Desi News

Desi News

Second New Jersey Indian & International Film Festival features unique mix of entries

Films from the United Kingdom and India rubbed shoulders with those from Puerto Rico and Mexico capturing the diversity of the New Jersey Indian and International Film Festival Organizers and supporters of the New Jersey Indian & International Film Festival pose for a photo during the two-day event Oct. 19 and 20, 2019, held in South Plainfield, N.J. Photo courtesy: NJIIFF Close to 49 films played to full houses during the two-day New Jersey Indian International Film Festival (NJIIFF) Oct. 19 and 20, proof that a discriminating Indian-American public is hungry for the variety and diversity of the new crop of filmmakers. The second edition of NJIIFF went off without a hitch at the Regal Hadley Theater in South Plainfield, N.J., indicated Hemant Pandya, the main organizer of the event. In an interview with Desi Talk, Pandya estimated some 700-800 people from around New Jersey and surrounding areas came to…

Desi News

Michigan native Attiganal Sreeram appointed to President’s Council of Science & Tech

President Donald Trump has appointed an Indian-American to his new council of advisors on science and technology. Attiganal Narayanaswamy Sreeram, senior vice president of research and development and chief technology officer at Dow Inc. appointed Oct. 22, 2019, to President’s Advisory Council on Science and Technology, by President Trump. (Photo: Dow.com) Among the seven appointees named so far on the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) is Indian-American Attiganal Narayanaswamy Sreeram of Michigan. The PCAST can have a maximum of 16 Advisors, and there is a possibility that more Indian-American techies or CEOs would be appointed as members. Several Indian-Americans lead major companies in the country, including Satya Nadela of Microsoft, Shantanu Narayen of Adobe, Ajay Banga of Mastercard, and Google CEO Sundar Pichai. Over President Trump’s tenure, several of these CEOs have been part of meetings with the President at the White House on issues of…

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Children’s Hope Gala in New York raises over $1 million

Sunil Sani, Sandeep Mathrani, Dina Pahlajani and Reena Ninan at the Children’s Hope gala., held at Pier Sixty, in New York, on October 13, 2019. Photo: Children’s Hope. The annual Children’s Hope Gala (CHI), held at Pier Sixty, on October 13, was a sold-out event, and proved to be one of the organization’s most successful fundraising galas with over 500 guests from the tri-state area. The gala raised over $1million for Children’s Hope India’s health and education programs, helping children to move onward and upwards in life. The theme of the evening was ‘Children on the Move’ and it celebrated the upward progress of children through education and enhanced opportunities through CHI programs. CHI shared their story through a powerful video which showed that they are always on the move, as children of migrants, slum-dwellers, wage-workers and refugees. The master of ceremonies Reena Ninan, CBS anchorperson and television personality, radiant…

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Surati’s ‘Dandiya Bollywood Night’ in New Jersey a huge hit

Attendees revel and dance to dandiya and garba beats at Surati’s Lights of Diwali Festival at Exchange Place, Jersey City, NJ. Paul Martin Photography. Surati presented an allusive and promising prologue to its ongoing festival event: “Lights of Diwali”, with an inaugural Dandiya Bollywood Night outdoors at Exchange Place, Jersey City, with stunning views of the Manhattan skyline, on October 11, 2019. The Friday evening came alive with the vibrant music and foot-tapping rhythm of the Dandiya (Indian folk dance from the state of Gujarat), to which hundreds of buoyant and vivacious revelers responded with swinging, swirling, and wheeling steps, forming a resplendent revolving circle of energy and joy, according to a press release. The music was provided by the versatile band “Saaz aur Sangeet” from India. DJ Sunny spun garba, dandiya and Bollywood eclectic music for the evening. A major feature of this year’s Lights of Diwali festival is an operatic staging of the musical…

Desi News

Four honored at Indian Diaspora Health Summit in New Jersey

The inauguration of the third Indian Diaspora Health Summit, organized by GOPIO Health Council along with the Consulate of India in New York and TV Asia, on October 12, 2019, in Edison, NJ. Photo: GOPIO. The third Indian Diaspora Health Summit was held on October 12, 2019, at TV Asia Auditorium in Edison, NJ. The meet was organized by GOPIO International Health Council, The Consulate General of India in New York, and TV Asia, with support from Indian Health Camp of NJ, Princeton Lions Club and Central Jersey Business Organization. Deputy Consul General of India in New York Shatrughna Sinha attended the event as a Chief Guest along with CEO and Chairman of TV Asia Padma Shri Dr. H.R. Shah, Piscataway Township Councilman Kapil Shah, health professionals and community leaders from various organizations. The summit included comprehensive discussions on medical, dental, mental health, alternative medicine, life-style modifications and wellness and…

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Preston Bailey headlines Style Salon, multicultural bridal show in New York

Preston Bailey. Photo: The Style Salon. Weddings in New York are as diverse as the communities that make up New York City, and for the first time, a bridal planning event that showcases these weddings in all of their color and traditions is taking place in Manhattan. The Style Salon is a showcase of bridal vendors that service multicultural weddings. The event is being headlined by Panama-born, New Yorker, world-renowned celebrity event designer and author Preston Bailey who is known for his transformative event environments and whose clientele includes celebrities, royalty and prominent families around the world, according to a press release. “I’ve been designing weddings in many different countries for over 30 years,” said Preston, in a ststement. “I love how weddings are the center point of all cultures around the world. Weddings are the time when people celebrate and honor their customs and traditions. I am excited to…

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Houston Police adopt religious apparel policy in wake of Indian-American officer’s killing

Thousands attended the memorial for slain Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal Oct. 2, in Houston. (Photo: courtesy Syndee Jolly of Click Cafe Photography via The Sikh Coalition) This October 11, exactly three weeks after the wanton shooting death of Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal, the Houston Police Department announced it had made a major policy change allowing law enforcement officers to wear their articles of faith while in uniform. The announcement was made by Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo to honor Dhaliwal who was shot to death behind his back during a routine traffic stop. His memorial on Oct. 2, was attended by thousands of people and around the world, law enforcement as well as others mourned for him. Dhaliwal was the first Indian-American of the Sikh faith allowed to wear his turban and beard in uniform in the Houston police force. Dhaliwal’s suspected killer Robert Solis, charged…

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India, Pakistan set to sign pilgrim corridor pact amid Kashmir tension

FILE PHOTO: Laborers work at the sites of the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, which will be open this year for Indian Sikh pilgrims, in Kartarpur, Pakistan September 16, 2019. REUTERS/Mohsin Raza/File Photo NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India and Pakistan are set to sign an agreement on Indian pilgrims visiting a Sikh shrine in Pakistan, rare cooperation between the nuclear-armed neighbours at a time of tension that has brought exchanges of fire on their disputed border. The pact will introduce visa-free access from India to the Pakistani town of Kartarpur, home to a temple that marks the site where the founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak, died. India’s foreign ministry said in a statement late on Monday an understanding had been reached on most issues and India was prepared to sign the agreement on Wednesday. Pakistani officials were not immediately available for comment but Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper cited a foreign ministry spokesman as…

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Two Indian-Americans Win Arts Awards in Chicago

Two artists of Indian origin based in Chicago are among those awarded the 2019 3Arts Awards for their achievements. Laksha Dantran (dance artist) and Richard Costes (theater artist), are two artists among the 20 artists that 3Arts is awarding this year with $25,000 grants, an Oct. 21, press release from the organization said. The money is given with no strings attached. Laksha Dantran, Chicago based artist. (Photo: courtesy 3Arts) The organization 3Arts is a Chicago-based non-profit which awards Chicago artists of color, artists with disabilities, and women in the arts, with unrestricted grants at the 12th annual 3Arts Awards Celebration, scheduled to take place Nov. 4, 2019, at the Museum of Contemporary Art. Dantran is a transgender female dance artist whose work is rooted in the forms of Indian classical dance and theater. Currently she is working with Mandala South Asian Performing Arts in Chicago on a modern dance theatre…

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India on verge of series sweep as South Africa crumble again

Cricket – South Africa v Pakistan – Second Test – PPC Newlands, Cape Town, South Africa – January 6, 2019 South Africa’s Dean Elgar in action REUTERS/Mike Hutchings/ FILE PHOTO NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India subjected South Africa to the ignominy of a follow-on and were two wickets away from inflicting a series whitewash on the visitors after dominating day three of the third and final test in Ranchi on Monday. Replying to India’s 497-9 declared, South Africa were all out for 162, conceding a massive first-innings lead of 335 runs. Asked to follow on, they were equally poor second time round as they slumped to 132-8 at stumps having barely avoided defeat inside three days. Theunis de Bruyn was unbeaten on 30 after coming in as concussion substitute for Dean Elgar who went for tests after being hit flush on the helmet by an Umesh Yadav delivery. Anrich Nortje…