Indian Monthly March 2016 Edition

 

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Indian Monthly March 2016 Edition

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FREE Vol-3 ISSUE-3 March 2016 M NTHLY MELBOURNE’S LOCAL INDIAN NEWSPAPER www.indianmonthly.com.au INDIAN MARCH 2016 / www.bollywoodsun.com Navneet Agnihotri to be live in Melbourne Australia’s first Indian Aged Care Home to be built in Melbourne

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2 INDIAN MONTHLY | MARCH 2016 www.indianmonthly.com.au

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MARCH 2016 | INDIAN MONTHLY 3 Navneet Agnihotri to be live in Melbourne Navneet Agnihotri is a unique artist by profession and specializes in Sai Baba apintings. The divine journey of the artist began with divine blessings when he spontaneously made a few sketches while returning from Shirdi in a train. He completed his BFA from the Prestigious College of Arts and also Diploma from the Institute of Arts where he taught his juniors while he completed his own education. Though he never followed fame but fame always followed him and made a big hit soon after his studies with the record of Asia’s largest painting in 2000. Name, fame and growth have continued ever since. His paintings adorn the walls of more than 250 Sai Baba temples across the globe including Shirdi. He began the revolutionary step in art with his live performance of painting on stage in Jugalbandis where he paints with brushes in tune with the beats of music and leaves his audiences mesmerized. At a young age, he has made immense growth in his field and bagged many prestigious awards. A few of them include the one he got from APJ Abdul Kalam (Former President of India) as a rising star in his field sharing the stage with the likes of Sania Mirza, Sai Ratan Award in the USA for his 20 years of serving Sai and many more. His paintings in Shirdi was inaugurated by Smt. Pratibha Patil (former President of India). The latest in his achievements include more tha 25 live performances in last 12 months in the USA, Canada and Singapore. Upcoming events includes tours of Australia, New Zealand, London and Netherlands. www.indianmonthly.com.au

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4 INDIAN MONTHLY | MARCH 2016 Cricket Australia embracing people from diverse cultural backgrounds Cricket Australia (CA) is the national active part in the sport. He remarked that even the language barrier could be broken when people from diverse communities get an opportunity to learn about this sport and they get involved. ‘Sport for All’ is the tag line, he said, adding that Cricket Australia promotes and talks about Cricket to people from different nationalities and cultures to participate more. “The vision is for Cricket to be Australia’s favourite sport and a sport for all Australians.” CA connects the local talent form the subcontinent to the right authorities basically giving a chance to the local talent. It’s all about the country’s favourite sport In conversation with Mr Gagan Sethi, Community Ambassador for Cricket Australia If you have a desire to do something, just go for it. Be yourself and no one can stop you from following your dream: Gagan Sethi Mr Sethi is a Revenue and Credit Accountant by profession but his passion for cricket runs deep. He is also an active participant in most of the community events and is always in the fore-front when it comes to support the governing body for cricket in Australia. It connects to cricket’s local and state levels through its members and six state associations. In an exclusive talk with Mr Gagan Sethi, Community Ambassador for Cricket Australia, Mr Sethi stressed the need to bring awareness among different communities and nationalities to take community. He has been playing cricket from around last 25 years and the passion, he says, will never die. This love for cricket led him and two of his friends Puneet and Simran initialize the project called Williams Landing Sprots Club. Williams Landing Sports Club, WLSC was established three years by Mr Gagan Sethi, Mr Puneet Malhotra and Simran Dhamija to cater for the sports and recreational needs of the ever growing Wyndham and Williams Landing community. The trio has been playing cricket for many years and realized the way the community was represented was not good enough and it needed more professionalism. This is how WLSC came into being. It was not as easy as a pie to startup something like this, it needed lots of planning, discussions and most importantly hard work and dedication. Mr Sethi planned and took care of the budget and the finances whereas Puneet who is an IT professional looked after the Website and marketing stuff. Simran projected and planned everything needed. As remarked by Mr Sethi, they were not really impressed by the way some sports clubs used to function at the time. They wanted to do it in a better way rather than just a street play. The Club provides a way to collaborate by overcoming the cultural backgrounds through sports. There are over 60 senior members involved in the club and the club is aiming to start a juniors’ team soon. Some of the kids’ program running includes Milo Into Cricket and Milo T20 Plus Program for different age groups. Milo Into Cricket is a program organized by Cricket Australia. All the members are working together and are giving their best to the community. Mr Gagan commented, “This culture of Milo Program which never happened back home is an initiative to get more youth participation.” He also added that most of the parents are ignorant of how the program works and promoting and spreading the word will do the job here. It will help kids to learn from very beginning and can bring out the best talent. The Club has professional coaches and training sessions are held every Tuesday and Thursday and the games are mainly held on Saturdays. There is also another 8 weeks program for kids (7years to 13years) which runs every Saturday from 9:30 to 11:00. The best part about WLSC is that people from diverse cultural backgrounds come and take part. The WLSC won the premiership last year. The Club also organizes Boot camps, kitties, badminton and table tennis games for women and other volunteers involved in the club. WLSC is not going to restrict it to Cricket only but is planning to add other sports in future www.indianmonthly.com.au

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6 INDIAN MONTHLY | MARCH 2016 Australia’s first Indian Aged Care Home to be built in Melbourne A project is underway to build the first Indian aged care centre in Melbourne. This came into light when a Victorian provider refused to construct a vegetarian kitchen and prayer rooms for the Indian aged groups. The project is saved by Dutchcare now. Melbourne based The Confederation of Indian Australian Associations had signed a memorandum of understanding to grow the residential facility available at Dandenong, southeast of Melbourne. To resolve the problems faced by the older Indian generation in Australia, the Dutch provider had to intervene and take the responsibility to build such kind of an Aged Care in Melbourne. The Association’s Chairman Vasan Srinivasan said that the Victorian old age care provider refused the request when the Indian elderly asked for a vegetarian commercial kitchen and four prayer rooms. The chairman defended the refusal by saying that supplementing the requirements would have added an extra charge of around $2 million to the entire construction cost. “We needed the prayer rooms for the community to follow their religious discourse and teaching on a regular basis,” he said. “We were a bit disappointed, but we had to move on.” www.indianmonthly.com.au

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MARCH 2016 | INDIAN MONTHLY 9 Sikh Army captain sues U.S. military over grooming policy tests mask if he had a turban, uncut hair and a beard, the lawsuit said. “Defendants abruptly informed Captain Singh that, because of his Sikh religion, he must immediately undergo extraordinary, targeted, repetitive testing ostensibly to ensure he can properly wear a combat helmet and safety mask,” the suit said. “This discriminatory treatment is unfounded and violates the Army’s own regulations,” the suit said, adding that other soldiers had not been subjected to testing beyond what is given to most troops. Singh recently passed the standard gas mask testing with the rest of his unit, his supporters said. Captain Simratpal Singh, has filed suit against the U.S. military when he was ordered to undergo “extraordinary, targeted, repetitive testing” before receiving permanent to wear a beard and long hair for his religion according to the court papers. The 28 year old is a member of the 349th Engineer Battalion and was awarded the Bronze Star for his work clearing explosives from roads in Kandhar Province in Afghanistan. Mr Singh has demanded that the military accommodate his articles of faith and abandon it impromptu discriminatory testing. The court filing said he was granted a temporary accommodation last year allowing him to dress according to his religious beliefs. But Assistant Army Secretary Debra Wada recently ordered additional tests before he would be granted a permanent exemption. She stated that she wanted to be certain he could safely wear a helmet and gas “Thousands of other soldiers are permitted to wear long hair and beards for medical or other reasons, without being subjected to such specialized and costly expert testing of their helmets and gas masks,” Judge Beryl A Howell swiftly ruled in Captain Singh’s favour. The US Department of Defence, which had granted and then extended Captains Singh’s temporary religious accommodation until March 31 this year, remains scheduled to make a final decision on Singh’s permanent accommodation by that deadline. Air Force Major Ben Sakrisson, a Pentagon spokesman, said the department did not comment on ongoing litigation. But he said the military worked to “the maximum extent possible” to enable the free exercise of religion by all troops. The U.S. military took steps in early 2014 to give individual troops greater latitude to wear turbans, head scarves, yarmulkes and tattoos if required by their religion. The policy shift was mainly expected to affect Sikhs, Muslims, Jews and members of other groups that wear beards or articles of clothing for religious purposes. It also affected Wiccans and others who obtain tattoos for religious reasons. Only three Sikhs have been granted permission by the U.S. military to wear turbans, beards and uncut hair over the past six years, court filings said. Singh and two other Sikhs are awaiting decisions on their requests for a waiver. Singh is unusual among Sikhs seeking accommodations because in 2006 he attended West Point, where he gave in to pressure to cut his hair and beard. But after a decade of service, including completing Army Ranger School, he obtained a temporary accommodation last year to enable him to follow the grooming traditions of his religion. www.indianmonthly.com.au

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MARCH 2016 | INDIAN MONTHLY 11 Vishal Maa Bhagwati Jagran organized by Craigieburn Mata Mandir Hundreds came to seek blessings of the Almighty at the fundraising event organized by Craigieburn Mata Mandir. Hundreds of devotees flocked together at Heritage Receptions for the ‘Vishal Maa Bhagwati Jagran’ organized by Craigeburn Mata Mandir. The whole ambience was filled with chanting of hymns, recitals and prayers which made it even more celestial. The event was basically for fundraising for the new temple building as the existing building is installed in a smaller area. The Bhandara was followed by ‘Mata Pujan’. The event was typical Indian style which included Bhajan kirtan, Jhaankiyan, Midnight Bhog, Tara Rani Katha and Kanjak Pujan. The temple was built in 2014 when Bhawna Gupta and her husband Prabhjot Singh felt the need of ‘Mata ka Mandir’ in the area as there was not one closer. They built it adjacent to their house in Craigieburn and wanted it to be open all the time like it is in India. They made it for themselves but soon devotees started coming in and it was when they decided to extend it in a bigger area. The temple is open 24*7 for the devotees. Bhawna Gupta works as a Manager for Mc Donalds and is an ardent devotee of Mata Rani and her husband, Prabhjot is an IT professional who has always supported her in whatever she does. Next the duo is focusing to organize something for Hanuman Jayanti which will be posted soon. www.indianmonthly.com.au

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MARCH 2016 | INDIAN MONTHLY 13 UK visa fees set for big hike The British government is set to increase visa fees across most categories of applications from March 18. The decision will have a major impact on the migrants coming from India and will affect thousands of Indians who were the largest group of skilled workers to be granted visas to live and work in Britain last year. The changes, proposed in January this year, mean a 2 per cent rise for most fees including the short-term visitor visas and most work or study applications and a 25 per cent increase in fees for nationality and settlement visa applications. The UK Home Office said the increases will reduce UK taxpayer contributions towards the border, immigration and citizenship system and ensure that by 2019-2020 the system is self-funded by those who use it. «These changes ensure that the Home Office can achieve a self-funding system, whilst continuing to provide a competitive level of service, and a fees structure that remains attractive to businesses, migrants and visitors,» a Home Office statement said. According to recently-released figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), Indians formed the largest group of skilled workers to be granted visas to live and work in the UK last year. Indians bagged the majority of the 92,062 visas issued to skilled migrants in 2015. «Indian nationals accounted for 57 per cent of total skilled work visas granted (52,360 of 92,062), with USA nationals the next largest nationality group (10,130 or 11 per cent),» the ONS report said. Most of these migrants go on to apply for settlement in the UK and will now pay around 25 per cent more for such applications as the fee for a settlement application or so-called «Indefinite Leave to Remain» (ILR) application within the UK will increase from 1,500 pounds to 1,875 pounds. The main changes effective from March 18 are: visas linked most closely to economic growth, such as those offered to workers and students, will be increased by 2 per cent. A 2 per cent increase will apply to all visit visas to help maintain the UK›s position as one of the world›s top tourist destinations. www.indianmonthly.com.au

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MARCH 2016 | INDIAN MONTHLY 15 Folk & Rock Music & Dance Academy got off to a good start For all the music, dance and other performing art lovers, there is a good news. Yes! Folk & Rock Music & Dance Academy is open now. The academy was launched on 28th February 2016 when Sultan Dhillon, Nirvair Kandola and Jaideep Goraya joined hands to give wings to their dream of opening such kind of an academy in Melbourne. Mr Dhillon is a renowned Dhol player and has won 11 gold medals at national level in India. Mr Kandola manages the dance groups and everything related to social media. Mr Goraya teaches folk instruments like Tumbi, Algozey, Harmonium and Keyboard. Mr Goraya also takes care of the technical side when it comes to setting up sound system for events. The trio has been working together from last many years and the academy is a result of their hard work and dedication. The team of trainers include professionals from different walks of life. Preet kandola is the Bhangra Coach whereas Kuldeep Kaur is the Giddha coach. Arun Sharma teaches Guitar and Parth Pandey teaches Piano (Western). Drum set is taught by Veenu Pathak and Drama and Acting by Deepak Bawa. Apart from the faculty, Aminder Dhami who has been a big support in promoting and supporting the new venture plays a vital role in taking this initiative to the next level. The classes are held on Saturdays and Sundays from 12 noon to 3 pm. And more so the community is showing a great response as 47 students have already been enrolled. The several folk dances include Jindua, Sammi, Malwai Giddha and many more. The opening ceremony of the academywas held at Brothers Banquet, Springvale where an overwhelming crowd of over 120 people attended the event which was emceed very beautifully by Kuldeep Kaur and Deepak Bawa. The performances included Bollywood songs by Swarythm Band, Bhangra by Preet Kandola and Group and Giddha. Giddha by beautiful girls captured the hearts of all. The first 20 students enrolled were rewarded with medals. www.indianmonthly.com.au

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