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August 24, 2012 Volume 4, No. 9
New Zealand’s first Indian weekend magazine
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The Pulse of Kiwi Indians
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The noble linguist
It’s been quite a journey for Syed Mujeeb ever since he put his feet on Kiwi land. It was the first time that Mujeeb had even heard of New Zealand when his wife suggested the idea of settling here. And today, the man is the recipient of the coveted “Queen’s Service Medal” in the Queen’s Birthday and Diamond Jubilee Honours List 2012 for his dedicated contribution to the Muslim community in Auckland. The award will be presented to Mujeeb at the Investiture Ceremony on August 30 at the Government House, Auckland. “This award is a great honour for me, my family and my community. I really never thought that the government will recognise my services towards the community by honouring me with such a prestigious award,” says an overwhelmed Mujeeb. Hailing from Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh), this fiery journalist (who is a NZ correspondent for Hyderabad’s The Siasat Daily) migrated to NZ in 1996 and has been actively involved in various community activities since then. He even anchored the first Urdu radio programme in Auckland called Aaj Juma Hain, establishing an instant connect with both Muslims and Hindus among the Indian Community. He has served as the Vice-President of the New Zealand Muslim League and is currently the General Secretary of the Urdu Hindi Cultural Association of New Zealand. The latter, which started in November last year, was revived from the decades old local Hyderabad Association that’s remained inactive all this while. “My passion is to serve the communities and people of all religions and cultures to the best of my ability for the betterment of this beautiful country and its people,” Mujeeb informs, adding, “Indians mostly come here for work and are unable to give time for community activities. Hence, the decision to start the Urdu Hindi Cultural Association stemmed from the thought of bringing all Indians together irrespective of their religious background and to promote Urdu and Hindi languages in NZ.” In February, the association organised a unique three-in-one cultural evening consisting of Mushaira, Kavi Sammelan and Sham-e-Ghazal, much to a delightful response. “We are also coming up with a magazine, the first edition of which will be launched on September 2, 2012 and we also plan to start an Urdu-Hindi library soon along with an Urdu radio station,” Mujeeb reveals. The association is making every effort to keep us, Indians, rooted to our culture through the beauty of the country’s diverse languages. Way to go.
Syed Mujeeb, the proud recipient of the Queen’s Service Medal this year, is passionately promoting Urdu and Hindi languages in NZ through his Urdu Hindi Cultural Association
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Migrant workers network to combat exploitative practices
A new network to help migrant workers know their rights is timely, following a TV investigation this week of exploitative practises by employers of migrant workers, its organizers say. FIRST Union launched UNEMIG: Union Network of Migrants on Sunday, August 19, at the NZ Diversity Action Programme held at the Aotea Centre, Auckland. “Migrant workers are frequently victims of under legal minimum wage pay, abuse, discrimination, bullying and harassment in the workplace,” said Robert Reid, FIRST Union General Secretary. The launch follows Unite Union taking Burger King to the Employment Relations Authority, accusing the fast food giant of exploiting young migrant workers and running an anti-union campaign. The union says the company has carried out a "co-ordinated, unlawful and secret campaign" to undermine the union and its relationship with members, and had discriminated against members in their employment. It is seeking remedies and penalties amounting to more than $200,000. Antares Restaurant Group, which operates Burger King stores in New Zealand, told media it had not been advised of this grievance by either the union or the authority. Mike Treen, Unite's national director, said Burger King had "desperately resisted" signing a collective agreement with the union and was the last major fast food company to do so. "They have always actively discouraged members from joining and because of that fact, have been successful in keeping their wages below those of their competitors," Mr Treen said. Mr Treen said many of the victims were migrant workers from the Philippines and India, many of whom were fearful of speaking up as they depended on their jobs to qualify for residency. "Many staff are given work permits as students ... but to get an offer for permanent residence they need to be offered a manager's job," he said. Employee of six years Lalit Sood claimed he and other staff faced pressure from management to leave the union and he was forced to "work like a slave". "I've always been treated very badly ... and just because I get paid a fixed salary, they expect me to work long hours and all sorts of hours," Mr Sood said. “Unions exist to protect and advance the collective interests of workers, and it is our duty to make sure that migrant workers’ rights are protected,” Robert Reid said. Dennis Maga, FIRST Union UNEMIG coordinator, said the network is assisting migrant workers with employment and immigration matters, holding education events and supporting migrant workers to network with others. “The TVNZ feature exposed the complete lack of enforcement of migrant workers rights, because there is no government agency actively investigating conditions for migrant workers,” said Dennis Maga, formerly a union official in the Philippines. “Migrant workers don’t complain about their employers for fear of losing their job and working visa. They don’t want to be deported, so aren’t able to speak out. They mostly only react to their exploitation once dismissed – and it is very expensive for them to get legal support.” “By forming UNEMIG, there is now a body that can investigate exploitative practises and support migrant workers to access the decent work and conditions they are entitled to,” Dennis Maga said.
Search on for NZ’s top teacher
The search has begun to find New Zealand’s most inspiring teacher and recognise the thousands of teachers who go above and beyond the call of duty. To reward the astounding contribution of our nation’s teachers, Warehouse Stationery is calling for students and their parents to nominate teachers who always give 110 per cent. This year builds on the phenomenal success of last year’s inaugural search, which attracted more than 1100 entries nationwide. It was so successful that this year’s search has been extended to include Early Childhood teachers, as well as Primary and Secondary school teachers. “We all know how hard teachers work and we launched this competition last year as a means to recognise all those teachers who consistently go the extra mile to make learning-time a rich and rewarding experience,” says Cathy Atkins, Warehouse Stationery head of marketing. A survey of 300 teachers found that nearly all of them work during the weekend, helping out at sports events, cultural groups, musical productions and use their spare time to catch up on the previous week. More than half of teachers surveyed also spent at least 10 hours a week after school catching up on marking, lesson plans and other administration. The survey also found that most teachers spend their own money, over $400 on average, on school related expenses such as classroom stationery (71%), classroom art supplies (46%) and breakfast or lunch for needy students (20%). Thirty teachers from Early Childhood, Primary and Secondary schools will share in $30,000 worth of classroom supplies from Warehouse Stationery. One of these teachers will be named New Zealand’s Most Inspiring Teacher 2012 and receive a grand prize including a $5000 holiday. Recognising an inspirational teacher is easy and everyone who nominates a teacher goes into the draw to win a Samsung Galaxy 2 Tablet worth $559. Simply visit www.inspiringteachers. co.nz before Friday, September 23, to find out more. Winners of the Warehouse Stationery’s Most Inspiring Teachers search will be announced on the 15th of October.
Migrants happy but don’t assimilate into Kiwi society
Nearly all recent migrants are happy with life in New Zealand, but the majority don't make Kiwi friends, a survey shows. At the last Census, 37 per cent of Auckland's population was born overseas and the Immigration Settlement Monitoring Programme Migrants Survey 2011, released recently, shows 55 per cent of foreigners had none or one New Zealand mate. The survey, by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), also found 22 per cent of migrants didn't even socialise with any New Zealanders, compared with 41 per cent who did. Those less likely to hang out with Kiwis were from north Asia and Southeast Asia, while the British, Irish and North America were most likely. The top reason for migrants moving to New Zealand was to be with family, a partner or friends, followed by the relaxed pace of life and the environment. The country's clean, green environment was the aspect that was most likely to exceed migrants' expectations. Being made welcome and safety from crime also rated highly. But New Zealand didn't impress with its quality of housing, salaries and cost of living. Despite this, around 70 per cent of recent migrants wanted to stay permanently in New Zealand and 89 per cent would recommend New Zealand to friends and family. Labour and Immigration Research head Vasantha Krishnan said the research showed labour market participation for recent migrants was generally positive as 70 per cent were in paid employment. "This is an encouraging sign that migrants are integrating well into the labour force," she said. The purpose of monitoring programme is to improve the ministry's understanding of migrants' settlement and the labour market. Survey results are also used by Immigration New Zealand to develop and present information used to attract potential migrants. The majority of people surveyed came from north Asia, followed by Britain and Ireland, and the rest of Europe. Thirty-one per cent of migrants were between the ages of 25 and 29, while 24 per cent were between the ages of 25 and 29.
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Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Study to Work Visa – A review
RAJ PARDEEP SINGH & ASHIMA BUDGOOJAR
Immigration has always been a concern to all the migrants. Now a days I getting queries from lots of current students and they are very much concerned about their future. What will happen to their visa, under which visa category they can apply? Why there are so many work visa categories? I want to through some light on the student’s issues. Requirements under the Study to Work category First of all work visa is temporary visa which allows Student to work temporarily in New Zealand Students may be eligible for a temporary work visa if: If Student are studying in New Zealand and Student want to stay and work here after Student have completed Studentr studies, Student may be eligible for a work visa under WD1 Work on completion of a course of study, with an offer of employment or WD2 Graduate job search work visa without offer of employment. All applicants need to meet our health and character requirements. The other requirements Student need to meet depend on whether Student have a job offer. a New Zealand professional association which requires more than two years of relevant practical work experience. Student will need to provide evidence that: ● Student have a job offer that is relevant to Student’s qualification, and ● Student have successfully completed a course in New Zealand that took at least three years to complete, or ● Student has successfully completed a qualification in New Zealand that would qualify for points under the Skilled Migrant Category of our Residence policy. Student’s application for a work visa must be made no later than three months after the end date of Student’s student visa for that course or qualification, unless Student holds a Graduate Job Search Work Visa. We will apply conditions to Student’s Work Visa that relate to Student’s practical experience. Students without a job offer If Student are a student who has completed a qualification in New Zealand, but Student do not have a job offer, Student may be eligible for a Graduate Job Search Work Visa for a maximum of 12 months. Then, when Student has found a job, Student can apply for a further visa for up to two or three years under the Study to Work category. To be eligible for a Graduate Work Search Visa Student must: ● have successfully completed a qualification in New Zealand that would qualify for points under the Skilled Migrant Category ● apply no later than three months after the end date of the student visa for that qualification ● provide evidence of a minimum of NZ$2,100 available to maintain Student during Student’s 12-month stay in New Zealand Immigration New Zealand accepts traveler’s cheques or bank documents in Student’s name). Student who holds Limited purpose student visa can not apply above visas. In my experience some students who have studied a National Certificate, National Diploma, New Zealand Diploma or a New Zealand Institute of Management qualification have been providing the incorrect qualification certificates with their applications. Students need to provide NZQA or NZIM qualification certificates with the work visa applications. So to avoid any delays, please provide the correct documents to INZ. Please talk to education provider in the first instance, if Student has qualified for this award then Student’s provider can apply to NZQA/NZIM for Student’s qualification certificate. For immigration queries please contact the writer. RAJ PARDEEP SINGH & ASHIMA BUDGOOJAR Barrister & Solicitor Kenton Chambers Lawyers Ph: +64 9 358 1900 Fax: +64 9 358 1903 Website: www.kentonlaw.co.nz Level 8, 300 Queen Street, Auckland Central. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org / ashima@ kentonlaw.co.nz
If Student are applying for a three-year work visa because Student are working towards obtaining a membership or registration from a New Zealand professional association (such as the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants or the New Zealand Registered Architects Board), Student need to provide us with more evidence. ● Student must show that Student need membership or registration to fully perform Studentr professional duties. ● Student must show that the employment is considered relevant practical experience by the professional association. Evidence might include documentation from the professional Students with a job offer If Student are a student with an offer of em- association, or from the employer, which says ployment relevant to Studentr qualification, how the employment meets the association’s Student may be eligible for a work visa and for requirements. ● Student must show that Student New a maximum period of: Zealand qualification meets the requirements ● two years; or ● three years, if Student are working towards for registration or membership of the profeskenton-chambers.pdf 1 8/21/2012 9:57:49 PM obtaining a membership or registration from sional association.
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Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
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After 10 years, the Shri Shirdi Saibaba Sansthan of NZ Inc is finally on track in its mission to begin work on its new temple in Princes Street, Onehunga. “We are finally getting there,” Sanstahan president Hari Gangisetty said. “Today is a historic day for the Sansthan,” said Gangisetty, referring to the August 20 start date of the construction work. The building contract was signed on August 19, and the construction started the following day. The targeted completed date is 40 weeks from now, which is June 2013. Originally the fixed price contract of $2,765,000 was approved in the annual meeting on July 14. The executive committee and temple committee negotiated it down to $2,700,000, thereby saving $65,000.
The executive committee, on the recommendation of the Temple Committee, authorised the president, vice-president, secretary and treasurer to sign the contract with the builder, Shakti Construction Ltd. “What has been achieved today is only because of each one of you. Over the last 10 years since the Sansthan's inception every one of us has had only one common goal, that of having Baba's Mandir. The dream is soon to be a reality,” Gangisetty said. “We will be updating construction progress on a regular basis. “This is an exciting phase for the Sansthan. We value your continued support and appreciate your input in making this happen. “May Baba bless all of us with positive attitude which brings strength, energy and initiative. Let the countdown begin.” www.shirdisaibaba.org.nz
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Support for 6000 owners of changed properties
Auckland Council has announced a grant for as many as 6000 ratepayers who are ineligible for rates capping or phasing. The Strategy and Finance Committee recently agreed to a grant scheme that will allow some ratepayers with so-called ‘changed properties’ to receive the same rates transition benefits as if they hadn’t altered their properties. The rates transition policy was adopted by the council earlier this year to smooth the impact of the government requirement for the introduction of a single rating system for Auckland based on capital value. It limits rates increases for most residential ratepayers to 10 per cent and decreases to 5.6 per cent. “Bringing together the rating systems of eight former councils has presented a number of challenges,” Mayor Len Brown said. “Legislation precludes our transition policy being applied to changed properties. This grant scheme will benefit almost 5400 homeowners and approximately 600 businesses. “Council is focused on implementing the government’s changes with the least possible impact on households and businesses. We have set the average rates increase at 3.6 per cent – any movement of rates above or below that mark is a direct result of the legislation,” Mr Brown said. To be eligible for the grant scheme properties must meet the following criteria: * have been renovated, * or had an additional separately used or inhabited part added, or * another change of a similar nature, i.e. an additional room or increased floor area or * a combination of the above. The grant would not be available to changed properties that are considered: * new builds * new properties created as a result of a subdivision * properties that, as a result of a change in use, fall into a different classification, e.g. a residential property that becomes a business. The cost of the scheme is estimated at $6 million and will be met in the 2013/14 annual budget. Its administration costs will be absorbed within existing budgets. Eligible owners of changed properties will be advised by letter within the next couple of weeks; if they have already paid their rates in full, any difference will be reimbursed by cheque. Those who have not paid will have their rates instalments adjusted accordingly.
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Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Orientation week at NZTC
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nztc's chief executive selena fox welcomes the new staff and students
New Zealand Tertiary College’s new international students have been given a week-long orientation. The process began with a pōhiri ceremony at NZTC’s Greenlane Campus alongside new staff members on the 7th of August. This traditional Maori custom signifies the coming together of two separate groups to form one whānau (family). Chief Executive Selena Fox congratulated the students, hailing from China, Japan, Korean, India and Fiji, on choosing to start their early childhood journey with New Zealand Tertiary College. “In your days ahead you will receive strong support, you will be challenged, you will grow and learn and you will be encouraged and expected to give of yourself.” She finished by noting that August was the College’s Values Month and explained the values of Vision, Heart, Competence and Spirit. Members of the College’s Steering Committee introduced themselves and welcomed the students. Qiang Liu, a new International student from China, thanked the College for the welcome on behalf of his peers and Deryk Thompson, NZTC’s new Academic Registrar, spoke on behalf of the new staff. The newcomers then sang Te Aroha before moving forward to exchange a hongi with key staff. After a morning tea the students were given presentations on what to expect when living and studying in Auckland. The following Tuesday, the International Team took the students out on various modes of transport to familiarise them with their new city. They boarded a train from Greenlane to Britomart Transport Centre, in the Auckland CBD where they were shown where to pick up free timetables and maps. The group walked around the city centre and down to Viaduct Harbour, before boarding a bus to the Auckland Museum. In the lunchroom the students were divided into groups and performed short dances and songs. All of the students, including two men, showed great potential as future early childhood educators. Finally they took a bus back to the Greenlane campus.
The new international students at the Viaduct Harbour
For more information on studying one of NZTC’s specialist early childhood programs please call (09) 520 4000 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Staff and students exchanging hongi
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Bhartiya Samaj Charitable Trust celebrated India’s 66th Independence Day amidst much fanfare on August 12. Organised at the ASB theatre, Aotea Centre, the celebration began with the flag hoisting ceremony by the guest of honour, Prof. C.S. Benjamin followed by a musical treat by the Caribbean Steel Band and Desi Dhol. The musical extravaganza was taken forward by a grand cultural programme showcasing the rich cultural heritage of India. With the theme of ‘Unity in Diversity’ running through, the programme consisted of vibrant performances, showcasing traditions from different states of the country, by various community organisations, music & dance academies and cultural groups. Among the dignitaries present were, Hon. Melissa Lee, the Parliamentary Secretary of Ethnic Affairs (representing the Rt. Hon. John Key, Prime Minister) and colleagues from National list, Hon. Kanwaljit Bakshi & Hon Dr. Jackie Blue. Also representing the Labour list were Hon. David Shearer, the leader of Labour, Hon Dr. Rajen Prasad and Hon. Phil Goff. Rt. Hon Winston Peters, the leader of NZ First and Hon Le’au Asenati Lole-Taylor also attended the event among other members of Parliament, councillors, members of Local Council Board, Ethnic Panel members, various business and community leaders.
A multicultural bonanza for India’s 66th Independence Day
Pak-Kiwis celebrate Pakistan's 66th Independence Day
Independence Day of Pakistan on Tuesday, August 14, 2012, at Mount Eden War Memorial Hall in Auckland. A pretty large number of the community members jubilantly participated in the programme with passionate feelings. Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, JP, National List MP was the Chief Guest on the occasion. In his inaugural speech, Naveed Hameed, President of the Association, briefly apprised the participants of the struggles and sacrifices made by their forefathers in making the movement of Pakistan's Independence a success. “The country was one of the foremost nations to be granted independence from colonial rules, after the World War II and the formation of the UNO”, he said. He specifically mentioned that it was the 27th of Ramadan on August 14, 1947 when Pakistan emerged as an independent country on the global map, and fortunately today it is 26th of Ramadan when we are celebrating its 65th anniversary with all zeal and spirit. Welcoming his good friend Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, Hameed said that Bakshi has always been supporting the right cause of Pak-New Zealanders, both in parliament and in public. Speaking on the occasion, Bakshi gave an outline of various programmes, plans and steps of the National government to improve the country’s economic situation and stressed on the removal of hurdles in way of implementation of important infrastructure development plans in the coming years. He urged the people coming from the Indian sub-continent to look for jobs in the mining and oil exploration industries being set up in nearby rural districts of New Zealand, where he promised higher per capita income in comparison to Auckland. Hameed assured that Pakistani immigrants are proud of becoming Pak-Kiwis and they are committed to fostering the economic development of New Zealand with dedicated hard work and positive commercial activities. He also acknowledged the support of the sponsors of the programme and thanked all participants, who in spite of being amidst fasts for the holy month of Ramadan, came to celebrate the Independence Day of their homeland.
Pakistan Association of New Zealand Incorp. (PANZ), a representative body of Pakistani community in New Zealand, celebrated the 65th
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The Trustees of "Friends of Fiji Health" would like thank everyone for the fantastic support shown for our annuual fundraising dinner last month. It was a great night. Without your ongoing support our missions would not be possible
Background FOFH is a NZ registered Charitable Trust which was incorporated in July 2010 under the Charitable Trust Act 1957. The Trust is administered by 6 Medical Specialists and 7 Non-medical Professionals - all formerly from Fiji. The main objectives of the Trust are as follows: "To establish a volunteer medical team of Specialist Doctors, Nurses, Therapists, Psychologists, Dentists, Optometrists, Anaesthetist Technicians and without limiting to any other or all types of healthcare, medical and surgical fields to travel to Fiji from time to time to provide free Healthcare, Medical and Surgical complementary and/or supplementary services within the existing framework at any Fiji public based hospital to the needy citizens of Fiji. To provide training and education to the local healthcare providers in Fiji, and wherever possible, provide healthcare, medical and surgical equipment and instruments to Fiji hospitals." Two valuable points worth noting about FOFH 1. For every ONE DOLLAR that FOFH raises, on average, it is providing EIGHTEEN DOLLARS worth of medical services to Fiji. 2. FOFH runs on ZERO ADMINISTRATION COST - the trustees meet this cost from their own pockets. visit our website: www.fofh.co.nz.
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Same-sex marriage bill opposed
Prominent community groups have come out against the proposed same-sex marriage bill about to enter debate in Parliament. Labour Party MP Louisa Wall’s bill will come up for conscience voting next month. New Zealand Central Indian Association president Paul Singh Bains, born in India, came to New Zealand in 1954. He is opposed to the bill. “Re: Marriage Amendment Bill - I am personally not in support of that bill,” Bains told Indian Weekender. “Ethically, I believe marriage as an institution is a bond and understanding between man and wife and should remain exclusively between (male and female). My personal advice to Indian members of Parliament is not to support that bill. “As president of NZICA, every conversation that I have been involved with in the Indian community is against the Amendment bill. Everyone voice grave concerns about the ethics of marriage between same-sex individuals,” Bains said. “It is against all ethical religous beliefs. It is unnatural and so unproductive thus cause for future dysfunctional relationships and families. What message are they sending children of the future? “In saying the above I have no problem with same-sex partnerships, but they should not be termed marriage. If I may say sexual relations should only be promoted as being healthy between male and female. Consideration and thought should be given that we are after all human beings and not animals or some other unidentified creatures. We should not propose to be so un-natural. In its submission to the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill, the Urdu Hindi Cultural Association of New Zealand said the organisation had “serious concerns” about the bill. “The above organisation represents members from various cultural, ethnic and religious backgrounds,” association president Nafis Akhtar said. “The members have some serious concerns about this Member’s Bill on the following grounds: Under the explanatory note, the general policy statement states that ‘this Bill amends the Marriage Act 1955 (the principal Act) to ensure that its provisions are not applied in a discriminatory manner.’ It further states that “marriage as a social institution, is a fundamental human right and limiting that human right to one group of society only does not allow for equality”. “We strongly dispute that marriage is a social institution only,” Akhtar said. “For most of our members, it is a religious and/or civil sacrament and has inherent expectation of procreation. “Same sex marriage goes against this very fundamental belief that we hold very dearly. It is a relationship that is recognized across cultures, countries and religions. “If the proposed amendment is to be used as a basic human right and as the main driving force behind the proposed amendment, then it will create further discriminations instead of rectifying the ‘current inequality’. “The law also needs to take into account other groups of people who may also want to exercise their wish/right to a legal marriage, for example people in a polygamous relationship. “Thus, the proposed act can be challenged at a later date to include polygamous marriages which are also viewed as a ‘social institution’ by many. If a definition of marriage can be amended once, what is to stop it being amended again.” The submission urged MPs to vote against this bill for the following reason: * Marriage is a religious and/or civil sacrament and in most ancient traditions is a sacred practice between two genders which has procreation as one of the key outcome of this union. Historically Marriage Act recognises the biological difference between the two genders and accepts a union between two genders. The Civil Union Act 2004 recognises the union between two people irrespective of their gender and sexual orientation. * Civil Union Act provides most if not all the legal rights to an individual. The only key difference we see is the right to adopt children is afforded to the Civil Union relationships. In that case, the Act that needs to be amended is not the Marriage Act but the Adoption Act. * It is our contention that amendment to the Marriage Act 1955 is unnecessary and does not address the issue of discrimination as it will set precedent for other types of social relationships to be recognised as marriage e.g. polygamous relationship. Meanwhile, the New Zealand First Party has renewed calls for a binding referendum to allow the public to have its say on same sex marriage. Party leader Winston Peters says the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill does not adequately address the issues and a two-question referendum is required. • “We need to let the public say whether the definition of marriage should be changed to include same sex couples. • “We should also be asking if the Civil Union Act should be amended to allow Civil Union couples the same rights as married couples.” Peters said no political party campaigned strongly for same-sex marriage during the 2011 election, so there was no clear answer as to what New Zealanders wanted. “These are issues of public morality and thus it should be for the public to decide, not temporarily empowered politicians, particularly those MPs who are adamant that the public should not have its say. “A referendum is the only way to accurately gauge what the country wants. “If Louisa Wall believes she has the public’s support, she should be willing to amend her Bill to first include a referendum held at the same time, for example, as the Asset Sales referendum,” Peters said. Also, MPs from the Labour Party's South Auckland strongholds are divided over a bill which would legalise same-sex marriage, with two concerned it could seriously hurt the party's support in its heartland electorates. Labour MP for Mangere Su'a William Sio said he would oppose fellow Wall's bill and called for it to be withdrawn. Mangere was one of three crucial Labour electorates in South Auckland, and he felt the wide opposition from constituents to the bill, particularly from Pacific Islanders, could cost the party at the next election. Ms Wall, who represented the Manurewa electorate, said she felt much of the opposition was based on misunderstandings of the legislation - one Pacific pastor had told her he "would rather go to jail than marry two people of the same sex".
750,000 participating in national earthquake drill
More than 750,000 people are participating in New Zealand’s biggest ever earthquake drill, New Zealand ShakeOut. The Director of Civil Defence Emergency Management, John Hamilton said the aim is to have 1 million people do the “Drop, Cover and Hold” earthquake drill at 9:26-26:9 (9:26am on September 26, 2012). “With six weeks to the drill we are well on the way to our target but there is still a way to one million,” Mr Hamilton said. Taking New Zealand’s population as 4.4 million, the target of one million is 23 per cent of the population. Currently, 17 per cent of the country has registered for New Zealand ShakeOut. Crucial to the success of New Zealand ShakeOut is organisations and people joining and encouraging others to be involved. To help that happen, the campaign is working with businesses, local government, schools, central government agencies and other organisations. The biggest category of registrations to date is schools, which is as expected. The second biggest is businesses. “It is great to see businesses getting involved, with many of them looking at this as more than solely a drill. We have businesses looking at the earthquake safety of their buildings, planning and testing how they would operate after an emergency, and considering the safety of customers and visitors to their sites.” The 9:26-26:9 earthquake drill is the focal point of New Zealand ShakeOut because it is a clear, simple action that people can take to help prepare themselves for an earthquake. It is also a first step, and it encourages people to look at their preparedness in more detail.
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Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
PM Key officially opens Sudima Auckland Airport
August 9, 2012 saw the official inauguration of Sudima Auckland Airport by The Right Honourable John Key. The event was attended by approximately 350 guests from various corporate and tourism-related organisations as well as several politicians including Dr. Pita Sharples. The event started with a Powhiri undertaken by Manawhenua, Te Aki tai, Ngati Te Ata, Te Ahiwaru, and Te Kawerau a Maki, and others of the Hapu of Tainui. Mr. Key was then invited to unveil a plaque commemorating the occasion and guests were welcomed into the hotel. Guests were greeted by students from Aorere College dressed in the traditional outfits of their heritage, showing a representation of the diverse and multicultural nature of New Zealand society. The group’s Director of Operations, Les Morgan, spoke about the success of the hotel thus far and the commitment to growing in the future. He then requested Mr Key to present the first annual Sudima Hotels New Zealand employee of the year award to Aiden Muggle-
ton, the Executive Housekeeper from Sudima Lake Rotorua. The CEO of the group, Sudesh Jhunjhnuwala then spoke, thanking staff and guests alike for their hard work. He invited the Chairman, Mr. L. N. Jhunjhnuwala, and Director, Mr. Dinesh Jhunjhnuwala to present Mr. Key with a cheque for $11,000 for the Christchurch Earthquake Relief Fund. Mr. Key then talked about the importance of tourism to the country and his commitment to continue to grow the sector. He was presented with a gift from Eru Thompson, a Kaumatua of Hapu Tanui to commemorate his birthday, and was invited to cut a birthday cake. After the speeches, students from Aorere College’s award-winning Sweet 16 choir performed while guests mingled and enjoyed a drink and nibbles. Hind Group is a long time property investor & hotel owner in this country. They currently operate three hotels under the “Sudima” brand and one self-contained apartment style property in Australia.
Eid-ul-fitr celebrations at the Parliament
Baby Show in Auckland in Oct
Tickets are now on sale for the Baby Show, which will bring a huge range of products and services to Auckland’s parents and parents-to-be from 26 to 28 October 2012 at the ASB Showgrounds. The Baby Show is the new brand of what was the Parent and Child Show (New Zealand’s most successful and popular parenting exhibition since 1993) and comes complete with a fabulously useful new website at www.babyshow.co.nz This event is a one-stop-shop that enables pregnant couples andparents of babies and pre-school children to browse, try out, and purchase hundreds of essential products and services directly from the companies that provide them. The show website has been completely redesigned to enable visitors to research the show before they go, check out the companies that are exhibiting, search for the products they need, and find show-only specials that will save them real money. The website also enables visitors to compile personalised itineraries and show floor plans they can print out or share via social media. There’ll be a huge range of top exhibitors at the show including Mumanu pregnancy pillows, Nuk breastfeeding equipment, Safe T Sleep sleepwraps, Babu merino babywear, Slumbersac baby sleeping bags, ‘4 in 1’ beds from The Cot Store, Features Forever baby casting, Dream Au Pair service, and heaps more. There will be a ton of big brands at the show too, like Pumpkin Patch, BabyFactory, Huggies, Mustella, Avent, The Sleep Store and Treasures. The show provides invaluable, FREE advice in the form of all-day seminars from leading parenting and early childhood experts. This year’s line-up includes TV personality and parenting guru Nigel Latta, ‘Green Smoothie’ advocate Victoria Boutenko, author of ‘Oh Baby’ Kathy Fray, ‘baby whisperer’ Sharlene Poole, Kitty Ho on infant massage and Samantha Thurlby-Brooks on sleeping comfortably in the third trimester. All of this amazing content is wrapped up in a low-pressure, family-friendly environment that offers lots of comforting and convenient extras beyond just awesome products and advice. There is FREE all-day entertainment on the main stage for the littlies, extra-wide aisles so buggies can pass in both directions without snarl-ups, rest areas dotted throughout the show, and a well-equipped parenting room for nappy changing, feeding and chilling out. Buy your ticket online and save – online tickets are only $13, gates sales are $15. Go to www.babyshow.co.nz
Members of the Muslim community in New Zealand joined with others at the Parliament on Tuesday, August 21 to celebrate the Islamic festival of Eid-ul-fitr (Eid). Eid-ul Fitr is a festival of feasts, celebrated by Muslims all over the world when the fasting month of Ramadan is completed. The Minister for Ethnic Affairs, Judith Collins hosted the celebrations in the Banquet Hall at Parliament, joined by the Prime Minister, John Key. “New Zealand’s Muslim community is represented by more than 40 ethnicities, following the arrival of the first Muslims as Chinese gold miners in 1874. For members of the Muslim community, Eid is about celebrating the special meaning of Islam in their lives,” Ms Collins said. “For the wider New Zealand society, Eid is about acknowledging the valuable way that
Muslim people continue to contribute to New Zealand’s religious, cultural and ethnic landscape,” she added. There are around 36,000 Muslims in New Zealand – most are based in Auckland and are of Fijian-Indian extraction. In addition to immigrants from India, Africa and the Middle East there are around 1000 Māori and 1000 Pacific peoples who identified themselves as Muslim in the 2006 Census. The Director of the Office of Ethnic Affairs, Mervin Singham said: “We need people from diverse backgrounds to be familiar to each other, to respect each other’s strengths and to share some common values and understanding. When we connect at public celebrations such as Eid, and work together using our unique attributes, we can achieve a lot together,” he said.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
First Maori-Indian hui picks up pace
The first Hui of Maori Indians with the theme “Coming together, working together, growing together” is gathering momentum. An organising committee, comprising of academics, scientists, project managers, lawyers and business people of Maori-Indian origin, has been formed to organise the first gathering. People from Auckland, Hamilton, Rotorua, Whakatane, Opotiki, Kawhia, and Wellington have shown interest in attending the first Hui. They are also interested in bringing their whanau (family) with them. Hindu Council of New Zealand, in association with International Centre for Cultural Studies (ICCS Aotearoa), is organising the first Hui (gathering) at the Tangatarua Marae, Waiariki Institute of Technology campus, Rotorua from Friday, 5 October to Sunday, 7 October 2012. There are two interesting facts about Tangatarua marae. First, Tangatarua translates to "two peoples" and strongly symbolises the bicultural nature of the people who will participate in this first Hui of Maori Indians. Second, this marae was carved by Lyonel Grant, a Maori-Indian himself, who descended from an Indo-Maori marriage between his grandparents. In addition to cultural and social sessions during the Hui, there is also an excellent line of speakers for the academic session. The speakers include: • D r Edwina Pio, an Associate Professor at the Business School of AUT University, Auckland with research interests at the intersection of management, ethnicity, wisdom and pedagogy. • Dr Lorna Dyall, a senior lecturer at Te Kupenga Hauora Maori, the Division of Maori Health, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, Auckland University and with research focused on improving Maori health and wellbeing, Gambling and Mental health. “The initial idea of this gathering was to bring like-minded people of Maori-Indian origin together to improve the networking between them,”said Dr Guna Magesan, General Secretary, Hindu Council of New Zealand, and also the co-ordinator of this first Hui. Waitiahoaho Emery from Rotorua and Raewyn Bhana from Auckland are the joint co-ordinators of the Hui. They are supported by a strong organising committee. “Looking at the quality of people attending the Hui, we decided to change it to a conference structure, with more expected outcomes from this gathering,” said Waitiahoaho Emery, the joint co-ordinator of the Hui. The official programme starts at 4pm on Friday, 5 October 2012, with a powhiri (official Maori welcome). The two-day gathering will provide the participants to learn more about Hindu culture. There will be workshops on vegetarian cooking, Rangoli (traditional Hindu decorative art), “Mehndi-Moko” (temporary henna tattoo) where both Maori and Hindu designs will be taught, yoga, and ladies will have an opportunity to learn saree wearing. During the deliberations, participants will share their experiences. Social sessions dealing with issues specific to Maori Indians, for example, identity and acceptance issues that some individuals may have faced, will be of special interest. “We are also encouraging all Maori-Indian people to write an essay about their family which will be published as part of conference proceedings/ souvenir”, Raewyn Bhana, the joint coordinator of the Hui. "This Hui has given us the Maori-Indian people to feel proud of their heritage – both Maori and Indian," Ms Bhana added. This Hui also brings the Maori Indian community together, stay in the Marae together, have a vegetarian kai (food) together and know each other better. Those who are interested in attending this first gathering of Maori Indians need to register their names with email@example.com Please note that there will be a minimal registration fee (koha) to cover food, accommodation, and knowledge sharing. This gathering will be a smoke-free, alcohol-free and meat-free event. This gathering is one more step forward in Hindu-Maori whakawhanaungatanga (relations). The Hindu Council of New Zealand believes in the spirit of community well-being on the principle of “Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam” (World is one family). Event: First gathering of Maori Indians Location: Tangatarua Marae Waiariki Institute of Technology campus Rotorua Date: Friday, October 5 to Sunday October 7, 2012 Contact to register interest email firstname.lastname@example.org For more information, please contact Waitiahoaho Emery (joint co-ordinator) 021 277 7354 or (07) 346 8948; Raewyn Bhana (joint co-ordinator) 027 551 3225 or (09) 278 9266 Dr Guna Magesan (Hui co-ordinator) 021 034 5621.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Business group elects new executive
The Mt Roskill Business & Community Groups Association (MRBCGA) recently elected its new executive committee at its annual meeting. Secretary Ganesh Rao thanked members for “your firm committment of providing various services to the association is appreciated”. “Thanks to all members of the executive committee who served this association for 18 months since its inception in December 2010. “The past president Richard Prakash's tireless services was appreciated by the audiance. Thanks to Rajesh Jariwalla , Mobile Mortgage Manager, Westpac, for efficiently conducting the proceedings, relating to the election of new committee members at the AGM.” The following members were elected to the new executive committee. 1) Dr Lingappa Kalburgi (President) 2) Sanjeev Toora (Vice-President) 3) Ganesh Rao (Secretary) 4) Agnes Granada (Treasurer) 5) Brenda Jones (Exe. Comm. Member) 6) Irene Prakash (Exe. Comm. Member) 7) Paresh Patel (Exe. Comm. Member) 8) Priyan Rajapaksa (Exe. Comm. Member) 9) Peyton Jacinto (Exe. Comm. Member) 10) Bharat Patel (Exe. Comm. Member) 11) Dr Shiv Kumar (Exe. Comm. Member) 12) Paul Tuafoe (Exe. Comm. Member)
Yesudas along with troupe in Auckland
Rave reviews of Padmashri Yesudas’ Australia concert have spurred ticket sales for the legend’s Auckland show scheduled for this weekend. “‘Fantastic… 100 per cent’ were just two of the early comments received from friends who attended the Brisbane concert of Dr Yesudas over the last weekend,” Auckland concert organiser, Suren Surendran, said. “The legends have already performed in various places in Australia --- Brisbane, Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney. The whole troupe will have ample opportunity to “rehearse” before their tour finale in Auckland on August 25,” Surendran added. Padmashri Yesudas is celebrating his 50 years (and 60,000 songs) in cine music industry with a Golden Jubilee World Tour.
Joining him in these celebrations is the ‘Nightingale of the South’, Padmashri K.S.Chithra, Vijay Yesudas and Shweta Mohan (daughter of Yesudas’ protégé, Sujatha Mohan). The concert will include a popular selection from the old and new Tamil, Malayalam and Hindi songs. The net proceeds of the concert will go towards Project HOPE, an initiative supporting the orphaned children from the civil war in Sri Lanka. “For those who have already got the tickets – be assured of a treat on the 25th,” Surendran assures. The tickets are available in all
price ranges ($40, $50, $75 & $125). You can either call Surendran on 021 952 747 or Ravi Muthu on 021 991 594, or mail to email@example.com Some of the local Auckland Indian shops like Spice Corner (Royal Oak), RRK Foods (Sandringham), Smart Deal Bazaar (Mt Roskill) and Spice Land (Panmure) also have $50 & $40 tickets. Tickets will also be available on the day, at the entrance of the concert.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Thank you for not smoking, says council
Auckland Council will take a non-regulatory approach to a smokefree policy for the city, it was agreed last week. The Regional Development and Operations Committee decided against a bylaw banning smoking but supported commitments made in the Auckland Plan and local board plans to reduce smoking in public places and council-controlled areas. Officers reported that a bylaw ban would cost $164,000 to develop and ongoing staff costs to enforce it. The Auckland Plan recommends working with central government and other agencies to investigate options for banning smoking in parks, swimming pools, public transport stops, sports grounds and entrances to public buildings. It supports the government’s goal of New Zealand becoming smoke-free by 2025. A non-regulatory policy, as recommended by the council’s Parks, Recreation and Heritage Forum, would enable coordination across the region and build on existing initiatives that include promotion of smokefree regional parks and facilities at Auckland Zoo, Eden Park and Mt Smart, smokefree signage at Northern Busway stations, and promotion of smokefree events. Councillor Ann Hartley, committee chair, said: “There’s evidence that non-regulatory or voluntary policies have produced positive results and we have to build on that approach. “Towns and cities up and down the country are wrestling with this issue and the practicalities and costs of enforcement through bylaws. Encouraging people not to light up in public places is less heavy-handed and most towns are opting for non-regulatory policies supported by signage and awareness. “Smoking is deemed an anti-social activity across much of society and is becoming self-regulating backed by the efforts of the government and organisations like the Cancer Society, Action on Smoking and Health and district health boards.” Local boards will receive the committee’s report, as decision-making about community facilities and local parks rests with them.
Ethnic New Zealanders deserve a fair go
Ethnic New Zealanders continue to face enormous barriers in the job market and in gaining access to basic public services - a situation that must be addressed, says Labour’s Ethnic Affairs spokesperson Rajen Prasad. His comments follow the Annual Diversity Forum in Auckland which came to a close this week. The forum discussed the findings of a Human Rights Commission report on structural and institutional discrimination. The report, titled A Fair Go for All, analysed the experiences of ethnic communities in health, education, justice and the public service. It found that not all New Zealanders, regardless of the colour of their skin, ethnicity or national origin got the same opportunity for good health, a good education, decent work and an adequate standard of living. “The report’s conclusion - that there are barriers to people of different ethnicities getting the same opportunities and the same outcomes as other New Zealanders - will come as no surprise to ethnic communities,” Rajen Prasad said. “Many ethnic New Zealanders are struggling to get ahead. At most of the ethnic events I attend I am approached by highly qualified people who can’t find work, let alone work in their field. “Many see this as the result of a personal failing. But this report sees the consistent poor performances as a failure of the institutions that provide the services and make decisions. This recognition of institutional discrimination is a breakthrough,” Rajen Prasad said. “The report refers to racial profiling as a process resulting in discrimination in the workforce. It suggests the solution may be building organisational commitment, being proactive, involving communities and developing targeted programmes. “I urge employers to take up these suggestions,” Rajen Prasad said. “Stories about doctors and engineers driving taxis are just some examples of people in work that is inconsistent with their qualifications. These are highly talented, well trained people and their skills should be recognised. “This is not a time for excuses but a time to find solutions that utilise the skills and talents represented in our ethnic communities,” Rajen Prasad said. Contact: Dr Rajen Prasad
A proposed smokefree policy will be reported back to the committee early next year.
Sisters’ Arangetram draws 700
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More than 700 people gathered recently to witness the Arangetram of Auckland sisters Yashee and Vanshee Kumar. Proud mum Reshmi Kumar said it was an enriching experience for the girls. The Bharatnatyam Rangpravesham in-
volves Nritta, the pure dance, and Nritya, display of emotions. The function was also attended by Labour MP Dr Rajen Prasad, who also addressed the audience.
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Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Education loan is a right of every student: Chidambaram
New Delhi: Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Saturday said an education loan is a right of every student and the officials with the public sector banks (PSBs) who are found rejecting a large number of applications may be penalised for denying the loans. “Bank account is a right of an individual. It is not a gift of a bank and bank loan is a right of every student,” Chidambaram told reporters here after meeting with the chiefs of public sector banks (PSBs) adding that the issue of education loans is close to his heart. “No application from a deserving candidate, if he/she meets the parameters, should be turned down by the (bank) officer receiving it. If a loan is not given, the decision can be taken only at one level higher to the officer receiving the loan application,” Chidambaram said. This was the first meeting between Chidambaram and the chiefs of PSBs since he took over charge of the finance ministry Aug 1. The agenda of meeting contained four issues relating to education loans including expansion, time-bound disposal of applications, education loans for meritorious students admitted under management quota and loans for professional diploma courses. According to Chidambaram, under the new policy if an increase in education loan rejections is detected then there can be punitive actions against the branch manager. “One case of application rejection or two cases may be an oversight issue, but if the branch reaches a critical number like five or ten cases of rejection then there can be action against the manager,” said Chidambaram. “It is very important that every students who meets the parameter must get a loan because it's a right.” The PSBs are working up on the modalities surrounding the Budget announcement of a credit guarantee fund for education loans. They are also working on a mechanism for rating of institutions, courses and students for loan disbursement.
PM, Sonia attend Vilasrao funeral
Latur, Maharashtra: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi joined the funeral of former Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh who was cremated with full state honour on August 15. In the presence of thousands of his followers and the top political leaders and Bollywood personalities, Deshmukh was cremated at his Babhalgaon village in Latur district of Maharashtra in the evening. It is from Latur that Deshmukh had began his political career with win in panchayat election and as a sarpanch. The last rites were performed by Deshmukh's eldest son Amit Deshmukh, who is an MLA from Latur. Besides the PM and Sonia Gandhi, also present at the funeral were union ministers like Sushil Kumar Shinde, Sharad Pawar, Praful Patel and Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan. Deshmukh, who was the Union Minister of Science and Technology, and Earth Sciences, breathed his last in a Chennai hospital on Tuesday. He was 67. Deshmukh’s body was brought to Latur, his home district, by a special flight in the morning. The body was kept there to allow people to pay their last respects and then was taken to Babhalgaon village where it was kept for a while at his ancestral home. Deshmukh's funeral was conducted with full state honours. Deshmukh was suffering from a serious liver ailment and failure of multiple organs and the end came at 1.40 pm on Aug 14. Deshmukh was survived by his wife Vaishali and three sons, including his more famous Bollywood actor son Riteish Deshmukh. His other two sons are Amit Deshmukh, an MLA from Latur city, and Dheeraj.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Northeast exodus ignites flames between India and Pakistan
ThroNgs oF youNgsTers hAIlINg From NorTheAsT INdIA WAITed For hours To CATCh A TrAIN To guWAhATI From kolkATA’s hoWrAh sTATIoN oN sATurdAy, Aug 18 AFTer They Fled CITIes lIke puNe, bANgAlore ANd hyderAbAd FeArINg reperCussIoNs oF The AssAm vIoleNCe
New Delhi: Thousands of northeast Indians residing in Pune, Hyderabad, Bangalore and other cities fled to their home states this week after reports and rumours of imminent attacks on them stemming from the ethnic violence in Assam. The number of people fleeing Karnataka appeared to subside on Saturday after the police made several arrests and chief minister Jagadish Shettar promised order, however the exodus from Pune and Hyderabad continued, media reports said. Islamabad on Saturday denied charges that elements in Pakistan spread false rumours that caused northeast Indians to panic and flee from southern and western India over fears of a retaliation for ethnic violence in Assam. Indian Home Secretary R K Singh told reporters late Saturday that investigators had found that Pakistani websites used images of people killed in cyclones and earthquakes and passed them off as Muslims killed in violence earlier this year to spread fear of revenge attacks. SUNDAY TO WEDNESDAY Most of the images had been uploaded from Pakistan and sites have been blocked now, Singh said, adding that even the majority of threatening mobile phone text messages that spread panic among northeast Indian people originated from the neighbouring country. “Bulk of these messages and these clips have their origin in our western neighbour, in Pakistan. Bulk of these have been uploaded in various websites in Pakistan. We have set up two units to monitor all the websites. 34 websites have been identified so far,” Singh said. He said the issue would be taken up with Pakistan. But Pakistan on Sunday rejected the 3/33 TAMAKI DRIVE, MISSION BAY, AUCKLAND charges. “No bulk SMS PH: 09 528 3856 FAX: 09 528 3853 messages to India on Assam have originated E: INFO@JEWELOFINDIA.CO.NZ WWW.JEWELOFINDIA.CO.NZ from Pakistan. I told (Indian Home Minister Sushil Kumar) Shinde that Pakistan knows Assam issue only from media,” Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik told an India TV news channel. “We are not interested in internal matters of India. If at all any call initiated from Pakistan, please share evidence, we will take action and report back to Indian authorities soon. We want friendship, not these small tensions between two neighbouring countries,” he said, speaking to another news channel. Malik’s statement came after Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde on Sunday spoke with him over the issue of the messages and the websites. Shinde also sought Pakistan’s full cooperation in checking and neutralising such elements. About 30,000 people hailing from the northeast have left Bangalore, reports estimated, even as least as 21 people were said to have been arrested in the last two days on charges of rumour-mongering and assaults. At least 78 people were killed in the Assam violence between Bodos and Muslim settlers since July and countless were rendered homeless and sheltered in relief camps.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
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T H O U G H T
T H E
W E E K
A woman is the only thing I am afraid of that I know will not hurt me. - Abraham Lincoln, United States President, 16th President of the United States, 1809-1865
Equality and global harmony
Tradition is the great facilitator of discrimination. It is because of tradition that women were not allowed to vote in New Zealand until 1893. Similarly, Africans were legal slaves in America up til 1865. Through protest and hard work that these minorities rose to equality. The essence of the human spirit is freedom. Tradition is binding and restricting. It is caught up in definitions, regulations and control. Tradition fears freedom. Tradition fears innovation. Tradition has always been aware of the existence of homosexuality, but has always been reluctant to acknowledge it. Cultural and historical repression of same sex relations is a peculiar phenomenon. Homosexual relations have been recorded in the earliest histories of every civilisation, which, according to religious fundamentalists, is fine these days. It is the re-definition of marriage which has ruffled the feathers of the Indian community. Leaders of the Indian community such as Paul Singh Bains, president of New Zealand Indian Central Association, and Nafis Akhtar, of the Urdu Hindi Cultural Association of New Zealand, have both expressed their disapproval of Labour Party MP Louisa Wall’s Marriage Amendment Bill, citing reasons of religion discordance. The New Zealand government does not exist to support religious beliefs and practices. Religious fundamentalism has no place in politics and the governance of a current day democratic society. To say that the marriage of a homosexual couple goes against religious beliefs is a valid argument, but completely defunct in the eyes of the government of the first world country we live in. What we should be looking at instead is the identity crisis that this proposed bill has created. Each culture defines itself by defining the other. E.g They are not natural. They are sacrilegious. Therefore I am natural. I am holy. These groups feel that their collective identities are being undermined by the inclusion of same sex relationships in marital practice. Well, homosexual identity has been undermined by fundamentalism for a long time. Now this bill seeks to legitimise their identity by giving them the same sense of freedom and empowerment that heteronormative society has always had. Religions preach peace and love yet its members experience tremendous discomfort when asked to love something they are not familiar with. Open marriage brings our society one step closer to true equality. To let same sex couples remain on the fringes of society, to deprive them the same rights as a heterosexual couple is to continue in the harrowing tradition of oppression of fellow human beings. These oppressive traditions need to be abolished. Even if the bill does not go through, same sex couples will still go on existing as they always have. As cliché as it sounds, love does not care for laws. Where religion views marriage as a holy spiritual union, the government only sees a document. Whether you think that marriage is a holy union sanctioned by God or a man-made cultural institution, it stands to be changed because it is no longer meeting the needs of our society today. People are craving worldly awareness, equality and global harmony. Your God is your own business. Move with the times.
* Manisha Anjali is a writer based in Auckland
Laborious route to govern
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Mommy and Daddy from the Labour party seem to be caught in the middle of yet another drama. The working relationship between David Cunliffe and David Shearer has been rather prominent in the media since the latter was appointed the new leader of the Labour party back in December last year. It was no secret that Cunliffe believed that the new leader was inexperienced, and not ready to take on the role. He has been widely quoted as saying that he was “ready now” for the position whereas Shearer would need to mature in politics before undertaking the leadership. During the in-party election last year both contenders had different goals for the party. Cunliffe went down the road of saying that his first priority would have been to “reunite the caucus” followed by earning back the confidence and the trust of New Zealanders reaching out to provincial and rural areas. Shearer also placed importance on the renewal of the party stating that success depended on building and maintaining connections with New Zealanders. He further talked about Labour’s core philosophy being “opportunity for all” and focussing on closing the gap between the rich and the poor. They remain empty promises as so far neither Shearer nor Labour has pulled out the big guns. We see high ranking MPs such as Shane Jones, Jacinda Ardern and Cunliffe holding their ground and not giving their opposing leaders any issues expect for Ardern and the Maggie Barry debacle. Labour has not given New Zealanders the new and fresh front line that was promised nor have they really done anything to attract voters to the party. Really at this point, I’d like to yell out from the rooftops, “Labour, WHERE ARE YOU?” The array of comments against Shearer’s leadership has only increased in the last week as Labour MPs criticised Cunliffe to TV3 Political Editor Duncan Garner. The public airing of these comments on Garner’s blog only lead to further critique of the Labour party as Shearer was publicly reproached on the blogosphere for not responding to the comments. This surely only contributed to Labour’s slight dip in the polls. An online petition has also been started asking Shearer to step down. That said however is doubtful as to whether the petition will garner enough attention to even pique his concern. Shearer finally addressed the Labour caucus on Tuesday 14th August instructing them to stop the “sideshows” and to make their portfolios the focus of comments. It took him long enough. Where does this leave the Cunliffe-Shearer drama? Well, at the moment it seems to be on hold with the former assuring the public that he was “very supportive” of Shearer’s leadership. The latter has been defending Cunliffe vehemently against all the negative comments made against him by the ABC camp (Anything But Cunliffe). That said, Cunliffe’s ambition and desire to lead the party is still the subject of much conjecture further fuelled by the change in party rules to enabling trade union and party members to vote on the leadership. So we are left with an experienced but unpopular politician still not satisfied completely with the current circumstances and a clever, fresh faced yet inexperienced and often flat leader of the Labour party. Shearer won the in-party election mainly on his promise of a fresh face and a new plan of attack. Where is any of this now? As mentioned before, the front runners of his party have been taking a back seat and Shearer has really been the only one visible in the public eye. The Labour MPs need to follow David Parker’s lead in addressing the key issues that labour is concerned with such as the retirement age of 67 and the capital tax gains. All press is good press is not a mantra that they should live by. They need to stop wasting time on petty drama get their head in the game, discussing policy areas and their portfolios. Shearer really needs to step up his game if Labour wants to fight their way back into power in 2014. Sometimes, only good press is good press.
* Pooja Sundar is a law and politics student at the University of Auckland
Indian Weekender is published by Kiwi Media Group, 98 Great South Road, New Market and printed at APN Print, Ellerslie, Auckland Copyright 2010. Kiwi Media Group. All Rights Reserved.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Lead or let lead
My dear argumentative Indian, enough is enough. The ordinary Indian citizens have not been pushed this close to the wall ever in India's history, not even during the emergency. They keep reposing faith in a “personally honest PM” and get rewarded in terms of “coalition dharma, which means sale of nation for a wrong electoral mandate”. Then an honest CAG confronts Government of the day with facts and figures of the national loss, which is ridiculed as notional loss and zero loss by blue-eyed boys in the Government of the day. The Government itself validates the loss through a fresh pricing of the licences. When CAG gives report after report on various scams, Government learns how to dodge them and prevent a timely public debate. And there are scams involving the honest PM's own portfolio. Smaller countries pursue aggressively the menace of illegitimate money stashed away from their countries with a view to both bringing back the lost wealth to the nation's ex chequer and punishing the guilty. Government of the day tries to wish away its obligations to the country under non-existent compulsions of treaties and acts vigorously to bury the ugly past and worse allowing the guilty time and ample opportunity to move the illegitimate money away. Social activists demanding the right legal framework are “framed” in a multitude of allegations and along the course, a series of promises are made and broken. India mutely witnesses the rewards going to key persons for sabotaging the legislative action required to bring in the right kind of legal framework for an independent watchdog. It takes a yoga guru's seemingly endless series of agitations to keep the “show of public dismay over inaction on black money” going. And the citizens have to consume a most nontsia of the country shed its inhibitions against activists of “the lesser mortals” and follow whoever, who is able to lead the protests against the apathy and inaction of the Government. If all apolitical forces can come together there walks of life. If Gandhi had been isolated as a fakir with political ambitions for his own interests - no matter whether that was justified or not, a public perception was possible - nothing could have been achieved by us. My appeal to the argumentative Indian who is unwilling to step down from ivory towers and is too willing to belittle any agitator on the street is: Lead or let lead and, more importantly, follow the leaders who can catalyze the change you and your future generations desperately need. Do not forsake interests of your own country for the sake of your own ego and opinions on those who dare to question the wrong doings of successive Governments, none of your running commentary on the axis of perfection which will never materialise is an iota of service to the country, every agitator is doing a service to the country and her future generations no matter how much less informed he or she may be relative to the arm chair philosophers of the day. Not everyone can dream of giving this service to the nation. Give up your ego and be part of the force multiplier - no matter who gains from the change and who is coming to ask for the change for what reason, everyone knows the change is both inevitable and can no longer brook a deferment..
sensical debate that focuses on the very few civilians who want to make a difference to the most desperate situation in India's history including various tenures of hostile alien rulers. The hapless Indian citizens have been pushed closest to the wall. It is time the intelligen-
would be no need for the activists to become political or get aligned with politicians some of whom are very much part of the problem. Our freedom movement succeeded because, aside from certain circumstances, there was an inclusive participation from people from various
Enough is enough.
More health operations for New Zealanders, and faster
kANWAljIT sINgh bAkshI
More people are getting the operations they need, and they’re getting them faster, under National. We are committed to delivering better public services and this week saw positive signs of this in the health sector. New information from district health boards show an extra 7500 patients received elective surgeries in the past year – that’s more hip and knee replacements, more tonsillectomies, and more of all the other kinds of operations that greatly improve quality of life for Kiwis. This is the fourth year of record surgery increasing under National – over the past year, 153,000 people got the operations they needed. These strong results reflect the National-led Government’s focus on frontline services. We also understand the importance of people getting the operations they need, as soon as possible. We’ve put a particular focus on patients waiting for more than six months, and we have managed to greatly reduce the number of people waiting for elective surgery, or for a specialist assessment to see if they need surgery. In the past year, the number of patients across the country waiting longer than six months has undergone a massive reduction, dropping 85 per cent from 5700 to 840. At the same time, more and more of this country’s health graduates are signing up for the Government’s Voluntary Bonding Scheme. A total of 2300 health graduates have now been acN AT I O N A L L I S T M P cepted onto the scheme, and this year we accepted all 510 graduates who applied – that’s 43 doctors, 42 AU midwives, 411 nurses, 13 radiation therapists and one C K L A N D O F F I C E : Unit 1, 131 Kolmar Rd, Papatoetoe, Auckland medical physicist. Ph: 09 278 9302 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Postal Address: PO Box 23136, Hunters Corner, Auckland 2025 Registrations have been spread all over the country, with even the smallest district health boards receiving half a dozen registrations each. National wants more of our best and brightest home-grown health graduates to stay in New Zealand after graduation, and this initiative is helping ensure they do exactly that, using their skills to help their fellow Kiwis. In 2008, the National-led Government inherited a public health service in crisis. But we’ve turned this around – we’ve prioritised health funding to the frontline, we’re spending more than any other government in history and we’re achieving some great results. In Budget 2012, we increased health funding to $14.12 billion this year – this will help to ensure New Zealanders continue to get the health services they need, when they need them. Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi is a National Party MP
Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.bakshi.co.nz www.iwk.co.nz
Sikkim aims to go ‘fully organic’ by 2015
Gangtok: Sikkim, which started eco-friendly farming from a small area of land about a decade ago, is set to become a fully organic state by 2015, a senior state official has said. “The entire state will be converted into a certified organic state by 2015. Our schemes and policies are well tuned to realise that goal,” Sikkim Agriculture Secretary Vishal Chauhan said. According to him, structured organic farming started in the state in 2003 when the government set up the dedicated Sikkim State Organic Board to promote farm techniques that prohibit the use of manufactured synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. “Our Chief Minister, Pawan Chamling, had also introduced a resolution in the assembly seeking to convert entire farming in the state to organic. Now, our farming relies on techniques such as green manure, compost, biological pest control and crop rotation.” Over 8,000 hectares of land was covered under organic farming between 2003 to 2009. In a bid to make the state fully organic, various state government agencies have been working in coordination. The state government has completely stopped lifting of quota of chemical fertilizers extended by the Government of India since 2006-07 and all sales points for chemical fertilizers in public and private sector have been shut. Sikkim government has also promoted largescale use of bio-fertilisers and provides certified manufactured organic manure to farmers as an alternative to their chemical substitures, Chauhan said. In order to provide alternatives to farmers, 24,536 rural compost units and 14,487 vermi-compost units were constructed in farmers’ fields till 2009. The bio-village programme was also adopted in 2003 and around 400 villages were adopted by the state government till 2009 to benefit some 14,000 farmers and 14,000 acres of land in four districts of the state. “We have also launched the comprehensive ‘Sikkim Organic Mission’ as a nodal agency to implement and monitor the programme in time-bound manner. A state-level apex body with the chief minister as its chair oversees the implementation,” the official said. “Under the new initiative, the government has set a target to implement fully-organic farming technique by 2015. Organic products sell at a premium, which will benefit over 50,000 families in the state and promote organic agro-tourism.” According to latest data, Sikkim produces some 80,000 million tonnes of farm products, including 45,890 million tonnes of ginger, 3,510 million tonnes of large cardamom, 2,790 million tonnes of turmeric, 4,100 million tonnes of buckwheat, 3,210 million tonnes of urad daal and 20,110 million tonnes of mandarin oranges. “Significant portion of these products are already organic,” the official said.
Kerala gets ready for Onam
Thiruvananthapuram: Onam, Kerala's famous harvest festival, will be celebrated this year from August 26. Until August 31, when the festival ends, Keralites will push concerns over the deficient monsoon to the background and celebrate the annual visit of mythical King Mahabali. “The beauty of this festival is that it is celebrated across religion, gender and age. I have noticed that over the years, levels of participation are actually rising. It is nice that traditional games are still played, not just in rural parts of the state but also in cities,” said E. Draupadi, a retired teacher. Onam falls in the month of Chingam, the first month of the Malayalam calendar. Thiruvonam, the most important day in the Onam calendar, falls August 29 this year. Traditionally, Onam celebrations start on Atham day, 10 days before Thiruvonam. Among the first signs of Onam is the large number of swings that can suddenly be spotted at many homes, especially in rural areas. Incidentally, there are different sets of games for men and women organised by local clubs and resident associations. The women folk take part in the traditional Onam dance Kaikotti Kalli. The men have archery contests and Talappanthukali (played with a ball) and there are also combat games called Kayyankali and Attakalam. A colourful spread of flowers is arranged on the floor as part of Onam. These days, many offices organise competitions around such decorations. Onam is known for the lavish 25-dish lunch, served on a banana leaf. And celebrations cannot be complete without a smashing sale of liquor. The state-owned Kerala State Beverages Corporation, the sole wholesalers, has stocked its outlets and godowns with more than adequate stock. Textile shops too will expect spurt in sales. It is common for Keralites to buy new pairs of clothes every Onam. In recent years, Onam week has witnessed heavy rain. Deficient monsoon or not, rains won’t be quite so welcome in Kerala during Onam.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
India Day Parade fills New York with its sights, sounds and stars
New York: Thousands of people watched as the sights and sounds of India took over Manhattan's Madison Avenue for the India Day Parade led by Bollywood star Saif Ali Khan and cricketer Anil Kumble. Saif, dressed in a crisp white kurta-pyjama as the grand marshal of the 32nd India Day Parade Sunday, waved to fans as the procession made its way over blocks with dancing, costumes and floats. The Bollywood actor said he was proud to be a representative of India at the parade, an annual feature of the city's cultural scene organised by the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) to mark India's Aug 15 Independence Day. "Whatever fame we have is because of the movie industry and I am happy to see such a massive outpouring of love here. I want my fans in the US to know that we love them and are thankful to them and I hope they continue to enjoy our films," he said. Spin bowler Kumble, who was the guest of honour, said it was a matter of pride for him to be part of one of the biggest Independence Day events outside India.
"Indians have made cricket popular in the US and I hope America too becomes an important member of the cricketing fraternity," he said. A replica of the Cricket World T20 Trophy was featured at the parade. India's Consul General Prabhu Dayal joined Saif on the lead float as a contingent of the New York Police Department led the three-hour long parade while IndianAmericans wearing tri-colour sashes waved the Indian flag and patriotic Indian music filled the air. Members of one performing group, the Swamibapa Pipe Band from Secaucus, New Jersey, wore plaid kilts as they marched and played bagpipes and drums. Hundreds of New Yorkers joined thousands of Indian Americans who had come from neighbouring New Jersey and Connecticut to watch the parade showcasing India's cultural heritage and diversity. Last year, Bollywood actor Rani Mukherjee was the grand marshal of the parade.
Udaipur’s vintage Rolls-Royce wins US trophy
Washington: Arvind Singh Mewar of the erstwhile royal family of Udaipur has become the first Indian to win at the 62nd Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance event with his 1924 vintage Rolls-Royce. Mewar's 1924 Rolls-Royce 20 HP Barker Tourer (GLK 21) Sunday won the Lucius Beebe Trophy awarded to the Rolls-Royce considered most in the tradition of Lucius Beebe who served among Pebble Beach's early judges. The five-day annual event at Pebble Beach, California, exhibits the best in automobiles from all over the world. "By participating in this event, we want to showcase our legacy and our heritage - because today 'Living Heritage' has more currency than luxury whose definition is so dynamic," Mewar said. Mewar also released a 194-page coffee table book dedicated to the history and restoration of this favourite royal car of Udaipur along with the family's association with Rolls-Royce over seven generations. The coffee table book titled "The Royal Udaipur RR GLK 21 Classic drive from Derby to Udaipur to Pebble Beach and Continues" relives the car's journey from being bought to be cannibalised for its spare parts to becoming a family favourite. After being put out to pasture in a corner in Zenana Mahal in the City Palace, the RR GLK 21 was spotted by Mewar, who then gave expression to his passion for restoring classic cars and resurrected it to its former glory. "India was the ultimate destination for many of Rolls-Royce's early cars because the Indian Maharanas and Maharajas were only too happy to make the transition from horse-drawn carriages to a car," Mewar said. "Back in the old days, this venerable marquee found pride of place for state visits, ceremonies and festivals," he recalled. "In some instances they were also used for hunting and were retrofitted to accommodate cricket teams."
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Air Pacific rebranding takes off
Air Pacific has revealed its new branding that will be on its planes when it relaunches as Fiji Airways next year. The new logo and Fiji Airways livery will be on the three new A330s which arrive from next March. The airline last used the Fiji Airways name in 1951. At the heart of the new brandmark is a new Masi symbol the airline says links its name to a traditional art form that has been a part of Fijian culture for several centuries. Air Pacific's chief executive and managing director David Pflieger said work on the rebrand began a year ago. "While the new name had a lot of history associated with it, we decided that we wanted a new and distinctly Fijian symbol and brandmark that would help us best represent the country while also ensuring our planes stand out at some of the world's busiest international airports. In short, we wanted a flying billboard for Fiji,'' he said. The full re-branding is due to be finished by the end of next year by which time the new look will be seen on aircraft,at ticket offices, check-in counters and airport lounges. Air Pacific has been restructured and is undergoing rebranding and fleet replacement, reported an operating profit of $11.5 million for the year to March 31, compared with an operating loss of $2.6 million for the previous financial year. Its rebranding comes as Air New Zealand also moves to change its look with tailplanes switching from teal to black and a new font for its name.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
‘Look to India for exports’
A STUDY by ANZ's economists, has suggested that Fiji could perhaps look to India as a major export market. Fiji's trade complimentary index (TC) rankings were lower than most in the region but with India, the score was 26.2. Fiji's TC rankings were lower than many regional peers, and India came out on top with a score of 26.2. The TC suggests prospects for international trade and how well imports and exports match in two economies. The index ranges from 0 to 100, a zero reading suggests a mismatch in the imports of one country and the exports of the other while a reading of 100, means the import structure of one country perfectly matches the export structure of the other, suggesting this pair of countries have great potential as trading partners. Australia and New Zealand followed India in the TC ranking for Fiji. In 2010, Australia received 23.1 per cent of all Fijian exports, New Zealand received 6.5 per cent, and India only received 0.3 per cent. "Given that the import basket of India matches the export basket of Fiji better than traditional partners and the share of exports to India remains quite small, there is strong potential to intensify exports to India," the research by Daniel Wilson and Paul Gruenwald said. Philippines, they noted, also had a high ranking as well. In the region, the economists said there had not been much change since 2010 with Papua New Guinea (PNG) still dominating both the export and import side with a share of 81 per cent and 63 per cent respectively. "Fiji was next with the second largest share of imports which also highlighted the largest trade deficit in the Pacific," the research said. "Solomon Islands followed, where log and gold shipments brought about a 0.9ppt climb in its share of Pacific exports. Vanuatu, Timor Leste and Samoa make up the remaining shares, with all importing more than they exported." Australia remained the main export market for the Pacific with $4.1bn. The research said there was a substantial room for new markets for the Pacific. One of the positive observations of the research was that the Pacific has been accessing more export markets, however, the numbers were very low. - Fiji Times
‘Abused’ woman granted refugee status
A 40-year-old Fiji woman, who has suffered years of domestic violence, has been declared a refugee in New Zealand because a legal authority here says Fiji police have systematically failed to protect women and families. The Immigration and Protection Tribunal heard an account of the abuse the woman - known as “BR” - suffered at the hands of her husband before she fled with her son and daughter to New Zealand, www.stuff.co.nz reported this week. The two teenage children also applied for refugee status but were declined. The woman's husband would drink heavily and be abusive, demanding and violent. She endured a "pattern of drink-fuelled beatings, sexual and emotional abuse most weekends over the course of... 14 years." Coming from an Indian Hindu culture she never considered divorce but on two occasions she called the police, the Stuff website reported. Fiji Indian police would come but turned out to be drinking friends of her husband. On another occasion they would not respond to her complaint saying they had no transport. In 2007 with the help of family she and her children escaped to New Zealand and have been here since. She has now got employment. The tribunal said Fiji's political landscape has been characterised by almost constant change, upheaval and ethnic conflicts and four military coups. The tribunal says there had been "a systemic failure by the Fijian police to provide consistent and effective protection for victims of family violence". It noted a military regime decree on domestic violence had led to an increase in complaints to the police but the tribunal found that there was no evidence of an appreciable increase in effective state protection for women victims of violence in Fiji. The tribunal received medical evidence that the woman suffered battered woman syndrome and she met the refugee criteria of having a well-founded fear for her safety: "The persecution that the mother faces if for the reason of her membership of a particular social group, namely women." The tribunal found that the children, now 18 and 17, did not meet refugee criteria as they had not been physically abused by their father. – Fairfax NZ
International students left out of pocket
A group of international students have been caught in the legal crossfire after the sudden closure of a private training school. Josalin Devi, 21, Zaina Nisha, 19 and Umesh Sami, 25, from Fiji were studying business and management diplomas at Ellipse Institute, which was closed in June by the NZ Qualifications Authority for failingto keep students' money in a trust account. The three students have found new schools but say they have been unable to get their money back from the Public Trust to pay for their courses because of a court battle between NZQA and Ellipse's owner, Bhashkar Prasad. Josalin Devi said the school's former insurer StudentCare told her the money would not be released until the students' work at Ellipse was formally recorded. NZQA staff told her Mr Prasad, who is suing the Government agency over the closure, was refusing to release the paperwork, but Mr Prasad said he did not have the course work and blamed NZQA. She and other students could not graduate from their new schools until they paid for their courses and their visas were due to run out in the next few months. "We want our results as soon as possible because our visas are running out and we can't afford to pay for the whole thing all over again. "It was not our fault that we went to the wrong school. NZQA was running it - it was registered with NZQA and legally running." She said NZQA staff told her Ellipse had had problems since 2009, which made her wonder why they did not take action against it sooner. Zaina Nisha said she had paid $11,500 for her diploma of business course, which was to have finished in October, a month before her visa ran out. Mr Prasad said he did not have the students' papers because NZQA staff seized everything when they closed the school and
did not leave an inventory of what they had taken. "I'm really sorry for the students. Our international students are just left high and dry. They'll lose their visa, they'll lose the money they've paid in here." NZQA deputy chief executive Tim Fowler said the agency had been contacted by 25 Ellipse students affected by the problem. He said NZQA took about five boxes of records from Ellipse. These were mostly attendance and administrative records, which had been catalogued and returned. "NZQA does not currently hold any Ellipse records and has not at any stage had any academic records." - NZ Herald
YOUTH FORUM FOR PERSONAL GROWTH
Chinmaya Yuva Kendra (CHYK) empowers young minds. CHYK is about dynamism and personal transformation. CHYK provides a relaxed forum of discussion, workshops, camps, exploration and practice of Spirituality. This is an ideal group for high school students, university students and young professionals. CHYK offers the support and company of a dynamic group where youth learn the knowledge and practical means of achieving:
Junior CHYK (Ages 14-17) Chinmaya Nikunj, Mangere
Sundays - 2:30 - 4:00pm
Senior CHYK (Ages 18-28) Chinmaya Nikunj, Mangere
Thursdays - 8:00 - 9:30pm
clarity of vision
knowing and working on strengths
equipoise and creativity
The CHYK motto is "Harnessing Youth Potential through Dynamic Spirituality"
“THE YOUTH ARE NOT USELESS. THEY ARE JUST USED LESS.” - Swami Chinmayananda
Register now for Chinmaya Mission’s Youth Group - CHYK Contact: Br. Adarshji on (09) 275 6954 www.chinmaya.org.nz
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Ancient Indian monuments that belong to the world
Is the past dead? Is heritage of any relevance today? While all other ancient civilizations have long disappeared, India is probably the only living civilisation spanning over some 5000 years. India at its core has somehow retained the elements of her ancient civilization showing a clear continuity. Much has stood the test of time in India - from the subtlest knowledge to the much preserved world heritage sites. Here's a brief account of the ancient Indian cultural sites that are classified as world heritage by UNESCO.
'The past has become the present and the present will be past in the future' is common knowledge. Says the wise Confucius "Study the past, if you would divine the future". Dr.William Durrant, the prolific American writer, historian, and philosopher wrote, "It is a mistake to think that the past is dead. Nothing that has ever happened is quite without influence at this moment. The present is merely the past rolled up and concentrated in this second of time. You, too, are your past.....So with a city, a country, and a race; it is its past, and cannot be understood without it." We learn from the past to understand the present; what we do in the present influences our future. Heritage plays a critical role in linking the past to the present. To the question “Why is historical heritage important", a Wiki answer says "the spirit and direction of the Nation are founded upon and reflected in its historic heritage." Hence heritage is a good source to know where we come from and learn from it. The staggering Indian heritage... India's staggering heritage comes from being one of the world’s richest and most continuous of cultures. For thousands of years India has been one of the key contributors in both secular and sacred knowledge that include stellar contributions in the fields of medicine, metallurgy, mathematics, the sciences, technology, metaphysical insights (incorrect called as Indian philosophy), literature, linguistics and how can one forget the fine arts, music, dance and numerous other disciplines of art. Ancient Indian monuments that belong to the world Of the 962 sites all over the world, recognised by UNESCO as world heritage sites, there are 29 sites in India (as of 2012). Of the 29 sites in India, 6 sites are natural heritage sites and 23 sites are cultural. Of these 23 cultural sites, 14 sites have roots in the Vedic Indian heritage and tell the story of what is essentially Indian. Vedic or Dharmic heritage is the classical heritage of India. It is the underlying factor and an invisible thread that has provided balance and sustained the fabric of Indian society for centuries. Without classical elements, Indian heritage cannot be imagined. Everything original, authentic and indigenous in India has come from those dharmic traditions - be it the material sciences or even the higher sacred knowledge. The dharmic traditions represent the ancient civilisation of India in many ways and are depicted in the monuments that we see today. Here is the list of those great monuments that are visited by millions. 1. Ajanta Caves (2nd century BCE to 6th century) 2. Buddhist Monuments at Sanchi (2nd and 1st centuries BC to the 12th century CE 3. Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park (Prehistoric & 8th to 14th centuries) 4. Elephanta Caves (5th and 8th centuries) 5. Ellora Caves (7th to 10th century) 6. Great Living Chola Temples (11th and 12th-century) 7. Group of Monuments at Hampi (14th and 16th centuries) 8. Group of Monuments at Mahabalipuram (7th and 8th centuries) 9. Group of Monuments at Pattadakal (8th century) 10.Khajuraho Group of Monuments (10th and 11th century) 11.Mahabodhi Temple Complex at Bodh Gaya (3rd century BCE, 5th and 6th century) 12.Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka (2nd and 1st centuries BCE) 13.Sun Temple, Konârak (13th century) 14.The Jantar Mantar, Jaipur (18th century) The above monuments (except perhaps the ones at Bhimbetka) stand testimony to that which is essentially Indian. Of course there is the Taj Mahal, Red Fort, the mountain railways of India, Agra Fort, Qutub Minar, CST terminus in Mumbai etc which are part of Indian heritage. However these striking monuments couldn't have been built without the patronage of forces that came from outside India. There are some 30 more tentative sites which have been submitted to UNESCO Committee for evaluation and acceptance. Of the 30, the ones that has its roots in ancient India are the ancient Buddhist site at Sarnath, Buddhist monastery complex in Leh, Dholavira (Harappan) city in Gujarat, excavated remains at Nalanda, group of monuments at Mandu, Madhya Pradesh, Hemis Gompa monastery in Ladakh, Rani-ki-Vav (The Queens Stepwell) at Patan, Gujarat, the Silk Road sites in India, Sri Harimandir Sahib (The Golden temple) in Punjab etc. Regardless of the UNESCO recognition, they are very much a part of the Indian inheritance and are looked after by the Archaeological society of India (ASI), who administer 3650 such monuments. Each and every one of the above cultural sites showcases different aspects of life divine and its artistic expressions - be it a sculpture, a mural, an astronomical complex or an ancient place of contemplation. The dharmic identity is imprinted in these cultural sites. All the sciences that was used to make these sites stand the test of time has its source in the colossal and deep body of classical Vedic knowledge which is the rock bed of Indian heritage. Ram Lingam blogs his insights on India and Indian culture at www.indiasutra. co.nz
Is spirituality only for retired people?
by Brahmachari Adarsh Chaitanya
FINDING HAPPINESS IS THE BEST SPIRITUALITY
Br.Adarshji is the resident teacher of Chinmaya Mission New Zealand based @ 63 McKenzie Road, Mangere, Auckland.
brAmhAChArI AdArsh ChAITANyA
Spirituality, shown the Geeta, is are To keep your mindappliedas our mostindifficult circumstances,heard, understood the mastery over the mind. Such is the simplicity of Spiritual Wisdom. To illustrate this, where your hands to be workingnot is and in so that we do Adarshji get lost our journey in life. here is an anecdoteinfrom the life of the world renowned Vedanta teacher H.H. Swami Chinmayananda. This clearly is an incorrect understanding of its very purpose. Yet, most of us wait for our retirement to learn the secrets of this Divine text. Alas! By that time, we are burdened with too many regrets of our past actions, or our ego is so stubborn that it is unwilling a higher WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE watch. They are experiencing to uplift itself due to the earlier habits formed. But even if we do understand and appreciate the BETWEEN YOU AND ME? principles of the scriptures, we feel there so much to change,state of have to start in our next life...deeper we would mind through the How convenient, thisa person asked H.H. Swami Once is - this reincarnation? absorption of the mind in the sport.
The need for spirituality in our life's is unclear, hence how and when to practice it is also unclear. The battlefield setting in which the Holy Geeta - one of our greatest spiritual texts was given out, clearly shows us as to when the spiritual knowledge is most effective… how can we then assume or recommend such spirituality to be best pursued after retirement?
Chinmayananda, The main reason for such an idea is that we see SpiritualityAlas!means player makes an error and as a One for securing a safe future after death either for ourselves or for our loved ones who have left mind is back to its old dissipated “Swamiji, what is the difference the the earthly plane. between you and me? You eat, I also ways! True joy is experienced only
If this is so, then becoming spiritual after retirement seems like the right thing to do. But to those of us who are eat, youto ask why,also look at the world and ask, when the reason behind this all? What not afraid walk, I who walk, you bathe, what is the mind is totally absorbed, be is its purpose? What is my purpose? Spirituality takes a I I also bathe sometimes… you talk, whole new dynamic meaning and expression. work, it in a sport, while cooking, at Our religion is advice, then how come you also not supposed to be just a ticket to heaven, instead it's a faithful map guiding us sincerelygiven such special treatment and I and unbiasedly to our Final Destination, Liberation from all Bondages. Imagine if your not?” journey is determined by the direction of the traffic flow? Sounds silly doesn’t it?
are in an does not mean “Spirituality absorbing lecture, or while retirement to a Star running away am watching forestPlus! This absorption from of the mind is done through various all worldly responsibilities and putting oneself into self abnegation means of entertainment. and physical torture eating only Swamiji smiled and said, “When berries and leaves.” But most of our life’s journey is unfortunately like you eat, you are thinking of how much DO WE NEED SPIRITUALITY, - Swami Chinmayananda that, determined by the flow of others. Spirituality, you heard, walk understood the RELIGION, GOD OR when properlyhave tocorrectly to remove and fat, sincerelywhen provides us with our true inner goals and prepares us on the path to reaching them in lived, you walk, you are thinking of MEDITATION? our present life itself. what food to eat later, when you bathe Now you may say Adarshji, And when we live this spirituality consistently from early on in life… let me put it this way, the benefits you thinking of work, when you work, of ‘That Spirituality’, is seen very evidently throughout our life,Precisely, we can bring our mind into even after retirement. you are thinking of everything else, absorption through entertainment Bramhachari Adarsh Chaitanya serves as the Resident Acharya of Chinmaya Mission Auckland and whereas when I eat, I am eating, when such as TV, computer, sport, etc. then conducts weekly spiritual classes for children, youth and adults. For more information about the I Mission and Bramhachari when I bathe, why do we need spirituality, Religion, Chinmaya walk, I am walking,Adarsh Chaitanya please follow this link, www.chinmaya.org.nz or contact him atbathing. That is the difference I am 2756954 God or meditation? between you and me!” But this is the deal! Have you ever THE TENNIS MATCH AND THE tried to recreate the same experience MIND... again in order to get the same joy as Be where you are, at that present you did the first time? You know we all moment because in the present moment have, right? How many of us find the there cannot be anything other than exact same exhilarating experience as complete fullness. This is experienced the one we got the first time? It’s very in the intensity of sport. I'm sure you rare if not impossible, right? It’s rarely have seen an intense tennis match. the same. How in a long rally there is only focus on the ball. The players, the umpires, I remember playing an indoor soccer the ball boys, the crowd watching game with a group of youngsters and even the one’s sitting at home where we enjoyed so much that we lost everyone is glued to the movement track of time. All we did thereafter of the ball. It is so riveting indeed to was revel in the memories of that
wonderful experience. We did try to recreate the same experience but alas we could not as we kept comparing it with the earlier one. THE TWO FOLLIES... The two follies of having our mind in absorption through any external activity or event are:
1. FOCUS REMAINS EXTERNAL WHEREAS THE EXPERIENCE IS FOUND WITHIN: This is the greatest mistake we make when we experience joy! We feel it is caused by the event outside, “Ah! It was such a great movie!” or “that was a fantastic game!” or “Wow! What a lecture!” (Vastu- Paricchhinna – Object Dependent) Spirituality and religion reminds us that the source of the experience lies within us. Joy is when our mind is "absorbed or dissolved". Complete joy is when the mind totally transcended, that’s the experience of bliss - of pure unbroken happiness. Whenever the Mind is dissolved in any activity there is JOY. Unfortunately, since we are focused in the activity (Vishaya – object) we attribute the joy to the external object, like the ice-cream, or the movie, etc. As long as it is external we will have to keep running and chasing and recreating that experience. 2. IT’S TEMPORARY: The event or activity does not go on forever… it comes to an end, hence so does our experience of joy. (DeshaKaala Paricchhinna – Time & Space Dependent) Besides, Spirituality in Religion also points out that very transient nature of our joys and even if we
do attain most of what we desire at the end of the day the gains are still impermanent and it does not add any real value to my existence. It is like a child going to a play school and playing with the toys there but returning empty handed, not sure if they are going back there again… imagine that to be our situation at the time of death. Spirituality thus, guides mankind to a higher fuller pursuit by pointing out the path of Shreyas (Path of Greater Good) over the path of Preyas (Path of the Pleasurable). Spirituality is thus finding Happiness which is both within and long-lasting. Once found, it is as simple as eating while you eat, sitting while you sit… it is in the dynamic present. This seeking can however, only be done by a mature mind which is ready to inquire and eager to experience that Higher Joy… Are you ready?
Yo Dhruvaani Parityajya Adhruvam Parisevate Dhruvaani Tasya Nashyanti Adhruvam Nashtam Eva Ca “One who abandons the pursuit of the permanent and runs after the impermanent. To them even if they gain the latter, it perishes and since they didn’t seek the permanent it is lost to them.”
- Sanskrit Subhashita
Bramhachari Adarsh Chaitanya serves as the Resident Acharya of Chinmaya Mission Auckland and conducts weekly spiritual classes for children, youth and adults. For more information about the Chinmaya Mission and Bramhachari Adarsh Chaitanya please follow this link: www.chinmaya.org.nz or contact him at 2756954
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
team gave its worst performance in Olympics so far losing all their matches and finished 12th out of the 12 teams who took part in this meet. Only in the first match they could put up some fight before losing 2-3. While their defence looked shaky always and crumbled whenever there was any pressure, their front liners failed to combine beside failing to cash in on the chances which came in their way. Much was expected from Archery and Tennis. Both the events failed to live up to the expectation and displayed a poor show. Most of the archers failed to qualify for the final round while a couple of others made their exit from the second round only. Deepika Kumari who became champion in one of the world series Archery meet, before this Olympic was totally off colour and put up a dismal show failing to adjust with the local condition. In individual recurve, Deepika after qualifying could not proceed beyond first round. Similarly in tennis, Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna pair in men's doubles, Leander Paes- Sania Mirza in mixed doubles and Somdev Devvarman and Vishnu Vardhan, who were given wild cards here bit the dust in the first round itself. Only Leander and Vardhan could move up to 2nd round .
London Olympics: India’s best show so far
London: India within its standard put up a comparatively better show at the London Olympics which concluded at the Olympic Park stadium here Sunday night. India sent its largest contingent consisting of 83 sportspersons from 13 disciplines and ended up collecting six medals including two silvers and four bronzes which is the highest number of medals earned from a single Olympic games so far. However, if one takes gold medal as the measurement for achievement, then this performance is yet to surpass Beijing feat where India got a gold in shooting through Abhinav Bindra and a couple of bronzes by Vijender Singh in Boxing and Sushil Kumar in wrestling. In London 2012 after Gagan Narang started the medal hunt wining a bronze in 10 m Air Rifle for men, his compatriot Vijay Kumar buttressed the number winning a silver in 50 m rapid fire pistol. Thereafter shuttler Saina Nehwa, boxer Mary Kom and grappler Yuogeswar Dutt collected a bronze each while Beijing bronze medalist Sushil Kumar achieved a rare feat among the Indians by winning silver in 66 kg category wrestling on the concluding day. Sushil Kumar thus emerged as the lone Indian to earn a medal in individual event in two Olympics and that too back to back. Indian hockey
In comparison shooting and wrestling did well. Maintaining the tradition set up by Rajya Vardhan Singh Rathore who first won a shooting medal for India, a silver in Athens Olympics, and then a gold by Avinav Bindra at Beijing, Vijay Kumar and Gagan Narang rose to the occasion to get a silver and a bronze for the country respectively. These apart shooter Jaydeep Karmakar missed a bronze narrowly finishing 4th in 50 m prone position rifle for men. In wrestling too, Indian grapplers,
who got a bronze in Beijing through Sushil Kumar produced a better show this time. While Sushil Kumar lived up to the expectation and enhanced one more step and finishing with a silver, Yogeswar Dutt begged a bronze. Sushil Kumra said the country would get a gold next time. Both in Badminton and boxing, true to the prediction, Saina Nehwal and Mary Kom gave a boost to the women sports bagging a bronze each. In men boxing another Indian medal aspirant Vijender Singh fought valiantly before bowing out
from the quarter final narrowly. Though India participated in eight, other events including athletics, swimming, table tennis, weightlifting, judo and rowing, the Indian challengers here except, Krishna Pooniah and Vikash Shive Gowda in women and men discuss respectively, bowed out of the competition losing in earlier rounds. Krishna and Vikash could reach the finals, but finished near the bottom.
Rs 40 lakh award for Mary Kom
New Delhi: Union Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region and Chairman of North Eastern Council (NEC) Paban Singh Ghatowar on Monday announced a cash award of Rs 40 lakh for Olympic medalist M.C. Mary Kom. This minister said that this award is to extend a congratulatory note to Mary Kom for winning the bronze medal of the 51 Kg category Women’s Boxing, at the London Olympics. According to Ghatowar, NEC had constituted NEC Chairman’s Sport Award for Excellence, to support and acknowledge the excellent sport persons from the north eastern region. Achievers of the award would be felicitated and given cash awards. The Doner Minister will hand over the award to Kom in a felicitation programme to be held on Sept 16 at Imphal, Manipur.
VVS Laxman announces retirement; Badrinath replaces him in the Test series against NZ
Hyderabad: Indian cricketer VVS Laxman announced his retirement from international cricket on Saturday, August 18, ending a glorious cricket career that spanned for 16 years. “I think it is right time to give oppurtunity to youngsters to play in home conditions given overseas tours next year. As a youngster, representing India was a dream for me...I am blessed I got that opportunity,” said an emotional Laxman. The stylish right-handed batsman said he was lucky to play for India in an era when the side played its best cricket in India and abroad.
Laxman, who bats right-handed and occasionally bowls off-spin, was out of form of late and says the decision but I have always listened to my inner voice and conscience. It was around five days back when I thought of ending my career,” Laxman said. After making his Test debut against South Africa in 1996, Laxman went on to play 134 Test matches and scored 8781 runs. He hit 17 centuries in his Test career. His glorious innings of 281 runs against Australia at the Eden Gardens in 2001 will always be remembered as one of the best innings played by him. Laxman scored 2338 runs in 86 One Day
International (ODI) matches. He hit 6 centuries with a top score of 131 runs. He was a part of the renowned batting quartet that comprised of other three icons Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar. BCCI had selected Laxman in the Indian team for the upcoming Test series against New Zealand. But the All-India Senior Selection Committee has now named S. Badrinath as VVS Laxman’s replacement in the Test series, which commenced in Hyderabad on August 23. Badrinath will join the squad at the earliest, said BCCI honorary secretary Sanjay Jagdale on Sunday.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Benefits of Reiki Treatment
Our body is composed not only of physical elements such as muscles, bones, nerves, arteries, organs, glands, etc it also has a subtle energy system through which 'life force energy' flows. This energy system is composed of energy 'bodies' which surround our physical body. The energy bodies have energy centres called chakras, which work somewhat like valves that allow life force to circulate through the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual bodies. We also have energy meridians and nadis. These are like rivers or streams which carry our life force energy throughout our physical body, to nourish us and assist in balancing our body’s systems and functions. More people are beginning to seek natural treatments to reduce stress & improve mental and physical capability without the use of medication. Stress, Anxiety & Depression One thing that disrupts and weakens the flow of 'life force energy' is stress. Stress is often caused by conflicting thoughts and feelings that get lodged in our energy system. These include fear, worry, doubt, anger, anxiety, etc. Medical research has determined that continual stress can block the body's natural ability to repair, regenerate and protect itself. The American Institute of Stress estimates that 75%-95% of all visits to doctors are the results of reaction to stress. The effects of unreleased stress range from minor aches to major health concerns, such as heart disease, digestive disorders, respiratory and skin problems. Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress but when it becomes an excessive fear or worry of everyday situations it is a concern. Common symptoms of anxiety include fatigue, headaches, muscle tension, muscle aches, trembling, twitching, irritability and sweating. Anxiety can affect every area of life, including work, family and relationships. The common symptoms of depression include insomnia, fatigue, lack of interest, sadness, anger and suicidal thoughts. Conventional treatment for stress, depression and anxiety usually includes anti depressant medication which might help with symptoms but can also have unwanted side effects and does not address the root cause of depression. Reiki not only treats the symptoms but also
Spring Skin Care Tips
Dr. (Mrs.) Pushpinder
DHMS, EFT & Reiki Master
aids in self-healing abilities & balance body’s chemistry, boosting the immune system. Reiki therapy is extremely gentle yet powerful. Sessions are non-invasive and do not require discussion of emotional issues, traumas or the past. A Reiki session only requires the person receiving Reiki to lie down and rest. It often clears the mind and leaves a sense of peace, hope and optimism. Reiki can be a wise first step in any treatment plan. As anxiety and pain lessen, and people feel hopeful about regaining their health. Reiki can improve the results of all medical treatment, acting to reduce negative side effects, shorten healing time, reduce or eliminate pain, reduce stress, and help create optimism. Addictions & Alcoholism Reiki can be of particular benefit to those recovering from an addiction: • It is claimed that Reiki can make addiction withdrawal symptoms less severe. • There can be a great deal of stress as the individual adapts to a life away from alcohol or drugs. The relaxation benefits of this technique can mean that people deal better with stresses of recovery. If people feel too overwhelmed they can be tempted to relapse so the ability to deal with stress is a must. • Those individuals who have been involved in substance abuse for a long period will have great deal of physical and mental damage. This technique can help repair the damage and get the individual back on a path towards healthy living. • It is usual for people in early stages of recovery to experience plenty of anger and resentment. These emotions are highly dangerous because they can lead back to addiction. Reiki may help them release these negative emotions. • This type of healing can help people feel more comfortable in their own skin. This is particularly helpful for those individuals who are dealing with self-esteem issues. In future you need any help & support for your problems – physical, mental, emotional or spiritual please feel free to call me to find out how REIKI can help you. Dr.Pushpinder - 09 6205800( 5pm-8pm).
As a new season is approaching, many of us start making various changes in our routines. Preparing our skin for the new season is essential in order to be able to look our best at any given moment. Although subtle, a few changes in our skin care rituals can make a great difference in the way our skin looks, so learn to prepare your skin for the spring season in a few easy steps. As seasonal changes start to emerge, our skin is faced with various different challenges. Significant temperature variations can often take a toll on our skin unless we learn to adapt to them. If the winter season proved to be extremely hard for your skin, the new season might be your chance to start over in a completely different way. Fortunately, having flawless skin is much easier during the warmer months as your skin is subjected to fewer problems. Creating an effective skin care routine may take a little work initially, yet, after you get used to it and begin to see results, it becomes a lot simpler. Moisturizing is by far the most important aspect we should take care of. Although moisturizing regularly is just as important during spring as it is during winter, it is generally smarter to switch to a lighter moisturizer. A rich moisturizer might have done a good job protecting your skin during the cold winter months, however, once the temperatures go up, it might feel a little greasy. Using a heavy duty moisturizer can still be a good idea for body areas that are prone to dryness, however, making the switch is still necessary. If you don't want to purchase a new moisturizer, mixing a little rosewater in your moisturizer might do the trick. Those who have oily skin might also want to invest in a mattifying gel, as it might serve as a good base for a long lasting makeup. For those who have other types of complexions, this idea might not work well as these gels can be too drying. If dryness is a problem, weeklyhomemade facials are recommended to be able to get a natural glow and nourish the skin at the same time.
Sunscreen remains an absolute must during the warmer months, so looking for a sunscreen with a SPF of at least 20 is recommendable. A moisturizer with SPF is also a good alternative for those who are looking for versatile products. An important aspect to remember is that you should pay attention to the areas that are likely to be forgotten such as the back of the ears, the lips, your fingers and so on. Scheduling an appointment with your dermatologist for a skin exam is also a good choice to be able to see if any potential problems have occurred. While shopping for adequate skin care products for spring, it is important to think about the potential problems you might face during the warm season. If sunscreen makes you more likely to have acne breakouts, then buying a formula that has active ingredients such as avobenzone and oxybenzone in it or simply an oil free one might be a good choice. Also, experimenting with a different foundation tone might be a good choice as your skin tone will surely change in the upcoming months. Exfoliating regularly is another essential ritual you should not neglect. Choose a gentle exfoliator that will not irritate the skin and make sure not to over do it. Apply a gentle lotion afterwards to replenish moisture and avoid irritations. Aside from the basic skin care ritual it is also crucial to take a closer look at your makeup routine. Staying informed about the latest trends and opting for lighter shades is a good idea as it will help you reinvent your look and highlight your best facial traits. Last but not least, paying attention to your diet and exercise regimen and striving to make better choices is another aspect that will have an impact the way your skin looks. Make sure to include plenty of seasonal fruits and vegetables, drink a lot of water and exercise regularly to improve the way your skin looks from within.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Straight talk for straight teeth
In today’s fast paced world we barely get time to efficiently deal with stress or to acknowledge when we are feeling overwhelmed and a downward spiral can quickly begin to take place under the surface. Feeling good about oneself has become more vital to staying positive, maintaining a good self esteem and combating feelings of anxiety and depression, which in this stressful world can easily bring a person down and eventually affect his health and well-being. We all know that straight teeth certainly look better. Most people who seek Orthodontic treatment usually do it for cosmetic reasons because they want a nicer smile. When you have a great smile, it boosts your confidence and makes you feel ready to take on the world. However, aside from the aesthetic benefit, there are several reasons why straight teeth are actually healthier too. A dentist recommends orthodontic treatment to straighten the teeth and to correct the bite or occlusion. The upper and lower teeth are meant to fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. A correct bite is critical for the overall health of the teeth. Proper occlusion creates a more balanced bite and puts the surrounding joints and muscles in a better, more relaxed position. When the bite is off, the joints are also commonly off too. And that creates tension in the surrounding muscles. Patients with an improper bite usually experience headaches, neck aches, shoulder pain, etc too. In addition, the stability of a proper occlusion or bite also causes less wear & tear of the teeth over time. Check out the Youtube clip: http://www.youtube.com/user/ invisalignaus?feature=results_main. Finally, straight teeth are easier to clean and require less maintenance than crowded teeth. While choosing your Orthodontic treatment provider, it is also important to check if the care giver is a trained Orthodontic Specialist. Orthodontists who have completed specialist training are all members of the NZAO. You can find them on the NZAO website; www. orthodontists.org.nz. Hill Road Orthodontics is a respected provider in orthodontic care community. Located in Hill Road, Manurewa, our practice’s top priority is to provide you the highest quality orthodontic care in a friendly, comfortable environment. We utilize the latest technological advances in the industry such as invisible ceramic braces and
dedicated to your comfort, making every effort to ensure successful and effective treatment. Dr Ann Oommen, an Orthodontist who's studied
Invisalign® along with the latest in computer technology (digital imaging and advanced computer graphics) to ensure that you receive the most effective care possible. Our well-trained staff is very caring and
at the prestigious Nair Hospital Dental College in Mumbai, India, where she topped while pursuing her B.D.S degree in dentistry. She was the only student to gain entry for the specialist postgraduate course of Orthodontics in Mumbai
University in her year, acquiring a Masters degree in Orthodontics soon after. She then took up a teaching post in Mumbai University at her alma mater Nair Hospital Dental college in the department of Orthodontics as a lecturer and clinical instructor in the graduate programme as. She then moved to New Zealand and has been practicing in South Auckland since 2001. She practiced under Dr. J. Michael Schulze in 2005. At Hill Road Orthodontics, we have a passion for what we do. Whether you are an adult, adolescent or child, we are committed to helping you achieve the smile you deserve - a healthy and beautiful one. It is never too late to look better, wrinkle less and have less muscle fatigue. This is why more and more adults today are undergoing orthodontic treatment. So don’t put off what you know will benefit you greatly. The rewards of straight teeth outweigh any discomfort that you may experience in the process.
Re c i p e
3 boneless thighs of chicken, skinned and cubed 4 bunches of spinach 2-3- green chillies 2tsp- garlic paste 2tsp- ginger paste 1- large onions extremely chopped 2- large tomatoes chopped ½ cup- plain yogurt 1/2tsp- red chilli powder 1tsp- coriander powder 1/2tsp- turmeric powder 1tsp- garam masala powder 1- big cardamom pod 1- whole clove ½ cup- milk or ¼ cup- cream Salt according to taste 2tbsp- butter 2tbsp- oil
Fry the chicken pieces in 2tbsp oil for around 3-4 minutes until lightly browned and set aside. Put the spinach and green chillies in a pan with ¼ cup of water, bring to the boil and remove from heat. When it’s cool grind it into a paste with the hand mixer or in a blender. Heat butter in a non stick pan add cardamom pod, clove followed by onion, when onion is light brown add ginger, garlic paste. Fry until light brown. Add tomatoes and stir, add red chilli powder, turmeric powder, garam masala powder, salt and yogurt fry until the butter has separated. Add chicken cover and cook for 5 minutes until the chicken is tender. Add spinach to the chicken cover and cook until the spinach starts sticking to the pan. Add milk if spinach seems too dry or add cream. Serve hot with rice or naan.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Music for the soul
Eleven time Grammy Nominee and Soul Superstar Musiq Soulchild, who's known for his sultry and captivating voice, will perform in Auckland for the very first time. When: September 12 Where: The Civic Admission: $59.90 - $149.90 Website: www.buytickets.co.nz
Big bang of dance
Get ready to experience Auckland’s first Ethnic Dance show 'Humse Badkar Kaun’s' Grand Finale. Ranging from Beauty Pageant winners to stylish dancers, the finale is all set to raise your eyebrows and heart beats with its breathtaking performances. When: August 25, 7pm Where: Dorothy Winstone Theatre Admission: For tickets, contact Roopa @ 021 665 609
Dance with Cinderella
Christopher Hampson’s Cinderella returns to the stage. Acclaimed New Zealand designer Tracy Grant-Lord’s sumptuous costumes and lavish sets draw you into a glittering fantasy world. When: September 9 Where: ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre Admission: $25 - $140 Website: www.buytickets.co.nz
Oliver, Philip and Sylvia are caught in a kind of erotic time warp. Their complex love triangle, replete with conflicting loyalties and passions, shifts from 1958 to the present and back again. When: September 1, 7.30pm onwards Where: Pukekohe Indian Association Hall, Ward St, Pukekohe Admission: $10 Adults, $5 Children (5-13 years). Tickets available at Hill Superette, 281 Queen St. For more enquiries call on (09) 2384729
Teaser of SRKKatrina starrer out - sans title!
The highly anticipated first teaser of Shah Rukh Khan, Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma starrer, directed by Yash Chopra, has been released but what is suprising is that it has been launched without a title. “Never before has a film’s trailer been released without its title. This one insinuates that it just may be called ‘Yash Chopra’s Romance’. However, the teaser does confirm that the film will release on Diwali,” said an insider. The teaser of the film, which marks the comeback of Yash Chopra as director after a gap of eight years, begins with the tagline “A Yash Chopra Romance” and takes the viewers through his iconic journey via short clippings of his blockbuster films like Waqt, Deewar, Kabhi Kabhie, Silsila, Dil Toh Pagal Hai, Veer Zara, among others. And eventually gives a sneak peak of the granduer of the new untitled film with shots of Shah Rukh, Katrina and Anushka. Yash Raj Films is likely to reveal the title after the final schedule of the film in Kashmir and Ladakh ends. It will release Nov 13.
RGV finds Sridevi 15 times more beautiful, a better actress now
Filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma is so impressed with the trailer of English Vinglish that he is praising its lead actress Sridevi to the skies. Gauri Shinde’s directorial debut marks the comeback of Sridevi to the big screen after a break of 15 years. “Watched English Vinglish trailer. After a 15-year hiatus, Sridevi is looking 15 times more beautiful and seems to have become 15 times a better actress,” tweeted Varma. Sridevi was last seen in Judaai. In English Vinglish, she plays a middle-class Indian woman who struggles with the English language in the US.
Anubhav Sinha’s underwater flick shot in Fiji
Director-turned-producer Anubhav Sinha (of Delhi Belly fame) says shooting for Warning has been wrapped up and the two-part underwater 3D movie will be released without any intermission. “Warning is a 90-minute 3D franchise. It is about six-seven friends who ignore a warning and get into life threatening crisis. Some survive and some don’t,” Sinha, who has produced the film, said. “It’s a no interval film and a good example would be Delhi Belly, which was a 90-minute film without an interval,” he added. The first part of the film is about friends stuck in the middle of an Ocean. Gurmeet Singh has directed Warning and Sinha said: “He (Singh) wrapped the whole film in 42 days, that too a 3D underwater film. We shot the film in Fiji.” The second part of Warning will be released a year after the first one.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
In a candid conversation with Sreya Basu in Mumbai, filmmaker Karan Johar reveals his personal aspirations and living them through his upcoming film Student Of The Year
which I am very proud of. But I needed to be on a holiday even in my creative field. It’s not just another film for me that we will release but a movie where we launch new talents (Varun Dhawan, Siddharth Malhotra and Alia Bhatt). What was the thing you were missing the most in My Name Is Khan? I remember, while we were shooting for Sajda (song) from My Name Is Khan, both Shah Rukh (Khan) and me were sad that he couldn’t do lipsyncing. His instinct is filmy and he wanted to show as if he is singing the song aloud. But he couldn’t do it. Curbing that instinct was terrible for him and me. So I am happy that I have been able to make all three of them sing, dance and everything that I love about Hindi movies in SOTY. You showed youth romance in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. How different is SOTY from that? This film feels very different from the films I have directed so far. I was more like a nervous parent to all three of them, nurturing them. So there was always a kind of inner stress. Making a film of that (huge) scale with these talents was something that I felt I needed to be done and I am very satisfied. Which school are you trying to show in SOTY that allows girls in shorts? This is a school in my head. But there is a root about it. The characters are identifiable and extremely connective. The school is like any school, but the world of glamour within it is something that is me and I am never going to run away from something that is my core. I can’t be dishonest and pretentious and say there is a school like this in this country. It’s an aspirational school. What do you do to stay young? Oh I have to do a lot of hard work! You have to dye your hair, wear blazers like them (youngsters) … mujhe paagal kutte ne kaata tha that I celebrated my 40th birthday (on May 25) and told everyone what
do with cinema and I am an escapist by nature and therefore it presents itself on celluloid as well. Your films generally have a lot of cameos by your friends in Bollywood. Is SOTY an exception? There is only one cameo in the film and that is by Kajol. Her cameo comes at a really interesting place. Have you ever bagged the ‘Student Of The Year award’ in your school days? There was no question of me bagging such an award. I was happy in my own world. These days the Rs 100 crore mark decides the fate of a film. What do you think about it? I think it’s a pressure that’s humming all of us all the time. It’s great to achieve the 100 crore mark and is glorious to do that. But then if you don’t achieve the mark or go beyond it, it doesn’t make your film smaller or bigger. At the end of the day, it’s the longevity of a film that is important. It’s not that a 100 crore film will live forever. my real age is…couldn’t even lie on that. So I can only be jawaan and live my youth in my dreams now. How similar was your student life to the one you have shown in SOTY? I can assure you there is no similarity. Have you seen the promo? The promo shows students running, swimming and playing so many sports. It can never be my school life for sure. Then where did the inspiration of such a high school life come from? Cinema is all about creation and the result of your own kind of aspiration as a human being. If you are not good-looking, you want to show good-looking people in your films. If you are not thin, you want to show them walk on the beach looking hot and sexy. So if you hadn’t a glamorous school or college, you just want to show that. Escapism has everything to What kind of films do you think have a universal appeal? There are two types of films that have always been acknowledged. One is, full-on masala films that run in packed threatres, and the other is content-based like Paan Singh Tomar and Kahaani. Name a face in Bollywood that acted as a gamechanger? There are many, including all the Khans (Aamir, Salman, Shah Rukh). They have changed the economics. Also, recently Hrithik (Roshan) gave his first 100 crore flick (Agneepath). Then there is Ranbir Kapoor and Imran Khan, who have shown their strength at the box-office. Also, I hope there are more actors like Vidya Balan whose intentions are very honourable and noble.
You started off with Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham and then broke the genre to make films like My Name Is Khan and Dostana. Now you are back with a high-school romance. Yes. I felt Student Of The Year was my holiday film. After My Name Is Khan, I really felt the need to do something where I personally would have fun. I wanted to visit lip-sync songs, dance, youth, glamour and of course, keep the emotion intact. I felt with My Name Is Khan I had made a heavy, impactful film,
Rahul Roy doesn't want to be a part of 'Ashiqui 2'
Actor Rahul Roy, whose superhit debut film Aashiqui is being remade by the Bhatt camp, is not keen for any special appearance in the movie and believes noimage of lead actors will benefit the remake. “I think only a new actor should portray the role because the USP of Aashiqui was a new boy who had no image. If you look at it, people didn’t know what to expect,” the 44-year-old actor said during a fashion show in Mumbai organised in memory of late director Sultan Ahmed. Asked if he would like to do a special appearance in the film, Rahul said: “No, I do not want to do it. There is a lot of difference between Rahul Roy of that time and Rahul now. The innocence I had 22 years back, that innocence can never come back.” Being directed by Mohit Suri, the romantic musical has Aditya Roy Kapoor and Shraddha Kapoor in the lead roles and both have appeared in other films. “Someone corrected me that Aditya and Shraddha are doing the roles. I think both of them don’t have any particular image and I think both should be absolutely right for the role,” he added. Rahul asserts the storyline of the remake has to be very different from the 1990-flick as the definition of romance has changed. “Mohit is a good director. I can’t say what heights will this new film touch but this is evident that the story would be different because there is a lot of difference between romance then and romance now,” Rahul said.
The man who gave Big B the jitters
Amitabh Bachchan has bravely fought many dacoits in his films, but there was one who the megastar was in awe of in real life - Daku Man Singh. “In my younger days, we were in awe of daku Man Singh, whose escapades and adventures were common conversation in and around every possible gathering,” Amitabh wrote on his blog srbachchan. tumblr.com. “As kids we would imagine the size and the massiveness of this person, and were made fearful of his sudden presence, if we did not go to bed at appointed hour or fussed about finishing our meals, or to be back home in time before dark,” he added. Recalling the fear, that people used to go
through, the actor wrote: “In the summer months of Allahabad, when the sun would set and the lawn used to be watered to cool the ground, the family would sit out in the evenings, and as night came upon us, the elders would ask us to go to the house and put the lights on in the rooms.” “For us, it used to be a moment of extreme trauma, because even though the house was not more than 50 feet away from where we were sitting, the fear of the dark as you walked in, was numbing. We felt almost as though Man Singh would suddenly appear from behind one of the doors or grab us as we strode back to where the elders were sitting!” he added. Singh was among the dreaded dacoits of Chambal region and had 1,112 robberies and 185 murders to his credit between 1939 and 1955. He was shot dead in an encounter in 1955.
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Meet the gang of Rangmanch
Rangmanch once again along with its founder member Jayanta Bhaduri, director, Ujjal Ghosh and its extremely talented cast and crew presents Sunhere Sapne to Auckland theatre lovers on September 1 and 2. Keeping with its vision to provide “quality Indian theatre” to Auckland audience and to reach out to them, Rangmanch has in the past produced three memorable Hindi theatre productions, Zimmedari (2008), Ballabhpur Ki Kahani (2010) and Dildar (2011). Each play has been different in theme and style and each carried a message. Rangmanch now brings to you another multicharacter play, ‘Sunhere Sapne’ which is an entertainer and also has a thought provoking story. It is a romantic story revolving around the dreams and aspirations of an intelligent and hardworking young man. Working as a motor mechanic, he is frustrated by his lower middle class surroundings and aspires to travel overseas and live a life away from social and financial drudgery. He yearns to escape a judgemental and dogmatic society that shows no compassion for the working class, a luxury, one of his low social standing could never afford. He wishes to break free from the shackles of an “undignified” profession, and escape to a paradise of social equality and freedom. Desperately chasing this dream, he looses touch with reality and his life is shattered, until the woman he loves rescues him from his inevitable doom. This leads the audience into a fascinating climax wherein reality and dreams combine to infuse new confidence in our protagonist. He is blessed with the ultimate realisation that happiness and fulfilment are all around us, we just have to learn to find it together! After all isn’t life all about sharing our joys and sorrows collectively? Rangmanch has been fortunate to be associated with a group of committed and talented theatre lovers. If it were not for Sudarshna Bhaduri, Rangmanch’s stories would never come alive on stage! Sudarshana is a talented writer and has been with Rangmanch since its inception and has always played an integral role. She says, “I fulfil the vital role of transforming the cast into their dream characters on stage.” Pavitra Roy also affectionately known as “Pavitra da” is our “go-to” man! He is someone that brings fresh and ingenious ideas to our creative table here at Rangmanch, someone who is extremely proactive and has great vision into the future of Rangmanch. Pavitra is one to approach when we need a boost of confidence. The director, Ujjal Ghosh is also an intense and soulful actor and has appeared in leading roles throughout Rangmanch’s history. His on-stage persona is strong yet sensitive and he performs the role of Akaash, the protagonist in Sunhere Sapne. Jayanta Bhaduri worked together with a handful of friends to form the core group to run the Rangmanch Theatre group. He is a powerhouse of theatrical knowledge and experience and has been the creative lead in all Rangmanch’s play till date. While playing the role of Suresh Gupta in this play, he is also mentoring the younger talent and guiding them to give their best performance. Monica Nangia feels lucky to be associated with Rangmanch, one of the best theatre groups in Auckland she says and plays the character of Neha who goes through various emotions in the play. Chirag Solanki, a multitalented individual has played many different roles in Rangmanch’s plays and has the distinction of also wearing many different hats for the organization! Chirag brings with him theatre experience from working on various street plays and skits in India. He is Amarnath Prasad in Sunhere Sapne, an incredibly promising cricketer in his youth but sadly enough, realises that his golden dreams of a stellar cricketing career will never be fulfilled. Rupal Solanki plays the character of Mamta Prasad, the long suffering wife of Amarnath who in spite of all her personal and financial hardships remains devoted to her husband. Rupal is a dedicated theatre enthusiast who has been associated with Rangmanch since 2011. Pieu Nalin has been passionate about stage since childhood, be it dancing, acting or any other form. First time with Rangmach as Asha, the daughter of Amarnath and Mamta, she is a young intelligent girl who dreams of making it big one day. Malavika Kamath is a connoisseur of all things artistic. She is a trained Bharatnatyam dancer and enjoys devoting her time and efforts to the pursuit of creative endeavours. She enjoys playing character parts and will be seen as Bulbul, the vivacious “working girl” of the basti. Hers is a multifaceted character that has realised what it takes to survive by herself in a harsh and sometimes unforgiving world but still finds the time to chase her golden dreams! Vijesh Nangia believes that Rangmanch through its plays brings to fore the nuances of society and emotions that form part of it. Proud to be associated with Rangmanch, he plays the character of Raj. Vishal Patil is a theatre enthusiast and while his main passion is acting, he has been closely associated with the marketing and promotion of Rangmanch. He plays the role of Dev, a passionate young person who has become part of a communist group and is also the younger brother of our protagonist, Akaash. Madhumita Chatterjee as Diya is the regular Indian girl in her 20s who dreams of a peaceful family life with her dream man.
Aman Dutt who has recently joined Rangmanch plays Rohan, a young college student who is passionate about studies and aspires to become a doctor.
Vijayendra Bose, playing the role of Ajay, a friend of Akaash’s brother Dev, is making his debut in Hindi theatre in Auckland. He thanks Rangmanch and all its talented members for giving him this opportunity. Rangmanch’s younger talent also includes Mehak Nangia in the role of Seema (Asha’s friend), Atreya Bhaduri as an inspector, Shaibal Chakraborty in the role of a young aspiring cricketer, Nevil B as Bulbul’s regular client and Adya Dutta, Disha Roy, Sachi Roy, Sasha Thakkar and Malisha Ghosh as our team of little dancers. Behind the scenes Rangmanch has invaluable support of Krittibas Dasgupta providing background music, stage craft by Shantanu Ghosh, marketing & publicity by Pavitra Roy, dance & choreography by Monica Mahendru, stage management and lights by Kuntal Trivedi and Babla Bannerjee. They all have a passion for theatre and a penchant for quality plays. Rangmanch also takes this opportunity to thank all the organisations who have given grants, our sponsors and media partners with whose support this has been possible. Creative Communities New Zealand – Auckland Council ASB Community Trust Pub Charity Westpac Other sponsors: Eco Travels, Top In Town, Westpac and Relianz Forex Ltd. Media sponsors: Humm FM and Indian Weekender Do join us to watch as the story unfolds on stage and experience the emotional turmoil of Akaash and the others, in the pursuit of their golden dreams…..Sunhere Sapne, Rangmanch’s stage production in Hindi. We hope to have your wonderful support and cooperation. Showing September 1st and 2nd at The Playhouse Theatre, Glen Eden, Auckland. For booking and other details please contact: Chirag 0276784966 Pavitra 021445166 Ujjal 0212506823 Malavika 0210514035 You can also visit us on www.rangmanch.org. nz/ and follow us on Facebook
Proudly announces the presentation of its 4th Hindi Drama
In the timeless conflict between dreams and realities...love is the only resolution...
Ujjal Ghosh Krittibas Dasgupta
Background Music Concept:
Playhouse Theatre, 15 Glendale Rd, Glen Eden, Waitakere City.
Saturday - 1st September at 7.00 pm Sunday - 2nd September at 5.30 pm Tickets: $30.00 $ 20.00 $ 15.00 $5.00 discount for every ticket booked in a group of 4. For booking and other details please contact: Chirag : 027 678 4966, Pavitra: 021 445 166, Ujjal: 021 250 68 23, Malavika : 021 051 4035
Indian Weekender | August 24, 2012 | www.iwk.co.nz
Romance, Kat, Action
Film: Ek Tha Tiger Director: Kabir Khan Starring: Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif, Girish Karnad, Ranvir Shorey Rating: **1/2 Yash Raj may always be associated with passionate romantic tales, comprising of song, dance and plenty of drama (and melodrama) but there’s no denying that the production house is equally good with no-brainer actioners --- Dhoom series, Tashan and now Ek Tha Tiger. With Ek Tha Tiger though, Kabir combines action and romance a la Mr & Mrs Smith style, making an exciting chase for a love story, which leaves aside emotions and takes you on a high-end adventure trip --- starting from Iraq and ending in Cuba. The love birds in question here are RAW agent, Tiger (Salman), the heroic spy who has no life beyond his death-defying missions. And the damsel in ‘action’, Zoya (Katrina), who boxes as effortlessly as she moves her belly. A globetrotting chase follows after the two fall in love... Ek Tha Tiger starts off as a hardcore terrorist thriller and slips into a full-blown rom-act(ion). The story reminds you of Veer-Zaara, ofcourse a more hip, nondramatic and illogical version. Some sequences are downright outrageous in terms of ‘non’sense. But since Salman has vowed to be the Rajnikanth of Bollywood, you might as well see him stopping a speedy tram with his blazer this time round. He’s every bit the macho-man that one expects him to be post Wanted, Dabangg, Ready and Bodyguard. But despite his consistent popularity, flair for action and a natural chemistry with Katrina, Salman doesn’t impress in this film. The actor has developed a strange deadpan expression and hardly ever goes beyond that, even in the most intense of scenes. We don’t know if it’s his illness that’s to blame but in this film, he certainly seems to require some effort to flash a simple smile too. So even if Salman is responsible for making all the big bucks for yet another film, it’s Katrina who’s actually the highlight of Ek Tha Tiger. The Barbie doll truly transforms herself from a mere eye-candy to a kickass action heroine in this one. She’s never looked so hot and played so tough. It’s such a treat to watch her on screen that you are willing to overlook all the other flaws --- drab screenplay, shallow plot and forgettable music, barring the catchy Mashallah. With Ek Tha Tiger, Kabir single-mindedly concentrates on action and cinematography, and does well in both. So don’t go expecting anything more than a pacy action-packed escapade amidst beautiful locales.
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