– UK Sikh Family Seeks to Retrieve Golden Palki and Volumes of Guru Granth Sahib Ji confiscated by KPMG

Punjab Times & Sikh24

Hayes, UK, 23 October 2014. A Sikh family living here has been fighting a legal battle for some years to get back a palki and volumes of Sri Guru Granth Sahib seized by an administration company from its TV studio.

During the past years, a recovery company KPMG took away a golden palki, an 18th century volume and two other printed volumes from the HDS TV Studio in Hayes in connection with a case related to payments. H.S. Bhabra asked the above-mentioned company to return them but the company did not do this.

H.S. Bhabra says that he wrote a letter Mr F. O’Connell, an officer of the company, on 10 September 2007, but the matter has not been resolved in spite of that. It is worth mentioning that Hardial Singh Bhabra of HDS TV studio is an expert palki maker, and the palkis made by him grace many Gurdwaras.

When his TV company failed and had to be closed by its owners, Mr F. O’Connell’s company (KPMG) took away this golden palki along with the historical volumes from the studio.

Mr Hardial Singh Bhabra says that he told the said company that the palki and the three volumes were not the property of the company, they were respectable not only for their family but for the whole Sikh community as well.

Efforts have been made since then to recover them. It has been ten years since then, but the KPMG company has not given any information about them. The family says that they approached a political party as well, but even they have not co-operated.

Mr Gurmel Singh Kandola, general secretary of the Sikh Council UK, said that these things have great significance for them and are venerable, and they want this problem resolved soon.

Additionally, the Ramgarhia Council UK and the Ramgarhia Sabha Derby have appealed to the said company that Mr Hardial Singh Bhabra’s personal things should be returned to him; they are a historical treasure of the Sikh community.

Similarly, other Sikh organisations of UK, such as Mr Raghbir Singh leader of the Akhand Kirtani Jatha UK, Mr Rajinder Singh Purewal of the Derby Sikh Museum, Bhai Amrik Singh Gill of Sikh Federation UK, Mr Balwinder Singh Nannua President of the Khalsa International Welfare Society, and Bhai Malkit Singh of Sikh Sewak Society International, are fully co-operating with Mr Hardial Singh.

They have also appealed to the said company that the three volumes and the palki belonging to Mr Hardial Singh Bhabra be returned.

Various Gurdwaras and organisations wrote letters regarding this in 2012, but still the Sikh community has not got these things back.

Following the letter written by Sri Dashmesh Sikh Temple President Mr S.S. Sagoo and the General Secretary Mr Harcharan Singh Bhopal, separate letters were written by Mr Piara Singh Bhogal of Sikh Council of Gudwaras in Birmingham; the Gurdwara Trust Nottingham President Mr Jaswinder Singh Bassi; the Ramgarhia Southall President Dr Shaminder Singh Marvey; Mr Patwant Singh Suri, Mr Jaswant Singh Vohra and Mr Gurbakhash Singh Birdi of Ramgarhia Sabha Nottingham; Mr Inder Singh Ghataura of Ramgarhia Sikh Temple Slough; the Ramgarhia Board Leeds Vice-President Mr Gurdev Singh Saggoo; and the Sikh Missionary Society General Secretary Mr Teja Singh Mangat.

They requested H.S. Bhabra for the location of these significant things and the volumes of Sri Guru Granth Sahib should be launched and they should be told where these things are.

The letters say that a non-Sikh does not know how a volume of Sri Guru Granth Sahib should be kept respectfully, so it should be given back to the Sikhs.

The palki is also an important thing for the Sikhs. In spite of the repeatedly sent letters, the company is not offering any solution. The Sikh leaders have expressed a concern regarding how these volumes may have been kept and looked after, and whether the Sikh community will get them back at all.

So the Sikh leaders have also said that if the company still does not listen, they will hold a huge demonstration before the office of the company.

Punjab Times & Sikh24 can be reached at

Gurdwaras – Central Gurdwara, Khalsa Jatha, Shepherd’s Bush, London, UK

Central Gurdwara (Khalsa Jatha)
62 Queensdale Road
London W11 4SG

The Tribune – The Hindustan Times – Devendra Fadnavis meets Nitin Gadkari; seeks his blessing

Pradip Kumar Maitra

New Delhi, 23 October 2014. A 30-minute closed door meeting between Union minister Nitin Gadkari and the state BJP chief Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday seems to have sealed the deal in favour of the latter when it came to the position of Maharashtra chief minister.

Both these leaders are strong contenders for the coveted post following BJP’s victory in the assembly elections. Fadnavis is the choice of the central leadership and the grapevine in the political circles is that he was instructed from Delhi to visit Gadkari and seek his blessings.

The meeting of Fadnavis (44) with Gadkari (58) is quite significant when 39 newly-elected BJP MLAs from the Vidarbha region met the union minister at his Nagpur residence on Tuesday and later persuaded him to take the reins of the state.

Two other party MLAs and five independents also met him and extended their support when the central leadership is hell-bent on nominating Fadnavis.

Notable BJP MLA from the region and senior party leader, Sudhir Mungantiwar has been pitching for Gadkari name for the chief ministership.

The leader of the state legislative council and newly-elected MLA Vinod Tawde even said that Gadkari would be the right choice for the post in view of the present circumstances while the senior party leader Eknath Khadse expressed his displeasure over the pressure tactics of Gadkari.

The desperation from the Gadkari camp could be gauged from the fact that three newly elected party MLAs, Krishna Khopde, Sudhakar Kohle and Samit Meghe offered to resign from their respective seats for the union minister to pave the way for his selection as the chief minister of the state.

However, Gadkari had earlier clarified his stand not to return to state politics and said it was for the party’s central leadership to decide and he would accept any responsibility given to him, an indication that he was one of the contenders for the post.

The sudden meeting of both the leaders surprised all when both were showing their strength within the organisation before the selection of the top post of the state.

Gadkari had arrived in Nagpur from Delhi on Tuesday evening while Fadnavis is also here since Tuesday evening and both did not bother to meet each other during the period. Moreover, there was even no telephone communication during the period between the two leaders.

The relationship between Gadkari and Fadnavis is not very cordial in the recent past even though Fadnavis is a protégé of Gadkari.

“We have no differences. My political guru is Devendra’s father, Ganghadharrao Fadnavis while I was instrumental in bringing Devendra into politics,” Gadkari said after the meeting of the duo at his residence this morning. However, he maintained that it was just a courtesy meeting on the occasion of Diwali.

It was said that the central leadership already communicated to both, that Fadnavis would be the BJP choice for the chief ministership and Gadkari would ensure a smooth passage to him and guide him as a senior party leader in future.

Fadnavis was told by the party leaders that he should go to his place and take a blessing before leaving for Mumbai on October 26 evening. He was accompanied by the city mayor, Pravin Datke.

Gadkari and Fadnavis are likely to meet the RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat either on October 25 or October 26. The party observers Rajnath Singh and JP Nadda are coming to Mumbai to select the new chief minister on October 27.

According to RSS headquarters here, Bhagwat and other senior RSS leaders, including its general secretary Bhaiyaji Joshi are out of Nagpur and expected here on October 25.

The central mediator between the RSS and BJP for the recent crisis over the selection of chief minister, Chandrakantdada Patil, a veteran ABVP leader, is also coming here on October 25 to meet Fadnavis and Gadkari and later they are likely to meet the senior RSS leaders, informed a senior RSS pracharak, who preferred anonymity.

The Hindu – Khattar, Modi’s man all the way

His appointment has infused new life among RSS cadres who now await their moment of glory while being dedicated workers

Mahim Pratap Singh

New Delhi, October 24, 2014. Manohar Lal Khattar, the 60-year-old former RSS pracharak soon to take over as the Chief Minister of Haryana, would be a Narendra Modi man all the way, feel Sangh parivar insiders The Hindu spoke to.

With Mr. Khattar in place in Haryana, and Devendra Fadnavis likely to grab the top post in Maharashtra, Mr. Modi’s influence over State units of the party will be further consolidated.

“It will serve three purposes: weakening of the existing Jat-dominated, BJP leadership in Haryana led by Captain Abhimanyu, Ram Bilas Sharma and others; winning over and energising the RSS cadre; and creating a

strong wall of support for Modi within the RSS,” says an RSS insider.

The move has infused new life among RSS cadres who now await their moment of glory while being dedicated workers.

Cadres were likely, sources said, to develop a natural affinity to Mr. Modi as someone who rewarded ground-level workers, even choosing them over established politicians for top posts.

“So if the RSS decides to check Modi ji, say, two years down the line, he will have a strong wall of support for himself within the organisation,” says a BJP worker on condition of anonymity.

He says someone like Mr. Khattar, a first time MLA who was named Chief Minister, would never be in a position to question Mr. Modi.

“He would be under the weight of this perceived largesse…for being made a mainstream leader.”

While his admirers know him as an extremely “simple, approachable, hard-working and thinking” person, Sangh sources believe the decision on Mr. Khattar’s appointment went beyond these obvious considerations.

“Mr. Khattar makes it convenient as well as comfortable for the central BJP leadership. Sharing a boundary with Delhi, Haryana needs to be monitored closely. Mr. Khattar wouldn’t protest being a rubber stamp while Mr. Modi sends in a strong Chief Secretary to carry out his mandate in the State,” says an RSS source.

Like Mr. Modi, Mr. Khattar also rose to being a pracharak, and would possibly learn from the Prime Minister the art of reticence, even though his conservative views on women’s rights and other sensitive issues like pre-marital sex are unlikely to be palatable to the youth constituents of the new India Mr. Modi plans to lead.

But for the moment, the message from Mr. Modi is clear: be loyal and hang on; you never know when you could be rewarded.

Southall – Shoreditch – Aldgate East – Southall

Bus, Overground, Walk, Underground, Bus
28 September 2014

Vicarage Farm Road / Great West Road (Heston)
H32 on its way to Southall

Gunnersbury Station
Stop for eastbound buses
237, 267, 391, H91, N9

Gunnersbury Station
Showing trains from Clapham Junction and Gunnersbury
Due to works the trains were only going as far as Willesden Junction

To see more UK Trains, Underground and Buses pictures :

To see more London Overground and Crossrail pictures :

More UK pictures to follow
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

Published in: on October 24, 2014 at 6:55 am  Leave a Comment  

The Times of India – 24% of global missed TB cases in India: World Health Organisation

Kounteya Sinha,TNN

London, 24 October 2014. One in every four missed cases of tuberculosis (TB) globally is in India.The World Health Organisation has found that India tops the list of the world’s missed TB cases. Almost 24% of the world’s missed TB cases are from India, according to the Global TB Report 2014 released on Thursday.

Ten countries accounted for 74% (2.4 million) of the estimated “missed” cases globally in 2013.

The number of missed cases is defined as the difference between the estimated number of incident cases and notified (new and relapse) cases in 2013.

Of the nine million incident cases of TB estimated to have occurred in 2013, only 5.7 million were both detected and notified to national TB programmes (NTPs) or national surveillance systems giving a case detection rate of 64%.

WHO says that this leaves a gap of approximately 3.3 million people with TB who were “missed”, either because they were not diagnosed or because they were diagnosed but not reported.

WHO said “Improvements in case detection in India would have a global impact, given the size of the TB burden in the countries and the sizeable gap between notified cases and estimated incidence.

A recent study in India suggests that about 50% of detected cases are not reported to the NTP, a finding confirmed in a recent prevalence survey in Gujarat (unpublished data)”.

Meanwhile, WHO revised its estimate of how many people have TB by almost 5,00,000. In 2013, some 9 million people had developed TB around the world, up from 8.6 million in 2012.

About 1.5 million people had died in 2013 from TB, including 3,60,000 people who had been HIV positive, the WHO said in its global report. In 2012, there had been 1.3 million tuberculosis deaths.

The WHO said its report underlined that a “staggering number of lives are being lost to a curable disease and confirms that TB is the second biggest killer disease from a single infectious agent”.

“One of the biggest issues facing organizations tackling the disease was the number of undiagnosed cases. The fact that three million people are missing out on treatment every year explains why there are still so many avoidable deaths from tuberculosis,” said TB Alert chief executive Mike Mandelbaum.

Most people who developed TB in 2013 were in South East Asia and the Western Pacific.

India accounted for 24% of cases alone while China saw 11% of total cases.

An estimated 37 million lives have been saved through effective diagnosis and treatment of TB since 2000.

Dr Mario Raviglione, director of the Global TB Programme, WHO said: “Insufficient funding is hampering efforts to combat the global epidemic. An estimated $8 billion is needed each year for a full response, but there is currently an annual shortfall of $2 billion, which must be addressed.

The multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) crisis continues, with an estimated 4,80,000 new cases in 2013. Worldwide, about 3.5% of all people who developed TB in 2013 had this form of the disease, which is much harder to treat and has significantly poorer cure rates”.

Since 2009, with more laboratories rolling out rapid tests, there has been a tripling of MDR-TB cases being diagnosed.

In 2013, 1,36,000 MDR-TB cases were detected and 97,000 people started treatment. Although the number of patients treated has increased three-fold since 2009, at least 39,000 patients, diagnosed with this form of TB, were not being treated last year and globally only 48% of patients were cured.

Another key challenge identified by WHO is the co-epidemic of TB and HIV. An estimated 1.1 million (13%) of the 9 million people who developed TB in 2013 were HIV-positive, with 4 out of 5 cases and deaths occurring in the African Region.

While the number of TB deaths among HIV-positive people has been falling for almost a decade, from 5,40,000 in 2004 to 3,60,000 in 2013, antiretroviral treatment, preventive therapy and other key interventions still need to be further scaled-up.

Of the estimated 9 million people who developed TB in 2013, more than half (56%) were in the South-East Asia.

About 60% of TB cases and deaths occur among men, but the burden of disease among women is also high. In 2013, an estimated 5,10,000 women died as a result of TB, more than one third of whom were HIV-positive. There were 80,000 deaths from TB among HIV-negative children in the same year.

BBC News – UK military ‘made wrong calculations’ on Afghanistan

Thursday 23 October 2014. Military leaders failed to calculate the magnitude of the conflict in Afghanistan, the former head of the British army has told the BBC.

General Sir Peter Wall said they thought they had a “reasonable force” for their limited objectives, but he now admits they got it wrong.

The commander in Helmand in 2006, Brigadier Ed Butler, said troops were “underprepared and under-resourced”.

The MoD said it was “proud of what we have achieved in Afghanistan”.

Since the conflict began in 2001, 453 British troops have died.

In 2004, the Army was still engaged in the conflict in Iraq and its leaders admit they were aware that they did not have the resources to fight in more than one campaign for any length of time.

But they fulfilled a commitment to send 3,300 troops to Afghanistan as part of the Nato force.

General Wall told a BBC Two documentary: “We had put forward a plan saying that for the limited objectives that we had set ourselves, this was a reasonable force. And I freely admit now, that calculus was wrong.”

‘Flawed assumption’

Military leaders had assumed that the operation in Iraq would have been winding down when troops were deployed to Afghanistan, but in 2005 the situation in Iraq was deteriorating.

Lord Dannatt, head of the Army between 2006 and 2009, said: “Looking back we probably should have realised, maybe I should realised, that the circumstances in Iraq were such that the assumption that we would get down to just 1,000 or 1,500 soldiers by summer 2006 was flawed – it was running at many thousands.

“We called it the perfect storm, because we knew that we were heading for two considerable size operations and we really only had the organisation and manpower for one.

“And therefore perhaps we should have revisited the decision that we the UK would lead an enlarged mission in southern Afghanistan in 2006. Perhaps we should have done that. We didn’t do that.”

Lord Richards commanded the 35,000 troops from 37 nations in Nato’s International Security Assistance Force (Isaf) from 2006-07. He said there was an “institutional reluctance” to accept the conflict could deteriorate.

He said: “We have a phrase in the Army, hope for the best but plan for the worst. We were actually hoping for the best and planning for the best. I mean I didn’t have the resources I needed.

“I didn’t have a reserve, I didn’t even have an aircraft to fly round my own patch. I mean we just weren’t in the real world.”

In the summer of 2006, some British forces in Afghanistan found themselves effectively stranded in a number of outposts in the north of Helmand province. Overstretched, under constant fire and heavily dependent on helicopters, soldiers ran dangerously low on food, water and ammunition.

The commander of the British forces in Helmand in 2006, Brig Ed Butler, said: “We were underprepared, we were under-resourced, and most importantly, we didn’t have a clear and achievable strategy to deliver success.”

Lord Dannatt said: “There was a real danger that we would find that we couldn’t support our people, that we would find a platoon cut off and potentially massacred.”

But army chiefs remain confident that in the long term, the mission was worthwhile.

Gen Wall said: “The lasting impact we will have had is not just to sanitise the threat to allow the development of governance and economy, but to be a witness to and stimulus for very significant social change, with an improving economy, with jobs, with much developed farming opportunities in contrast to narcotics.

“Had we not done this, Helmand could well be looking rather like the borders of Syria and Iraq.”

A spokesperson from the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said: “It is well-documented that the beginning of the Afghan campaign presented military obstacles but we can be proud of what we have achieved in Afghanistan.

“With our international partners we went to remove Al-Qaeda terrorists who were plotting to kill people and cause destruction on our own streets and to prevent their return. That has been the most important part of the mission and the terrorist threat to the UK from this region has been substantially reduced.”

The statement also highlighted the UK’s “important role in training Afghan security forces”, who would continue to be supported.

Gurmat Learning Zone – Gurdwara closed in Belgium

Posted to GLZ by Jagpal Singh Tiwana <>

Brussels, 21 October 2014. The mayor of the town of Vilvoorde in Belgium, Hans Bonte, has ordered the closure of the local gurdwara, Guru Nanak Sahib, for one month.

Belgian media Tuesday charged that the Sikh temple “appears to operate as a magnet for Indians staying in Belgium illegally”.

The Flanders news and radio VRT website said that during a recent police raid 11 illegal immigrants were discovered in the cellars of an empty building in the neighbourhood of the gurdwara in Vilvoorde which lies outside Brussels.

Bonte was quoted saying that: “This is the same hiding place used by people-traffickers who were convicted at the end of last year. In total, they received prison sentences totalling 54 years and six months. The Sikh temple provided food and accommodation for the illegal immigrants during daytime.”

On October 13, Bonte had a meeting with representatives of the gurdwara. He asked them to formulate constructive proposals aimed at tackling the problem of the illegals.

“They told me they were aware of the situation but could not do anything about it. Meanwhile, I have not heard anything” said the mayor.

Representatives of the gurdwara say that the Sikh worship house offers langar (free food) to anybody who comes there without demanding their identity papers. (ANS)

Jagpal Singh Tiwana
Dartmouth, Canada

Gurdwara Guru Nanak Sahib
Lange Molensstraat 14
B-1800 Vilvoorde
(Vlaams Brabant)

There is a protest today, but the information given on the Gurdwara website is not clear

Gurdwaras – Gurdwara Sahib Austin, Texas, USA

106.a.Austin Gurdwara
Austin Gurdwara

106.b.Austin Gurdwara
Stained glass khanda

Gurdwara Sahib Austin
5104 Avispa Way
Austin, Texas 78738 USA

Published in: on October 23, 2014 at 7:52 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Tribune – Captain, Ramoowalia back BJP demand on Chandigarh

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 22. Congress Deputy Leader in the Lok Sabha Captain Amarinder Singh today welcomed the Punjab BJP’s demand for transfer of Chandigarh to Punjab and its support for the Rajiv-Longowal accord.

Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, SAD’s senior vice-president, said the accord would benefit the state if implemented in letter and spirit, “I was privy to discussions that led to the signing of the accord. It’s main thrust was transfer of Chandigarh to Punjab.

Captain Amarinder Singh said it was only right that Chandigarh was given to Punjab as it was built as its capital. “It is the best time to give Chandigarh to Punjab since there is a BJP government at the Centre, in Haryana and in Punjab where the BJP is a partner in the government.”

He said it was to be seen if the BJP sincerely pursued its demand with the Centre. He cautioned the party against its alliance partner (SAD). He said the Akalis were likely to sabotage any move they saw as an intrusion into their political space.

Captain Amarinder Singh said it suited the Akalis not to allow the contentious issues to be resolved.


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