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Hindu Press International
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Aussie Hindus Call Off March Against Temple Desecration
Posted on 2001/3/25 22:48:02 ( 767 reads )


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The Hindu Council of Australia called off its protest march against an Australian labor union accused of desecrating the famous Sri Venkateswara Temple. The Council withdrew its call following an apology by the Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU). A CFMEU team visited the temple and removed eight stonemasons, alleging gross underpayment and unsafe living conditions. Temple management said the union desecrated the premises. The media liaison had earlier admitted union members entered accommodations wearing shoes, but removed them after it was pointed out that shoes were not allowed. The episode was followed by wide media coverage of allegations of a US$49/week wage and forced on-site accommodations.




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Indian Companies Provide Back-Office Services for American Companies
Posted on 2001/3/25 22:47:02 ( 760 reads )


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BANGALORE, INDIA, March 15, 2001: India has become the back office for many American companies. So expounds this article that illustrates that Indian Companies such as Customer Asset groom their employees to familiarize them with American culture and give them a fictitious identity. Providing services to companies such as General Electric and British Airways, they then field customer service calls from America and UK for these companies. Indian college graduates are competing for these jobs as the income supercedes other careers available in the country. They practice their accents with the "Ally McBeal" TV show, and have learned that the phrase "No way, Jose," doesn't have anything to do with a person named Jose.




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Scientific Proof - Smoking Promotes Wrinkles
Posted on 2001/3/25 22:46:02 ( 911 reads )


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LONDON, ENGLAND, March 23, 2001: Have you always thought that by simply looking at a person's face you could tell whether he or she is a smoker? Now there is scientific proof to back up your guess. A study conducted by Professor Antony Young at Guys, Kings and St. Thomas' School of Medicine has shown that the skin of smokers contains high concentrations of a gene called MMP-1. Apparently this gene is responsible for the breakdown of collagen, a component of skin tissue that helps the organ retain its elasticity. Smoking activates this enzyme and skin turns wrinkly and grey.




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Don't Blame Coconut Oil
Posted on 2001/3/25 22:45:02 ( 722 reads )


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COLOMBO, SRI LANKA, March 21, 2001: Mediterranean cuisine is redolent with olive oil and no Chinese chef will stir fry without sesame oil, but in Sri Lanka, coconut oil is at the heart of a heated controversy, according to this report in India Abroad. Statistics show 521 per 100,000 Sri Lankans die of coronary disease, and healthcare personnel have long advised reducing coconut use to cut the risk of cholesterol-clogged arteries. Cardiologists and researchers have, however, recently been singing a different tune. Quoting studies here and abroad, they have begun praising the nut, causing consternation. Specialists put the rise in heart ailments to other factors like smoking, hypertension and stress. In the provinces, the rate of heart disease is seven percent, compared to 14 percent in the cities. These statistics which would tend to exonerate coconut oil, which is widely used in the provinces.




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South African Women Study to Become Priests
Posted on 2001/3/24 22:49:02 ( 745 reads )


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DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA, March 20, 2001: Indian women in South Africa have found a new niche to promote and protect their religion. Twenty-four diligent participants, all of them female, have graduated from the Arya Pratinidhi Sabha Academy. Started in 1954, the institution teaches interested persons a weekly class for three years. Under the tutelage of trained priests, students become well versed in religious rites and ceremonies. After completing both oral and theoretical examinations, four women were recently inducted as female priests, while the remaining twenty are able to perform basic rituals for weddings, funerals and the birth of children.




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Fiji To Restore Democracy
Posted on 2001/3/24 22:48:02 ( 679 reads )


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FIJI, March 23, 2001: Last May's coup toppled the democratically-elected government, but Fiji's caretaker Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase announced a two-week period for the elections starting August 25 to enable citizens in remote islands to vote. He said the country's president, Ratu Josefa Iloilo, had set the date for polls for the 71-seat parliament. Qarase took charge last year in an interim government appointed by the military under a deal with nationalist rebels, who had demanded the multi-ethnic constitution be scrapped and ethnic Indians barred from power. The new government -- made up of indigenous Fijians -- was declared illegal by the Court of Appeal this month, but was later reinstated by Mr Iloilo. The elections will be seen as a key test of the former British colony's determination to return to democratic government. Ethnic Indians make up 44% of Fiji's 800,000-strong population.




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Moyers Documents Chemicals' Effect
Posted on 2001/3/24 22:47:02 ( 693 reads )


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NEW YORK, NEW YORK, March 25, 2001: Bill Moyers believes so strongly in "Trade Secrets," his documentary about the chemical industry, that he sheds blood for it. The veteran journalist rolls up his sleeve and offers an arm at New York's Mount Sinai School of Medicine to Dr. Michael McCally, who is conducting a study on the amount of man-made chemicals that have infiltrated the human body. The results are stunning. Of 150 different chemicals tested, traces of 84 are found in Moyers' blood. Only one of those -- lead -- would have been found if his blood were examined 60 years ago, McCally said. There were 31 different kinds of PCBs in Moyers' blood, 13 different dioxins and the pesticide DDT. At 66, Moyers figures the chemicals probably won't do much harm. But what if he were younger? What would all the chemicals do in combination with each other? How much is too much? Neither Moyers nor McCally know the answers to those questions. Neither, they suspect, do the companies that invented and produced the chemicals. The blood test brings the findings of his hard-hitting documentary chillingly close to home. Moyers' 90-minute report, followed by a half-hour discussion, premieres on PBS stations Monday, March 26, at 9 p.m. EST.




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Swami Shuddhananda Tours USA, England, Germany
Posted on 2001/3/24 22:46:02 ( 837 reads )


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KOLKATA, INDIA, March 15, 2001: Swami Shuddhananda will begin his summer tour April 27 in London, and continue on through the USA from May 1 -19, then to Germany from May 20 - 26. For details, email "source" above. The forward-looking swami is especially popular among young people.




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Fiji Temple Desecrated
Posted on 2001/3/21 22:49:02 ( 873 reads )


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SUVA, FIJI, March 20, 2001: A small Hindu community in Lautoka in western Fiji has asked for police protection after thugs broke into their temple and desecrated it. Davinesh Reddy, the caretaker of the Gangamman Kovil temple in Velovelo, Wairebatia, said that gold ornaments were stolen from the temple and the Deity statues stripped of their attire. The thieves also made off with about $300 and caused $200 worth of damage.




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Exploiting Religion For Land
Posted on 2001/3/21 22:48:02 ( 792 reads )


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LUCKNOW, INDIA, March 20, 2001: Building temples has become one way to grab land in some parts of India. An unauthorized temple often begins with the installation of the Deity and then grows into a full-fledged temple over time. In Lucknow's Gomti Nagar township, large green stretches of land and parks were planned for the new residential area. As people began moving into newly-built apartments, someone quietly placed a few rocks and a Siva Linga in the corner of one such park. The corner began to draw attention and soon a brick wall was erected. Today the site has become a full-fledged Siva temple and the grounds cover more than 100 square meters of parkland. In another case, a person started a temple on a corner facing a busy traffic intersection. He then transformed the building into a restaurant. Now no one can uproot this encroachment now that the person running the restaurant has managed to get an injunction against a court-ordered demolition. Building temples has become one of the easiest and most convenient means of grabbing land because the culprits are aware of the immunity they enjoy. The encroachment may end up being a traffic hazard or inconvenience to the public but everyone falls in line because mosques and temples are too sacred to be touched by anyone.




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VHP Supports Political Party Advocating Change in Temple Management
Posted on 2001/3/20 22:49:02 ( 676 reads )


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COIMBATORE, INDIA, March 19, 2001: Extending its support to Tamil Nadu parties that advocate that an autonomous board be set up to oversee Hindu Temples, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad wants the state government to hand over the management of temples. Churches and mosques are already governed by autonomous bodies and the VHP wants the same treatment for Hindu Temples. As they extend their influence even further in the political arena, the VHP may impose blanket bans on conversions.




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"Om A Little Teapot..."
Posted on 2001/3/20 22:48:02 ( 763 reads )


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NEW YORK, NEW YORK, February 19, 2001: In a Saturday-morning class of mothers and toddlers at New York City's Next Generation Yoga Studio, students become sleeping doggies, lions and snakes before the 45-minute session is over. Baby boomers are introducing their children to yoga, believing that balanced lives begin with balanced children. YogaKids, an organization in Michigan City, Indiana, that certifies adults to teach yoga to children, has produced a video tutorial which has sold 80,000 copies since 1996. Enthusiasts believe that yoga and its meditational tools can be helpful to children with learning or behavioral difficulties such as attention-deficit disorder. The asanas have been used by some instructors to strengthen the muscles of children with Down's syndrome. Yoga has also proven to help with the self-esteem of severely disabled children at a Chicago public school.




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Documents Allege Abuse of Nuns by Priests
Posted on 2001/3/20 22:47:02 ( 870 reads )

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Malays Attacking Hindus
Posted on 2001/3/20 22:46:02 ( 734 reads )


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KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA, March 20, 2001: Beneath the normally tranquil surface of Malaysian society, dangerous tensions and the potential for violence still lurk. Sixteen-year-old Indran Rajasinga was on his way home when he was attacked by a gang of Malay youths. "I have no idea how I got away." A wound to his head required stitches and an injury to his leg are the only scars he bears. But the fear is still there. He has not left home in days. "Now I only need to see a Malay and I feel angry," Indran said. "If they attack the Indians again, we will fight back." Four days of vicious street battles between Indians and Malays in the squalid townships brought Malaysia its closest brush with serious ethnic strife in over 30 years. Hundreds of riot police and paramilitary troops managed to restore order, but six people were confirmed dead, and dozens of others were injured.




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US Rejects Taliban Explanation On Buddhas
Posted on 2001/3/19 22:49:02 ( 769 reads )


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WASHINGTON, U.S.A, March 20, 2001: The US has dismissed as "inaccurate and self-serving" the Taliban militia's explanation that it blew up two giant Buddha statues in Afghanistan in a fit of pique after a foreign delegation offered money to help preserve these ancient artifacts. "We definitely don't buy this explanation," State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said after US officials had a "working-level" meeting with Taliban representative Sayed Rahmatullah Hashimi. Earlier, Hashimi who expressed no remorse over the demolitions, told The New York Times that the Taliban made its decision in a rage after the delegation including a representative of Unesco offered money for the statues while a million Afghans faced starvation. "When your children are dying, you don't care about a piece of art," he added.




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