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Redefine "Hindutva" Say Some Indian Religious Leaders

Posted on 2003/1/15 8:47:02 ( 871 reads )


PATNA, INDIA, January 12, 2003: The concept of "Hindutva" should be redefined on a broader perspective, salvaging it from what some believe are the "narrow confines" of a particular religion, two religious leaders said. "Love for all fellow beings, refraining from causing any harm to anybody with a spirit of sacrifice and dedication to come closer to the 'Supreme Soul' through spiritualism and meditation are the essence of the concept of 'Hindutva'," says Acharya Kishore Kunal and Ratan Lal Singh. They considered Hindutva as synonymous with an ideal lifestyle, devoid of greed, anger and feelings of revenge. They opposed intermingling of the pious approach of 'Hindutva' with nationalism of a particular country.

English Romantic Poets May Have Been Influenced by Hindu Philosophy

Posted on 2003/1/15 8:46:02 ( 906 reads )

Indian Citizenship for It's Diaspora Population -- Another Viewpoint

Posted on 2003/1/15 8:45:02 ( 878 reads )


SOUTH AFRICA, January 15, 2003: HPI ran a story where views from one South African Indian Hindu were quoted opposing Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's recent proposal for dual citizenship for India's diaspora. Thavashan Govender's response to this story follows: "I myself am a South African of Indian origin and a Hindu as well. I am proud of my cultural and religious background. To be once again a citizen of the motherland would be the ultimate honor! India should not regard Mewa Ramgobin and Fatima Meer as representing the opinions of Indo- South Africans. Many of us would certainly love having dual-citizenship and would consider it an honor." Readers may contact "source" above for further discussion.

Hindu Temple of Central Texas Announces Kumbhabhishekam

Posted on 2003/1/15 8:44:02 ( 942 reads )


TEMPLE, TEXAS, January 15, 2003: The Hindu Temple of Central Texas, 4309 Midway Drive, Temple, Texas, announces their kumbhabhishekam. The installation of the Deities and dedication of the temple will be held in three different stages. The first, for Lord Venkateswara and Goddess Padmavati (donated by the Thirupati Thirumalai Devasthanam), will take place on January 17, 18, 19; for Ram Parivar and Radha Krishna will occur on January 24 and 25; ceremonies for Lord Mahaganapathy, main deity, along with Lord Siva, Goddess Parvati, Lord Subramaniam, Ayyappa, Navagraha and Lord Balaganapathy will be held February 12 through 16. For further details of the Kumbhabhishekam celebrations and of temple activities, readers may contact "source" above.

Indonesian Police Official Blends Karma With Investigative Technique

Posted on 2003/1/14 8:49:02 ( 825 reads )

Source: Washington Post

BALI, INDONESIA, January 12, 2003: In difficult moments, I Made Pastika hikes briskly up a mint-green mountain toward a cool, silent place above the clouds. At the summit, after a two-hour climb, the Indonesian investigator in charge of solving the worst case of international terrorism since Sept. 11, 2001, sits cross-legged before an ornate, centuries-old temple carved of white stone, the highest Hindu temple in Bali. And then he prays. "I go there every time that I feel I need spiritual support, every time I'm facing a serious job," the Bali native said in a cell phone interview from the mountainside. "It gives me strength." A disarmingly direct official, Pastika blends respect for Western investigative techniques with reverence for his Eastern spiritual roots. His efforts have won him a measure of acclaim. With prosecutors preparing to charge the first suspects, Pastika has been praised by Indonesian civic leaders as well as foreign diplomats and human rights activists. Australia's deputy ambassador, Neil Mules, said Pastika is "an example of the best that Indonesia has to offer."

Christian Missionaries' Master Plan for Nepal

Posted on 2003/1/14 8:48:02 ( 988 reads )

Source: Nepal News

KATHMANDU, NEPAL, January 9, 2003: Christian missionaries have congregated on the outskirts of the capital city, where they are discussing the pros and cons of a strategic plan which aims to multiply churches across the Himalayas. They plan to achieve this by exploiting the marginal conditions of religious communities in the face of the worsening conflict. More than three dozen senior Christian missionaries, fluent in Nepali and mainly from the Western countries, are partaking in what they assert is an International Non-Governmental Organization Business Meeting that began on January 4. According to The Kathmandu Post which obtained a copy of the strategic plan, the missionaries assert in their vision statement that "We will work to establish churches in the Himalayan region, and sending churches and like-minded organizations in bi-vocational holistic ministry." The missionaries' strategic plan encourages such institutional projects as hospitals, something the document says has been the historical methodology of TEAM Nepal, a partner of the Himalayan Partners. "In keeping with TEAM's philosophy of Health Care Ministry, our health care initiatives are to facilitate the growth of the body of Christ by restoring physical, emotional and spiritual wholeness to individuals, families and community through preventative and curative medical services while demonstrating the love and compassion of Jesus Christ." The missionaries also plan to place personnel in national organizations or in government-sponsored positions, which is "another platform that can make an impact in church establishment." The missionaries "believe in ultimately establishing indigenous reproducing churches." The document continues with the belief "that missionaries are most effective when we teach and train nationals rather than doing the work ourselves."

South Africa's Indians Reject Dual Citizenship

Posted on 2003/1/14 8:47:02 ( 956 reads )

Kumbha Mela's Lost and Found Champion

Posted on 2003/1/13 8:49:02 ( 881 reads )


ALLAHABAD, INDIA, Kumbha Mela, 2001. The place is packed with nearly four million people. Stranded in the crowd, eight-year-old Subodh holds out a 10-rupee note (US$0.21) and sobs, "Please take this and help me find my father." The milling crowd has separated the two. After wandering around for a few hours, the boy finds himself before the "lost-and-found" camp. Soon, he is playing in his father's lap. 75-year-old Raja Ram Tiwari, who founded the camp, is happy each time a lost person is reunited with family. He has been helping people in this manner at many festivals and fairs since 1946. Tiwari has so far helped 400,000 adults and 25,000 children in six ardh-kumbhs, 46 megh melas and five purna kumbhs. In the millennium's first maha-kumbh in 2001, he reunited 130,000 people. Tiwari founded an organization called the Bharat Sewa Dal with 150 volunteers. He is now indispensable at the melas and has been nominated senior member of the mela committee. Tiwari's wife, Shanti Devi, also aids his efforts. "She takes care of the little children who get lost at the fairs," he says. The couple have three sons, who also help out whenever possible.

India's Construction Industry May Be Required to Use Fly Ash

Posted on 2003/1/13 8:48:02 ( 904 reads )


NEW DELHI, INDIA, January 5, 2003: Use of fly ash in construction laying of roads and reclamation of low lying areas may soon become mandatory as the statutory period of 60 days for raising objections and making suggestions in this regard will soon expire. "Fly ash" is the environmentally hazardous byproduct of coal-burning power plants. The draft fly ash rules were notified last month by the Ministry of Environment and Forests. The fly ash rules notified in September 1999 are being amended to make it compulsory for all agencies engaged in construction of buildings within a radius of 100 km -- doubled from 50 km earlier -- from coal or lignite-based thermal power plants to use fly ash bricks, blocks or tiles, the ministry has said. Though the minimum amount of fly ash to be used at present has been kept at 25 per cent, in due course the new rules require 100 per cent use of fly ash products. HPI adds: Iraivan Temple, located in Kauai, USA, has a monolithic four-foot-thick concrete slab foundation measuring 56 by 117 feet that was constructed using fly ash technology, the first large-scale demonstration of the technology. It was built under the direction of Dr. P. Kumar Mehta of the University of California. Temples in Houston and Chicago are also placing monolithic flyash foundations without reinforcing steel.

Mauritius to Run Ramayana Center

Posted on 2003/1/12 8:49:02 ( 1196 reads )


LUCKNOW, INDIA, December 30, 2002: To promote and propagate the Ramayana and the spiritual, social and cultural values that the epic holds, the government of Mauritius has taken the responsibility to run The Ramayana Center. Rajendra Arun, chairman of the center, briefed the press here on Saturday about plans to provide guidance and support for intellectual and moral development of the Hindu community and society at large, through the center. In the National Assembly of Mauritius all members, including Hindus, Muslims and Christians, unanimously passed the act related to this center. "This reflected the importance of the values of Ramayana," Arun said. Arun proposed to set up a branch of the center in India also. He said that it was necessary "as the feeling of insecurity had developed into fear, and that is the root cause of all ailments. Unfortunately people in India, which is the land of Rama, do not remember the message that Ramayana delivers."

Sri Lankan Refugees Eager to Return Home From India

Posted on 2003/1/12 8:48:02 ( 806 reads )


CHENNAI, INDIA January 11, 2003: "The mood is upbeat among Sri Lankan refugees in various Tamil Nadu camps and they are all eager to return home," Union Minister of State for Home, C.H. Vidyasagar Rao, said here today. The Minister, who visited some of the camps, said the on-going peace talks between the Sri Lankan Government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam had given the refugees hope. The Indian Government was ready to repatriate those who were willing to return. There were about 69,098 refugees in camps spread over 23 districts and another 24,348 staying with their relatives in Tamil Nadu. Since 1983, the Indian government has spent US$6.1 million on maintenance of the camps.

Sri Tukaram Ganapathi to Tour USA

Posted on 2003/1/12 8:47:02 ( 877 reads )


CHENNAI, INDIA, January 11, 2003: Sri Tukaram Ganapathi , a versatile abhang singer in the typical Maharastrian varakari style, is to be featured for a three-hour program at the Cleveland Music Festival on April 24, 2003, as part of a USA tour. All proceeds from the program go to the maintenance of his go-shala (cow protection place). Anyone wishing to organize a musical program in your area kindly contact "source" above for additional information.

Cultural Events Held at U.K. Prison

Posted on 2003/1/11 8:49:02 ( 977 reads )

Source: Nottingham Evening Post

NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND, January 2, 2003: The strains of soul and reggae music are not what you would expect to hear emanating from the gym at Nottingham Prison. And even less, to find among the basketball hoops and badminton courts, about 40 prisoners milling around eating Caribbean food and reading about the development of the Hindu religion. Prison Governor Phil Wragg said, "We've been running a cultural diversity awareness program, to coincide with Black History Month and Ramadan. We have brought in outside organizations and have gotten staff and prisoners involved. We have displayed writings by prisoners, and have had a different menu each night this week." In a prison where 17% of the 535 inmates are from ethnic minorities, and there are myriad religious and culture groups, running this sort of event seemed a logical step to the organizers.

Traditional Indian Dress for Men Has a Revival

Posted on 2003/1/11 8:48:02 ( 955 reads )


NEW DELHI, INDIA, January 6, 2003: Sharbari Datta is giving a sartorial flare by reviving the traditional Indian men's garment. She is the first to introduce the concept of colored silk dhotis, angarakhas, achkans, bandhgalas, sherwanis and kurtas and has successfully created a revolution in men's fashion. Datta says, "I sell my designs and not my label. Why shouldn't men of today be dress conscious? They are no less beautiful than our women."

Kiran Bedi Appointed to United Nations

Posted on 2003/1/11 8:47:02 ( 897 reads )


NEW DELHI, January 11, 2003: After making a mark in India, the country's first lady IPS officer, Kiran Bedi has been appointed Civilian Police Adviser in the Department of Peacekeeping at the U.N. The first woman to hold the post, her appointment was made by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. "I am happy while being grateful to God as prayers have worked for me," said Bedi. The assignment involves comprehensive policing, which includes training and legal aspects. Bedi has previously been honored with numerous awards, including the Ramon Magsaysay Award (of Philippines) for Government Service, the Joseph Beus Foundation Award (of Germany) for Holistic and Innovative Management and the Morrison Tom Gitchoff Award (of the USA) for actions that have significantly improved the quality of justice in India. In 1979, she was awarded the Police Medal for Gallantry for conspicuous courage. As warden, she was responsible for implementing reform at Delhi's Tihar jail, the largest in Asia.

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