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Indians Of The Century
Posted on 2001/2/5 22:46:02 ( 809 reads )


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NEW DELHI, INDIA, Feb 4, 2001: Their deeds affected the lives of millions throughout the world. They belonged to different streams of life with one thing in common: True greatness. The Times of India Online's Indians of the Century poll was the most comprehensive to be undertaken in this country with 881,772 votes naming Mahatma Gandhi, Dhirubhai Ambani (founder of Reliance company), Lata Mangeshkar (the great singer) and Swami Vivekananda as the four Indians who made the greatest impact on India this century in four categories respectively -- Leaders and Politicians, Creators of Wealth, Artists and Entertainers and Great Minds and Spiritual Lights. All of them are self-made individuals without the advantages of wealth, aristocracy or caste; they fought adversity and believed in action -- karma yogis in the true sense.




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Sri Chinmoy Presents U Thant Award To PM
Posted on 2001/2/4 22:49:02 ( 1090 reads )


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NEW YORK, NEW YORK, January 13, 2001: International peace leader Sri Chinmoy presented the prestigious U Thant Peace Award to Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee in recognition of his lifetime service to Mother India recently, according to a New India-Times report. The award is named after for late Secretary General of the United Nations and has been presented to Pope John Paul II, Mother Teresa, former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela and Hinduism Today publisher Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami. During their meeting, Sri Chinmoy sang a song in the praise of the prime minister. The prime minister was deeply moved and appreciated the song. Prime Minister Vajpayee was also held the Sri Chinmoy Peace Torch by Sri Chinmoy. The torch is carried by millions of people all over the world as part of history's longest and largest relay run, the Sri Chinmoy Oneness-Home Peace Run. Sri Chinmoy was in Bali recently on his annual two month peace goodwill visits to different countries.




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Killer Quake Breathes Life Into "Mythical" Saraswati River
Posted on 2001/2/4 22:48:02 ( 869 reads )


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GUJARAT, INDIA, Feb 5, 2001 - The Saraswati river, the missing third link in Allahabad's Sangam is making an appearance in quake-injured Gujarat. Scientists say shifting of tectonic plates in the Allah Bund fault area has led to a geographical osmosis in the Rann of Kutch area, pushing the Saraswati over-ground in spurts. Hundreds of villages in the Rann, where there was no water last week, now have streams flowing all over. Geological experts say that the Saraswati, a distributary of Indus which had vanished mysteriously around 1600 bce, has changed its course towards Kutch. "There is evidence that Saraswati was a distributary of Indus. And we also know that Saraswati had a connecting point from Indus that still flows from the top of Rajasthan to Pakistan," a Central Ground Water Board scientist said. Now the question the villagers are asking is whether the springs will stay. Prof. R.S. Chaturvedi, a geo-scientist, says the answer can come only after a thorough research. "It depends on the amount of water available in the parent river," he said. The Saraswati River was the lifeline of the Indus Civilization until tectonic shifts caused it to change dry up on the surface. Its course, five miles wide at places, can be seen in satellite photos of the area.




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51 Couples Marry in Gujarat
Posted on 2001/2/4 22:47:02 ( 1011 reads )


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AHMEDABAD, INDIA, February 4, 2001: Over 12,000 people attended the mass wedding of 51 couples even though the aftermath of the earthquake is visible throughout Ahmedabad. In honor of the recent tragedy claiming so many lives, the brides of the occasion chose not to wear any gold jewelry.




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Hindu Devotees on Barefoot Holy Journey
Posted on 2001/2/4 22:46:02 ( 2021 reads )


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GURUN, MALAYSIA, February 3, 2001: Seventy Hindu devotees are walking barefoot for 109 km for the Thai Pusam festival on Wednesday. Wearing saffron-colored robes and sarees, the group began a five-day journey from the Kedah state capital on Thursday and is expected to reach Penang on Monday evening. The purpose of the journey is for the devotees to fulfil their vows and to get blessings, according to Dr. Ramasamy K.M.S. Chockalingam Chetiar, who is heading the group. He said the group will pay homage to more than 25 temples along the way, including those at Sungai Petani, Kepala Batas and Butterworth, before reaching their destination. Everyone in the group is required to have been on a vegetarian diet for at least two weeks prior to the journey.




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Thai Pusam Will Air Live On The Internet
Posted on 2001/2/4 22:45:02 ( 867 reads )


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KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA, February 3, 2001: Devotees and the public can view the Thai Pusam celebrations at Batu Caves on Feb 7 live on the Net in what is believed to be the first project of its kind in Malaysia and possibly the world. The broadcast will be covering the once-a-year festival held at Batu Caves for about 24 hours. It will then be transmitted live for the benefit of Internet viewers at a special Thai Pusam website at http://thai pusam.tele.com.my from 6 pm on Feb 6. More than a million devotees are expected to throng Batu Caves this year to fulfil their vows. Dr. Thuraichelvan, Aastha Inter Network chief executive officer, said that surfers would be charged on an hourly basis. "All payments will have to be made by the appropriate payment modes before viewing," he said. Dr. Thuraichelvan is coordinating the US$131,579 project. He and project organizers are inviting companies and organizations for sponsorship.




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Government Helping Gujarat Citizens
Posted on 2001/2/3 22:49:02 ( 940 reads )


Source: Rediff on the Net





GUJARAT, INDIA, February 2, 2001: The aftermath of the earthquake in Gujarat has left many survivors feeling helpless and depressed after losing loved ones, property and other belongings. In an attempt to bring normalcy back into their lives, the government is organizing religious ceremonies to honor the death of loved ones. It is hoped that family survivors will find comfort by interacting with others who have suffered great loss and begin rebuilding their lives.




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Want to Bet that in 2150 The Oldest Person will be 130 or 150?
Posted on 2001/2/3 22:48:02 ( 812 reads )


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CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, OHIO, February 5, 2001: On January 1, 2150, the winner of a trust fund, starting today with 300 dollars and estimated to then be worth US$500 million, will be announced. Two scientists have set up a bet on the highest obtainable life expectancy. Estimating the age to be 130, S. Jay Olshansky of the University of Illinois has wagered against Steven Austad of the University of Idaho who has bet the oldest person will be 150 years. Austad has more faith in the progressive medical techniques of cloning and stem cell research where worn-out body parts will be replaced. Both scientists have named a University as beneficiary of the trust fund.




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Honored Lama Flees Tibet
Posted on 2001/2/3 22:47:02 ( 890 reads )


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DHARAMSALA, INDIA, February 3, 2001: Last year the 14th Karmapa fled Tibet for India. He is the third-ranking Tibetan Buddhist leader, after the dalai lama and the pancha lama. He has now been given refugee status in India. The teenager's escape from a closely-guarded monastery in Tibet embarrassed the Chinese government.




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Bangladeshi Policeman Lynched
Posted on 2001/2/3 22:46:02 ( 863 reads )


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DHAKA, BANGLADESH, 3 February, 2001: Activists belonging to radical Muslim groups have lynched a policeman during violence in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, marring their call for a strike against a ban on religious edicts, or fatwas. Dhaka police have arrested at least 40 people who are thought to be involved in the violence, and have recovered the constable's body. The groups' strike call failed to prevent thousands of people from attending a rally in support of last month's High Court ruling banning fatwas, which had been organized by several nongovernmental organizations. It has been a day of high emotion on the streets of Dhaka, not least because of fears that the pro- and anti-fatwa camps might come into direct conflict. Hindus stand to be caught in the middle of the battles.




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U.S. Academy of Religion Chooses Hindu President
Posted on 2001/2/3 22:45:02 ( 824 reads )


Source: Ridiff on the Net





ATLANTA, GEORGIA, February 3, 2001: Vasudha Narayanan grew up in conservative Chennai where religion, culture, tradition, history, philosophy and temples formed the backdrop of her environment, nurturing her curiosity about Hinduism. Narayanan, 47, a professor of religion at the University of Florida at Gainesville and an author, was recently chosen as the President-elect of the American Academy of Religion. She is the first non-Jewish or non-Christian to hold the office in its 92-year history. With 9,000 members, the Atlanta-based organization is the world's largest association of academics who research or teach topics related to religion. Narayanan believes ''faith cuts across many social boundaries'' and ''people have an inborn need to connect to religion,'' because it forms the base of their values.




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Controversy Over Breaking Coconuts at Hindu Festival
Posted on 2001/2/2 22:49:02 ( 884 reads )


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KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA, January 31, 2001: Traditionally on Thai Pusam Malaysian Hindus honor vows to Lord Muruga by breaking coconuts during this religious festival. The Consumers Association of Penang has requested that the coconut offerings be limited and excess cash that would have been used to purchase coconuts be donated to the poor. The Hindu Malaysian Youth Council countered by pointing out all the edible coconuts so broken are consumed as sacred prasadam--the food offered to the Gods, and there is therefore no waste.




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VHP Challenges Shankaracharyas
Posted on 2001/2/2 22:48:02 ( 831 reads )


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NEW DELHI, INDIA, January 29, 2001: Acharya Giriraj Kishore of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) today reacted to the statements of some religious leaders and challenged the Shankaracharyas, "Let them build the Ram Temple if they have the money and material needed. However, they cannot expect us to give our money and construction material to them." He said that the VHP had been able to arrange for enough resources to build just the first floor of the two-story temple. Acharya said, "We just want the Ram Temple at the disputed site. It does not matter who constructs it. However, some people are unnecessarily raking the issue for cheap publicity." Meanwhile, some programs have been cancelled following the devastating earthquake in Gujarat, and he noted, the VHP would contribute US$108,700 towards rehabilitation of the victims.




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5,000-Year-Old Structure Survives Quake
Posted on 2001/2/2 22:47:02 ( 968 reads )


Source: Intel IT Update





KOTDA MOUND, DHOLAVIRA, GUJARAT, INDIA, February 2, 2001: Beyond the endless mounds of concrete and bricks that are now this part of Gujarat, there is a patch of ancient history that withstood the devastating quake: Dholavira, a Harappan landmark. The biggest Indian site of the 5,000 year-old Indus Valley civilization remains solid while the structures built by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to provide shelter to its staff have crumbled. The site has suffered no damage at all. It was excavated only in the early 1990's, nearly 20 years after it was discovered. Villages only a couple of miles away have been devastated by the quake. One could, of course, argue that the ancient site had already been through several earthquakes of this magnitude, and what damage could be done has been. Still, the contrast with the modern structures is stark. Of the six men employed to guard the site, five fled the day of the quake. The sixth remained only because he lives in Dholavira. The site is spread over 100 hectares and is believed to be the only town during that period to have an elaborate underground drainage system, houses, streets and wells. Every year, the ASI begins excavation in December and continues until April. This year, no excavation activity has started, reportedly because a team with technical expertise could not be drafted.




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Germany Attempts to Curb Mad Cow Disease
Posted on 2001/2/2 22:46:02 ( 862 reads )


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BERLIN, GERMANY, January 31, 2001: In an attempt to eradicate mad cow disease, technically known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy, the German government announced that it will be slaughtering 400,000 cattle. This drastic reaction is the result of falling exports to 34 other countries who have banned German meat. Also German citizens have reduced their consumption of beef by 50 percent after more than 20 cases of the disease in cows have been discovered since last November. No cases of humans infected with the disease have been detected in Germany. Elsewhere in Europe the beef industry is suffering because of the scare.




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