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Hindu Press International
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Hindu Minority Seeking Own Homeland
Posted on 2001/7/10 23:48:02 ( 625 reads )


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NEW DELHI, INDIA, July 10, 2001: It was a time of terrible fear among the Kashmiri Pandits, Hindus indigenous to the beautiful Himalayan valley. They and Hindu settlers were being killed, kidnapped and robbed by Islamic militant groups demanding independence from India or to unite with Muslim-majority Pakistan. Between October 1989 and August 1990, some 350,000 Kashmiri Pandits fled and live mostly in squalid camps in Jammu, Kashmir's winter capital. Now the Pandits are raising anew their demand for a homeland, which they say must be separate because of fears they will be targeted again. "They wanted to Islamize Kashmir and they wanted us out. It was ethnic cleansing, said Ramesh Manavati, spokesman for Our Own Kashmir, an organization that says it represents more than 700,000 Kashmiri Pandits and demands an enclave in the Kashmir Valley. The All-Party Hurriyat Conference, an umbrella group that claims to speak for Kashmir, says the Pandits are welcome back, but a separate Pandit homeland is unacceptable.




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Kashmiri Pandits Long to Pilgrimage to Sharda Temple
Posted on 2001/7/10 23:47:02 ( 600 reads )


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NEW DELHI, INDIA, July 8, 2001: Longing to pilgrimage to the Sharda Temple in Kishanganga Valley in an area of Kashmir occupied by Pakistan, Kashmiri Pandits have appealed to Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee to openly discuss the issue in summit talks with Pakistan President Pervez Musharrat. Since 1990 when Pakistan took over the valley, the 350,000 Pandits who migrated to avoid the militancy have since been denied the privilege of visiting their ancestral temple. Also known as a famous learning centre among Kashmiris, historians have found chronicles highlighting the temple as far back as 1130 ce. For many centuries the Sharda Temple has been the focal point in many pilgrims' lives. Even though the site is now in ruins, it exudes an awe inspiring glory and Kashmiri Pandits want to worship and express their devotion at the renowned temple complex.




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Iowa Indians Excited About Maiden Temple
Posted on 2001/7/10 23:46:02 ( 673 reads )


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GRANGER, IOWA, July 8, 2001: Hindu leaders say a $3 million temple and cultural center being built three miles north of Granger will be the first Hindu temple in the state. "This is good for the community," said Rajesh Kumar, vice-president of the Indo-American Association of Iowa. "They want to worship and it will be good for them to get a place for themselves." Hundreds of Hindu families have been in Iowa for more than 10 years without a place to worship, he said. Construction on the $1.5 million temple will start this fall and is expected to be completed by next spring. The temple could seat 280 and would be open seven days a week to non-Hindus and Hindus alike. Kumar said more than 1,000 Indian families live in Iowa. About 95 percent of them are Hindu. The late Prem Sahai, a Webster City physician, donated land for the temple. His son, Subhash Sahai, said it was his father's idea to build the worship center, but he wanted the project to be a community effort.




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New Temple For Parashakthi in Pontiac
Posted on 2001/7/10 23:45:02 ( 623 reads )


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DETROIT, MICHIGAN, JULY 8, 2001: Pontiac, a suburb in Detroit, is now home to a newly constructed temple for the Goddess Parashakthi. The 6,000 sq. ft. temple houses icons of Devi Sri Karumari Amman, Vinayaka, Karthikeya, Lord Siva and Devi Sivakamasundari. The temple was designed by renowned temple architect Padmasri M. Muthiah Sthapathi. The origin of the temple began when Karumari Amman appeared as a vision to Dr. Krishna Kumar, a medical practitioner in Detroit. Dr. Kumar, who serves as president and chief trustee, is also the major donor to the temple, with a contribution of $1.5 million. For more information contact: www.parashakthi-temple.net.




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Amazing Perseverance Of Pilgrims
Posted on 2001/7/9 23:49:02 ( 688 reads )


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JAMMU, INDIA, July 8, 2001 : With the state government reluctant to open the fresh registration counters at Jammu for the pilrimage to Amarnath Cave, hundreds of stranded pilgrims again took out a procession from Geeta Bhavan to Ranbereshwar Temple and staged a demonstration there demanding their enrollment. The government is limiting the number of pilrgims, which number in the hundreds of thousands, because of threats from Muslim militants in the area. Some of the stranded yatris have run short of money and they are making the rounds of various social organizations for help to return home without performing the darshan. Another news reports states that efforts are underway to divert the stranded pilgrims, who have come here ahead of their date of darshan and others without registration, to other places of religious importance including Purmandal, Shiv Khouri, Mahakali, Peer Khoh and other temples near or within the city. The Tourism Department has come out with a booklet carrying a map of Jammu region and officials are distributing these among pilgrims at departure points of the yatra, M.A. Stadium and other places. Meanwhile, the Jammu and Kashmir government has appealed to unregistered pilgrims not to come to the state.




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UK Hindus To Protest Taliban Regime
Posted on 2001/7/9 23:48:02 ( 661 reads )


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LONDON, ENGLAND, July 9, 2001: Hindu Human Rights group (HHR) is deeply concerned about the plight of Hindus in Afghanistan. Recently, the ruling Taliban Regime issued an order that all Hindus should wear yellow armbands so that they could be "easily identified" in public. It has been reported that this has been retracted to a decree that all Hindus should carry identification cards, again for "easy public identification." the group states in this press release, "We say that armbands, special clothing or ID cards all amount to one thing -- discrimination and the abuse of basic human rights. The world must see these actions for what they are; the relegation of Hindus to second-class citizens in their own country." The group is organizing a protest in front of the Prime Minister's house, 10 Dowing Street, on Saturday, July 14 at 11:30am.




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Priest's Murderer Gets Life In Prison
Posted on 2001/7/9 23:47:02 ( 698 reads )


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LEICESTER, ENGLAND, July 9, 2001: A drug addict has been jailed for life for the murder of one of the UK's most prominent Hindu priests. Harish Purohit, a high-profile member of Leicester's Hindu community, bled to death after being stabbed 16 times in October last year. After a week-long trial, a jury took just three hours to find Dean Riddell, 26, of no fixed address, guilty of murder. Nottingham Crown Court heard that Harish Purohit led a secret life in Leicester's gay community. The jury was told how Mr Purohit's family knew of his homosexuality and he was also well-known on Leicester's gay scene. Jailing Riddell for life, Mr. Justice Hughes told him: "It is perfectly clear to me that you were picked up by the deceased man in his motorcar. There was some kind of altercation and the jury has decided it was not self-defense or provocation. It was a sustained attack from behind with a knife you carried habitually."




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Ramakrishna Order Meets In Michigan
Posted on 2001/7/9 23:46:02 ( 632 reads )


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GANGES, MICHIGAN, JULY 7, 2001: One hundred and eight years after Swami Vivekananda came to Chicago and introduced Hinduism to the West, the monks of his order gathered in the small town of Ganges, Michigan, to usher in the new millennium. "Vedanta in the Third Millennium," a three-day conference, attracted nearly 800 followers from around the U.S. It was among the largest assemblies of senior monks of the Ramakrishna order in the history of the West. All told, 16 swamis attended, and the event attracted considerable media attention. The conference began June 22 at the 110-acre Vivekananda Monastery and Retreat Center. Throughout the three-day conference, the devotees kept a well regulated schedule, including early morning meditation and worship. Lectures were presented by each of the swamis sequentially, followed by meals and free time which enabled many to meet the swamis, individually. Over the course of the conference, the monks discussed Vedanta's role in society. However, personal spiritual instruction and practical guidance was the main emphasis.




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Devotees Pose a Problem For Traffic Police
Posted on 2001/7/9 23:45:02 ( 724 reads )


Source: Times of India





NEW DELHI, INDIA, July 9, 2001: For traffic cops the "Kanwariyas" are a seasonal road hazard. With the advent of Sawan, the monsoon month, these bare-footed pilgrims carrying Ganga-water have started pouring into the city. "These Kanwariyas have erratic pedestrian movements. Belonging to the neighboring states of UP and Haryana, they often walk in the middle of the road. Such movements can put their lives in danger," says a traffic police officer. The Kanwariyas usually enter the city and pass through three entry points. "These routes generally get more and more crowded as Shivaratri approaches," says another official. The police are attempting to educate the Kanwariyas through pamphlets and public announcements.




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The Latest Elephant By-Product -- Paper!
Posted on 2001/7/9 23:44:02 ( 759 reads )


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SRI LANKA, July 5, 2001: Elephants are everywhere on the island of Sri Lanka just south of India and this abundant resource has found an unique niche. After reading about the success a Kenyan game ranger had with the process of making paper from elephant dung, Thusitha Ramsinghe decided to give it a try. Finding out that the elephant's waste product contains a high degree of cellulose, Mr. Ramsinghe's company started to first collect, sort, dry, and boil the dung to extract the pulp which is then pressed into paper. The company called Maximus utilizes the paper to produce greeting cards, menus and invitations. Willing to pay the extra price for this rare item, companies such as the Hilton, Sri Lankan airlines, the Bank of Ceylon and others purchase the specialty paper to intrigue their clientele.




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High Jobless Rate Forcing Asian Migrants to Leave New Zealand
Posted on 2001/7/8 23:49:02 ( 677 reads )


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AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND, July 6, 2001: A new study on Asian migrants by the Auckland City Council's policy researchers reported yesterday that many recent Asian migrants to New Zealand are returning home or trying to move to Australia or the United States to escape high unemployment. According to the report, all groups among more than 110,000 Asians in Auckland are suffering high unemployment, well above the New Zealand average, leading to an outflow of recent migrants now seeking jobs elsewhere. It cited cases of skilled workers driving taxis to make ends meet, self-employed businesses barely making a living and people without jobs who were ineligible for welfare benefits.




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IDRF Adopts a Village in Gujarat
Posted on 2001/7/8 23:48:02 ( 706 reads )


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HOUSTON, TEXAS, JULY 5, 2001: Three hundred families in Jivapar village in Gujarat will soon have strong, earthquake-resistant homes. The India Development and Relief Fund - Houston has decided to adopt the village in Morbi taluka of Rajkot district and rebuilding work is expected to start early next year. The IDRF is building 204 new houses at an estimated cost of $800,000, to be shared equally by the IDRF and the Gujarat government. IDRF president Vinod Prakash said, "It is a source of immense inner joy and happiness for all the IDRF donors and volunteers that their hard-earned money and intense effort to alleviate the misery of the quake victims is taking concrete shape."




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Police Arrest Five as Fighting Flares in Bradford
Posted on 2001/7/8 23:47:02 ( 675 reads )


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LONDON, ENGLAND, June 7, 2001: At least one man was stabbed and five others were arrested in the northern English city of Bradford on Saturday as Asians and whites clashed before a planned demonstration by right-wing extremists. Political marches had been banned in Bradford earlier this week in hopes of preventing another of the race riots seen across northern England in recent months, but members of the rightist National Front had said they planned to go ahead with a rally. There had been a number of violent clashes after 200 to 300 mainly Asian youths broke through lines of riot police, with shop windows being broken and bricks and bottles thrown.




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Studies on Effects of Meditation to be Published
Posted on 2001/7/8 23:46:02 ( 721 reads )


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SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA, July 2, 2001: Dr. Ramesh Manocha, head of the meditation research program at The Royal Hospital for Women in Randwick, has collected preliminary data on the effects of meditation among patients. Successfully used to treat migraines, asthma, hot flushes, and occupational stress, meditation has been intuitively recommended by GP's to help their patients. Dr. Ramesh's scientific research has backed up the mind-body connection. After practicing meditation, those suffering from asthma attacks improved and those with migraines had fewer of them or the intensity was less. In some cases the migraines disappeared only to return if the person stopped meditating. Fifteen menopausal women with hot flushes showed a 70% improvement in their symptoms after only eight weeks of meditating. Over 50 people found a "real and measurable difference" in their occupational stress.




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Hindu-Bashing Chicago Radio And TV Talk Show Airs
Posted on 2001/7/8 23:45:02 ( 646 reads )


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CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, July 9, 2001: A campaign launched by Chicago radio and TV talk-show host Tony Brown purports to "inform" the American public about Hinduism. Brown's show aired on WLS 890 AM between 10 a.m. and 12 noon, on Saturday, June 30, and a similar television show aired 6 a.m. on Sunday, dedicating its time allotment to a bash of Hinduism. It was timed, perhaps coincidentally, when three major congregations of Indians - the JAINA, the TANA, and the "Vedanta in the Third Millennium" conventions were held in the Windy city. Brown promises more shows on the topic. Among other things, Brown said: "Nazism emanated from Hinduism; Hitler borrowed the Swastika symbol from the Hindu religion." Untouchability, "widely practiced" in India, permits "five per cent of the three high castes to rule the rest of the one billion population." "After the death of Mother Teresa, all Christian nuns in India were systematically persecuted." Brown also chastised the US government "for allowing (Indians) to immigrate into the US." Reports of this story will be appearing in the coming week, according to journalist Frank Parlato Jr., who is covering the story for various Indo-American publications, including the India Tribune and India West.




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