Monday, October 20, 2014  About Us  

Report by Victoria Saldanha and Anna Dcruz & Pics by Belmangar Lobo The St Joseph's Feast in Dubai was a fun filled event, held on 6 June 2014 @London Suites Hotel, Al Wasl Club Dubai from 12.30 P.M onwards until late evening. The function was organized by the Belman Bethkati Association in Dubai, under the leadership of Mr. Ivan Dsouza and the committee members
The program commenced by invoking God's blessing which was led by Mrs.Preethi Pereira, followed by stage function compeered by Arun Dsilva. Anil Prakash Dsouza compeered the program and mesmerized the crowd till the evening.
We had well known guests from Belman Parish, Mr. Gregory Menezes and Mrs.Lydia Aranha, as the chief guests. They enlightened us with their words of wisdom. They conveyed best wishes from Parish Priest Fr.Lawrence Dsouza and the parishnors from Belman.

Mr. Joseph Matthias, the owner of Merit Freight was the guest for the day, which with his speech and songs enthralled the audience.
Mr. Anil Cardoza (Ex-President) thanked 2012-2013 committee during his tenure and handed over the responsibility to Mr. Ivan Dsouza newly elected president and wished him success in his endeavors. All the past presidents were honored for their contribution to the Bethkati group over the years.

The sponsors for the event were felicitated, who are the pillars in supporting the events every year.
The talented children of Belman parish performed dance numbers and showcased their talents, and were recognized and awarded accordingly.Followed by a humorous Skit by Ivan Pereira and team.
Good music was organized by Lancy, Russel&Wilson. Ronald entertained the crowd with good songs.A delicious buffet lunch was served to all... The memories of the event were captured by Mr.Jacob Lobo. A gathering of around 170 was present.Bingo was conducted at the end and the program concluded with Baila dance by the audience
A special thanks to all our sponsors who made this event a great success and to everyone who supported the program and made this function a grand success

Facebook Case Cracked, Says Maharashtra Government, Cops Less Sure - 6/9/2014

NDTV news Facebook Case Cracked, Says Maharashtra Government, Cops Less Sure

Pune: The Maharashtra government says it has identified those responsible for posting morphed photos of iconic leaders on Facebook which triggered violence last week and again this weekend.

Home Minister RR Patil has promised arrests soon, though police officers seem less confident.

Last week, a 28-year-old Muslim IT worker was beaten to death by a mob after offensive images of Maratha warrior king Shivaji and Shiv Sena leader Bal Thackeray were circulated on Facebook and WhatsApp.

This weekend, doctored photos of Dr BR Ambedkar, the architect of the Indian Constitution, were circulated on Facebook and WhatsApp. Some shops remained closed yesterday and buses were pelted with stones in parts of the state.

 Home Minister Patil today said that the "Facebook case" has been cracked and that all the incendiary images are being posted by the same group.
"Anti-social elements are posting inflammatory posts to stoke hatred, bitterness and disharmony between sects," the minister said, warning that action will be taken not just against those who put up the photos but against others who "like" them on Facebook or forward them.

"Unless we are given the IP address by Facebook from where it has been uploaded we can't go ahead and if the person who has posted it has used a proxy server then we are nowhere," admitted Sanjay Kumar, Joint Commissioner of the Pune police.

Last week, Mohsin Shaikh, a young software professional was killed on his way home from dinner in Pune. 17 members of the Hindu Rashtra Sena, a radical right-wing outfit, have been arrested for his murder. The police linked the brutal killing to the tension over the morphed Facebook pictures of Shivaji and Bal Thackeray. Mohsin was not linked to the uploading of the photos, the police has said.

Pranab Mukherjee Outlines Modi Government's Economic Agenda - 6/9/2014

President Pranab Mukherjee addressed a joint sitting of Parliament on Monday outlining the roadmap of the Narendra Modi government. The government will function on the mantra of "minimum government, maximum governance," Mr Mukherjee said.
Here are the top 10 economic highlights of the President's Address:
  1. Food inflation: Consumer price or retail inflation in India was at 8.59 per cent in April year-on-year after running near or above 10 per cent for almost two years through the end of 2013. High inflation has led to high interest rates and adversely impacted the country's growth. The Modi government would focus on improving the supply side of various agro and agro-based products, the president said today. The government is alert about the possibility of a subnormal monsoon this year and contingency plans are being prepared, he added.

  2. Economy: India's GDP growth has been sub-5 per cent for two straight years and tax collection has declined. The Modi government will usher the economy into a high growth path, rein in inflation, reignite the investment cycle and restore the confidence of the domestic as well as international community in our economy.

  3. Jobs: India needs to grow at 8 per cent per annum to create enough jobs for its young population, but a sharp slowdown in economic growth points to a demographic disaster. For rapid creation of jobs in the manufacturing sector, the Modi government will strategically promote labour-intensive manufacturing. Employment opportunities will also be expanded by promoting tourism and agro-based industries.

  4. Taxes: Retrospective tax laws, introduced in 2012-13, have been described as the single biggest impediment for foreign investment into the country. The Modi government will embark on rationalisation and simplification of the tax regime to make it non-adversarial and conducive to investment, enterprise and growth, the president said today. The government will make every effort to introduce the GST while addressing the concerns of states, he added.

  5. Reforms: Lack of consensus among politicians and policy paralysis led to scuttling of many reforms, damaging India's potential to grow over the last few years. The new government will follow a policy of encouraging investments, including through FDI; which will be allowed in sectors that help create jobs and assets, the president said.

  6. Agriculture: Government will increase investment in agri-infrastructure and address issues pertaining to pricing and procurement of agricultural produce, crop insurance and post-harvest management. Government will incentivize the setting up of food processing industries.

  7. Reviving manufacturing: India's manufacturing sector has been the biggest drag on overall economic growth over the last two years. The new government will set up world class investment and industrial regions, particularly along the Dedicated Freight Corridors and Industrial Corridors spanning the country. It will strive to move towards a single-window system of clearances both at the centre and at the states through a hub-spoke model.

  8. Infrastructure: Delays in getting road, rail and power projects approved hit infra companies had during the UPA rule. The new government has drawn an ambitious infrastructure development programme for the next 10 years. Modernization and revamping of Railways is on top of the agenda. Diamond Quadrilateral project of high speed trains will be launched. A fast, time-bound and well monitored programme for execution of the National Highways programme will be initiated. Low cost airports will be developed to promote air connectivity to smaller towns. Inland and coastal waterways will be developed as major transport routes.

  9. Energy security: The government will substantially augment electricity generation capacity through judicious mix of conventional and non-conventional sources. Reforms in the coal sector will be pursued with urgency for attracting private investment in a transparent manner.

  10. Urbanization: The government will build 100 cities focussed on specialized domains and equipped with world class amenities. By the time the nation completes 75 years of its Independence, every family will have a pucca house with water connection, toilet facilities, 24x7 electricity supply and access.

Sensex Hits Record High; Nifty Nears 7,650 - 6/9/2014

NDTV news
Sensex Hits Record High; Nifty Nears 7,650
The Sensex surpassed its all-time high of 25,419.14 on Monday, while the 50-share Nifty overtook its previous record high of 7,592.70. (Track stocks)

The Sensex and Nifty gained on the back of a rally in global stocks, which rose in response to an impressive US jobs report, an upward revision of Japanese economic growth and healthy Chinese export figures.

Sentiment remains upbeat as foreign investors continued buying Indian equities on Friday as well. FIIs bought cash shares worth Rs1,283 crore on Friday.

Overseas investors have been aggressively buying Indian shares on hopes that the Narendra Modi-led government would take quick decision to put the economy back on track.

The first test of the government's intentions would be the budget, which is likely to be announced in early July.

"The market is in a bull run and the momentum is expected to continue. Large overseas funds, which are coming into the market, are looking for quality companies with inherent strength such as ONGC. Most of the state-run companies are performing and are getting rerated," said Deven Choksey, managing director, KR Choksey Securities.

However, independent analyst Sanjeev Bhasin told NDTV that markets are overbought, so there could be profit booking at higher levels. The trend continues to be bullish though intermittent corrections are likely, he added.

Cement stocks saw brisk buying in early trade and the top four Nifty gainers were Grasim Industries (6.5 per cent), Ambuja Cement (3.8 per cent), ACC (3.5 per cent) and UltraTech Cement (3.3 per cent).

Realty, capital goods, consumer durables and metal stocks also saw decent gains. IT stocks, however, were under pressure as the rupee strengthened below 59 per dollar. (Top gainers)

ONGC fell around 2 per cent on profit taking. Wipro and Infosys were among other Nifty losers.

As of 09.30 a.m., the Sensex traded 194 points higher at 25,590, while the Nifty traded at 7,643, up 60 points.

Kejriwal-Yadav spat throws AAP into deepest crisis yet - 6/7/2014

NEW DELHI: The Aam Aadmi Party is in the throes of its biggest crisis yet. A leaked letter by Arvind Kejriwal's right-hand man, Manish Sisodia, to Yogendra Yadav accusing him of "trying to finish off the party or Arvind Kejriwal", provoked another letter being leaked on Friday — this one written by Yadav to senior party members in which he accuses Kejriwal of falling victim to "the disease of personality cult".

Sisodia's letter was a response to this email. Given his close proximity to Kejriwal, Sisodia's letter is being widely regarded as having the leader's endorsement. As reported by TOI on Friday, in his letter, Sisodia accused Yadav of fomenting factional politics, misleading the party about its electoral prospects in Haryana and demanding to be AAP's CM candidate of Haryana, apart from undercutting Kejriwal's position.

Given the hostile nature of the charges, it is apparent that the crack in AAP's leadership is running right through the middle with two of the most high-profile leaders being on different sides. It now remains to be seen how long Yadav will stay in the party, given his deep disillusionment with it, as well as the fact that AAP is now unlikely to contest the Haryana assembly elections later this year.

Recognizing that the differences could mar the party's future, the AAP national executive (NE) on Friday desperately tried to paper over them, claiming that there were no serious differences in the party. In fact, it sought to present a united face by trying to get Shazia Ilmi, who has quit AAP, back to the party.

However, Yadav's letter indicates that the differences can't be wished away and that they have been building up for a while. Yadav wrote that while Kejriwal might have been AAP's "undisputed leader", there was "a difference between a leader and a supremo". He added, "Love and affection for a leader often turns into a personality cult that can damage an organization and the leader. This is what appears to be happening to our party."

Yadav said that the party, built by a remarkable collection of volunteers, had lost its collegiate style of functioning. Instead, decision-making has been centralized in the hands of a few. After the party's poor show in the Lok Sabha election, demands were raised for dissolving the Political Affairs Committee (PAC) and the NE, and giving party convener (Kejriwal) a free hand to reconstitute these bodies. "All this reminded me of what happens in parties like the Congress and the BSP," Yadav said.

He hoped that Kejriwal, on coming out of jail where he was sent after refusing bail in the Gadkari defamation case, would put an end to this chorus. "Instead, in his first meeting with volunteers, Arvind bhai himself endorsed the anti-PAC sentiment, which amounted to an open expression of no confidence in his colleagues," wrote Yadav.

In this letter, Yadav also clarified that his offer to resign from the PAC on May 31 wasn't because of a factional fight with another AAP leader in Haryana, Navin Jaihind, as was being made out, but because of a host of issues that cumulatively showed that AAP and its leaders had deviated completely from its ideals.

Yadav also echoed a sentiment that is being heard increasingly in the lower rungs of the party. His letter said: "The national leadership has not been able to focus its attention beyond some areas, leaving much of the organization in a state of chaos. Central leadership is not in touch with colleagues who regularly deal with states on their behalf." This sentiment has been echoed by members who have quit the party.

Sikhs clash at Golden Temple in Amritsar - 6/6/2014


At least 12 people have been injured during clashes which broke out between Sikhs at Amritsar's Harmandir Sahib, or Golden Temple, the religion's holiest shrine, in northern India.

Kiran Jyoti Kaur, a spokesperson for the temple, told the AP news agency that members of a Sikh group brandishing swords and wooden sticks clashed on Friday with the guards of the shrine.

Hundreds of Sikhs had gathered at the temple to pay their respects to those killed in the June 6, 1984 raid of the temple by Indian troops, aimed at flushing out armed separatists demanding an independent Sikh homeland.

"Today we were supposed to have a solemn remembrance for the martyrs of 1984 so what has happened is very sad," Prem Singh Chandumajra, a spokesperson for a Sikh group called the Shiromani Akali Dal, whose supporters were involved in the clashes, told the AFP news agency. "The Temple has once again been dishonoured today." 

Independent homeland demanded

Television footage showed two groups of Sikhs sporting blue and saffron turbans chasing each other with swords on the marbled staircase of the shrine in Punjab state.

Kaur said supporters of the Shiromani Akali Dal, led by Simranjeet Singh Mann, turned violent and they were chased away by temple guards.

They were raising slogans for an independent homeland for the Sikhs.

Local television channel NDTV said the situation had soon been brought under control when extra security was deployed inside the temple.

Operation Blue Star, the 1984 Indian army operation to establish control over the shrine, was one of the most contentious episodes in India's battle against Sikh separatists in the 1980s.

The army's action, which left 400 people dead, enraged Sikhs who accused the troops of desecrating the shrine.

India's prime minister Indira Gandhi was shot dead by her own Sikh bodyguards in October 1984 in revenge for the operation.

Her assassination triggered mass anti-Sikh riots in which some 3,000 people were killed, many of them on the streets of the capital New Delhi.

Narendra Modi To MPs: Do Not Touch My Feet - 6/6/2014

NDTV At a meeting of the BJP's parliamentary party today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi reportedly handed out some advice to party MPs, including asking them to stop touching his or other senior party leaders' feet while greeting them. (Also Read: Sumitra Mahajan Elected New Speaker of Lok Sabha)

Mr Modi, who is also the leader of the party in the Lok Sabha, has reportedly stressed that the BJP's members of Parliament must always be well prepared before speaking in the House and must have the "right perspective" on issues so as not to strike a discordant note or one that is not in line with the party's views. (PM Modi Leads Newly-Elected MPs as They Take Oath in Lok Sabha)

He has reportedly also emphasised that the MPs must "work hard and study hard." Senior leaders said the suggestion that they stop touching the feet of other leaders is a bid by the Prime Minister to end what is seen as a culture of sycophancy and currying favour. (We Will Work for the Hopes and Dreams of People: PM Modi)

The meeting was held in the Central Hall of Parliament since the committee room where the BJP held meetings till the last time is not big enough to accommodate the current strength of the party, which now has 282 seats in the Lok Sabha. It had only 116 in the previous Lok Sabha. (16th Lok Sabha: Ten Interesting Facts)

Sources said Mr Modi, party patriarch LK Advani, BJP president Rajnath Singh, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley sat on the dais facing the other MPs, among whom seniors like Sushma Swaraj, Nitin Gadkari and Murli Manhoar Joshi sat in the front row.

After Splitting From Telangana, Will Tirupati be the New IT Hub? - 6/3/2014

NDTV As the residual state of Andhra Pradesh prepares to choose the new capital city after the creation of Telangana, it seems that Tirupati, the temple town, could well become the crown of the state, if not its capital.

But it is now a case of more supply than demand - no big companies in the available sprawling facilities for the talented students who pass out from the reputed universities here.

Tirupati is home to several reputed universities which produces extraordinary talent each year. At least 100 multi-product companies including Pepsi, Cadbury, Isuzu Motors, Kobelco and others have together employed more than 18,000 people near Tada, a manufacturing hub about 80 km away. The big challenge now is to get these big companies to click on destination Tirupati.

Although sandwiched between Bangalore and Chennai with good connectivity, water resources, and sufficient power, that has not happened. The IT clan says a catalyst is needed to make things work here and they hope the man credited with the turnaround of Hyderabad, Chandrababu Naidu, will play that role. The TDP chief will be taking oath as chief minister on June 8 near Vijayawada, which is expected to be the new capital city of Andhra Pradesh.

"I was among the first to start a company here, but for over 5-6 years we have only had promises. With Hyderabad going away, we need now think of another IT capital. This is a good opportunity for us. Right now we have immense raw talent. The right things need to be done - like bringing down Internet cost, rent cost," says Giridhar G, Vice President of the Tirupati IT Association.

Nearly one lakh pilgrims visit Tirupati each day. Twelve crore tourists out of the total 20 crore who came to the undivided Andhra Pradesh visited Tirupati. The division of the state may mean a big black cloud over the Seemandhra region but the silver lining is that it is a huge opportunity, particularly for revenue generators like Tirupati, which for long have not go their due.

Mers infects 68, kills 10 in UAE - 6/3/2014


Abu Dhabi: Mers, or the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus, has killed 10 people and infected 68 in the UAE since March last year, Abdul Rahman Mohammad Al Owais, Minister of Health, told the Federal National Council on Tuesday.

Al Owais said the ministry was in constant contact with the World Health Organisation (WHO) and other international agencies.

The Health Ministry continues surveillance for severe acute respiratory infections and carefully reviews any unusual patterns, Al Owais said, allaying concerns about the virus, which can cause potentially fatal respiratory illness, citing the scare of bird flu, which only offered fortunes to pharmaceutical and vaccine companies.

The Health Minister said globally Mers has infected 682 people and killed 216 since the first case was diagnosed in June 2012. There have been 330 cases, including 59 deaths, worldwide since the end of March, according to WHO statistics released on June 2.

Rashid Mohammad Al Shuraiqi, a member from Ras Al Khaimah, put a question to the Minister of Health concerning efforts being made to prevent the spread of Mers in the UAE.

All the cases were found in Abu Dhabi, WHO said, as it announced the potentially fatal virus has now spread to Yemen.

The patients range in age from four to 73, with a median age of 41, and 72 per cent of them are male.

More than two‐thirds affected were health-care workers, including paramedics, but only one became seriously ill.

Twenty‐eight cases of Mers were identified in a hospital cluster in Al Ain City, the first of which was a 45‐year‐old male shopkeeper who died in the UAE on April 10. It was reported that he hadn’t recently travelled or had any contact with animals, and it’s not currently known how he caught it.

A further 27 cases were health-care workers or had had contact with infected people; the remaining five cases, among them a mother and daughter and an unrelated four‐year-old child whose mother had recently returned from a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia.

Affected Arab countries include the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Jordan and now Yemen, as well as Egypt and Tunisia.

The virus has infected 571 people and killed 189 in Saudi Arabia, the biggest tally in the world.

It has also been reported in Europe (the UK, France, Germany, Greece Italy and the Netherlands); the Philippines, Malaysia; and the USA.

Last month, WHO acknowledged growing concern about the virus but said it was not a global health emergency because there was no evidence of sustained human-to-human transmission.

President's rule to be revoked in Telangana; KCR set to take oath as CM - 6/1/2014

Indian Express

Telangana would come into existence as the 29th state of India on Monday, capping the decades-old struggle in the region for carving out a separate state from Andhra Pradesh.

President’s rule imposed in united Andhra Pradesh would be revoked partially on Monday to facilitate the swearing-in of a government in the newly-created Telangana headed by TRS president K Chandrasekhar Rao. A notification is expected to be issued on Monday morning in this regard.

The Central rule would, however, continue in the residual AP until TDP Chief N Chandrababu Naidu takes charge as Chief Minister, which is likely on June 8.

Chandrasekhar Rao is scheduled to be sworn in as Chief Minister at 8.15 am at the Raj Bhavan here on Monday by Governor ESL Narasimhan, who will be the Governor for both Telangana and the residual Andhra Pradesh.

After taking oath as first Chief Minister of separate Telangana, Chandrasekhar Rao would attend the official celebration of ‘Telangana Formation Day’ at the sprawling Parade Grounds here.

The ruling TRS, other political parties and Telangana supporters have lined up a number of events in Hyderabad and elsewhere to celebrate the realisation of the decades-long dream.

TRS activists and supporters have already painted Hyderabad pink, the colour of TRS flag, by installing huge cut-outs, banners, festoons and balloons hailing their leader.

According to TRS sources, cultural programmes would be organised from 9 pm to 11.59 pm tonight and a dazzling display of fireworks would be held from mid-night at People’s Plaza and Tank Bund at the picturesque Hussain Sagar lake to celebrate the occasion. Chandrasekhar Rao’s daughter and MP Kavitha would attend the celebrations at Telangana Bhavan, the TRS headquarters here.

The journey towards achieving the goal of separate Telangana has been momentous and there have been a number of milestones in the saga. In 1956, Andhra and the then Hyderabad state were merged to form Andhra Pradesh, the first state to be formed on linguistic basis in the country. In 1969, an agitation for formation of separate Telangana began and about 300 people were reportedly killed in the agitation. In a big fillip to the separate Telangana agitation, BJP came out in support of separate statehood demand and it promised “one vote, two states” in the 1998 elections.

A group of Congress MLAs from Telangana submitted a memorandum to party president Sonia Gandhi in 2000 demanding separate statehood to the region. The separate Telangana agitation got a huge boost in 2001 when the then TDP leader K Chandrasekhar Rao quit the party and launched the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) to fight for separate state.

TDP announced support for separate Telangana demand in 2008 and it joined hands with TRS for the 2009 Lok Sabha and Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly elections. The Telangana agitation grew subsequently after Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy died in a chopper crash in September 2009 as he was seen as a formidable opponent of separate Telangana.

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