Tag: India

Vintage wheels move in India’s Heritage Transport Museum

Final final

By Chitwan Sharma*

NEW DELHI, 15 March 2020: About an hour’s drive from Delhi is the world heritage museum. Located at Tauru in the Gurgaon district of the state Haryana. HTM (Heritage Transport Museum) covers an area of around 90,000 sq feet.

This state of the art museum is very high tech and gives a modern feel. It is a multi-story museum that features exhibition galleries, mini auditorium, library, museum shop, and a restaurant facility.

Audiobooks with headphones are provided along with the tickets on the entrance and these audiobooks have thorough information about the whole museum. A documentary on the importance of different modes of transportation is also shown in the auditorium.

The founder and trustee Tarun Thakral spent nearly 20 years collecting vintage vehicles from different states of India. The museum includes a 1930 Royal Rail Saloon and a 1935 Buick series 90 limousine, a 1900 horse carriage and a 1946 Salsbury and many more. The oldest model in the museum is an 1780 bullock cart.

With the help of lithographs, photographs, postcards and transportation books, and vehicles, the museum tells us the vibrant and rich history of Indian transportation in a modern way.

*chitwan.sharma30@gmail.com)
Info- www.heritagetransportmuseum.org

EU-India trade: Call to include ‘strong’ human rights clause, suspension mechanism

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By Counterview

While recent reports on the European Union (EU) resolution on the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), quoting EU officials, seek to suggest that EU is “keener” on concluding trade and investments agreements with New Delhi than discussing Kashmir and the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), a closer look at the draft resolution, proposed to be taken up for discussion in March 2020, appears to point towards something totally different.

The resolution, while condemning India’s stance on Kashmir and CAA, “urges the EU and Member States to raise the controversial new citizenship legislation in their contacts and negotiations with their Indian partners, and insists that any EU trade agreement with India should include a strong human rights clause with an effective implementation and suspension mechanism.”

A vote on the resolution has been postponed following a decision by members of European Parliament (MEPs) at its plenary session in Brussels on January 29 to the March session because it was found necessary to wait for the legal process on CAA in India to conclude. The reason given was, the Supreme Court was looking into the matter, hence it would be better to vote on the resolution “when there is full clarity on the situation.”

Specifically underlining that the situation in Kashmir and CAA should be looked at against the backdrop of “trade negotiations… underway between the EU and India”, expresses what it calls “deep concern at the fact that India has created the legal grounds to strip millions of Muslims of the fundamental right of equal access to citizenship”, adding, EU is “concerned that the CAA could be used, along with the National Register of Citizens, to render many Muslim citizens stateless.”
The resolution says the Government of India is obliged, under the 1992 UN Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities, “to protect the existence and identity of religious minorities within their territories and to adopt appropriate measures to ensure that this is achieved”, adding, “people belonging to minority groups, including religious minorities” should be allowed to “exercise their human rights without discrimination and in full equality before the law.”
“Strongly” condemning India’s “violation of these internationally recognized principles”, the resolution calls on the “Government and Parliament of India to demonstrate their expressed commitment to fully guaranteeing the protection of refugees and migrants, irrespective of their religion”, urging “the Indian authorities to engage constructively with the protestors and consider their demands to repeal the discriminatory CAA.”

The resolution declares “solidarity with the national strike held on January 7”, noting that “over 250 million workers have taken to the streets to protest for social security for all, against the privatization of public companies, and against the CAA”, even as condemning “the excessive force in the crackdown on protests.”

EU draft seeks prompt and impartial investigation into allegations of torture and ill-treatment of peaceful protestors
Insisting that “citizens have the right to protest”, it calls upon “the Government of India to establish a credible, independent investigation into allegations of excessive use of force and violence by law enforcement officials against demonstrators.”

It further calls upon the “Indian authorities to stop the criminalization of protests, to lift the disproportionate restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly, to end the indiscriminate shutdowns and to ensure the protection of all human rights”, adding, it “condemns the torture and detention of minors and peaceful protestors and the imprisonment of those critical of the authorities.”

At the same time, the resolution calls upon the EU and Member States “to condemn all violence in the context of the ongoing protests against the CAA, including the alleged killing of protestors by law enforcement officials, and all incidents of excess use of force by the police, some of which have been verified by Amnesty International India.”

Asking the Indian authorities to “launch a prompt and impartial investigation into the allegations of torture and ill-treatment of peaceful protestors”, the resolution wants “the EU and its Member States to use all bilateral and multilateral meetings to urge the Indian authorities to open up to a constructive human rights dialogue and to end the crackdown on individuals and organizations working on human rights”.

Source- Counterview

Warm send off to the outgoing Indian High Commissioner Dr. A M Gondane

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Indian Consul in Melbourne Mr. Raj Kumar & Dr A M Gondane, outgoing Indian High Commissioner in Australia at the Indian Consulate reception. Photo: SAT

Warm send off to the outgoing Indian High Commissioner Dr. A M Gondane

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 11 September: The outgoing Indian High Commissioner in Australia, Dr. A M Gondane today said relations between India and Australia had progressed but talks on a free trade pact between the two countries remain conclusive. The High Commissioner mentioned the importance of the rising number of Indian students in Australia and Melbourne being their main destination.

Mr. Gondane also without naming Kashmir, detailed the Indian government’s recent steps there and wanted the Indian diaspora to clarify any issues they have with the Indian diplomatic missions. He was addressing a select gathering at the Indian Consulate called to catch up with him as he has ended his three years’ term as the High Commissioner in Canberra.

The Indian Consul in Melbourne presented a memento to him appreciating his personality and the work he did in Australia.

Mr. Gondane refused to name his successor, when asked by SAT but said the name was being finalized and is likely to be known by next month.

The outgoing High Commissioner mixed and talked with community members and others present and posed for photographs.

InstaReM’s digital money-transfer push focuses on South Asia/India market

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A photo after the media interaction.

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 22 March: India and Philippines are the countries which get the largest amount of remittances from Australia. Running into millions of dollars, no doubt, it’s a massively big and lucrative money transfer industry which has attracted many big and small companies. InstaReM, Singapore-headquartered, is one of them operating here since 2015 with 15,000 customers. It’s different because of its pure digital cross-border payment system operating successfully in the Australia-to-South Asia/India corridor. Its operations cover 55+ countries.

In a briefing to select South Asian media and community leaders, Vinoth Manoharan, Country Manager of InstaReM, said, “The South Asia/ India corridor is very exciting for InstaReM, and we strive to deliver the best quality experience to our Indian and other South Asian customers. This audience often tells us that convenience is important to them when conducting remittances. We have heard their message loud and clear and are pleased that our focus on customer experience and convenience has resulted in a strong 24 percent volume growth in the Australia-to-South Asia corridor, led by Australia-India traffic last year.”

“My father regularly remits money back home to South Asia and used to be hesitant about
transferring money online. After experiencing great convenience in his first digital
transaction with InstaReM, the notion of taking time to visit a physical branch or an agent
does not make sense to him anymore!”

“His situation is not unique – many of the South Asian diaspora living, working, and studying
in Australia need to conveniently send and receive money and we know how important it is
to make the process as smooth as possible,” continued Mr Manoharan.

A lively Q-A session was revealing with company officials including Vinoth, Karan and Taylor answering to issues facing customers. On a question by SAT, Karan said, people who transfer money via the outlets end up giving bigger commissions. So, he feels, customers need to be educated tro take the digital route.

Unlike other money transfer companies, InstaReM money can only be transferred overseas through their App or website. The company possessed $ 250 million transactions in 2018.

India is the second largest global remittance market for Australia, with AUD$2.74 billion
transferred from Australia to India in 2017. World Bank statistics show migrants in Australia
sent close to AUD$23.816 billion overseas in 2017.

During the briefing session, InstaReM laid out the firm’s focus on understanding and
delivering on the unique needs of the South Asian/Indian diaspora in Australia through the unique positioning of five core benefits:
1. Zero-Margins on Foreign Exchange rates
2. Low Transaction Fees
3. Absolute Transparency in Costs
4. Speed of Settlement
5. Convenience

A Finder.com.au study found 12 percent of people in Australia provide financial assistance
for relatives overseas and 32 percent have sent money abroad at least once; around half of
those as a gift and just over one third to support relatives, says an InstaReM media release.

For more information, visit https://www.instarem.com/

Bleeding blue at the MCG as India take ODI series 2-1

By SAT sportsdesk

Melbourne: The MCG was bathing in a sea of blue on friday as India took their winning form into the 3rd and final one day international of the 2018/19 tour of Australia. At the innings break, Australia were 230 all out, with Yuzvendra Chahal starring for India to take 6 wickets for 42 runs in his 10 overs.

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Top scorer for Australia was  Peter Handscomb with 58 runs off 63 balls. Usman Khawaja 34 and Shawn Marsh 39 made valuable contributions but could not covert their innings into a big one. With 230 runs being a below par score, Australia were hoping for their new pace factory Richadson, Stanlake and Siddle to make early inroads into the strong India batting lineup.  Like the first ODI they were hoping to take out top order Dhawan, Rohit and Kohli cheaply to put pressure on the Indian middle order. Rohit and Kohli are in fine form after making centuries in the first and second ODIs.

Siddle did take Rohit Sharma’s wicket early on and Dhawan got out to Stonis in the 16th over. Dhoni was promoted to number 4 in the absence of regular #4 Raidu and gave a chance to Stoinis on his first ball but Maxwell could not hang on. Earlier, Kohli was also dropped on 10 by Peter Handscomb at slip. There were also two close run out chances that the Aussies missed. Without scoreboard pressure, Finch had no choice but to bring in the field. The experience of Kohli and Dhoni, with more than 20000 international runs between them, was expected to take India through to an easy win. However, with Dhoni playing slow and farming the strike, Kohli’s rhythm was disrupted and he nicked one to the keeper in frustration. Out came young Jhadhav and formed an important partnership with Dhoni to get the ask to 59 runs off 53 balls. Then something in Dhoni’s brain clicked to play a maiden off Zampa’s last over and the ask suddenly became 50 off 33 balls ,much to the pleasure of the fox sports commentators who called it game on for Australia. Dhoni (87 not out) had the last laugh by increasing the scoring rate with Jadhav (61 not out) to complete another successful chase and win the series. The old master showed how its done in style – keep wickets in hand and take the chase deep into the final overs of the game. India ended their most successful tour on Australian soil winning the test series 2-1 and now the ODI series 2-1

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Indian fans once again attended the MCG in big numbers giving a feeling of an India home game at the Eden Gardens. The Australia cricket fans seem to taken to the fast pace of the Big Bash and Cricket Australia will have to review the scheduling to keep the international games relevant in their minds. It would have been great to see the MCG full if the fans of both teams attended in force. Friday being a working day, the Australian Open along with the absence of run machines Stephen Smith & David Warner would have also played a part.