August 1, 2012
A Publication of the Global
Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO)
August 1, 2012
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GOPIO SPEARHEADING GADAR
CENTINNIAL COMMEMORATION IN 2013
GOPIO SPEARHEADING GADAR
CENTENNIAL COMMEMORATION IN 2013
The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) took the initiative
last year to reach out to NRI/PIO organizations, government agencies,
institutions, associations and individuals to get involved and participate in
the commemoration of the historic GADAR Centennial in 2013. GOPIO continues its
appeal for participation to make this a truly historic centennial that is
deserving of the sacrifices of those who started this effort to free India.
Gadar was a movement to free India from British slavery with the force of arms.
It was started as Hindustan Association of the Pacific Coast in 1913 in Astoria,
Oregon. The headquarters of the association was established in San Francisco
from where a magazine titled "Gadar" was launched. The Gadar magazine became very popular among
Indians in a short period of time and the Hindustan Association of the Pacific
Coast itself became known as the Gadar Party.
Photo above:Gadhr Hall in San Francisco
As was done by GOPIO for the Kolkata Memorial unveiling on January 11, 2011 in
recognition and remembrance of Indian indentured laborers who left India from
1834-1920, Gadar Centennial Commemoration is a GOPIO initiative in our
continuing effort to preserve and promote Indian history and culture.
In March 2012, GOPIO issued a GOPIO News Bulletin and Press statement urging all
people of Indian origin, NRI/PIO organizations, agencies, institutions,
associations and individuals to become part of the GOPIO Gadar Centennial
Commemoration Committee. Several influential groups and individuals have come
forward to contribute time, talent and resources to the centennial event(s). We
are requesting many more people to be part of the Commemoration Committee for a
joint celebration of the 100th anniversary.
In 2003, GOPIO, jointly with the National Federation of Indian American
Associations (NFIA) and the Global Punjabi Diaspora organized the 90th anniversary
of Gadar movement to pay tribute to the pioneers, patriots and heroes of the
Gadar movement. Former President of India, K.R. Narayanan came to the USA to
deliver the keynote address. The celebration included a whole day conference
during which speakers recalled the contributions of unsung pioneers, patriots
and Gadar heroes. At the banquet which followed the conference, several
dignitaries paid tributes to the Gadarites who sacrificed life and limb for the
freedom of their motherland.
above left: Lala Hardyal: First General Secretary of Ghadr
party (1913-14) and founder
editor of 'Ghadr' newspaper; right:Kartar Singh (Sarabha, Ludhiana):Leader of
Ghadr Party and worked as in charge of the press. He was given the death
sentence in Lahore Conspiracy case and was hanged on 16th Nov. 1915 in Lahore
To mark such a significant centennial, GOPIO Gadar Centennial Planning Committee
is planning a commemoration of highly prominent global scope and scale that
befits such a historic event, significant to Indian history and Indian Diaspora
history. As more persons and associations join the GOPIO Gadar Centennial
Planning Committee, the global planning will become more finalized. Members of
the GOPIO Gadar Centennial Planning team include: affiliate organizations;
affiliate institutions; affiliate academic institutes and academicians;
affiliate agencies; affiliate government ministries; patrons; benefactors;
contributors & supporters; media; and others.
The GOPIO Gadar Centennial Planning Committee has requested of the Government of
India, and is engaged in meetings to solicit support to:
Declare 2013 as the year of Centennial Commemoration of Gadar Movement;
Establish chairs in memory of the Gadar heroes in India and in the USA;
Issue a suitably designed postage stamp in memory of Gadar Heroes;
Publish a historic Centennial Commemoration book about the Gadar Movement for
free distribution to libraries, schools, institutions, organizations and to all
delegates at Pravasi Bhartiya Divas (PBD) 2013;
Direct all Indian Consulates in USA, Canada and other countries to commemorate
the centennial of the Gadar Movement by holding official community events
Convert Gadar Memorial Hall in San Francisco as a museum and research library on
GOPIO is pleased that Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA) is including
GADAR Centennial Commemoration (GCC) at Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) 2013 in a
significant way with an Oration, a PBD Session, Release of the GOPIO Gadar Book
and an exhibit in the PBD 2013 Exhibition Hall. This prominent level of support
enhances our efforts for worldwide promotion and coordination of Gadar
Centennial Commemoration in news bulletins, interviews, articles and associated
information. There is ongoing discussion on a short documentary that will be
shown and distributed at all GOPIO Gadar Centennial events.
Planning has begun by GOPIO Gadar
Centennial Planning Committee for a series of events to be held
during the centennial year 2013, beginning with a kick-off meeting in San
Francisco in 2012.
The following venues are being considered to host celebrations in the Gadar
Centennial Commemoration Forum & Lecture Series as consecutive events during
Francisco, New York, Los Angeles,
Washington (DC), Atlanta, Miami, Houston, Chicago, Seattle, Boston.
UK/Europe: London, Berlin, Paris, Amsterdam.
Australia/New Zealand: Sydney, Auckland.
Chandigarh, Patiala, Bhopal, Delhi, Patiala, Ludhiana, Kolkata, Kolhapur and others.
Note: Sequence and scheduling of forum and
lecture series could be changed as needed.
The year-long festivities will culminate with a Gadar
Centennial Commemoration Finale & Memorial Dedication in San Francisco on November 1,
GOPIO urges more organizations and individuals to be part of the Centennial
Commemoration Committee so that a major joint effort is made for memorable
celebration events at several places throughout the year 2013.
For more information, please send an email or call:
Inder Singh, Chairman, E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel: +1-818-708-3885
Ashook Ramsaran, President, E-mail:email@example.com, Tel: +1-718-939-8194
Sunny Kulathakal, Bahrain, Executive Vice President, Tel: +973 39441956 or +91 9845756692,
Piyush Agrawal, Senior Vice President,
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel: +1- 954-648-6494
Thomas Abraham, Exec Trustee, GOPIO
Foundation, E-mail: email@example.com, Tel: +1- 203-329-8010
Or Contact any GOPIO International
team member listed at GOPIO website: www.gopio.net
GOPIO GADAR CENTENNIAL
COMMEMORATION - EXCERPTS FROM SPEECHES
"In the evolution of India's
struggle for independence, the Gadar Movement constitutes an important landmark.
Countless daring and intrepid people participated in that movement, set the goal
of liberating our country through armed struggle, faced untold misery and
hardships in pursuit of their objective and even made the supreme sacrifice of
laying down their lives. One of the distinguishing and heartening features of
the Gadar Movement was its inclusive and broad based identity. Its leaders had
the vision and outlook which transcended the boundaries of any particular
religion or caste. They considered themselves first and foremost as Indians and
treated patriotism as their religion. Even though the Gadar Movement failed in
realizing its ultimate objective, it inspired our leaders during subsequent
phases of our freedom struggle and constituted a glorious phase of our history
for freedom, liberty and independence".
Former President of India, K.
R. Narayanan, Chief Guest
for the 90th anniversary of Gadar Movement. (Hon. Narayanan could not deliver his
speech in person due to illness in Washington, D.C on his way from India to
Fremont, California, however, it was delivered by a direct TV hook up from
"In the first decades of this
(twentieth) century, California provided the scene for one of the most bizarre
and memorable incidents undertaken by any ethnic community in the United States:
the attempt by a group of India's expatriate nationals to create a revolutionary
army, invade India by sea, and liberate her from the clutches of British rule".Prof. Mark Juergensmeyer,
University of California, Santa Barbara - The Gadar
Syndrome: Ethnic Anger and Nationalist Pride
"In the early months of World
War I, an ambitious attempt to free their country was made by Indians living
overseas, particularly in the United States and Canada. Although the
overwhelming majority of the Gadarites were Sikhs and the centers of
revolutionary activity were the Sikh temples in Canada, the United States,
Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore, many of the leaders were of other parties and
from different parts of India, Hardyal, Ras Bihari Bose, Barkutullah, Seth
Husain Rahim, Tarak Nath Das and Vishnu Ganesh Pingley. The Gadar was the first
organized violent bid for freedom after the uprising of 1857. Many hundreds paid
the ultimate price with their lives" Khushwant Singh - Publisher -- Illustrated Weekly, February 26,
"Even in the eyes of the
enemy, these (Gadar) heroes shone like rays of hope in the darkest night. They
were India's dream, its future and the path they showed was later followed
proudly by other martyrs like Bhagat Singh. It is time that we remember and
honor them," F.C Isemonger & J. Slattery
of Indian Police, Punjab -- An Account of
the Gadar Conspiracy 1913-1915. Dr. Ved Prakash Vatuk wrote in the Foreword.
GOPIO MOVEMENT HONORED - INDIA
ABROAD LIFE TIME SERVICE AWARD GOES TO GOPIO FOUNDER PRESIDENT DR. THOMS ABRAHAM
India Abroad, America's oldest Indian community weekly and a publication of
Rediff.Com India Ltd. has honored GOPIO Founder President Dr. Thomas Abraham at
its annual banquet with its Award for Lifetime Service to the Community on June
The Pierre Hotel in New York. Dr. Abraham, a veteran community leader has been
the prime mover of the overseas Indian movement and founded many community
organizations. Others recognized at the awards banquet included US Attorney for
New York Southern District Preet Bharara as India Abroad Person of the Year
2011, writer Anita Desaifor
Lifetime Achievement, Democratic Party political activist Neera Tanden with India Abroad Publisher's Special
Award for Excellence, Professors Susanne and Lloyd
Rudolph with India Abroad Friend of India
Awards, computer scientistDr.Shwetak N. Patel with Face of the Future Award, and
India Abroad Special Awards to US Army Major Kamaljit Singh Kalsi,
US Army Hindu Chaplain Captain Pratima
Scripps National Spelling Bee Champion Sukanya Roy.
Photo above: Award recipients at India Abroad Annual Awards held in new York
City on June 29th, 2012. From L. to R. Captain Pratima Dharm, Major Kamaljit
Singh Kalsi, Sukanya Roy, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Prof. Lloyd Rudolph, Anita Desai,
Preet Barara, Neera Tanden and Dr. Shwetak Patel.
Dr. Abraham has been involved in the NRI/PIO movement for the last 4 decades.
Dr. Abraham's involvement in the Indian American community started in New York
in 1976, when he was elected at the Chairman of the Joint Committee of Indian
Organizations. In 1977, he brought together all Indian community groups in the
New York area under the umbrella of the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA).
In 1980, Dr. Abraham as FIA President organized the First Convention of Asian
Indians in North America attracting as many 1500 delegates from all over the
United States for a convention in New York which resulted in the formation of
the National Federation of Indian American Associations. Dr. Abraham coined the
word PIO (people of Indian origin) in 1989, when he served as the convener of
the First Convention of People of Indian Origin in New York. The Global
Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) was formed at this convention of
which he served as its first convener/president from 1989-2004 and Chairman
2004-2009. GOPIO is a worldwide organization unifying the whole Indian Diaspora
with chapters in 30 countries. Other groups he initiated include National Indian
American Association for Senior Citizens (NIAASC) in 1998, South Asian Council
for Social Services (SACSS) in 2000 and The Indus Nanotechnology Association
(TINA) in 2011. He is also co-founder of Indian American Kerala Cultural and
Civic Center in New York and served as the co-chairman of the campaign to raise
funds for Jagdish Bhagwati Chair for Indian Political Economy at Columbia
University with an endowment of $4.0 million.
Through these organizations, Dr. Abraham has helped to build a solid base for
India in various countries and the Indian Diaspora. In the last 23 years, GOPIO
took up several issues of NRIs/PIOs to the United Nations, India and other
countries. Currently, Dr. Abraham, serves as the Executive Trustee of GOPIO
International Foundation. Dr. Abraham served as the founding president of FIA
from 1977 to 1981, and founding president of NFIA from 1980 to '88 and as NFIA
Chairman from 1988 to '92. He conceived the idea of the Federation of Indian
Associations (FIA) in New York and helped to start such umbrella organizations
(FIAs) in other US cities. FIA New York does the largest India Day Parade
In recognition of his selfless community service, Dr. Abraham was presented with
Bharatvanshi Gaurav (Person of Indian Origin Pride) Award by former Vice
President of India Bhairon Singh Sekhawat and Pravasi Bharatiya Samman (Overseas
Indian Honor) Award by President of India in January, 2008 for his outstanding
service to the Indian communities worldwide and India. Dr. Abraham was also
presented the Outstanding Alumnus Award by the Malaviya
National Institute of Technology (MNIT)
at its annual convocation in November 2008.
A graduate of Columbia University, Dr Abraham is an expert in advanced materials
and nanotechnology and is President of Innovative Research and Products (iRAP), Inc., a Stamford, CT (USA) based
technology and market research firm. Dr. Abraham has written over 50 papers that
are published in the various professional journals and magazines.
Born in Pathanamthitta (Kerala), Abraham came to the US in 1973. He is married
to Susy, a physician/geriatrician and has two children, Nitya, an urologist
fellow at Cleveland Clinic and Jay, an aircraft design engineer currently
working for Pratt&Whitney. Abrahams live in Stamford, CT, USA.
GOPIO INTERNATIONAL AND
GOPIO-CT SCHDULES AN OPEN HOUSE DISCUSSION WITH MEMBERS AND SUPPORTERS
GOPIO-CT is hosting an open house discussion on what the chapter wants to
achieve for the organization, how to involve people in various activities, roles
and responsibilities for Executive Board Members and what programs to take up
for the rest of this year and the next year. The discussion will be lead by a
GOPIO-CT member, Mr. Aashik Khakoo, who is a finance director at Moet Hennessey
USA. Aashik also specializes in Project Management and Creating Efficiencies in
The event will be held in conjunction with the monthly GOPIO-CT meeting on
Thursday, August 9, 2012 starting at 7 p.m. at Stamford Hampton Inn and Suites,
All GOPIO members and supporter are welcome to attend. Following the meeting,
there will be a contributory informal sinner at the Spice Affaire located at the
For more information, contact Shailesh R. Naik, President, GOPIO-CT, Tell: (914) 409-2552, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
GOPIO METRO WASHINGTON DC AND
ALIGARH ALUMNI ASSO. ORGANIZE SIXTH ANNUAL INDEPENDENCE DAY MUSHAIRA AND KAVI
"Poets have played significant role in our struggle for freedom and their
contribution shall remain in our heart forever," said Ambassador Arun K. Singh,
Deputy Chief of Missions, Embassy of India. Ambassador Singh was addressing the
gathering assembled at the Universities at Shady Grove Auditorium in
Gaithersburg, Maryland for the 6th Annual Independence Day Mushaira-Kavi
Sammelan and release of two recently published books of poetry.
"Hindi and Urdu are twin sisters, who have been marching forward side by side in
India and all over the world," he added. He praised the efforts of organizers
for arranging an event which brought poets and audience of both languages under
one roof. "I would like to especially recognize the efforts of Abdullah ji and
Zafar Iqbal sahib, who have been actively engaged in bringing our diverse
community members together," he said concluding his remarks.
Releasing Rashmi Sanan's book of poetry, Tanha, Tanha, Ambassador Singh
commented that he felt very elated in launching this book because the poet was a
part of the Indian Embassy in Washington.
Mrs. Daler Deol Aashna's book Rubaru was released by Dr. (Mrs.) Maina Singh,
Professor at Georgetown University in Washington. Professor Singh said that as
an academician with keen interest in poetry, she was very glad to be asked for
this duty. She congratulated both poets for their work.
Coordinator of the program, Dr. Zafar Iqbal said that the goal of this program,
organized by the organized by the Metro-Washington Global Organization of People
of Indian Origin (GOPIO) in cooperation with Washington Aligarh Alumni
Association (AAA), was to provide a forum where people could get together
transcending political, religious, regional, and geographical boundaries
promoting Ganga-Jamuni culture of the Subcontinent. He apprised the audience
that for the last four years the Embassy of India has been supporting these
programs. Last year, the Embassy of India, with our support organized an
Urdu-Hindi poetry meet for the first time in the Embassy. It was very pleasing
to note that such events are gaining increasing popularity, he added. The AAA
President, Mr. Sayed Naved and GOPIO National Coordinator, Dr. Renuka Misra
welcomed the poets, distinguished guest and audience for their time and
Dr. Moazzam Siddiqui, in his address "Ganga ki mauj mein Jamuna ki lahren: Urdu
Hindi do zubainai" emphasized that it was misleading to label Hindi as the
language of Hindus and Urdu as the language of Muslims. Muslims have contributed
significantly to the development of Hindi and Hindus to the development of Urdu.
He added that, "Urdu suffered heavily during the partition of the Subcontinent
in 1947 and wrongfully blamed by bigoted politicians for the division of the
country." "Whereas in reality no other Indian language has the same amount of
patriotic and nationalistic poetry, qualitatively as well as quantitatively, as
produced in Urdu. Great literary centers of both languages are situated on the
banks of Ganga and Yamuna and their tributaries (Delhi, Agra, Mathura on the
banks of Yamuna and Allahabad, Patna and Benares on the banks of Ganga)."
Photos above left: Poets with Ambassador Arun singh and Dr. Zafar Iqbal. Photo
above right: A section of the audience.
Other distinguished guests included Dr. Maina Singh, Minister for Community
Affairs Datta Padsalgikar from Indian Embassy, Fakhrul Islam, Akmal Aleemi.
Khursheed Usmani, AAA Secretary formally thanked all participants and the
audience for their cooperation.
Dr. A. Abdullah, the evergreen conductor of poetry recitation sessions,
mentioned in his introductory remarks that the AAA and GOPIO have been
successfully providing a common platform for the interaction of Urdu and Hindi
literary personalities under one roof for the last five years and that
increasing number participants and audience is in these programs is a testimony
to the desire of people to share the common heritage. The event was presided by
Mrs. Ishrat Afreen, a guest poet from Houston, TX and participating poets
included A. Abdullah, Akram Mahmood, Aziz Qureshi, Daler Deol Aashna,
Fayyazuddin Saieb, Sadiq Bajwa, Ishrat Afreen, Narendra Tandon Sahil, Narendra
Govil, Rakesh Khandelwal, Rashmi Sanan, Razi Raziuddin, Salahuddin Nasir,
Satyapal Anand, Suman Vardan, Vishakha Thaker, and Zaheer Parvez.
Contact: Dr. Zafar Iqbal, President, GOPIO Metro Washington, DC, E-mail: email@example.com
GOPIO-CT TO CELEBRATE INDIA
INDEPENDCEN DAY WITH FLAG HOISTING AND RECOGNITION OF HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES
GOPIO-CT will celebrate India Independence Day with a flag hoisting at the Govt.
Center in Stamford. It will also recognize the recent high school graduates. The
chief guest is Ambassador Manjeev Singh Puri, Deputy Permanent Representative of
India to the UN. Stamford Mayor Michael Pavia and the event sponsor Dr. Prasad
Manoharan will hoist the American and tri-color Indian flags. Those who have
graduated from high school this year may contact GOPIO-CT and provide details.
More information about the program is provided below.
LORD KHALID HAMEED HONORED
WITH FREEDOIM OF THE CITY OF LONDON AWARD
Hameed has been given the Freedom of the City of London award in recognition of
his work within the medical profession and in promotion of interfaith relations.
Lord Hameed, who hails from Lucknow, is currently the chairman of Alpha Hospital
Group and chairman and chief executive officer of the London International
Hospital. Prior to this, he was the Executive Director and Chief Executive
Officer of the Cromwell Hospital in London.
chairs the Commonwealth Youth Exchange Council. A Board member of the British
Muslim Research Centre, Lord Hameed supports various charities and was awarded
the Sternberg Award for 2005 for his contribution to further
Christian-Muslim-Jewish relations. He was the first Asian high sheriff of
Greater London for 2006-2007. He was awarded Padma Bhushan, the third highest
civilian award by India in 2009.
contemporary society the award of Freedom of the City tends to be entirely
ceremonial, given by the local government to those who have served in some
exceptional capacity, to celebrate a significant achievement or to pay tribute
to their outstanding contribution to London life.
MISS WORLD 1966 REITA
FARIA POWELL FELICITATED
Reita Faria Powell, the first Indian to wear the Miss World crown in 1966, was
among several Goan origin individuals felicitated during the UK Goan Festival.
Wearing her Goan heritage proudly, she is a role model for the community.
A major event in the annual cultural calendar, the festival attracted nearly
9,000 visitors this year. The event attracted visitors from all over the UK as
well as from Australia, Canada and the Middle East. Festival events included an
open air mass partly conducted in Konkani by a visiting priest from Goa and two
local priests; several cultural performances, and Goan food.
First organised by the Goan Association in 1985, the festival also felicitated
senior Labour leader Keith Vaz, of Goa origin, who recently completed 25 years
as a member of parliament. The event was attended by other MPs such as Virendra
Sharma and John McDonnell.
The UK Goan community has recently secured funding from the UK Heritage Lottery
Fund for a project to record the oral histories of British Goans who arrived in
this country from East Africa.
CHAMPION ENDOWED WITH WELL-DESERVED ORDER OF AUSTRALIA
Indian-American Rahul Nagvekars won the National Geographic Bee Championship
with an educated guess about the Bavarian city that was a legislative seat of
the Holy Roman Empire from 1663 to 1806.
As part of this year's Australia Day Honours, Adelaide's Dr Jagan Mazumdar
became the recipient of the Order of Australia (OA) "for service to applied
mathematics and bio-medical engineering as a researcher and educator, and to the
Indian community". This award is an acknowledgment of his contribution to
academia and service to the Indian community.
Dr Mazumdar and his wife Maya are 'pioneer' immigrants because when they arrived
at Adelaide in 1966, there were only three Indian families here, including them.
As he established himself as a valuable staff member of Adelaide University's
Mathematics Department, they helped other Indian migrants who started arriving
in the 70s and 80s, offering support in a variety of ways.
During his forty plus years at Adelaide University, Dr Mazumdar was involved in
two main areas of research - Solid Mechanics, and his latter-day love of
Biomedical Engineering. His interest in Biomedical Engineering led him to
undertake research on non-invasive study of heart valves tissue pathology. He
was also involved in research on tissue engineering on articular cartilage
impacting on osteoarthiritis that affects some 10 percent of Australians.
Dr Mazumdar has published over 200 research papers and written two seminal
books. In view of his scholarship in biomedical engineering, he was one of the
few non-engineers elected to a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers.
With only four Indian families in Adelaide in 1968, he formed the India Club. He
served as President of the Indian Australian Association of SA (1974-76) and the
Hindu Society (1996-98). Dr Mazumdar still maintains active interest in the
local Indian community. His wife Maya has held many offices at the Indian
Association for several years, and in her role as the Welfare Secretary, she has
helped numerous Indian migrant families sort out their early problems when
settling down in a new country.
INDIAN AMERICAN ARTIST
RECEIVES THE NICHOLAS GREEN DISTINGUISHED STUDENT AWARD
Ten-year-old Sana Nadkarni,
of Andover, Massachusetts, was chosen as Massachusetts' winner of the Nicholas Green Distinguished Student Award from
the National Association of Gifted Children. Nadkarni's artistic outlet of
choice is painting. Her paintings were featured last year as a solo exhibit at
the Massachusetts State House in Boston.
She has had several other exhibitions at varied locations from town libraries to
corporate buildings to colleges. Her paintings are also featured at a number of
area hospitals, including a traveling exhibit at Children's Hospital in Boston.
Her art has also been on display at libraries, hospitals and galleries.
Nadkarni has won a number of awards related to art including in the 2011
Massachusetts School Library Association Bookmark Contest, 2011 Junior Federal
Duck Stamp Contest and PBS 2011 GO Writer's Contest and 2011 U.S. Arts Olympiad.
The Nicholas Green Distinguished Student Awards
is designed to recognize distinguished achievement in academics, leadership, or
the arts, in children. The National Association of Gifted Children believes that
the Nicholas Green Distinguished Student Awards inspire children to achieve to
their fullest potential, highlight high-ability students, and draw attention to
the educational needs of our nation's gifted and talented students.
SCOTLAND UNIVERSITY HONORS NRI
ENTREPRENEURS HARI HARILELA
Hari Harilela, Indian origin entrepreneurs in Hong Kong who founded a
billion-dollar enterprise, has been honoured with honorary doctorate in Business
Administration by the Edinburgh Napier University. He
was conferred the honour in recognition of his outstanding contribution
to business and higher education.
Harilela, 90, is Chairman of the Harilela Group, which owns a range of companies
across the world including restaurants, hotels and
real estate. He
has been previously honoured with the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman from India as
well as the Order of the British Empire (OBE).
As a philanthropist, he contributed substantially to the relief effort in the
wake of the 2001 Gujarat earthquake and is also a firm supporter of education
and the growth of young people.
Professor Dame Joan Stringer, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Edinburgh Napier
University, said: "Dr Hari Harilela's life has been one of fortitude and
determination, a vivid example of how one can not only overcome poverty but also
go on to make a tangible difference to the lives of many".
NRIs AND PIOs NEWS FEATURES
INDIAN DOCTORS IN THE US AIM
TO ADVANCE SCIENCE OF HEALING
The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), a powerful
professional community of doctors with over 65,000 members, has not only become
a "force to reckon with" but aims to "advance the science of healing" worldwide.
According to the new AAPI president Narendra Kumar, "AAPI has become a force to
reckon with; we will all work together, stay focused and make you proud of our
organization." Kumar has been practicing otolaryngology - head & neck surgery -
in Saginaw, Michigan since 1988.
The members of the new executive committee are: Jayesh Shah, president-elect;
Ravi Jahagirdar, vice president; Seema Jain, secretary; Ajay Lodha, treasurer;
Durgesh Mankikar, chairman, board of trustees; Kusum Punjabi, Young Physician
Section (YPS) president; and Amit Bhakoo, medical student, Resident and Fellows
Section (MSRF) president.
Shah, an internationally recognised clinician in wound management and hyperbaric
medicine and a two-time recipient of Jefferson C Davis Memorial Award at the
Gulf Coast Chapter, has pioneered the formation of Hyperbaric Medical Society in
India. "With its extensive knowledge network, AAPI could advance the science of
healing all over the world," said Shah, the youngest president-elect of AAPI.
Jahagirdar, one of the pioneers of robotic surgery in his field has a special
interest in obtaining industry liaison and corporate sponsorship for conditions
unique to the Indian Diaspora. Jain, a practicing psychiatrist in New Jersey,
sees her role as a woman leader in AAPI to take up women's health issues in
society. Treasurer Lodha wants AAPI "to be a platform in helping our young
physicians coming from India to seek residencies and to help them in settlement
and to get jobs".
NEWS OF INTEREST TO NRIs
AND PIOs AROUND THE WORLD
PLATFORM FOR FREE LEGAL
SUPPORT IN SAUDI ARABIA
The Pravasi Legal Aid Cell will address the grievances of NRIs who have been
suffering from mistreatment and harassmentin
Saudi Arabia. Named as "Pleace India", the voluntary organization has called
upon Indian embassy and the consulate for taking prompt and effective actions to
ensure that legal protection and legal aid for the needy.
Pleace India is a forum under leadership of charity workers and legal experts,
in association with various social organizations. Indian expatriate community
will get free legal advice/help from the Indian legal professionals, who come
forward to associate with Pleace India voluntarily.
Visit http://pleaceindia.com for more information and to register a
INDIAN AMERICAN ASTRONAUT
SUNITA WILLIAMS LAUNCHES INTO SPACE
Expedition 32 launched with Indian-American Astronaut Sunita Williams aboard a
Russian Soyuz Rocket on July 14 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, with
Yuri Malenchenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency and Akihiko Hoshide of the
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. The
Soyuz blasted off and the rocket cleared the pad on its eight and half minute
ride to orbit.
The Russian Soyuz is the only way to reach the International Space Station for
American Astronauts until the commercial sector comes through with a new
American made rocket.
While on the International Space Station, Williams set a world record for women
with four spacewalks totaling 29 hours and 17 minutes. Williams logged a total
of 195 days in space.
DON'T FORGET DEEMED RENT WHEN
FILING INCOEM TAX RETURN
Investing in Indian real estate is a hot favorite among Non Resident Indians
(NRIs). And like every other investment tax challenges relating to real estate
is peculiar to the Indian Income Tax.
According to the Indian Income Tax Act, if a taxpayer (resident or NRI) owns
more than one house property, only one of them will be deemed as self-occupied.
There will be no income tax on a self-occupied property. The other one, whether
you rent it out or not, will be deemed to be given on rent. If you have not
given the second property on rent, you will have to calculate deemed rental
income on the second property (based on certain valuations prescribed by the
income tax rules) and pay the tax thereof.
Property is defined as 'building and any land appurtenant'. So this includes
residential property plus office building, factory building, godowns, flats,
etc. It does not include only land holding. In case you own a single commercial
property in India which is lying vacant, you would need to pay tax on deemed
rental on that property.
A detailed explanation on this is available from the Income Tax Department under
the Tax Payer Information Series - 17.
One house in foreign country
and one house in India
The Income Tax Act does not specify if either or both these properties must be
situated only in India. But now, more and more Indians are settling abroad. So
from the reading of the Act, the rule of 'more than one property' will apply to
global properties. If you are an NRI and own only one property globally and that
property is in India, you would not have to pay any income tax on that property.
However, if you own and live in a house in USA and you also own a house property
in India which is not given on rent, that property in India would be treated as
'deemed to be rented' because your self-occupied property is in USA. So even if
you do not give the property in India on rent, you would have to pay income tax
on deemed rent in India.
Once you inherit the property, you become the owner. Therefore, the property
qualifies for the same tax rules as if you had purchased the property. So if you
have inherited a property in India and that is not your only property, you would
have to pay tax on deemed income
The deemed rent is determined by valuation rules prescribed in the Income Tax
Act. For calculating tax, the income from the property is taken as the 'annual
value' of the property. The municipal value of the property, the cost of
construction, the standard rent under the Rent Control Act, the rent of similar
properties in the same locality are relevant factors for the determination of
the annual value. Usually, the highest of all the above is taken as annual value
of the property. Your chartered accountant will help you to arrive at this
From this annual value, you will be allowed a deduction of 30% in expenses,
irrespective of whether you have actually incurred 30% as expenses. The balance
is added to your total income and taxed thereon.
You must pay advance tax in three installments during the year in case the tax
payable, after adjusting TDS (tax deducted at source) is likely to be Rs 10,000
or more. If your total tax liability in 2011-2012 exceeded Rs 10,000, you should
have paid advance tax during 2011-2012 in three installments. In case you have
failed to pay sufficient advance tax, there are interest implications. The
interest is generally 1% per month for the default amount and extends till the
date of payment. So for financial 2012-2013, now maybe a good time to calculate
your total tax liability including deemed rental income. If your tax payable in
2012-2013 is likely to exceed Rs 10,000 (after netting off TDS) you would need
to pay advance tax installments.
Tax on deemed rent in country
As a permanent resident or citizen of the country that you are living in, you
may need to pay tax in that country on your global income. But you would need to
check the provision for deemed rental income. For instance, in the case of NRIs
in the United States, the US tax code does not tax deemed income. So if you have
a property or multiple properties in India that you have not given on rent, you
would not have to pay any tax in the US on those properties.
However, here's an important point. During the period that you hold the
property, you may be eligible for certain deductions on the property in the US.
For instance, property taxes from personal use property are deductible in
schedule A - itemized deductions. Now at the time you sell the property, your
gain or loss would be treated differently by the IRS depending on the purpose of
your holding - whether it was for personal use, investment or business. And the
purpose of your property holding is based on the relevant facts and
circumstances - - this includes both your intentions of the property while you
held it and also from the way you have claimed deductions, if any, in the years
prior to the sale.
You may hence want to consult your tax advisor on showing this property in your
US tax return.
Source: Economic Times - http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2012-07-27/news/32889374_1_india-tax-return-house-property-nris
GOPIO LIFE MEMBERSHIP AND
GOPIO is a non-partisan, non-sectarian global organization with chapters in
several countries, actively promoting the interests of people of Indian origin
worldwide by monitoring and addressing current critical issues of concern, and
by enhancing cooperation and communication between groups of Indians living in
GOPIO Individual Life
membership is open to all who believe in the mission of GOPIO. The one- time fee
is $5,000 for Platinum Life Membership, $2,500 for Gold Life Membership and
$1,500 Silver Life Membership and half the amount for each category for those
from developing countries and India.
GOPIO is looking forward to
opening chapters in all major cities of the world so as to network people of
Indian origin all over the world. If you do not have chapter in your city,
please visit GOPIO website (www.gopio.net) and
get details of chapter initiation (visit http://www.gopio.net/chapter_initiative.htm).
Process involves sending a letter of intent to start a chapter by a committee of
five people or more. For more information, contact:
GOPIO Chairman - Inder Singh, Tarzana, California, USA, Tel: +1-818-708-3885,
GOPIO President - Ashook Ramsaran, Fresh Meadows, New York, USA, Tel:
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or +91 9845756692, E-mail:Kulathakal@yahoo.com
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To become a Life member of GOPIO, one can sign up online at http://gopio.net/online_membership.htm or fill up
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Editor: Nami Kaur, Secretary, GOPIO
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Mahabir, Co-Chair GOPIO Media Council, GOPIO International (Guyana-New York,
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Gupta (Hyderabad, India) and Abu Thomas (New Rochelle, NY, USA)
Contributors of this
Singh (Chairman, GOPIO Intl.), Ashook Ramsaran (President, GOPIO Intl.), Dr.
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