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Dallas Philanthropists to Provide Microloans for Female Entrepreneurs in India

VOL 4 ISSUE 10 TEXAS MAR 18 - MAR 24, 2016 ENQUIRIES: Please contact PRICE 40 CENTS We wish our readers a happy Holi Y E A R S Dallas Philanthropists to Provide Microloans for Female Entrepreneurs
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VOL 4 ISSUE 10 TEXAS MAR 18 - MAR 24, 2016 ENQUIRIES: Please contact PRICE 40 CENTS We wish our readers a happy Holi Y E A R S Dallas Philanthropists to Provide Microloans for Female Entrepreneurs in India Obama nominates Merrick Garland as Replacement to Justice Scalia in Supreme Court Bina Palnitkar Patel - Trial Attorney at Greenberg Traurig Purva Jain - Architect with Richard Drummond Davis Architects Priya Bhola Rathod - Media & Lifestyle Guru Preeta Monga - Cultural Advcoate Ami Doshi - Founder of Milaap USA President Obama announced March 16 nomination of Judge Merrick Garland (right) to SCOTUS WASHINGTON (TIP): Much to the chagrin of the Republicans who have vowed to block any replacement for the late Justice Antonin Scalia until a new president takes over, President Barack Obama, on Wednesday, March 16, nominated Judge Merrick Garland, who is respected across political lines. CNN comments that GOP leaders, caught in the undertow of an election in which the conservative contd on Page 18 Russia begins withdrawing Forces from Syria Photo caption:russian President Vladimir Putin (C) meets Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu (R) and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (L). Putin ordered the defense ministry to begin the withdrawal of Russian forces from Syria. (AFP) MOSCOW (TIP): Russia began withdrawing its forces from Syria in a move that will leave the Syrian government to fend for itself to a much greater extent -- but with a greatly strengthened hand in negotiations over the country's future. The first group of Russian planes left Hmeymim air base in Syria on Tuesday, March 15 morning, the Russian Defense Ministry said. Russia's surprise announcement Monday that it would begin withdrawing its forces from the conflict came as suddenly as its devastating airstrike campaign that started in September. contd on Page 18 DALLAS, TX (TIP): Five Dallasbased women have joined forces to create an organization aimed at empowering and mobilizing less fortunate women entrepreneurs on the international level. Called Mahila, which is a Hindi word that means woman, The group consists of powerful female community leaders: attorney Bina Palnitkar Patel, architect Purva Jain, media and lifestyle guru Priya Bhola Rathod, cultural advocate Preeta Monga and social entrepreneur Ami Doshi. Mahila, at its core, is an organization SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA (TIP): North Korea defied U.N. resolutions by firing a medium-range ballistic missile into the sea on Friday, Seoul and Washington officials said, days after its leader Kim Jong Un ordered weapons tests linked to its pursuit of a longrange nuclear missile capable of reaching the U.S. mainland. South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement that the missile fired from a site north of Pyongyang flew about 800 kilometers (500 miles) before crashing off the North's east coast. The Joint Chiefs of Staff said it wasn't known what type of missile was fired, but a South Korean defense official, requesting A man, in Seoul, watches a TV screen showing a file footage of the missile launch conducted by North Korea. The country defied U.N. resolutions by firing a medium-range ballistic missile into the sea on Friday, March 18. (Photo courtesy AP) anonymity citing department rules, said it is the first mediumrange missile launched by the North since April 2014 when it fired two. A senior U.S. defense official said the Pentagon can confirm the missile launch, saying it appears to be a formed by women for women, said Bhola Rathod. Our goal is to best share our strength with underprivileged women to bring about meaningful, lasting change. Empowering ONE woman means impacting her family, her society and, ultimately, her world. The organization is hosting its inaugural event on April 7th to raise funds for struggling, low-income women living and working in India by supporting Milaap USA's microloan program. Milaap USA's mission is to promote financial inclusion for individuals and families through access North Korea fires Ballistic Missile into Sea to low cost funds in the following sectors: enterprise development, clean energy, water and sanitation, education and vocational training and healthcare. One hundred percent of the proceeds raised from this event will go directly towards Milaap's work in India, and every year Mahila will choose a different women's organization to support through fundraising. We believe philanthropy is providing a 'hand-up versus a hand-out,' said Doshi, Founder of Milaap USA. By empowering hundreds of thousands of contd on Page 3 Non-performing assets of public sector banks in India a Staggering Rs 3 lakh crore: CBI chief Bad bank loans undermine India's growth hopes MUMBAI (TIP): Something is indeed seriously wrong, Director of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Anil Sinha Rodong missile fired said, as he underlined the increase in nonperforming assets (NPAs) of banks from Rs 44,957 crore in 2009 to Rs 3 lakh crore in 2015, with bad loans almost doubling from 2 per cent of total advances to 4.36 per cent during the period. Sinha said, During the last six years, gross NPAs in public sector banks (PSBs) have gone up from Rs 44,957 crore in 2009 to Rs 3 lakh crore in The level of gross NPAs as percentage of gross advances has from a road-mobile also gone up from 2 per cent in 2009 to 4.36 launcher. The official per cent in And we are not even said the test violated multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions that ban North Korea from engaging in any ballistic considering huge amounts tied up in accounts under restructuring. While I fully understand that loan defaults can happen due to business risk and reasons beyond control of banks, borrowers and regulators, and nuclear activities. yet a significant part of the defaults are South Korea's Joint contd on Page 18 willful and fraudulent. What causes greater contd on Page 18 Lookout for news, views and reviews. Log on to ADVERTISEMENT 2 THE INDIAN PANORAMA FRIDAY, MARCH 18, 2016 THE INDIAN PANORAMA DALLAS FRIDAY, MARCH 18, Dallas schools don t routinely test water that students and teachers drink despite aging pipes DALLAS, TX (TIP): A media report published recently has said that Dallas school officials have known for years that many of their campuses have aging plumbing systems, some potentially containing lead. But they don't routinely test the quality of the water that students and teachers drink. School officials said this week that they'll test water only when there's a specific complaint, as they recently did at Lakewood Elementary School. Those test results are not yet in, but the discovery of lead and other contaminants in the water at the dilapidated Cotton building has prompted the district to shutter the building, move hundreds of workers to other facilities and agree to pay for blood testing for the exposed employees. There are no federal or state laws here requiring schools to test their drinking water. But the lead contamination scandal in Flint, Mich., persuaded many schools around the nation to check their water quality. And dozens of schools - including ones in New York and New Jersey - found unsafe levels of lead as result. Richard L. Valentine, a civil and environmental engineering professor at the University of Iowa, is a supporter of regular water testing in public buildings. He said testing is not expensive, considering the dangers posed by lead. You should be sampling buildings in a variety of places, he said about public place. And then do it again. There are currently efforts in Michigan to require water testing at schools in response to the Flint scandal. A similar bill in California was vetoed last year. The city of Dallas, which owns the water system, tested the water from the line that feeds the Cotton building and said Thursday that it was safe. The lead found by DISD's contractor was from taps inside the building. Kim McGraw, senior project manager with EFI Global, said the lead levels did not reach the federal threshold mandating that the district take action right away. EFI is the outside environmental safety firm that found the lead and byproducts of disinfectant in some water samples at the building. Some samples also showed cloudiness that the Environmental Protection Agency would consider higher than normal, according to the firm. About 500 employees will be relocated after spring break ends March 18. Workers are now being provided with bottled water. Dallas ISD spokesman André Riley said the district is not sure what caused the contamination at the 95-year-old building on South Lamar Street. It was formerly a Procter & Gamble manufacturing plant. Without more research, Riley said he wasn't sure whether the Cotton building or any DISD campuses have lead pipes or lead solder in the pipes. But lead was commonly used in plumbing through the 1960s, and some Dallas schools are as old or nearly as old as the Cotton building. Research has shown that prolonged exposure to even low levels of lead can The W.H. Cotton building at 3701 S. Lamar St. hurt children's growth, behavior and ability to learn. Randy Payton, assistant director of water delivery for Dallas Water Utilities, said lead has not been a common problem here. The city doesn't have any lead service lines, and the utility's water isn't corrosive like the water that caused Flint's crisis. When lead is found, Payton said, it's typically in concentrations that are a small fraction of the limit set by the federal government. Dallas Water Utilities tests at various points between the water source and customers' faucets. Dallas, to my knowledge, we never exceeded the action levels, he said. Officials with many Texas school districts were difficult to reach this week because of spring vacations. But Austin, Cedar Hill, Coppell, Garland, Grand Prairie, Fort Worth, Northside and San Antonio school officials all said they don't regularly test at their campuses. Fort Worth ISD spokesman Clint Bond said officials recently tested water at Western Hills High School after receiving two complaints about a strong chlorine smell. Testing and monitoring showed there were no abnormal levels of chlorine. We will do our own testing or work with our water suppliers to do testing if a need arises, Bond said. Grand Prairie ISD spokesman Sam Buchmeyer said he has never heard of a problem with the water quality on any campus. The Texas Department of Health has no recommendations about whether schools should test on their own. But the Minnesota Department of Health recommends that its schools test water from all drinking sources - faucets and water fountains - at least every five years. If the budget does not allow all taps to be tested in the first year, it is suggested that all high priority taps be tested the first year, the medium priority the second and the low priority the third, according to the agency's recommendations. A presentation from that department points to concerns about the on-again, off-again water use patterns, which lead to high lead levels. Schools generally rely on local water utilities to ensure that drinking water is safe. Extensive testing is required for water suppliers, such as Dallas Water Utilities. Those tests are designed to catch pollutants before they reach customers. Once the water enters the plumbing systems of schools or other building, there are opportunities for lead to leech out of old pipes or brass fixtures. To ensure water is safe, the federal lead and copper rule requires that water suppliers periodically test at the taps. In Dallas, that's done at 50 different locations every three years. Dallas Water Utilities also tests another 10 sites every quarter, even though it's only required to test those annually. It's not clear whether any of those sites were schools. Over the years, there have been highprofile incidents where dangerous lead levels were found in school drinking water. In 2007, random testing of 84 fountains in the Baltimore school system found that 10 of them had lead levels exceeding acceptable standards. Now, all but six schools that have filtration systems use bottled water, a cheaper option to water testing and replacing old equipment. Boston is in a similar position. It stopped using water fountains in threequarters of its school after 1988 tests found high levels of lead. Peter Binney, vice president of infrastructure for Colorado engineering firm Merrick & Co., said aging lead pipes don't automatically result in high lead levels in the water. There's typically problems that serve as a catalyst, he said. Besides corrosive water, changes to water usage pattern can affect lead levels, he said. If water is used less frequently, it can cause the sluggish water to sit longer in pipes and potentially leech lead from its surroundings, Binney said. We have always been aware of this issue, but it hasn't had the public attention like we've seen at this moment, he said. We do invest a lot in the safety, security, welfare and wellbeing of our children. We have a responsibility to make sure that [water] is not an issue. 2015's Festival Sweetheart Film - Miss India America Limited Theatrical Release in D.C., Chicago & San Jose this Month DALLAS, TX (TIP): After 22 sold-out screenings at mainstream and South Asian film festivals around North America in 2015 and multiple audience and jury awards under its belt, the smart, witty, coming-of-age comedy feature, Miss India America, will have a special, red-carpet screening, followed by a Q&A with the cast/team, in Los Angeles on March 24th. The limited theatrical release will take place at theaters in Washington, D.C., Chicago and San Jose starting on Friday, March 25th, for a one-week run. Following the theatrical release, the movie will be available on the following broadband platforms starting Tuesday, April 5th: Amazon, GooglePlay, itunes, Vimeo, Vudu, Xfinity and Sling. The brainchild of husband/wife creative team Ravi Kapoor (director/co-writer) and Meera Simhan (actor/cowriter), the cross-cultural comedy is set against the backdrop of the Indian beauty pageant world in Los Angeles. Inspired by Simhan's one-woman-show of the same title, Miss India America stars Texas native Tiya Sircar (The Internship, 17 Again, Vampire Diaries) and Hannah Simone (of Fox television series New Girl fame), along with a supporting cast of talented actors, including Kosha Patel, Satya Bhabha, Cas Anwar, Rizwan Manji, Anjali Bhimani and Bernard White. Produced by Megha Kadakia and Saurabh Kikani and distributed by MarVista Entertainment, the feature film establishes an authentic tone that pays respect to Indian cultural norms, while poking gentle fun at these traditions, raves The Hollywood Reporter. contd from Page 1 Dallas Philanthropists to Provide Microloans for Female... India's working poor to gain financial stability for themselves, we are able to tackle one of India's most challenging causes of poverty - financial exclusion. The launch of a laudable mission for women empowerment in the vicinity of the International Women's Day speaks a lot about awareness among women of what is to be done for women. It is hoped the Indian American community will come forward in a big way to support the new organization and contribute generously towards the cause. WHO: Mahila WHAT: Open Doors, inaugural fundraising event for Milaap USA WHEN: Thursday, April 7 from 7 to 10 p.m. WHERE: DEC on Dragon, 1414 Dragon Street, Dallas, TX DETAILS: Tickets are $100 per person, which include open bar and heavy appetizers. Event will also have a red carpet, silent auction, gift bags and DJ. TICKETS: For more information: JINGO Media - Jitin Hingorani or (mobile) INDIA 4 THE INDIAN PANORAMA FRIDAY, MARCH 18, 2016 SUSHMA SWARAJ WRAPS UP FRUITFUL NEPAL VISIT SC ALLOWS PICTURES OF CM, GOVERNOR IN GOVT ADS External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj left Pokharan on Friday after attending the SAARC ministerial meeting in Nepal. (ANI?Photo) POKHARA (TIP): External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj left Pokharan on Friday after attending the SAARC ministerial meeting in Nepal. Swaraj also held the first bilateral meet with her Pakistani counterpart after the Pathankot terror attack. After wrapping up her three-day visit, Swaraj left Pokhara on an Mi17 chopper for Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh from where she will head to Delhi on a special flight. She announced on Thursday that a Pakistani Joint Investigation Team (JIT)?will arrive in India on March 27 to probe the Pathankot terror attack. The assault figured very high in the over 20-minute meeting between Swaraj and Pakistani counterpart, Sartaj Aziz, the first political-level engagement between the two sides after the January 2 terror attack on an Indian Air Force base in Pathankot. Swaraj accepted Pakistan s invitation for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to visit Islamabad for the SAARC Summit, to be held from November 9-10 this year. She pitched for unleashing collective strength of SAARC, underlined the need for a South Asian Economic Union with greater connectivity and progress on pending agreements. Source: PTI 2 held in MP for posting morphed RSS chief s photos online BHOPAL (TIP): Police arrested two people in Madhya Pradesh s Khargone district for allegedly posting a morphed image of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat on social media to ridicule the Sangh s recent decision to change its uniform. Khargone superintendent of police Amit Kumar Singh said the duo was accused for hurting religious sentiments and posting obscene material electronically. In the image the face of the RSS chief was combined with a woman s body wearing tight fitting brown trousers and a white shirt, added Singh. On the complaint of a saffron outfit activist Rajnish Nimbalkar, the duo was booked under Section 67 of the Information and Technology Act and Section 505(2) of IPC. The two men identified as an egg seller, 22-year-old Shaqir Yunus Banthia who is a resident of Bhikhangaon area of Khargone, and a 21-year-old college student Wasim Sheikh who is a native of Khargone s Balakwada area. A local Khargone court sent them into two weeks judicial custody. The duo was allegedly mocking the Sangh s decision to switch from its trademark Khaki shorts to brown trousers, in order to attract young followers and move with the times.the complaint was made following protests outside Bhikhangaon police station by saffron outfits on Wednesday. The protestors alleged that the act was done intentionally to ridicule the change of dress code by the RSS. While Shaqir had shared the picture on a WhatsApp group of which he was not a group administrator, Wasim had posted the same picture over the Facebook. Congress leader Parasram Dandir and party workers met Khargone additional SP AS Kanesh on Thursday and questioned the arrests. Source: HT NEW DELHI (TIP): The Supreme Court on Friday reversed its 2015 order and allowed the use of photographs of governors, chief ministers and ministers in government advertisements, even as preparations are underway for assembly polls in five states next month. The Centre and several states had filed petitions seeking the review of the 2015 judgment that banned such pictures in government advertisements and held that only photographs of the Prime Minister, the President and the Chief Justice can be published in official media advertisements. The Centre in its petition argued that it is for the government to decide whose photographs should be published and what the content of advertisements should be. It said the court should refrain from interfering in such policy matters. The Centre also batted for the state governments and said that barring photos of chief ministers on advertisements is against the federal structure. In its 2015 order, the Supreme Court said that publishing photographs of Modi hails Islam, calls it a great religion NEW DELHI (TIP): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 17 praised the contribution of Islam, calling it
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