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Hindu Press International
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Afghan Crisis Causes Dry Fruit Shortage at Indian Temples
Posted on 2001/10/13 22:48:02 ( 773 reads )


Source: India Today's Aajtak Hindi TV channel





JAMMU, INDIA, October 14, 2001: Jammu Correspondent of Aajtak Channel interviewed Jyoti Gupta, secretary of Dry Fruit Traders Association of Jammu who said that due to non-arrival of dry fruit items from Afghanistan after the war has begun there is acute shortage of many dryfruit items. The devotees visiting Vaishno Devi Shrine are buying these dry fruits as prasad (food offered to and blessed by the Deity) in lesser quantity than during normalcy in the past at this point of time. Traders are selling their stock at a high price as the supply is not forthcoming. Gupta said that the situation will worsen if the supply does not return to normal, and the prices are likely to go up in the near future. Some of the items used for prasad are already up by 50 percent, the story said.




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New Krishna Book Announced
Posted on 2001/10/13 22:47:02 ( 674 reads )


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October 14, 2001: The full calendar of Krishna's festivals culminating in the joyful riot of color that is Holi, are mirrored in this book, available from "source" above. The stories of Krishna are well known, but they are not retold here, neither is the book a scholastic commentary. Celebrating Krishna is thus a different story told at the beginning of the 21st century. What does Krishna and his lila in Vraja mean in the first years of a new millennium? Illustrated with rich color photographs, the Vraja experience of the book will be cherished by it's recipients for years to come.




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Vivekananda Festival Held at Harrow, England
Posted on 2001/10/13 22:46:02 ( 769 reads )


Source: Press Release





HARROW, ENGLAND, October 14, 2001: Jai Prakash Lakhani of the Vivekananda Centre, UK, reports on the Vivekanananda Festival held at Harrow Civic Centre yesterday, "We had quite a few politicians present, including the local Member of Parliament and the local Member of the European parliament as well as many local councillors and the Mayors of Harrow and Brent. Our youngsters performed a short play called 'Gospel of Vivekananda.' The final lines of the play said, 'This Gospel is still an unfolding story and remains unfinished. In days to come it will be written in such 'glorious terms that mankind will know for certain that it is one with God.' The councillor suggested that from now on a day in October will be designated as 'Vivekananda day' in Harrow."




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Call for Divali Articles
Posted on 2001/10/13 22:45:02 ( 805 reads )


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TRINIDAD, October 14, 2001: The Indo-Caribbean Cultural Council (ICC) is inviting writers to submit their work for publication in its Divali 2001 souvenir magazine. Divali, the Hindu festival of lights, will be observed with a public holiday in Trinidad and Tobago on November 14, 2001. Writers who wish to express themselves on socio-political issues, current events, or other topics particularly relevant to Hindus in Trinidad are asked to submit their material in the form of articles, reviews, short stories and poems. In keeping with the proclamation of the year 2001 by the United Nations, the theme of the magazine is "Dialogue among Civilizations." The deadline for submission of original articles not exceeding 1,000 words is October 31. E-mail Kumar Mahabir, editor, at "source" above.




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Japanese and Others Buying up Afghan Buddhists Relics
Posted on 2001/10/12 22:49:02 ( 687 reads )


Source: Straits Times, Singapore





TOKYO, JAPAN, October 4, 2001: Japanese collectors were among the major purchasers of Buddhist images and fragments believed to have been stolen from the world-famous collections of Buddhist relics in Afghanistan and smuggled into Pakistan. Many Afghan refugees fleeing the country carry with them Buddhist figurines, parts of Buddhist reliefs or rock pieces they claim were from the remains of the two gigantic rock-hewn Buddhas in Bamiyan which were destroyed by the Taleban in March. The relics were smuggled into Pakistan by the Afghan refugees. Local police in Peshawar and elsewhere in Pakistan appear at a loss as to how to clamp down on the situation because of the large number of brokers of the smuggled artifacts. Small Buddha images were sold for more than US$420 each, and larger ones fetched more than US$500. Brokers said that those who purchased the smuggled Buddhist artifacts were mostly from Japan, Britain, the United States and Germany.




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Temple Suffers as Endowment Land Lease Rents go Uncollected
Posted on 2001/10/12 22:48:02 ( 632 reads )


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UNTUR, INDIA, October 6, 2001: Though the current farming occupants of their endowment lands have been making a net profit of over US$14,500 per year, the Chandra Moulaswara Swami Temple has been going without daily rituals for want of funds. A 1,783-acre gift deed of fertile agriculture land at Lingamguntla Village conveyed absolute rights over the property to the temple in 1790, when the country was ruled by the British East India Company. A recent Supreme Court judgment in favor of the temple's claim is being ignored with impunity by the tenants who have been illegally monopolizing the lands whose value has gone up to US$2,078 per acre following the availability of water from Nagarjuna Sagar Right Canal. The Temple appeals to the government for justice have been unsuccessful.




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Explosive Detectors for Tirumala Temple
Posted on 2001/10/12 22:47:02 ( 724 reads )


Source: The Hindu





TIRUPATI, INDIA, October 10, 2001: In the wake of the US-Afghanistan conflict, the State Government today deputed the Inspector General for Intelligence to convene a meeting with the TTD and the District Police top-brass to review the existing security arrangements in and around the Tirumala temple complex and prepare a blue-print to step up security and prevent any possible act of sabotage. Just a few days ago the temple requested the state to make the area around it a "no-fly zone." Today they decided to install x-ray scanners at the major entry points to the temple, including those for supplies to the kitchen. Each scanner is expected to cost US$63,829 a senior official said. Another major decision taken was to install explosive detectors, one each at the Vaikuntam Queue complex and one at Alipiri, at the foot of the hills. While the former is the entry point into hill station, the abode of the Lord Venkateswara, the other is the bee-hive through which thousands of devotees throng the hills daily from far and near. A door-frame-metal-detector would be installed at some point half-way up the foot-path and all trekkers would be frisked and their bags would be thoroughly checked by security personnel for any possible deadly materials. In order to monitor the movement of suspicious characters, the meeting has decided to install closed circuit TVs at the toll-gate for a round-the-clock surveillance.




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Kolkata Bars Open for Festival
Posted on 2001/10/12 22:46:02 ( 776 reads )


Source: Telegraph India





KOLKATA, INDIA, October 10, 2001: According to a government directive, retail shops selling liquor will be allowed to do business until 11:00 pm, and all bars in Kolkata will have permission to remain open till an hour after midnight during the coming festivals. All this to ensure that neither Kolkatans nor tourists are left high and dry. The ruling communists are also considering a proposal from the tourism department and the hoteliers' lobby for a waiver of the ban on sale of liquor on Ashtami and Dashami. The Left Front government, which once considered consumption of liquor a symbol of "decadence," did not issue a single liquor license for 13 years. But of late, it has started showing a flexible attitude in consideration of the considerable tax revenue generated by liquor sales.




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100,000 Attend Anti-Tobacco Rallies
Posted on 2001/10/12 22:45:02 ( 768 reads )


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CHENNAI, INDIA, October 7, 2001: Nearly 100,000 National Cadet Core members in Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry and Andaman and Nicobar Islands, on Sunday took out a rally with an aim to create awareness in society on the ill-effects of smoking. About 1,500 cadets participated in the rally here and carried placards in protest against the use of tobacco. The NCC is an official Indian government paramilitary organization which trains youth at both the high school and college level. It is similar to the reserve officer's training corps in the USA.




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Correction: Mata Amritananda European Tour Includes Zurich
Posted on 2001/10/12 22:44:02 ( 777 reads )


Source: Press Release





AMRITAPURI, INDIA, October 13, 2001: Mata Amritananda has canceled her coming European programs only for Finland, not Zurich, as stated in HPI yesterday.




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Hindus Attacked in Bangladesh
Posted on 2001/10/11 22:49:02 ( 730 reads )


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DHAKA, BANGLADESH, October 11, 2001: Some 50,000 people have virtually remained stranded in their homes as attacks on Awami League (AL) leaders and workers and the minority community continued in Jessore, Bangladesh for the past 10 days, according to this report and direct information e-mailed to Hinduism Today. Locals alleged that armed cadres of ousted BNP leader Maulana Shakhawat Hossain Bakul ransacked the houses of AL leaders, workers and Hindu families, and looted their valuables in 70 villages of the upazila, leaving 30 people injured since the election. Hindus living in those areas for generations were being asked to abandon their houses and leave the country threatened with dire consequences if they didn't leave the areas soon. Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia took the oath of office amidst rising anti-American protests and sporadic reports of violence. Other reports of this and some anti-American protests are at http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/worl ... newsid_1591000/1591794tsm and at http://www.indian-express.com/ie20011009/nat9.html




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Plea for Tirumala Temple Area as ''No-Fly Zone''
Posted on 2001/10/11 22:48:02 ( 718 reads )


Source: Press Reports





TIRUPATI, INDIA, October 8, 2001: The Andhra Pradesh Government is said to have decided to ask India's central government to declare the air space over the Tirumala hills, the abode of Lord Venkateswara as "no-fly zone." Information reaching here said the need for such a move was highlighted at a high-level meeting of senior civil and police officials held at Hyderabad to review the security arrangements in and around the famed Tirumala temple complex in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks in the U.S, and in view of threats of atacks on landmark and heritage installations in India and elsewhere in the world.




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Oriental Institute Receives Ancient Manuscripts
Posted on 2001/10/11 22:47:02 ( 670 reads )


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ADODARA, INDIA, October 6, 2001: Gifting the Oriental Institute of Baroda with a rare collection of scriptures more than 300 years old, descendants of the famous miracle-performing teacher Siddheswar Maharaja (1733 CE) wanted the gems to be preserved. Professor M. L. Wadekar, director of the institute, says that the ancient, beautifully written manuscripts cover diverse topics such as the Vedas, Puranas, Tantra, Mantra, Vedantas, and Ayurveda.




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Suva Mariamman Temple Rededicated
Posted on 2001/10/11 22:46:02 ( 1188 reads )


Source: Hinduism Today





SUVA, FIJI, October 12, 2001: The Mariamman Temple of Suva operated by the Then India Ikya Sangam reopened last month after improvements and installation of new deities. The ceremonies were performed by Pundit Tirthadeva Peruman with the assistance of six priests from other Fiji temples. Devi Raja Maha Mariamman is the presiding Deity of the temple, with side shrines for Lord Vinayaka (Ganesha) and Lord Muruga. The temple's annual fire-walking ceremony occurred during the 48-day rededication program. Thirty-five devotees, one only seven-years old, walked over the 45 tons of hot coals. No one was burnt, and 5,000 devotees witnessed the ritual.




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Mata Amritananda Adjusts European Tour
Posted on 2001/10/11 22:45:02 ( 754 reads )


Source: Press Release





AMRITAPURI, INDIA, October 9, 2001: At the request of the European organizers in light of the tense world situation, Mata Amritananda has canceled her coming programs in Finland and Zurich. Amma leaves here on October 13 for the tour, which will now include Germany, Holland, England, France, Spain and Italy. She will return here in December after also visiting the USA.




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