GOPIO Chamber of Commerce and Industry to be launched globally

Following the relaunch of the GOPIO Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) at the GOPIO Convention 2024 in April, a brainstorming meeting was held on May 23rd with GOPIO officials and businesspeople from the New York area. The meeting, which took place at the conference room of Braj Aggarwal CPA PC in New York City, focused on the worldwide launch of GCCI. Additionally, the event featured Ahmedabad Advocate Nachiket Dave, who practices in the Gujarat High Court and Supreme Court in New Delhi. Advocate Dave will be active in GOPIO-Ahmedabad and plans to initiate GCCI-Ahmedabad.

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GOPIO Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham and GOPIO Global Ambassador Prakash Shah led the discussion. Officials from GOPIO chapters in Manhattan, Connecticut, and North Jersey were also in attendance.
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Participants at the planning meeting, Sitting from l. to r. Joe Simon, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Advocate Nachiket Dave, Prakash Shah; Standing from l. to r. T.T. Bhat, Mridul Pathak, Prof. Raj Vangapaty, Prof. Krish Girish, Srinivas Akarapu, Dr. Anil Paulose, Attorney Dilli Bhatta, Ravi Nichani, Bharat Rana and Siddarth Jain

Dr. Hari Krishna Shukla Given Liberty Medal By New York State Senate

Dr Shukla with Liberty Medal(Albany, NY – May 23, 2024)  Dr. Hari Krishna Shukla, practicing Medicine in Flushing, Queens in New York for nearly four decades, serving thousands of young patients, was bestowed with the New York State Liberty Medal during a solemn ceremony on the New York Senate Floor in Albany, NY on May 15th, 2024.

The New York State Liberty Medal is the state’s highest honor, presented to citizens, who have merited special commendation for the actions on behalf of their fellow New Yorkers and their community.

Dr. Shukla, whose discovery of the “Shukla’s Formula” made him popular across the globe, was given the Liberty Medal by New York State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky (11th SD- Queens), recognizing his life-saving work in the field of neo-natal pediatric medicine. Earlier, on March 26, 2024, the New York State Senate passed and adopted a resolution (Senate No. 2010) to honor Dr. Hari Krishna Shukla for his work in the field of Pediatric-Neonatal Medicine.

“Dr. Shukla has received international acclaim for his work in advancing the science of how doctors treat infants born prematurely,” said Senator Toby Ann Stavisky. “Dr. Shukla is most renowned for developing a mathematical formula for ideal position of umbilical catheters in sick infants that helps to deliver critical fluids and medications more safely to premature children both intravenously and through the umbilical cord. Known as “Shukla’s formula.”

Senator Toby Ann Stavisky IS New York state senator since 1999 and Chairwoman  for higher education. This is the first time she has presented the Liberty Medal to any constituent. “Dr. Shukla’s life’s work in the field of neo-natal pediatric medicine warrants this honor,” Sen. Stavisky said.

Dr. Shukla is well known across the world for his work in advancing the science of how doctors treat infants born prematurely. Dr. Shukla is most renowned for developing a mathematical formula  to place umbilical catheters in an ideal position, in order that it causes minimal complications. The umbilical catheters in infants are known as life line  as it helps in maintaining fluid, electrolytes  and nutrition. It is also used for blood drawing, transfusion and admiration of medications.

Since Dr. Shukla published his research article on the topic in 1986, millions of infants have been benefited using Dr. Shukla’s Formula worldwide. Dr Shukla created a mathematical equation to place catheter in a position where it causes minimal complications. Dr Shukla’s Formula is now being used worldwide in  several countries, including the United States, Canada, Unite Kingdom, other European countries, Australia, India, Japan, China Russia, South Korea, Middle east. Every year about fifteen million infants receives umbilical catheterization. Dr Shukla’s equation is quoted in several medical textbooks and manuals throughout the world.

Dr. Shukla developed a formula for rapid estimation of insertional length of Endo-tracheal tubes in infants. This formula is used widely in the hospitals in United States, and has been made as part of the required training in BLS, PALS and ACLS courses in United States, given to residents, fellows, physician assistants, nurse practitioners prior to commencing employment and in continuing medical education courses required for maintenance of licensure.

Additionally, Dr. Shukla’ work has significantly contributed to the field of Pediatric Medicine. Dr. Shukla was the first US Physician to use surfactant in Preterm babies in the City of New York in 1986 under Investigational New drug (IND) protocol of Unite States Food and Drug Administration and NIH. The Surfactant therapy is now the standard mode of therapy for preterm infants with premature lungs all over the world. Dr Shukla received a Citation from United States Congress for being the first physician in New York to use surfactant.

Another area, where his contributions have helped are the patients with jaundice. His investigative research on how jaundice causes Kernicterus after his basic research on rats in an animal laboratory at the NYU School of Medicine was the first to demonstrate blood brain barriers for Bilirubin. This research helps in understanding how bilirubin reaches brain tissue and causes damage to Neurons.

His skills and love for the patients was witnessed during the Covid epidemic, when Dr Shukla treated over four hundred Covid positive children, from one-day- old to eighteen years old, with zero mortality.

Senate Majority leader

Dr Shukla is the recipient of the “Pasteur, Merieu and Connought” (The Makers of Polio Vaccine) Award for his work toward eradication of Polio in the United states and India.

Dr Shukla has served as a Consultant Pediatrician for over 38 years for the Permanent Missions of numerous countries to the United Nations and Consulate General of India. He is also the Civil Surgeon for the United States Department of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization Service since 1990.

Dr. Shukla, a triple Board certified by the American Board of Pediatrics, Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine & Forensic Medicine, is a Clinical Associate Professor at the New York University, School of Medicine and has nearly four decades of experience in training over 300 Residents and Fellows and he continues to provide state of the art care to preterm infants and children in the US and abroad.

Dr. Hari Shukla came to the United States in 1980 as a Rotary International exchange scholar from India. He is married to Kirti Shukla. The couple are blessed with two boys Mrugank and Mehool, who are American Medical Graduates, practicing in New York.

“India Beyond the Pandemic” Book Launch Held in New Delhi, Receiving Instant Bestseller Status and Acclaim

“India Beyond the Pandemic: A Sustainable Path Towards Global Quality Healthcare,” a book co-authored by Dr. Joseph M. Chalil, Ambassador Pradeep K. Kapur, and Professor M.D. Nalapat has rapidly climbed Amazon’s Best Seller lists. Achieving #1 in Business Systems & Planning and Strategic Management and #2 in Disaster Relief, the book has won for itself a global audience keen on transformative healthcare strategies for the post-COVID-19 era.

The book was officially launched on April 30, 2024, at the India International Center, New Delhi. The event was attended by a constellation of eminent personalities in healthcare, diplomacy, academia, and politics, including India’s Federal Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, Amitabh Kant, Dr. Ruby Pawankar, and Lt. Gen. UK Sharma. Each offered an in-depth analysis and endorsed the transformative approach toward sustainable global healthcare detailed in the book by the international authors.

Others who were present and endorsed the book included, Ambassador SD Muni, Ambassador Venu Rajamony, and Ambassador Lakshmi Puri, as well as former Federal Minister of India, KJ Alphonse and Princess Lakshmi Bayi of the erstwhile Princely State of Travancore. Their presence underscored the book’s significance while dealing with matters related to global health and policy.

“It brings me great joy to officially launch our latest book, co-authored with Ambassador Pradeep K. Kapur and Professor M.D. Nalapat, titled “India Beyond the Pandemic: A Sustainable Path Towards Global Quality Healthcare,” published by Konark Publishers,” said Dr. Joseph M. Chalil, a co-author of the book and the co-publisher of the Universal News Network. “This work is our collective endeavor to illuminate the pathways towards a healthcare system that is equitable, innovative, and sustainable. Join us in a crucial dialogue on shaping a future where quality healthcare is a global reality.”

Shri Hardeep Singh Puri (220x220)Hardeep Singh Puri, India’s Federal Minister for Housing & Urban Affairs, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas praised the book as an important contribution to the literature documenting India’s rising global health influence. He highlighted the book’s extensive exploration of India’s commendable vaccination drive and vaccine diplomacy, highlighting the nation’s vital role on the world stage during the unprecedented times characterized by the Pandemic.

Mr. Puri emphasized that the book is important for understanding India’s actions during the pandemic and the necessary policy reforms to enhance its global health leadership. He welcomed the book for being a narrative of resilience demonstrated by healthcare workers and a guide for future universal healthcare strategies.

Shri Amitabh Kant IAS (220x220)Amitabh Kant, IAS, G20 Sherpa and Former CEO of NITI Aayog, lauded the book as a proactive “call to action,” commending India’s leadership during its G20 presidency and the strategic health policy initiatives such as the New Delhi Declaration. He expressed his pleasure in writing a Preface for the book and emphasized its significance in, among other matters,  documenting India’s effective vaccination campaign and vaccine diplomacy. The G20 Sherpa highlighted India’s crucial role during the pandemic and acknowledged the resilience of healthcare workers and the innovations in healthcare technology that emerged during this period.

Mr. Kant described the book as a crucial guide for developing resilient healthcare systems to handle acute and chronic health challenges. He stressed the need for systemic health reforms and recognized India’s potential for ascending to a leadership role in global healthcare. In this context, he mentioned India’s presidency of the G20 in 2023 under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, highlighting its success in fostering global cooperation on health policies through initiatives like the New Delhi Declaration.

Mr. Kant portrayed the book as an essential resource for understanding and adapting India’s healthcare strategies for future challenges. Speakers positioned it as a blueprint for universal healthcare and a testament to India’s ingenuity and resilience in the face of a global crisis.

Prof Dr Ruby Pawankar MD Ph D FRCP FAAAAI (220x220)Prof. Dr. Ruby Pawankar, Executive Director and Former President of APAAACI and Former President of the World Allergy Organization, joined the launch event from Tokyo and described the book as an essential read for those committed to shaping a sustainable healthcare landscape, emphasizing its comprehensive approach and strategic use of technology during the pandemic.

Dr. Pawankar called the book “a must-read for all, dedicated to shaping a sustainable healthcare landscape and for health equity in these ever-changing environmental and geopolitical scenarios.” In her speech at the book launch, she emphasized the book’s detailed examination of India’s healthcare response during the pandemic, including its vaccine diplomacy and the strategic use of technology in healthcare.

Dr. Pawankar praised the book as a must-read for anyone interested in shaping a sustainable healthcare landscape and those dedicated to health equity in changing environmental and geopolitical scenarios. She commended the book for its role in documenting the adaptability and scientific progression that can guide future strategies for universal healthcare.

Lt Gen U K SharmaLieutenant General Dr. UK Sharma, Former commandant of the Indian Army’s flagship Referral and Research Hospital, described the book as a seamless narrative that expertly portrayed India’s robust response to the pandemic. He praised the book’s portrayal of healthcare workers’ resilience and innovative solutions that emerged during the crisis, describing it as a vital resource for understanding global health challenges and India’s potential leadership in global healthcare.

General Sharma emphasized the book’s role as a vital resource for understanding the challenges faced by healthcare workers during the crisis and the innovative solutions that emerged. He appreciated the book’s discussion of India’s potential ascendancy in global healthcare leadership, viewing it as a blueprint for India acting as the catalyst for  building resilient healthcare systems worldwide. General Sharma highlighted how the book is a testament to the ingenuity and resolve within the healthcare industry and is an invaluable guide for those committed to the noble cause of global health.

Publisher of the book, KPR Nair highlighted the book’s immediate success and its role in providing a detailed analysis of India’s healthcare response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He expressed pride in the collaborative effort of the co-authors, which resulted in a guide that is not only a retrospective account but also a forward-looking blueprint for global healthcare reforms and innovations.

Professor M D Nalapat (300x300)Prof. M.D. Nalapat discussed the importance of understanding the comprehensive strategies and healthcare reforms that India had implemented, which could serve as a model for other nations. He noted the comments made about the in-depth analysis provided by the co-authors and their view that the book is a critical resource for anyone involved in healthcare policy and administration, as it offered a blueprint for future global health initiatives.

Prof. M.D. Nalapat stressed the need for continuous adaptation and learning in healthcare, suggesting that the lessons documented in the book needed to be learned, as this was vital for preparing for future health crises. Professor Nalapat agreed with the view of the key speakers at the launch that the book was a significant contribution to global healthcare management’s academic and practical aspects.

Ambassador Pradeep K Kapur (300x300)Ambassador Pradeep Kapur noted the book’s potential to guide other nations in strengthening their healthcare infrastructures and policies. He highlighted the authors’ collaborative efforts in bringing together diverse perspectives and insights, which enrich the book’s content and relevance. Ambassador Kapur also discussed the book’s broader implications for rural community empowerment and national digital financial infrastructure, underscoring its significance in advocating for systemic changes that can lead to improved global healthcare governance.

While sharing the broad themes and the impact of the book, Dr. Chalil highlighted the book’s exploration of India’s effective management of the COVID-19 pandemic, emphasizing the innovative healthcare strategies and resilience demonstrated by professionals across the country. Dr. Chalil stressed the importance of the book as a tool for understanding and preparing for future healthcare challenges. He pointed out that it is a blueprint for integrating technological advancements and systemic reforms in healthcare systems globally. Additionally, Dr. Chalil mentioned the need to shift from disease-centered care to genuine health care, advocating for a system that emphasizes prevention and holistic wellness rather than just treatment.  His remarks encapsulated the book’s goal of offering actionable insights for building a more robust and equitable global healthcare infrastructure prepared to handle future pandemics and other health crises.

A panel discussion led by Supreet Singh with contributions from a diverse group of influential figures emphasized the critical role of technology in healthcare, the importance of holistic and preventive health, and the need for accessible and affordable healthcare as fundamental human rights. “India Beyond the Pandemic stands out as an essential guide to developing resilient healthcare systems capable of addressing future global health emergencies, thus fostering a more integrated and effective global health infrastructure. This reflects Dr. Chalil’s and his co-authors’ commitment to advancing healthcare dialogue and policy worldwide,” they said.

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Dr. Joseph M. Chalil is a visionary leader in the healthcare industry, currently steering Novo Integrated Sciences, Inc., as Chief Medical Officer. His illustrious career spans various facets of healthcare, innovation, and policy-making, underscored by his role as a Chief Strategic Advisor for the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) and President of both NovoAmerica Health Group and Clinical Consultants International, LLC. Dr. Chalil is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and is recognized for his leadership in healthcare administration. His contributions to healthcare and policy are internationally recognized, with numerous awards highlighting his leadership and innovative thinking.

Professor M.D. Nalapat is the UNESCO Peace Chair at Manipal University, and Director of the Department of Geopolitics & International Relations. Currently, he is the Editorial Director of ITV Network (India) & The Sunday Guardian. He is also the Vice-Chair of Manipal Advanced Research Group and Director of the Department of Geopolitics & International Relations at Manipal University. He has been the Editor of the Mathrubhumi and the Times of India. He has played a key role in the literacy movement in Kerala, as the first honorary coordinator of the Kerala Association for Non-formal Education and Development. He has excelled as an Advisory Board member and Associate member in various institutions. He is also a member of the Resource Board, Centre for International Relations, Washington D.C.

Ambassador Pradeep Kapur is an acknowledged “luminary diplomat,” with a distinguished career working with leaders and policymakers in different continents of the world: Asia, Africa, Europe, North America, and South America. Author and editor of many books, Kapur was Ambassador of India to Chile and Cambodia and was the Secretary at the Indian Ministry of External Affairs before joining as an academic in reputed universities in the USA and India.

“This book is dedicated to the valiant hearts and resilient spirits of all those we have lost to the global pandemic. It is a homage to the selfless service of healthcare professionals—doctors, nurses, and all frontline workers—who have faced insurmountable challenges with courage and compassion,” said the authors of the book. “Their unwavering commitment has lit the path to recovery and hope. May their legacy inspire a robust, accessible, and equitable healthcare system for every citizen of the world.”

Visit: www.indiabeyondthepandemic.com to read more about the book

India Beyond The Pandemic Book Cover

GOPIO Honors Dharmatma Saran – Cultural Ambassador of India to the World, For Promoting Networking of Young Women Achievers

Dharmatma Saran, a cultural ambassador of India to the world for promoting networking of young women achievers through his annual Miss India Worldwide Pageant was among the four prominent Indian Americans who were honored by The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) during the historic 35th annual convention on April 27th, 2024 at the Royal Albert Palace, Fords, New Jersey, USA.

outstanding community service at its Convention 2024 celebrating its 35th Anniversary on April 26-28, 2024 at They will be honored at the Finale Awards Banquet of the convention on April 27th.

Dr Neerja A. Gupta, the first woman Chancellor of Gujarat University, Ahmedabad, India; Dr. V.K. Raju M.D. who has been providing great service in eradicating childhood blindness; and Lion Hina Trivedi of Chicago as a great community builder were the other three distinguished persons of Indian origin who were honored during the Convention.

Dharmatma Saran is the chairman and founder of the New York-based India Cultural Festival (IFC) that organizes the trail-blazing Miss India Worldwide, and is a pioneer in entertainment, holding Indian pageants and fashion shows in the USA and worldwide.

Originally from Patna, Bihar, Dharmatma Saran has been in the United States for over 50 years. Promoting Indian culture in the USA and around the world has been his passion.

From 1981, serving as the Chairman of Public Relations of the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) which organizes the biggest India Day Parade outside of India, Saran laid the foundation of cultural activities of FIA since its inception in 1978.

Also, as Past Chairman of the International Cultural Committee of the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO), Saran contributed to the cultural activities of GOPIO since its inception in 1989. He is also a Founding Member of GOPIO.

With this experience, Dharmatma Saran started the first international Indian pageant “Miss India Worldwide,” which has affiliates in over 35 countries. He has brought a new dimension to pageantry as his pageants promotes Indian culture, traditions, values and performing arts. With his wife, Neelam Saran, he travelled to over 35 countries to start Indian pageants. Often referred as “India’s Cultural Ambassador to the world”, he is solely responsible for starting Indian pageants in various parts of the world.

Saran has judged many pageants including being the first NRI to be invited to judge Femina Miss India (Times of India Group) in 1992. Recipient of various awards around the world for bringing the international Indian community on one platform through pageantry including the Shiromai Award 1996 presented by P.A. Sangma, the then Speaker of India’s Lok Sabha, and Bharat Gaurav Award from Sanskriti at The United Nations in 2017.

Saran commands great respect and adulation from his past contestants and winners as well as from his State and National Directors in the USA and around the world.

Saran has become an internationally well-known leader in promoting pageantry around the world. Support came from most unexpected quarters. Noted actress, social worker, feminist and leader, Shabana Azmi, who is known to blast all beauty pageants, endorsed Saran’s show as noble as it helped fund the deserving children.

“The IFC motivates and guides its winners and contestants to take up charitable causes. Many of our past winners have raised substantial amount of money for various charities, especially for handicapped children,” says Saran.

IFC has used the title to raise funds for the poor and the needy. Saran has been successful in combining beauty with char­ity. It was Saran’s dream that beauty works for a good cause. Bela Bajaria, one of his highly successful beauty queens from Los Angeles, has collected $35,000 each year for the Hand and Heart for the Handicapped for many years to help disabled children in US and India. Another successful Miss India Hong Kong collected $100,000 in a charity ball to help the helpless people.

Saran credits the success of the pageantry to his family and a team of hard working people. “I don’t know how I would have fared but for the unstinted support of Air India. Also my friends former News India editor John Perry; President of Jackson Heights Merchants Association V.N. Prakash; TV Asia Chairman Padmashree H.R. Shah, Bombay Broadcasting’s Giri Raj; and all the successive Indian Consuls General have stood with me.” he recalls with gratitude.

Saran is blessed with an understanding wife Neelam. She has been a source of great strength and support to him from the day one. His two daughters, Neema and Ankeeta have always been of great support and as­sistance.

Saran’s contributions to Indian culture has been appreciated and recognized by various organizations around the world and he has been acclaimed as “India’s cultural ambassador to the world.” He has traveled with his wife Neelam to various countries to start Indian pageant.

Saran and his dedicated band of men and women have inspired people around the world to participate in a truly remarkable spectacle that enjoys the status of a truly bound­less Festival of good. The Miss India Worldwide is such a hallmark, it is not just a beauty pageant.

GOPIO Passes Resolution for Full Dual Nationality at the Convention

The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) celebrated its 35th Anniversary on April 26-28, 2024 at its Convention 2024 at Royal Albert Palace, Fords, New Jersey, USA. The convention focused on India’s Present and the Future and what role the Diaspora Indians can play in helping to realize this desirable future with a theme, ‘Opportunities for Diaspora Indians in India’s Big Manifest Future.’ The convention ended with General Body passing four resolutions including one demanding full dual nationality for Overseas Indian Citizens (OCI) card holders.

The convention was inaugurated with a lamp lighting ceremony on April 26th followed by a universal prayer song by GOPIO-Edison President Pallavi Belwariar and an invocation dance in Kathak style by Mitali Nirgude-Kaganeb. The chief guest was Guyana Ambassador to the USA, His Excellency Samuel Hinds, who earlier had served as the Prime Minister and President of Guyana. India’s Deputy Consul General in New York Dr. Varun Jeph delivered the keynote address.

LIGHTING OF THE LAMP
GOPIO Convention 2024 being inaugurated with lighting of the lamp by Ambassador Samuel Hinds, Deputy Consul General Dr. Varun Jeph and GOPIO Officials

New York City Mayor Eric Adams issued a citation honoring the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) on the occasion of its convention and for its contribution to improve life in New York city. The proclamation was presented by Deputy Commissioner for International Affairs Dilip Chauhan who complimented GOPIO for its outstanding work for the benefit of the Indian Diaspora worldwide.

New York Deputy Commissioner Dilip Chauhan presenting Mayor's Citation
New York City Deputy Commissioner Dilip Chauhan presenting citation from Mayor Eric Adams. From l. to r.: Convener Prakash Shah, Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham, Chauhan, Ambassador Samuel Hinds and President Lal Motwani

Ambassador Hinds fondly shared Guyana’s close relation with India and GOPIO, especially since the late Dr. Cheddi Jagan attended the first GOPIO Convention in New York and later inaugurated Second Global Convention held in New Delhi in 1992 as President of Guyana. Again in 1999, Guyana President Bharrat Jagdeo inaugurated GOPIO Convention in New York.

Ambassador Hinds said, “President Jagan had high regard for GOPIO and was always seeking to support GOPIO.”  Dr. Jagan played a significant role in Guyana’s progress. “With oil discovery, Guyana will prosper rapidly,” Ambassador Hinds added.

In his keynote address, Dr. Jeph articulated the tremendous progress India has made in many arenas and currently being the 5th largest economy of the world and will soon become the third largest economy.

Dr. Jeph provided India’s growth, success and potentials with amazing statistics and said that India with 65% of youth has bright prospects.

Dr. Jeph said, “Indian Americans are playing pivotal role in the US economy with start ups and other business ventures, while being just over 1% of the population, your contribution in the economy of over 6%.”

“To the USA, we send brilliance and intelligence of the highest number of foreign students creating formidable future,” Dr. Jeph added.

Dr. Jeph complimented GOPIO’s initiatives to network and help new students from India and said that the Consulate would continue to cooperate in this effort.

The inaugural session started with a welcome by Convention Convener Prakash Shah, who also serves as GOPIO’s Global Ambassador. GOPIO President Lal Motwani said that since the new team was elected last year, the organization has been brought with more activities and restarting its newsletter GOPIO News.

GOPIO Chairman in his remarks said that since its inception in 1989, GOPIO had taken up issues of civil rights and human rights violations of the Indian Diaspora around the world and that Indian Diaspora communities have achieved political mainstream in many of the countrie with signficant Diaspora population.

Speakers at the Inauguration
Dignitaries and GOPIO officials at the inauguration, from l. to r.: Indian Deputy Consul |General Varun Jeph, Ambassador Samuel Hinds, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Lal Motwani and Prakash Shah

Dr. Abraham said, “The 35 million strong Indian Diaspora community is the fastest growing Diaspora community worldwide spread into 180 countries and we are remitting over $100 billion dollars every year which has helped India to reach a foreign reserve of over $650 billion and this flow will continue in the same level or more in the near future.”

There were nine conference sessions on Saturday, Aprill 27th at the convention which included how Indian Diaspora can participate in India’s big manifest as well as some on the Diaspora life and social segments.

The first session on “GOPIO Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Worldwide Networking of the Diaspora Businesses,” was chaired by Convener Prakash Shah, who is also President First Growth Mortgage and Realty LLC. Speakers were Dr Vithal Dhaduk, who developed and sold Pharma Companies; Braj Aggarwal, President, Braj Aggarwal CPA PC, New York; Sunil Hali, Chairman, Radio Zindagi, Indian Eye, NDTV USA, New Jersey; Hotel & Realty Veteran Bhavik Shah and Falguni Pandya of Namaste Global.

Panelists at GOPIO Chamber of Commerce Business Session
Panel on GOPIO Chamber of Commerce and Networking Worldwide Diaspora Businesses, From l. to r.: Session Chair and Moderator Prakash Shah, Falguni Pandya, Bhavik Shah, Dr. Vithal Dhaduk Sunil Hali and Braj Aggarwal

During the Women’s Panel session titled “Diaspora Women Making A Difference”, GOPIO women shared their personal stories of contributions to their adopted homelands.  Rooted in Motherland India, five women, namely Soruba Rani Kuusto, Dr. Vimal Goyle, Dr. Rini Johar, Beena Kothari and Suman Kapoor of New Zealand, represented the diversity in membership across GOPIO.  Guided and mentored by the panel Chair and Facilitator J. Nami Kaur who is GOPIO’s International Coordinator-at-Large, they presented their vision for Diaspora engagement in India’s Manifest Future.

Women's Session Panel
Conference Panel Women – Session Chair Nami Kaur moderating the session. Panelists from l. to r.: Soruba Rani Kuusto, Rini Johar, Beena Kop0thari, Dr. Vimal Goyle, Ritu Chopra and Suman Kapoor

Session on “Medical and Health Issues and how Diaspora Indians can Participate in India’s Frontline Role in Pharmaceuticals, Vaccines and other Health Areas” was chaired and moderated by Dr. Asha Samant, GOPIO’s International Coordinator-at-Large, Co-Convener GOPIO Convention-2024 and Associate Professor at Rutgers School of Dental Medicine (UMDNJ), Livingston, New Jersey. Speakers were Dr. Anil Diwan, President and Executive Chairman of NanoVirisides, Inc., Shelton, CT, who spoke on “New Frontiers in Drug Development;” ⁠Rakesh Grover, President and CEO, Carnegie Pharmaceuticals, LLC, Delran, NJ; ⁠Dr. Anurag Pande, Vice President, Scientific Affairs, Sabinsa Corporation, East Windsor, NJ; Dr. ⁠Jaya Daptardar, Chief Compliance Officer of Bridges Health Care and CEO of Active Ayurveda and Yoga LLC, as well as President of GOPIO-CT, Fairfield, CT and Hari Singh Panaser, Chairman, Global Indian Trade and Culture USA; VP, Coolsoft LLC and Global Business Consultant, Birla Soft, Monroe, NJ.

Panel of Medical Health and Pharma Opportunities with India
Speakers at Medical, Health and Pharma Opportunities with India – From l. to r.: Chair and Moderator Dr. Asha Samant, Dr. Anil Diwan, Dr. J.M. Daptardar, Dr. Rakesh Grover, Hari Singh Panaser and Dr. Anurag Pande

The Panel on the Emergence of India as a Global Powerhouse which was organized by The Indus Entrepreneur – NJ Chapter (tie.org) focused on the growth of the Digital Economy, Supply Chain and Manufacturing. The session moderator, Professor Suresh Kumar, President of TiE NJ made a powerful bull case regaining its spot among the top three global economies by 2047 and even moving up to the top 2 by 2075. He said that political stability, generation of mass employment by growth of manufacturing, and making the right geo-political alliances over the next decade will be key to sustaining the recent Indian success.  The other panelist included Anjan Lahari, CEO of Navikenz and ex CEO of Birlasoft who cautioned against overconfidence and complacency: Neha Shah, CEO of GEP – who emphasized the importance of digital supply chains; Naveen Puri, Founder of InnoPharma – who stressed in training the workforce and keeping them flexible to develop new skills as neede; and Sanyukta Kulkarni, Manager of Route Development (Indian subcontinent), DB Schenker Inc. who spoke on “Growth of Logistic Operations in India.”

Panel on Digital Infrastructure Supply Chain Logistics and AI
Panel on Digital Infrastructure, Supply Chain Logistics and AI – From l. to r.: Navneet Puri, Sanyukta Kulkarni, Chair and Moderator Dr. Suresh Kumar, Neha Shah, GOPIO Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham and Anjan Lahari

There was a session on Diaspora Youth and Young Achievers and the role they can play in India’s Future and how GOPIO can facilitate their participation? It was put together and chaired by Ms Vasu Pawar, CEO/Founder of Step2StepUp Inc. and co-chaired by Bhavya Gupta, Founder and Managing Partner of ACE Consultants, New Jersey. The keynote address was delivered by Kunal Devmane from Mumbai, India, who was a keynote speaker at G20-India and author of Buffering to Streaming; Sutro Founder and CEO Ravi Kurani; Investment Management Expert Monica Arora; Grammy Award Winner and Audience Specialist Falguni Shah; Creative Music Genius Neil Nayyar; and Hotel & Realty Veteran Bhavik Shah.

Panelists of Young Professionals Session Being Honored
Young professional achievers recognized after their session. From l. to r.: Session Chair and Moderator Vasu Pawar, Ravi Kurani, Falu Shah, Monica Arora, Neil Nayyar, Kunal Devmane and GOPIO Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham. Not visible in the photo ae=re Session Co-chair Bhavya Gupta and Bhavik Shah

Session on “Technologies and AI, and other Innovations: How Diaspora Indians are leading Research and Innovations” was chaired by GOPIO Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham, who is a Nanotechnologist and President of Innovative Research and Products in Stamford, CT. It was moderated by Prof. Rajasekhar Vangapaty who is Academic Advisor to Fashion Institute of Technology. Prof. Siddhartha Dalal, Professor of Professional Practice in Applied Analytics, Columbia University, New York, delivered the keynote address. Other speakers were: Kathirvel Kumararaja, President, Founder and CEO, DevJee, Inc., New York, NY, who spoke on “Bridging Traditional Wisdom and Modern Healthcare: Opportunities for Diaspora Indians in India’s Health Innovation Economy;” Abraham Pannikottu, CEO. American Engineering Group, Akron, Ohio, “India’s Opportunities and Challenges of AI in Défense Sector on Overseas Small Business Partnerships;” Dr. Kris Mani, President, NSR Technologies, Basking Ridge, NJ who spoke on “Nanotechnology and Other Technologies;” Dr. Jatin V. Mehta, CEO, MetaSense Digital Marketing, Philadelphia, PA, “Mastering SEO & Marketing with AI.”

Panelists of Technologies and AI Session
Speakers at the Conference Session on Technologies and AI, from l. to r. Prof Raj Vangapaty, Dr. Jatin Mehta, Convention Convener Prakash Shah, Prof. Siddhartha Dala, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Kathirvel Kumararaja, Abraham Pannikottu and Dr. Kris Mani

There was a GOPIO Academic Council Roundtable coordinated by GOPIO Edison President Pallavi Belwariar and was chaired by the Academic Council Chair Dr. Neerja Arun Gupta who is currently the Vice Chancellor Gujarat University. It was atte3nded by GOPIO Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham and Guyana Ambassador Samuel Hinds. The Council discussed the role of academics in manifestation of future India, Student Start Ups with GOPIO Chamber of Commerce and future studies abroad programs for NRI and PIO students. It also did brainstorm on showcasing India to Diaspora and starting virtual and offline programs. Lastly, it resolved to create a Global Network for Academics.

Photo left Participants at the GOPIO
Photo left: Participants at the GOPIO Academic Council Roundtable, Right: Ambassador Hinds speaking at the session. Sitting are Session Coordinator Pallavi Belwariar, GOPIO Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham and GOPIO Academic Council Chair Dr. Neerja Arun Gupta

A non-business session on ‘Diaspora Languages and Literature’ was put together by GOPIO General Secretary Ram Gadhavi. Scholars including Dr. Babu Suthar (Gujarati), Anoop Bhargav (Hindi), Ashok Vidwans (Marathi), Dr. Vasu Ranganathan (Tamil), Raju Thomas (Malayalam), and Dilip Chakraborty (Bengali) discussed diaspora writers and the status of their respective languages. While summarizing the session, Suthar highlighted three main issues, the debate surrounding the concept of ‘diaspora’ versus ‘transnationalism’;  the challenge of preserving Indian languages in the USA due to socio-cultural differences, with differing opinions on whether to prioritize language preservation or adapt to local culture; and the role of language in connecting individuals to their cultural roots and expressing shared experiences, exemplified by Suthar’s struggle to express himself in Gujarati following the 2002 violence. The audience also shared concerns about maintaining Indian language and culture abroad.

Discussion Panel on Diaspora Languages and Literature
Panel Discussion on Diaspora Languages and Literature – From l. to r.: Ashok Vidwans, Raju Thomas, Anoop Bhargava, Dr. Babu Suthar, Dr. Vasu Ranganathan and Dilip Chakraborty

A second non-business session on “Diaspora Indians Aging Gracefully,” was put together by Bharat Rana, President, Federation of Indian Senior Association of North America (FISANA) and President of GOPIO-North Jersey. The speakers were Mukund Mehta, President, India Home, Inc. and President, Indo-American Senior Citizen Center of New York, Queens, NY; Sudha Acharya, GOPIO Founding Co-Convener and Executive Director, South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS), Flushing, New York; Anand Patel, Businessman and Philanthropist and Owner of Numerous Dunkin’ Donuts Chain franchises, currently serving as Board of Director of FISANA, Past President of FISANA and Currently Member of FIA Trustees; and Suman Kapoor, Hospitality Entrepreneur, GOPIO Waikato, New Zealand.

Convener Prakash Shah said, “We had the most successful Convention at a time that we consider is pivotal for India and for India’s 38 million strong Diaspora. We are dealing with an Outbreak but this time it isn’t an Outbreak of a Covid like disease but an Outbreak of Optimism!”

“We are very confident that with the infrastructure base having been built, India will rapidly evolve into becoming a net defense exporter and a multifaceted manufacturing hub in pharmaceuticals, automobiles, smartphones, semiconductors and aircraft among many others including continuing the high growth in service sector,” Shah continued.

Audience at the Convention
Audience at the Convention

All these conference sessions brought very interesting and useful knowledge as well as mastery of Indians in their specialized fields. The speakers and audience appreciated GOPIO’s vision and mission in planning such conference topics. Convention attendees agreed that right now India with its third largest Start-Up-Ecosystem and having already achieved 125 Unicorns is the best investment opportunity in the world and therefore especially attractive to the Diaspora Indians.

At the Finale Awards banquet, four individuals and two organizations were honoured with community service awards: Dr Neerja A. Gupta who is the first woman Chancellor of Gujarat University, Ahmedabad, India; Dr. V.K. Raju M.D. who has been providing great Service in eradicating childhood blindness; Dharmatma Saran who has been named as the cultural ambassador of India to the world for promoting networking of young women achievers through his annual Miss India Worldwide Pageant and Lion Hina Trivedi of Chicago as a great community builder. Two organizations are also recognized, Heart and Hand for the Handicapped (HHH) for its great service to physically and mentally challenged children and South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS) for its outstanding services to communities in the New York Area.

Community Service Award Presentation Ambassador Hinds GOPIO Officials and Awardees
Community Service Awardees with Ambassador Samuel Hinds and GOPIO officials. From l. to r.: Dr. Thomas Abraaham, Chitranjan Belwariar, Nami Kaur, Prakash Shah, Kewal Kanda, Gujrat University Vice Chancellor Dr. Neerja Arun Gupta, HHH President Balaji Jilla, Ambassador Hinds, Lal Motwani, Eye Specialist Dr. V.K. Raju, Community Motivator Lion Hina Trivedi, Miss India World Pageant CEO Dharmatma Saran, Rajul Shah, SACSS Executive Director Sudha Acharya and Board Member Dr. Swarna Shah, Dr. Asha Samant and Jay Bhandari

Others recognized by GOPIO include Dr Vithal Dhaduk, Pharmaceutical Business in USA. developed and sold pharma companies; Sabinsa Vice President Anurag Pande, Businesswoman Poonam Khubani; AAHOA Past Chairman Bharat Patel; TV Asia Chairman and CEO Dr. H.R. Shah, Parikh Worldwide Media Chairman Dr. Sudhir Parikh, Indian Eye/Radio Zindagi CEO Sunil Hali, New India Abroad Publisher Rajeev Bhambri; Indian Panorama Editor and Publisher Prof. Indrajit Saluja, Emalayalee and India Life Editor George Joseph, Universal News Network editor Ajay Ghosh and Pravasi Channel producer Sunil Tristar. GOPIO Convention Co-Conveners Dr. Asha Samant and businessman Kenny Desai were also recognized at the convention.

Media Recognition to TV Asia ITV and Indian Panorama
Media Recognition, from l. to r.: Prakash Shah, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Prof. Indrajit Saluja of Indian Panorama, Dr. Sudhir Parikh of ITV/News India/Desi Talk, Ambassador Hinds, Dr. H.R. Shah of TV Asia and Lal Motwani.
Sunil Tristar being recognized
Recognition to media for their services to community and GOPIO. From l. to r. Dr. Thomas Abraham, Prakash Shah, Rajeev Bhambri of New India Abroad, Ambassador Samuel Hinds, Deputy Consul General Dr. Varun Jeph, Sunil Tristar of Pravasi Channel and India Life, Lal Motwani, George Joseph of emalayalee, and Sunil Hali of The Indian Eye and Radio Zindagi

The GOPIO General Body meeting on April 28th passed important resolutions, many of which are designed to accomplish and accelerate the Diaspora Participation in India’s high growth in its ‘Suvarna Kaal’. These resolution to Govt. of India include to grant full dual nationality to OCI card holders, make OCI at par with Indian citizens in doing business in India and provide Aadhar Card to NRIs who are citizens of India. A fourth resolution urged Biden Administration and US Congress to pass legislation to eliminate the backlog of Indians waiting for permanent residence in the USA.

Edison Town Mayor Sam Joshi, since he was out of town, joined the convention at its concluding GOPIO General Body session and offered all his help for GOPIO to move forward in Edison and nearby areas. GOPIO in turn told the Mayor Joshi that it would initiate some programs for needy including supporting soup kitchens in Edison.

GOPIO General Body Meeting Attendees with Edison Mayor Sam Joshi
GOPIO General Body Meeting Attendees with Edison Mayor Sam Joshi

The General Body also unanimously elected Dr. Thomas Abraham as Chairman of GOPIO International for the remaining of the current term.

The Convention was attended by many from around the World and from various parts of the USA. The entertainment included a Comedy Hour by the Internationally Acclaimed Comedian Dan Nainan on the first day and concluded with a superb performance of Sarangi and Ghazals by Ustad Kamal Sabri, a seventh Generation Maestro who was accompanied by Avinash Mistry on the Tabla. Grammy Award winner Falu Shah and GOPIO-|Edison President Pallavi Belwariar rendered some songs as well.

Entertainers at the Convention From l to r Avinash Mistry Ustad Kamal Sabri Dan Nainan Falu Shah and Pallavi Belwariar
Entertainers at the Convention From l to r Avinash Mistry Ustad Kamal Sabri Dan Nainan Falu Shah and Pallavi Belwariar

In the afternoon, GOPIO organized a special trip to the recently consecrated Akshardham Temple in Robbinsville, New Jersey for outside delegates. GOPIO, which is 4 Ps, the premier, pioneer, popular and purposeful, organization of Global Indian Diaspora was founded in world’s financial center – New York in 1989 as a non-political and secular organization. Since then, GOPIO has blossomed like a banyan tree with Diaspora in all continents with Life Members and chapters in 35 countries. GOPIO is regarded as the most influential and productive organization dealing and taking up issues concerning to global Indian Diaspora to various authorities and governments. Government of India closely follows GOPIO and seriously takes its suggestions.

Note: For more information or question, please call GOPIO Convention Convener Prakash Shah at 908-267-5021

AAPI Announces 1st Ever World Congress of Physicians

(New York, NY – April 27, 2024) “It is with great pleasure that we announce that American Association of Physicians of Indian origin (AAPI) is organizing our first ever World Congress of Physicians, a Maga Convention of the Decade from July 18th-22, 2024 in New York City,” Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of AAPI announced here.

Dr. Anjana Samadder, the only 5th woman President of AAPI in the 42 year history of AAPI, provided a brief history of AAPI, stating how AAPI’s mission has evolved in the past 42 years. “Today, AAPI is strong representing over 120,000 Indian American physicians, 130 local Chapters, who make up 10% of total physicians in the US and nearly 50% of International Medical Graduates, rooted in every corner of the nation, who serve every 7th patient in the US. We are proud of our achievements and our contributions to the healthcare industry and the millions of people we serve.”

The Convention will be held at the prestigious Marriott Marquis on Times Square, at the heart of the most popular city in the world. This world-class facility will afford an intimate setting that will facilitate our ability to provide cutting-edge research and CME, promote business relationships, and display ethnic items. Vendor satisfaction and comfort are our top priorities. Participants will experience unique opportunities to explore and experience the City and the many unique programs including Broadways Shows and City Tours New York has to offer.

“We invite you to the AAPI’s inaugural World Congress of Physicians in the world’s capital city, New York,” Dr. Achintya Moulik, Chair of AAPI Convention 2024 said. “We have convened a fantastic group of dedicated organizers to meet the needs of the 2024 convention and are very excited about this year. Please reach out to any one of the representatives from the New York Tri-State team with questions or comments.”

“The Early Bird Special for the World Congress is going on,” Dr. Moulik said. “Take advantage of this limited-time offer before it’s too late for you to avail of this special offer that includes 5 nights stay at the iconic  Marriott Marquis on Times Square, City Tours, and Broadways Shows, in addition to all the educational and entertainment events.”

“Our physician members have worked very hard during the covid 19 pandemic, and the 2024 convention is a perfect time to heal the healers with a special focus on wellness,” said Dr. Samadder. Accordingly, some of the major themes at the convention include: Yoga and Meditation practices, a Welcome kit with books & self-care supplies, A Personal Reflexology Session, Take home wellness routine, yoga therapy sessions, a workshop on Spiritual well-being, Book talk with Yoga Gurus, including on the science of Yoga & Lifestyle medicine, and several wellness sessions.

The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin Convention offers an exciting venue to interact with leading physicians, health professionals, academicians, and scientists of Indian origin. The physicians and healthcare professionals from across the country will convene and participate in the scholarly exchange of medical advances, to develop health policy agendas, and to encourage legislative priorities in the coming year.

In addition to colorful entertainment, and exquisite authentic Indian cuisine, esteemed health industry leaders, world-renowned speakers, and experts will be sharing their wisdom and expertise in the industry, offering enlightening sessions to the delegates.

“The annual convention offers extensive academic presentations, recognition of achievements and achievers, and professional networking at the alumni and evening social events,” Dr. Samadder added.   For more details on AAPI and the 42nd convention, please visit: www.aapiconvention.org  and www.aapiusa.org

GOPIO TO RECOGNIZE SIX AT ITS 35TH ANNIVERSARY CONVENTION

The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) will recognize four individuals and two organizations for outstanding community service at its Convention 2024 celebrating its 35th Anniversary on April 26-28, 2024 at Royal Albert Palace, Fords, New Jersey, USA. They will be honored at the Finale Awards Banquet of the convention on April 27th.

The four individual awardees are: Dr Neerja A. Gupta who is the first woman Chancellor of Gujarat University, Ahmedabad, India; Dr. V.K. Raju M.D. who has been providing great Service in eradicating childhood blindness; Dharmatma Saran who has been named as the cultural ambassador of India to the world for promoting networking of young women achievers through his annual Miss India Worldwide Pageant and Lion Hina Trivedi of Chicago as a great community builder.

GOPIO Convention Awardees
GOPIO Community Service Awardees 2024: from l. to r.: Dr. Neerja Arun Gupta, Dr. V.K. Raju, Dharmatma Saran and Lion Hina Trivedi

Two organizations are also recognized, Heart and Hand for the Handicapped (HHH) for its great service to physically and mentally challenged children and South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS)for its outstanding services to communities in the New York Area.

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The convention is focusing on India’s Present and the Future and what role the Diaspora Indians can play in helping to realize this desirable future. Convention Theme is ‘Opportunities for Diaspora Indians in India’s Big Manifest Future.’

The convention will start with a welcome reception/dinner inauguration on Friday, April 26th. There are nine conference sessions on Saturday, Aprill 27that the convention which include how Diaspora can participate in India’s big manifest as well as some on the Diaspora life and social segments. Honored guests at the convention include India’s Deputy Consul General in New York Dr. Varun Jeph, Ambassador Samuel Hinds, Guyanese Ambassador to the USA.

The conference sessions are, Diaspora Youth and Young Achievers and the role they can play in India’s Future and how GOPIO can facilitate their participation; Diaspora Women and their Growing Contributions in Various Sectors; Technologies and AI and other Innovations: Diaspora Indians Leading Research and Innovations; GOPIO Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Worldwide Networking of the Diaspora Businesses;  Medical and Health Issues and how Diaspora Indians can Participate in India’s Frontline Role in Pharmaceuticals, Vaccines and Medical Tourism and in Propagating YOGA and its Benefits; Emergence of India as a Global PowerHouse for Digital Infrastructure, Supply Chain Logistics, and AI: How US Business can Participate; GOPIO Academic Council Roundtable; Diaspora Languages and Literature; and Diaspora Indians Aging Gracefully.

Entertainers include internationally acclaimed comedian Dan Nainan, Grammy Award Winner for best Children’s Album in 2022 Falu Shah and Sarangi instrumentalist Kamal Sabri.

One could register for the whole convention or selective events such as the conferences, Welcome Dinner and Awards banquet at www.eventbrite.com/e/827835537377/.

Consul General in New York

GOPIO COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARDEES FOR 2024

Dr Neerja A. Gupta – First Woman Chancellor of Gujarat University, Ahmedabad, India

LEAD Technologies Inc V1 01

Dr. Neerja A Gupta is the Vice-Chancellor of Gujarat University, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India. Formerly Dr Gupta was the Vice-Chancellor of Sanchi University of Buddhist-Indic Studies, M.P., India prior to working as Principal of Bhavan’s College, Ahmedabad, Gujarat. A doctorate degree in English, with 36 years of academic, research and administrative experience, she is the Chief Editor of Bharatiya Manyaprad, an international journal published by Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan. Dr. Gupta has been serving as Chairperson of GOPIO Academic Council since 2016.

Dr. Gupta has authored 22 books and has more than 60 publications. Under her guidance 27 students have successfully completed their Ph. D. She knows 9 Indian and 2 foreign languages. As a distinguished academician and administrator, she plays a key role as a designated member of several distinguished Board and Executive councils of various reputed Universities and Government bodies. She has completed several research projects funded by various national and international funding agencies.

She was the Principal Director of the team constituted on Jammu and Kashmir as special region by Ministry of Home Affairs and the finding were substantially used towards the abrogation of Article of 370 in Jammu and Kashmir by Government of India. She is a member of the Inter-Religious Dialogue Committee constituted by the revered Pope in Vatican City.

Prof. Gupta is the recipient of several prestigious awards including Woman Icon Award 2024 by G.S.A. Global Eye Magazine USA; Champions of Change Award – 2024 by the Lions Club International; Bharat Kirtiman Padak 2023 from World Books of Records, London; Aaj Ka Karmveer Award -2022; National Talent search Award –  2020; Bharat Manthan Award-2020; Atal Bihari Vajpayee Rashtriya Sanman in -2017; Shiksha Bharati Puruskar-2011; Best Multiple President-2001 by Lions Clubs  Dist. 323.

She has played an active role in disaster relief in Gujarat earthquake, Kashmir Floods, Sri Lanka Tsunami, and Uttarakhanda Flash Floods. Her theme paper on G-20 found a special mention by Hon. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi in his Mann Ki Baat on 29th January 2023 as the part of published book ‘India the Mother of Democracy.’

Dr. V.K. Raju M.D., F.R.C.S., F.A.C.S. – Great Service in Eradicating Childhood Blindness

Dr V K Raju M D F R C S F A C S – Great Service in Eradicating Childhood Blindness

Dr. V.K. Raju was born in Rajahmundry, AP, India. He is a Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology at West Virginia University, Adjunct professor at Wilmer Eye Institute and Johns Hopkins University. He is also founder and president of The Eye Foundation of America, a non-profit organization dedicated to realizing a world without childhood blindness in 30 countries.

Dr. Raju has been presented with numerous awards including, AMA Foundation Nathan Davis Excellence in Medicine International Award, Four Time Awardee by The American Academy of Ophthalmology, Martin Luther King Jr Achievement Award from WVU, Lifetime Achievement Award from the WV State Medical Association, University of Toledo Global Medical Missions Hall of Fame, President’s Lifetime Achievement Award from President Barack Obama, Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Academy of Ophthalmology

Dr. Raju has published two books, seventeen chapters, and over 100 publications in scientific journals.

 

Dharmatma Saran – Cultural Ambassador of India to the World and Promoting Networking of Young Women Achievers

Dharmatma Saran Cultural Ambassador of India to the World and Promoting Networking of Young Women Achievers

Originally from Patna, Bihar, Dharmatma Saran has been in the Unites States for over 50 years. Promoting Indian culture in the USA and around the world has been his passion.

From 1981, serving as the Chairman of Public Relations of Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) which organizes the biggest India Day Parade outside of India, Saran laid the foundation of cultural activities of FIA since its inception in 1978.

Also, as Past Chairman of International Cultural Committee of Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO), Saran contributed to the cultural activities of GOPIO since its inception in 1989. He is also a Founding Member of GOPIO.

With this experience, Dharmatma Saran Started the first international Indian pageant “Miss India Worldwide” which has affiliates in over 35 countries. He has brought a new dimension to pageantry as his pageants promotes Indian culture, traditions, values and performing arts. With his wife, Neelam Saran, he travelled to over 35 countries to start Indian pageants. Often referred as “India’s Cultural Ambassador to the world”, he is solely responsible for starting Indian pageants in various parts of the world.

Saran has judged many pageants including being the first NRI to be invited to judge Femina Miss India (Times of India Group) in 1992. Recipient of various awards around the world for bringing international Indian community on one platform through pageantry including Shiromai Award 1996 presented by P.A. Sangma, the then Speaker of India’s Lok Sabha, and Bharat Gaurav Award from Sanskriti at The United Nations in 2017.

Saran commands a great respect and adulation from his past contestants and winners as well as from his State and National Directors in the USA and around the world.

Lion Hina Trivedi – A Great Community Builder

Lion Hina Trivedi – A Great Community Builder

Lion Hina Trivedi, is a formidable force in both business and social activism. With a rich tapestry of experience and a plethora of accolades under her belt, she exemplifies dedication and leadership. As President of the GOPIO-Chicago Chapter and the Gujarati Pragati Mandal, Vice President of AIGC, and Past President of FIA Federation of Indian Associations, Past President AIA IL Chapter and the Chicago Indo US Lions Club, she has served more than 36 organizations and has been at the forefront of community-driven initiatives. Hina’s contributions have been recognized globally, earning prestigious awards such as the President’s Gold Medal, Melwin John’s Fellowship Award, MAFS Metropolitan Leader’s Award, and the US-Canada Fellowship Award. Her commitment to social causes extends across borders, collaborating with numerous NGOs worldwide and championing women’s empowerment through various social groups. Notably, Hina’s linguistic prowess, fluently conversant in nine languages, facilitates her bilingual services to those in need. Her dedication shines through her decade-long participation as a delegate at Pravasi Bhartiya Diwas, further cementing her as a stalwart in the international Indian community.

Heart and Hand for the Handicapped (HHH) – Great Service to Physically and Mentally Challenged Children

Heart and Hand for the Handicapped (HHH) – Great Service to Physically and Mentally Challenged Children

Heart and Hand for the Handicapped (HHH) is a not-for-profit tax-exempt 501(c) (3) organization that raises funds to support differently able children with physical and mental challenges such as polio, cerebral palsy, autism, Down’s syndrome and blindness and other vision problems in India and the US. HHH was founded in 1971 by five South Asian ladies who wanted to make a difference in the lives of differently able children in India. The organization is run by volunteers who lend their expertise in different areas.

HHH is an organization that serves the ideal of philanthropy and adhere to the highest standard of professional practice, treating everyone with respect and dignity. Over the years, funds have been donated to over 200 organizations in India and over 25 in the United States. HHH’s expense ratio per IRS filing is less than 15% of the revenue. Organizations that receive HHH’s grants must meet or exceed our rigorous standard for qualification and align with its mission. HHH raises funds through annual dinners, walk-a-thons, direct mail solicitations, United Way and corporate matching programs. HHH also accepts donations of stocks and bonds.

South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS) – Outstanding Services to Communities in the New York Area

South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS)

For 24 years, South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSSNY.ORG), based in the heart of Flushing, Queens, has been providing critical services and programs to improve the health and well-being of the South Asian and other underserved immigrant communities in New York City.

SACSS was established in 2000 at the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) conference at the Kerala Center, after leaders of local nonprofits and public officials discussed creating a social service organization that focused on the needs of the South Asian community.

Today, SACSS stands out as a vibrant community hub, uniquely reflecting the diverse communities it serves through its multilingual staff that speaks 20 languages. It serves as a comprehensive gateway, offering a variety of culturally and linguistically appropriate services, including healthcare and mental health counseling, senior support, a weekly food pantry to combat food insecurity, English language classes, and computer classes for workforce development, “Stitch with SACSS” a women’s economic empowerment program, immigration assistance through a legal clinic, a youth leadership program, and civic engagement.

Note: For more information or question, please call GOPIO Convention Convener Prakash Shah at 908-267-5021

AARC-Asian American Republican Coalition Supports Trump’s Election Bid As The 47th President Of United States

AARC has announced to extend its full support to President Donald J. Trump to win elections as the 47th President of United States, at its Press conference recently held at ITV Gold Auditorium, Edison, NJ. Press Conference was addressed by Hemant Bhatt, AARC- Founder and Chairman, Sridhar Chillara, AARC- National President and Dr. Sudhir Parikh, AARC- National Advisor and Chairman, Parikh Worldwide Media. It was emced by Sanjiv Pandya, Vice- Chair, AARC Public Relations and one of the founding members of AARC.

AARC DJT PC 2This Press conference begun by singing American National Anthem by Mathy Pillai, a renowned singer and pledge of Allegiance by Rima.

Mr. Bhatt in his speech spoke of bringing the community from regions of US to the Republican fold. He said that America has been going through a number of crisis and today’s America is not what we used to see earlier. There are darkened clouds all over. He referred the sense of fear for safety amongst residents, rising prices, cost of living increase, high inflation and ‘America has no border’. Legal and merit-based immigration is the only way America is meant for. Illegal immigration would hurt America big time. He further stated that life in America was much different even just four years ago during the Trump Administration, when there was safety, security, stock markets were booming, retirement accounts were rich in value and America was considered as world leader. President Trump visited North Korea, he was able to take on China and there would not have been any Ukraine- Russia war, Hamas Israel war and the world would not have been on fire as it is today. For these AARC DJT PC 3reasons, AARC announced its full support to President Trump to win Presidential elections on November 05, 2024.

Mr. Chillara said the voting patterns showed how even a small percentage of population like Asians, Indian Americans could influence the outcome of results of elections which are lost by very small margins. Asian Americans, Indian Americans and some minorities can change the results of elections and we could send our Republican candidates to White House, Senate and Congress. Asian Americans make about more than 25 Million. Why can’t we come together? Such power we have. In order to make it happen, large percentage of Asians have to be convinced about Republican party and educated about the values it represents, and have to go to polls and vote for Republican candidates.

Dr. Parikh recounted his lifelong support and engagement with the Republican party over many decades especially since 1992 the administration of President George H.W. Bush, when he and few Indian Americans republican raised $ 4 Million for the campaign. This was our community was very small and not doing very well at that time. He further mentioned that his 50 years of observation the Republican party is more pro India than the Democratic party and it is proven that Donald J. Trump would be pro India and that is good for the motherland and for us.

AARC DJT PC 1Several Asian Indian American Republicans encouraged and appealed the community to come forward in support of President Donald J Trump’s candidacy.

AARC’s NJ President Dharmesh Patel, Women wing President Tarang Soni, AARC- PA President Yagnesh Chokshi, Community leader Dr. Avinash Gupta, Sunil Hali ji, Nimish Patel, Neil Shah, Ashish Raval, Peter Carota, Dilip Bhatt, Raj Bansal, Manisha Bhatt, Inder Soni, Nayna Bhatt, Pawanji, Michael, Vijay Shah, Pankaj Parikh, Parth Patel, Ajay Shah and many prominent persons were present at this wonderful event.

A Q & A session followed the speeches.

 

AARC DJT PC 4

“India Beyond the Pandemic: A Sustainable Path Towards Global Quality Healthcare” Book Launch Planned in New Delhi

“It brings me great joy to announce the launch of our latest book, co-authored with Ambassador Pradeep K. Kapur and Professor M.D. Nalapat, titled “India Beyond the Pandemic: A Sustainable Path Towards Global Quality Healthcare,” published by Konark Publishers,” said Dr. Joseph M. Chalil, a co-author of the book and the co-publisher of the Universal News Network. “This work is our collective endeavor to illuminate the pathways towards a healthcare system that is equitable, innovative, and sustainable. Join us in a crucial dialogue on shaping a future where quality healthcare is a global reality.”

Hardeep Singh PuriCo-authored by Dr. Joseph M Chalil, Ambassador Pradeep Kapur, and Prof. MD Nalapat, the book will be released at the prestigious India International Centre, New Delhi in the presence of Shri Amitabh Kant, IAS, and Prof. Dr. Randeep Guleria on April 30, 2024.

Described as an essential addition to the canon of healthcare literature, offering a thoughtful analysis and actionable intelligence for navigating post-pandemic realities, the new volume is a testament to the resolve and ingenuity that defines our industry, and it is an invaluable guide for those committed to the noble cause of global health.

Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, India’s Federal Minister for Housing & Urban Affairs, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas described the book as “a useful guide for those who seek to understand how the pandemic has transformed our world and the road ahead for India and the global community. At the same time, it is an incipient contribution to the body of literature that is documenting India’s ascendancy in the global hierarchy. I commend Dr Chalil, Ambassador Kapur, and Professor Nalapat for their work in compiling this book.”

Amitabh KantShri Amitabh Kant, IAS, India’s G20 Sherpa, and former CEO, NITI Aayog called the book “a testament to the journey India undertook during those tumultuous times. This book serves as a crucial resource for policymakers, healthcare professionals, academics, and citizens alike.”

Prof Dr Randeep GuleriaProf. Dr. Randeep Guleria, Chairman, Institute of Internal Medicine & Respiratory and Sleep Medicine; Director, Medanta Medical School & former Director, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi called the book “A must-read for anyone interested in understanding how the Covid-19 pandemic has both challenged and changed the Indian healthcare system, and the valuable lessons learned as we moved forward into a post-pandemic era.”

Dr. Zachariah P. Zachariah, Medical Director, UHealth Cardiology Fort Lauderdale, said, “India Beyond the Pandemic” serves not only as a reflection on recent history but also as a forward thinking guide that underscores the importance of resilience, adaptability, and foresight in healthcare policy. It is an essential read for those committed to understanding and shaping the future of global health.”

Dr Stephen ShayaDr. Stephen Shaya, Executive Servant Leader, J&B Medical, and Managing Director, Akkad Holdings said, “The book is not just a recount of the crisis but an inspiring narrative encouraging a reimagined approach to healthcare, emphasizing resilience, foresight, and the collective effort to forge a path to quality healthcare for all. It is a testament to the indomitable human spirit and the relentless pursuit of innovation in adversity.”

Dr Satheesh Kathula MD FACP DipABLMDr. Satheesh Kathula, President-Elect, AAPI and Clinical Professor of Medicine, Wright State University, Global Healthcare Leaders Program (Harvard University commended the authors of the book “for its clarity, depth, and foresight, while presenting an illuminating analysis of the healthcare challenges and innovations that have emerged from the COVID-19 crisis, with a distinct emphasis on India’s strategic response. This book is a timely and vital contribution to the discourse on healthcare in the context of a global pandemic.”

Dr. Achintya Moulick, President & Chief Executive Officer, CarePoint Health Systems, Inc., said, “The book is an essential addition to the canon of healthcare literature, offering a thoughtful analysis and actionable intelligence for navigating post-pandemic realities. It is a testament to the resolve and ingenuity that defines our industry, and it is an invaluable guide for those committed to the noble cause of global health.”

Dr Joseph M Chalil AuthorDr. Joseph M. Chalil is a visionary leader in the healthcare industry, currently steering Novo Integrated Sciences, Inc., as Chief Medical Officer. His illustrious career spans various facets of healthcare, innovation, and policy-making, underscored by his role as a Chief Strategic Advisor for the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) and President of both NovoAmerica Health Group and Clinical Consultants International, LLC. Dr. Chalil is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and is recognized for his leadership in healthcare administration. His contributions to healthcare and policy are internationally recognized, with numerous awards highlighting his leadership and innovative thinking.

M D NalapatProfessor M.D. Nalapat is the UNESCO Peace Chair at Manipal University, and Director of the Department of Geopolitics & International Relations. Currently, he is the Editorial Director of ITV Network (India) & The Sunday Guardian. He is also the Vice-Chair of Manipal Advanced Research Group and Director of the Department of Geopolitics & International Relations at Manipal University. He has been the Editor of the Mathrubhumi and the Times of India. He has played a key role in the literacy movement in Kerala, as the first honorary coordinator of the Kerala Association for Non-formal Education and Development. He has excelled as an Advisory Board member and Associate member in various institutions. He is also a member of the Resource Board, Centre for International Relations, Washington D.C.

Ambassador Pradeep KapurAmbassador Pradeep Kapur is an acknowledged “luminary diplomat,” with a distinguished career working with leaders and policymakers in different continents of the world: Asia, Africa, Europe, North America, and South America. Author and editor of many books, Kapur was Ambassador of India to Chile and Cambodia and Secretary at the Indian Ministry of External Affairs before joining as an academic in reputed universities in the USA and India. A graduate of the globally acclaimed Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (IIT-D), he is the Executive Director of Smart Village Development Fund (SVDF); International Economic Strategic Advisor, Intellect Design Arena; and Chairman, Advisory Council, DiplomacyIndia.com. His healthcare contributions include setting up of BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences in Eastern Nepal, which is acclaimed as an exemplary bilateral India Nepal initiative. His advocacy for accessible healthcare is evident through his seminal work in collaboration with Dr. Chalil, “Beyond the Covid-19 Pandemic: Envisioning a Better World by Transforming the Future of Healthcare,” which became an Amazon best seller in USA.

“This book is dedicated to the valiant hearts and resilient spirits of all those we have lost to the global pandemic. It is a homage to the selfless service of healthcare professionals—doctors, nurses, and all frontline workers—who have faced insurmountable challenges with courage and compassion,” said the authors of the book. “Their unwavering commitment has lit the path to recovery and hope. May their legacy inspire a robust, accessible, and equitable healthcare system for every citizen of the world.”

www.indiabeyondthepandemic.com

India Beyond The Pandemic Invitation Flyer (2 Guests)

Seema Govil Among Top 20 Global Women of Excellence Honored on Capitol Hill

Feature and Cover Seema Govil Among Top 20 Global Women of Excellence Honored on Capitol Hill

Seema Govil, a prominent figure in the realms of media and franchising, has been honored as one of the Top 20 Global Women of Excellence during the 12th Congressional International Women’s Day celebration at Capitol Hill, Washington D.C. Presented by United States Congressman Danny K. Davis, alongside Representatives Jonathan Jackson (IL-01), Delia Ramirez, Raja Krishnamoorthi, Representative Shri Thanedar, and American Multiethnic Coalition’s President Dr. Vijay G. Prabhakar, this esteemed award acknowledges Seema‘s remarkable contributions.

Seema Govil Among Top 20 Global Women of Excellence Honored on Capitol Hill 1Hailing from New Delhi, India, Seema proudly stands as the sole recipient of this prestigious award, representing not only women globally but also the Indian community and the state of Texas. The ceremony, held on March 6th, 2024, spotlighted Seema‘s inspiring leadership and notable achievements.

Seema expressed her joy and Gratitude for the acknowledgment and the honor of meeting some phenomenal women.

Adding to the moment’s significance, Seema was presented with a medal signed by Representative Danny K. Davis. Reflecting on this additional honor, she remarked, “I was deeply touched by the additional honor bestowed upon me by Representative Danny K. Davis. It further affirms the significance of this incredible achievement.”

Dedicating the award to her mother, Mrs Pushpa Madan, on Women’s Day, Seema emphasized her mother’s profound influence and unwavering inspiration throughout her journey. She attributed her success to her mother’s legacy of core values—Education, Giving, and Gratitude.

Seema Govil is renowned for her dynamic presence in business and media. Since 2013, she has been co-president of the India Franchise Seema Govil Among Top 20 Global Women of Excellence Honored on Capitol Hill 2Council and the founder and CEO of Cosmo City Media, a full-service PR and media agency in Austin. Seema is also a franchise coach for The Franchise Consulting Company. Her expertise in franchising extends to seminars, trade shows, and panel moderation. She guides individuals interested in franchising by discerning and choosing the perfect franchise.

As a TV Asia anchor with an eleven-year tenure, Seema has covered diverse topics ranging from South Asian success stories to spirituality, arts, lifestyle, healthcare, politics, and business. Additionally, she hosts the Fablife360 podcast, showcasing uplifting stories from celebrities and ordinary individuals striving to achieve their dreams.

Seema‘s philanthropic endeavors include active participation in nonprofit boards and film festivals. Her impactful documentary, “Let’s Rewrite Their Story,” produced for Akshaya Patra kitchens in India, is a powerful tool for raising awareness and supporting the cause. Seema‘s commitment is further evident through her advisory role at Akshaya Patra Austin.

As an alumna of the Leadership Austin program and a dedicated franchise coach, Seema remains steadfast in mentoring aspiring entrepreneurs, leveraging her experiences to contribute positively to the community.

For reaching out to Seema directly, please text or call her at 512 762 7387 or email

at Seema@thefranchiseconsultingcompany.com

Seema Govil Among Top 20 Global Women of Excellence Honored on Capitol Hill 3Seema Govil Among Top 20 Global Women of Excellence Honored on Capitol Hill 4Seema Govil Among Top 20 Global Women of Excellence Honored on Capitol Hill 5

Mridangam Maestro T. S. Nandakumar: A Cultural Ambassador of India

Well known around the world for his mastery of the Mridangam, a percussion instrument that is a primary rhythmic accompaniment in Carnatic music ensemble, and with expertise in various other percussion instruments, including  konnakol (vocal percussion), thavil, ghatam, kanjira, and morsing, T. S. Nandakumar is a world renowned south Indian music artist, showcasing his versatility in Carnatic music, has devoted his entire life to the cause of popularizing Indian classical music around the world.

TSN Mridangam 02T. Shankaranarayanan Nandakumar, popularly known as “TSN” has played a pivotal role in spreading the knowledge about Indian drums, particularly the mridangam in the United States through his stage performances at prestigious orchestras, participation in global music events, educational initiatives and contributions, collaborations, global impact, and philanthropic endeavors. He has demonstrated a commitment to social responsibility through charity work, including organizing a 24-hour non-stop Akanda Seva Bhajan in aid of India’s tsunami victims.

Nandakumar’s belief that “Music is like a horizon which is never ending and has noTSN Mridangam 04 boundaries” has enabled him to take music wherever he went. TSN’s participation in international festivals and workshops has contributed to the global awareness of Indian percussion, showcasing the richness of Indian drumming traditions and  providing a platform for cross-cultural exchange. By actively participating in musical collaborations and performances in the United States, TSN not only showcases the beauty of the mridangam but also educates audiences about the intricacies and significance of this traditional Indian percussion instrument.

TSN Mridangam 06As a percussionist, TSN has accompanied luminaries in Carnatic music, including Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer, M. D. Ramanathan, Bhimsen Joshi, T. N. Krishnan, M. Balamuralikrishna and others. His role as an accompanist has greatly enhanced the events with the performances of these eminent artists.

Through his musical engagements, TSN engages in a form of cultural diplomacy, fostering an appreciation for Indian music and drumming traditions. This indirect form of education occurs as audiences experience the artistry and cultural depth of the mridangam during performances.

“Through music you can reach god,” says Nandakumar and wants to spread this path to the Almighty. Not satisfiedMridangam with his own mastery of classical Indian music, TSN took upon himself the mission to spread Carnatic music around the world. He established TSN’s Percussive Arts Centre. Inc (TSNPAC), where students are trained in diverse instruments. Since its inception in 1998 in Mumbai, India, TSNPAC has evolved into a hub for students to refine their skills and collaborate within the realm of Carnatic arts.  Upon migrating to New Jersey, USA, TSN seamlessly incorporated TSNPAC, offering courses in higher learning for Carnatic percussion enthusiasts in the United States. Today, TSNPAC stands as a beacon for aspiring artists seeking to master the intricacies of Carnatic percussion.

It’s well known around the world that through TSNPAC, TSN has played a very important role in teaching and training students in diverse percussion instruments, including the mridangam. In addition, Internationally famous musical institutions have tapped into TSN’s expertise, hosting his performances and though his highly acclaimed special, lectures in percussive arts.

TSN Mridangam 03Performing at the Thyagaraja Festival is a prestigious and culturally significant experience for Carnatic musicians. The Thyagaraja Aradhana is an annual music festival held to commemorate the legendary Carnatic composer Saint Thyagaraja. TSNPAC conducts Thyagaraja Festival to commemorate the legendary Carnatic composer Saint Thyagaraja. Thyagaraja Aaradhana Festival in Cleveland, Ohio, which is the largest Indian classical music festival outside of India.

“I feel very good about my accomplishment in spreading my knowledge about music toTSN Mridangam 01 everyone. I have students all over the world, students of Indian origin and from other nationalities, some of them have become full time musicians and are accompanying renowned artists,” Nandakumar says with pride. TSNPAC, in addition to providing trainings to music enthusiast, has successfully organized numerous annual events by notable artists in Carnatic music, including luminaries such as K J Yesudas, N. Rajam, N. Ramani, A. Kanyakumari, and L. Subramaniam.

Mridangam Arangetrams are held annually at TSNPAC, where graduating students perform along with accomplished artists, without prior rehearsal, which is a unique approach that serves as a culminating experience for their graduation from the Center.

The festival is characterized by an atmosphere of devotion, celebrating the profound impact Thyagaraja had on the Carnatic music tradition. Musicians engaged in marathon music sessions, presenting a repertoire of kritis (compositions) composed by Thyagaraja. The festival features continuous music performances, creating an immersive experience for both performers and the audience.

Leading concertTSNPAC’s significant milestones include a decennial celebration marked by a grand performance featuring over 100 students. The centre conducts Mridangam Arangetram annually, where students, without prior rehearsal, accompany main artists like A. Kanyakumari, culminating in a graduation ceremony. Notably, TSNPAC’s influence extends globally, with 108 professional student performances, including drumming, at the Cleveland Thyagaraja festival.

Many of his students have achieved high accolades as professionals and have become graded artists by All India Radio. They follow in his footsteps by training their own students in the style of TSN and continuing to promote Carnatic percussive arts.

In addition to training students of South Asian students, several artists from the West, who are now well known for their expertise in Carnatic Music include: Paula Jeanine, Todd Isler, Johann Berby, Guillaume Barraud, Will Calhoun, Bill Buchen, Lenora Zenzlai Helm, and Bernhard Schimpelsberger.

TSN’s discography, featuring solo performances and collaborations with various artists, serves as a valuable resourceTSN Mridangam 05 for those interested in Indian percussion. His recorded works contribute to the preservation and dissemination of this musical knowledge. His album, “Jewels of Rhythm” by his ensemble has earned him high accolades.

Nandakumar composed and released Jewels of Rhythm Vol 1, Jewels of Rhythm Vol 2 and Jewels of Rhythm Vol 3 which were performed by his students. Vibrative Rhythms by TSN is a fusion of Carnatic, Hindustani, and Western music as a one-man ensemble of mridangam, konnakol, thavil, ghatam, kanjira and the morsing played by himself.

Author of several books, with the objective of educating students to the themes of Indian Percussive Arts, TSN is currently working on writing books that covers advanced topics.

Son of Shrimati Saraswati and Shri Balakrishna Panicker, a great supporter of the arts as member of the Devaswom board in Kerala and actively involved in promoting Carnatic devotional music in temples and organizing concerts, TSN was born in the village of Ambalappuzha in Kerala, India. As a child, he was fascinated with the rhythmic chants and bhajans that would emanate from the various temples, was introduced to his Guru, Shri Kaithavana Madhavadas, where he was trained in the gurukula samprada tradition of Carnatic music. Nandakumar soon became a ‘Laya Vidwan’ due to his mastery of Carnatic percussive components: Laya, Raaga, Thaala and Bhava .

In Performance“At a very early age I started learning mridangam (A South Indian Classical Carnatic double-sided drum) because I was fascinated about percussion and its beats when my uncle’s (Shri Amabalapuzha Brothers) concert was held in the temple where I used to put Thalam,” recalls Nandakumar. “When I started learning I enjoyed playing mridangam and other percussion instruments. I was so passionate about it that I got into teaching mridangam and other percussion instruments and making people aware about the importance of music.”

As a young prodigy, TSN gained a reputation as an accompanist to renowned Carnatic musicians such as Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer, M.D. Ramanathan, S. Ramanathan, R. K. Srikantan, V. Dakshinamurthy, Bhimsen Joshi, N. Ramani, M. Balamuralikrishna, T. N. Krishnan, K. J. Yesudas, N. Rajam, T. K. Govindarao, Nedunuri Krishnanmurthy, T. V. Gopalakrishnan, Parassala . B. Ponnamal, A. Kanyakumari, M. Chandrasekaran, D. K. Jayaraman, B. V. Raman, B. V. Lakshmanan and many others.

In his recognition of his great accomplishments, he was honored with The Lifetime Achievement Award by the Shanti Foundation in Chennai. He was awarded the “Best Teacher Award” from several organizations with the most prominent being awarded by Shanmukhananda Fine Arts and the Cleveland Thygaraja Aaradhana Festival and by the Shanmukhananda Fine Arts, Sangeetha Sabha, Mumbai in 2007, Bharat Ratna Dr. M. S. Subbulakshmi Sangeetha Pracharya Award), and Visionary Award by Academy of Indian Music, USA.

Acknowledging contributions to the world of music, TSNPAC has bestowed prestigious titles upon distinguishedWith K J Yesudas artists. In 2022, the centre conferred the title “Ranjakagayakasiromanih” (The Crown Jewel among those singers whose music is charming) upon the legendary K J Yesudas. A. Kanyakumari was honored with the title “Sasvatanadavidushi” (One Who Is Adept in Music Which Is Ishvara).

Dedicating his entire life to the spreading of Carnatic Music, Nandakumar has been highly sought after as a teacher in India as well as abroad. In Mumbai, TSN trained students at large institutions like Shanmukhananda Fine Arts, Chembur Fine Arts, Gana kala, Music Triangle and Naadalaya.

He has conducted several musical concerts, lectures, demonstrations, and workshops at universities in the United States abroad like Lamar University of Houston and Indiana University of Pennsylvania. TSN also spent some time conducting special classes in percussive arts at the Sri Venkateswara Temple in Pittsburgh, the Academy of Indian Music in New Jersey and Switzerland. He also conducted 24 hours nonstop Akanda Seva Bhajan (Offered a Prayer through the medium of music) with his students in Mumbai for the tsunami affected victims of India.

He continues to provide opportunities for his students to perform by conducting seminars specific to accompaniment to other Indian art forms, such as Bharatnatyam Dance recitals and vocal or instrumental concerts, as well as through  Talent Exposure Concert Series which are published on YouTube to give students a forum to display their prowess.

Beyond geographical confines, TSNPAC continues to host performances not only in New Jersey but also in various parts of the United States. As a nurturing ground for Carnatic percussion, TSNPAC’s legacy embodies a commitment to excellence, providing a platform for students to explore and flourish in the rich tapestry of Carnatic music.

Looking back into his life’s mission, Nandakumar says, “My aim of contributing to Carnatic music by spreading knowledge has successful and I forever am indebted to my parents and my teacher. I feel even more proud that some of my students have become masters of mridangam and it’s an honor knowing that the knowledge I shared with my students is now spreading to around the world, imparting to many generations.”

Lifetime Achievement Award by SAFETSN’s commitment to promoting local talent and fostering cultural exchange remains unwavering. He has invited senior artists from India for the upcoming TSNPAC annual events with the objective of creating a global stage for collaborative performances.

Don’t miss this cultural extravaganza that promises to transcend boundaries and create lasting memories. Join us for an unforgettable musical journey at Sri Balaji Temple in Bridgewater.

Prepare to be captivated by a Rhythmic Extravaganza, an enchanting spectacle of rhythm, melody, and cultural celebration as T. S. Nandakumar (TSN), the maestro of Carnatic percussion presents an extraordinary event at Sri Balaji Temple in Bridgewater on March 17, 2024, from 9 am to 1 pm.

Event Highlights:

  • Multifaceted Performances: Join different groups of percussionists, including students of TSN, along with talented musicians playing Violin, Flute, Veena, and Vocal.
  • Diverse Instruments: Experience the soul-stirring sounds of Mridangam, Ghatam, Kanjira, Morsing, Thavil, and Konnakol, creating a symphony of percussion.
  • Artistic Fusion: Enjoy dance recitals by students of TSN, mastering Nattuvangam, a South Indian rhythmic recitation, and percussion, creating a seamless fusion of arts.
  • Music Cum Percussion Ensemble: Be part of a unique ensemble featuring students across age groups, showcasing the rich diversity of talents from ages 4 to 60.
  • Book Release: Witness the unveiling of TSN’s latest book, a testament to his deep-rooted knowledge and contribution to Carnatic percussion.
  • Distinguished Chief Guest: Dr. Venkataraman Swaminathan, a revered musicologist, will grace the occasion, releasing TSN’s book and adding to the cultural richness of the event.
  • Star Performance: TSN himself will take the stage in the climax, inspiring and boosting the spirits of the budding talents.
For more details, please visit: http://mridangam.info

GAPI Volunteer Clinic in Atlanta Expands Healthcare Services In Collaboration With SEWA

“There are several chronic diseases that if identified at initial stages can prevent catastrophic life-threatening events among people,” says Dr. Sreeni Gangasani, current national Treasurer of the American Associations of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), past President of Georgia Associations of Physicians of Indian Origin (GAPI) and the Director, GAPI Volunteer Clinic. Dr. Gangasani, who is a cardiologist by profession, understands the risks to individuals, their families, the nation, and the larger community by unidentifying and preventable illnesses such as Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, various Cancers, Heart Disease, Stroke, and Liver Disease.

With the objective of helping and supporting the local community in Atlanta, especially those who are uninsured, living in poverty, and immigrants with no way of finding quality and affordable healthcare, GAPI has decided to collaborate with SEWA to expand the GAPI Volunteer Clinic in Atlanta and make its services available to maximum number of people who need healthcare.

GAPI“GAPI Volunteer Clinic in Atlanta recently started working with SEWA volunteers to serve Hispanic and other underserved communities along with Indian and South Asian patients,” says Dr. Gangasani. “At present, the clinic is open first and third Saturdays, and we have plans to open the clinic every Saturday if volunteer physicians are available,” says Dr. Gangasani.

Dr. Gangasani while describing the origins of the Clinic said, “Following the astounding success of the SAI Health Fairs initiated by Dr. Sujatha Reddy, where thousands of poor, uninsured, and underinsured in the community received free and effective health care, GAPI’s past Presidents thought of extending the services through the GAPI Volunteer Clinic.”

GAPI Volunteer Clinic was started in 2010 at the Global Mall to help uninsured patients in the Metro Atlanta region after the GAPI Executive Committee decided in 2009 and was opened by then-congressman Tom Price. GAPI was established in 1987 and it has more than 800 members and over 300 Life members. It is well known for rendering sterling services in health care to the community.

GAPI CLINIC 2As the director of the GAPI volunteer clinic since 2010, Dr. Gangasani says, “I just wanted to take a moment to express how grateful I am to work at the GAPI clinic. It is truly a blessing to be able to provide medical care to those who may not otherwise have access to it. The gratitude that our patients express when they are seen is truly heartwarming and makes all the hard work worth it. I feel good knowing that I am making a positive impact in the lives of others. Thank you to all the dedicated staff and volunteers who make this possible.”

Dr. Gangasani says, on average over a dozen patients turn up at the clinic. All of them are uninsured or underinsured or visitors to Atlanta or seniors from India visiting their family members. Some seek urgent help during emergencies and are recommended to seek the clinic’s help. He is hopeful that he would like more people to come to the clinic. Spring is already here, so there will be many visitors and visiting relatives from India. It is vital that the community knows about GAPI Volunteers Clinic and makes good use of it.

Recalling the many lives he was able to touch during his 15-year-long association with the Clinic, Dr. Gangagasni said, “One of my best moments was identifying a tongue cancer in a clinic patient without insurance, who subsequently traveled to India and got the surgery done with a cure.”

GAPI CLINIC 1During Covid, the clinic was closed and referred for free telehealth consultations by telehealth companies like Eglobaldoctors who helped many patients during difficult times. Now that the pandemic is behind us, the organizers of the Clini want to expand the services and help more patients who are in need of healthcare.

In addition to 2-3 physicians being available at the clinic on Saturdays, the collaboration with SEWA, which has a wider network of volunteers will help in having adequate staffing to the clinic with Nursing, Managing Front Desk, and Follow-up services/referrals.

Talks are on with the Georgia Indian Nurses Association (GINA) who provide volunteer nurses to the clinic. If each of the GAPI’s more than 800 members volunteer his or her services for four hours a month, the Clinic will run smoothly.

The clinic has been approved for free EMR by clinical works. EMR (Electronic Medical Record) was installed and updated so that physicians can use it to provide better patient care. Run by GAPI volunteer physicians with the state of Georgia community health program support, Malpractice Insurance coverage to the physicians is covered by the Georgia state.

GAPI CLINIC 3Dr. Gangasani urged GAPI physicians and nurses to step up to the plate and volunteer for a few hours at the clinic. GAPI volunteer free clinic is available at the Global Mall for people with no Insurance and low income. Free Primary care consultation is available for the family. The leaders of the Clinic are working on getting discounted rates at pharmacies.

Services Available:

Minimal cost for lab work
Discounted rate for medications and Flu shots (in season).
Referral to Specialists at a discounted fee.

Address:

5675 Jimmy Carter Blvd
Suite 736
Norcross, GA. 30071
(Inside the Global Mall)

Time of Operations:

Open on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of every month from 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM.

Dr Gangasani requests the members of the community to come forward to help with successfully running the clinic. If anyone with a Georgia license wants to help and be part of this noble initiative, please contact Dr. Gangasani via email at: [email protected]

Is Modi Government Targeting Opposition Leaders for Political Reasons?

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) in India used to be a sleepy corner of India’s Finance Ministry and was not known to majority of Indians until recently. Mandated to investigate money-laundering and foreign-exchange violations, it rarely made headlines under the previous governments, including during the coalition led by the Congress party, which ruled from 2004 to 2014. Its record on money-laundering—a big problem in India—was particularly lackluster: it conducted only 112 raids and failed to achieve a single conviction.

Under Narendra Modi, the ED has become one of India’s most feared agencies. Since he became prime minister in 2014 it has conducted more than 3,000 money-laundering raids and secured 54 convictions. Most controversially, especially in the run-up to a general election due by May, it has targeted dozens of Opposition politicians, including at least five party leaders—while largely steering clear of bigwigs in Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

In March 2023, The Union government introduced changes to rules on money laundering which significantly widen the net under which the Enforcement Directorate (ED) can access the financial history of individuals and organisations. This has implications on all those the powerful central agency can now act against.

Is Modi Government Targeting Opposition Leaders for Political Reasons (TOI)The recent offensives against the Opposition Party leaders by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) may owe partly to the BJP’s objective of winning the 2024 general election with a much bigger margin, which requires it to “discredit and disunite” its opponents, analysts across India say.

Indian investigators have raided multiple premises linked with a prominent rights activist in the national capital – a move that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s critics say is part of a pattern that has seen his government targeting political opponents two months before general elections.

Congress Party leader and a former Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information at the United Nations, Shashi Tharoor crticized the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in India, accusing it of misusing central agencies to target political opponents. Tharoor expressed concern about the state of central agencies and independent institutions in the country under what he termed as “electoral autocracy.”

Highlighting that the ruling government is misusing central agencies for political benefits, Tharoor said, “Now we are seeing the government being quite shameless in misusing even those institutions that were meant to be independent like the ED, CBI, and law enforcement bodies, which were meant to chase wrongdoers. They are now being unleashed selectively only on those whom the BJP deems to be its political opponent.”

The recent offensives against the Opposition Party leaders by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) may owe partly to the BJP’s objective of winning the 2024 general election with a much bigger margin, which requires it to “discredit and disunite” its opponents, analysts across India say.

The latest victim of this lopsided ED raids and arrests was on January 31st, 2024, when ED officers arrested Hemant Soren of the Congress Party and the chief minister of the eastern state of Jharkhand, on suspicion of money-laundering.

Soren is the fourth opposition chief minister to come under the scanner of the central investigation agency. Earlier,Is Modi Government Targeting Opposition Leaders for Political Reasons (Yahoo) former Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel and his associates were accused by the ED of being involved in an illegal online betting case. Baghel was named by the ED days ahead of the state’s assembly polls, which allowed the BJP to carry out a political campaign against the chief minister’s alleged corruption.

Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad and his son and former deputy chief minister of Bihar Tejashwi Yadav have also been implicated in an alleged “land for jobs” scam. Lalu Prasad, who is severely ill, was called for questioning by the ED in a case that the CBI had first registered in May 2022 as a “land-for-jobs” scam. The CBI has named Lalu Prasad, his wife and former chief minister Rabri Devi, and their son Tejashwi Yadav and two daughters Misa Bharti and Hema Yadav, along with 12 others.

Other opposition leaders, including Tejashwi Yadav, the former deputy chief minister of neighbouring Bihar state, and Arvind Kejriwal, the chief minister of Delhi, have also been raided by federal agencies in recent months. Kejriwal’s deputy and one of his party’s parliamentarians are already in jail.

The ED raided the premises linked to AAP leaders in Delhi, prompting the party to accuse the Centre and the probe agency of intimidation. ED sources refuted the claims and added that the agency will take  “legal recourse.”

Delhi chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal, too, has been served multiple notices by the ED in the excise policy case, in which his deputy Manish Sisodia and party MP Sanjay Singh have already been arrested. Satyendra Jain, another AAP minister in Delhi, has been in prison for around two years. Speculations are rife that Kejriwal may soon be arrested for refusing to present himself for questioning, as the chief minister has maintained that the questioning was politically motivated and a ploy to arrest him to prevent him from campaigning during the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

In the central Chhattisgarh state, Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel and his associates were picked up by the ED officials right before elections in November last year. The BJP accused them of multiple scams, including an illegal coal mining deal, and used the charges as a major plank to win the state polls.

Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan is now facing the heat from central agencies. In its efforts to portray a negative perception on the Communist leader in Ketrala, the CBI pushed for a March or April hearing on its plea, ahead of the national elections, challenging the discharge of Pinarayi in an over-25-year-old corruption case, but the Supreme Court listed it for a final hearing in May.

The case is about an allegation that as Kerala power minister, Pinarayi visited Canada as “a guest” of Lavalin and decided to grant it a contract for the renovation and modernisation of three hydroelectric projects in Idukki. The CBI alleges the decision resulted in a loss of Rs 86.25 crore to the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB). The trial court and the Kerala High Court have discharged Pinarayi in the case. The CBI says the high court’s decision to discharge Pinarayi was “not correct.”

Several other Opposition leaders are under the scanner of the central agencies, including a former Congress minister in Rajasthan Mahesh Joshi in the alleged Jal Jeevan Mission scam, associates of a few Congress leaders in Haryana and Himachal Pradesh in an alleged Haryana Urban Development Authority scam, and several local opposition leaders in southern states.

The Tamil Nadu government has moved the Madras High Court against the Enforcement Directorate (ED), opposing the agency’s recent summons to 10 district collectors in the state in connection with alleged irregularities in sand mining. The state’s petition on behalf of the collectors, in which it alleged constitutional overreach by the ED and a deliberate attempt to harass state officials, marks an escalation in the ongoing tussle between the state machinery and central agencies.

This can potentially be an election issue during the Lok Sabha polls, especially in Kerala, where the BJP is trying to expand its base and the CPI-M and the Congress have been the leading parties for decades.

The ED’s raids against the Opposition, however, have served the BJP readymade campaigns to target the Opposition and advance its own anti-corruption plank. Curiously, however, the ED hasn’t been able to substantiate many of its charges, with its conviction rate remaining at an abysmal low.

In yet another instance of abus eof power by the Modi government, a total of 141 federal lawmakers – 95 from the lower house (Lok Sabha) and 46 from the upper chamber (Rajya Sabha) – were suspended since December 14, 2023 for allegedly disrupting House proceedings, after they demanded a debate on a Parliament security breach.

Alleging that central agencies are silent in the BJP-ruled states, Aam Aadmi Party Rajya Sabha MP Raghav Chadha added that 95 per cent of the cases registered by the CBI and ED are against politicians of the Opposition.

Calling ED, I-T department and CBI as the “jawans” of the Modi government, Mallikarjun Kharge, President of the Congress Party said that the prime minister is afraid because of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) defeat in Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh and therefore the agencies are trying to scare the Congress. He questioned why action is not taken against BJP leaders despite them having money and property. He said that the BJP has a “washing machine” through which tainted people in BJP are made clean. He said the agencies get active ahead of polls and target only Opposition leaders.

As the Lok Sabha elections approach, there are allegations that the BJP is using government agencies to intimidate and stifle opposition voices. Interestingly, the ED has yet to initiate any investigations against leaders of the BJP and its NDA coalition partners. Such alacrity against Opposition leaders contrasts that with ED’s lack of any initiative in pursuing similar cases of alleged financial fraud against BJP chief minister of Assam Himanta Biswa Sarma or deputy chief minister of Maharashtra Ajit Pawar, against whom allegations of corruption were being vigorously followed up before he joined ranks with the BJP.

Old cases like Vyapam during the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led BJP government in Madhya Pradesh have also been put in cold storage. The same is the case of multiple small and big cases of corruption during the BJP rule in Karnataka under chief ministers B.S. Yediyurappa and B.S. Bommai when many of their ministers faced allegations of financial irregularities.

Sushil Sunny Agrawal, a 39-year-old former minister in Baghel’s cabinet, was among the politicians the ED raided before the state elections last year. “They mentally tortured us. The ED officials told me: ‘What’s in there to stay with the Congress? Join BJP, that’s where the future is,’” Agrawal said. “These agencies have become liaisons for the BJP. They deal on their behalf: If you go with Modi, you will be cleared from all this and stand a chance at a bright future.” Agrawal said the Modi government is “hijacking” the forthcoming vote by targeting Opposition leaders and activists. “Democracy has completely ended in India,” he said.

The upcoming general elections are keeping Agrawal on edge. “The BJP knows no limits. And they are in a full-on attacking mode, weaponising the central agencies to completely curb the opposition,” he said.

The Congress Party along with most Opposition parties expressed concern over the “worrying trend” of the ED being used as a “political tool” by the ruling BJP against Opposition leaders and also cited the raids at the residence of Rajasthan Congress president Govind Singh Dotasra.

Last April, 14 Opposition Parties moved the Supreme Court to challenge the Modi government’s alleged misuse of bodies like the ED. A delegation led by Congress Working Committee member Abhishek Singhvi met the Chief Election Commissioner and others when they also demanded disciplinary action against ED officials who are “misusing” their powers and violating the guidelines of the of the EC, which insists on “neutral, impartial and non-discriminatory” actions by agencies.

The politicization of central agencies is not limited to political leaders who are opposed to BJP alone. They have targeted businessmen, heads and staf of financial institutions, Bollywood stars and their families, Media personnel, Human Rights activists, Not for Profit Agencies and many other groups who are considered independent and oppose Modi regime’s policies and abuse of power.

The arrest and ongoing investigations on Chanda Kochhar is another typical example. The Bombay High Court on February 13, 2024 declared the arrests of ex-ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar and her husband Deepak Kochhar in the ICICI Bank-Videocon loan fraud case as “illegal” as it upheld the 2023 interim bail order. The court had questioned the CBI over the delayed investigation since the FIR in 2019, while granting interim bail to the Kochhars. They were arrested on December 23, 2022, when their plea was pending. It ruled that the arrests were not in accordance with the law, citing lack of clarity on the reason for arresting them four years into the probe.

CBI officials raided the residence of former bureaucrat Harsh Mander and the office of a think tank, the Centre for Equity Studies (CES) in New Delhi, linked to him, alleging financial irregularities under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act.

Mander, a fierce critic of the Modi government’s Hindu supremacist agenda, served as an Indian Administrative Service officer for 22 years before he resigned in 2002 in the wake of the riots in Gujarat state when Modi was its chief minister. More than 1,000 people died in the violence, most of them Muslims, according to the state government.

Apoorvanand, professor of Hindi Literature at the University of Delhi and one of Mander’s close acquaintances, said he woke up to the “upsetting news” of the raids. “Mander and the civil society members have been relentlessly hounded by the investigative agencies,” he added.

The crackdown by the government is an attempt to establish a one-party rule in India, Apporvanand said. “When the opposition parties should be hitting the roads [to campaign] ahead of the elections, they are running from one agency to another,” he said. “The campaigns are distracted and their followers will be demoralised. You can practically achieve a one-party state without changing the constitution. From the civil society to academia, I can feel this fear – who’s going to be next?” said Apoorvanand.

“These raids or allegations of financial irregularities seem to have become a norm for the authorities to silence peaceful criticism,” Meenakshi Ganguly, the deputy director of Human Rights Watch’s Asia division said. Several activists are currently facing charges, some under draconian terror laws. “When independent state agencies are seen to act in a partisan manner, with politically motivated targeting of dissent, it undermines India’s image as a country that upholds the rule of law,” Ganguly said.

The ED’s raids against the Opposition, however, have served the BJP readymade campaigns to target the opposition and advance its own anti-corruption plank. Curiously, however, the ED hasn’t been able to substantiate many of its charges, with its conviction rate remaining at an abysmal low.

The Wire reported that there is a four-fold jump in ED cases since 2014 and that 95% of the cases probed by the ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation against political leaders are from the Opposition. Although the ED claims that it has a high conviction rate of 96%, the figures appear to be misplaced if one factors in the number of cases it has closed since 2005. The ED registered 5,906 cases until March 2023 but completed the probe and filed a chargesheet in only 1,142 cases – out of which it has disposed of only 25 cases, a mere 0.42 of the total number of cases. Of those 25 cases, the ED has managed convictions in 24 cases, which is around 96% conviction rate as claimed by the agency.

Supreme Court lawyer Prashant Bhushan said, “Like the politicians, the civil society or anybody who is a critic of this government is being targeted. This is the rise of a fascist state under Modi and unfortunately, the judiciary is doing very little or hardly anything to protect the rights and liberties of the citizens. Its independence appears to have collapsed.”

According to Tharror, “The institutions are those that give body and strength to our democracy, whether it’s parliament, whether it’s an independent election commission, whether it’s the information commission or the Reserve Bank of India. All of these institutions have found their independence vitiated.”

“Let the ED, income tax department, and CBI do their job, but how come all of their targets are from the Opposition? How is this possible that there are no other criminals anywhere but only in Opposition? Till now, nobody has given any satisfactory answer to these questions,” the Tharror said. “The respected V-Dem (Varieties of Democracy) institute in Sweden decided to call us not a democracy anymore, but an “electoral autocracy” that is that, we elect our leaders but then they behave as autocrats.”

The Kerala Center In New York To Establish Dr. Thomas Abraham Library

“The Kerala Center Board of Directors and the General Body in their meetings have agreed to establish a library under the name Dr. Thomas Abraham Library, which will carry an India Collection of Books and Indian Diaspora Books,” said a statement issued by the Kerala Center. “The library will serve as a reference library for India related books and Indian Diaspora books.”

Dr. Thomas Abraham is the Chairman, Board of Trustees, The Kerala Center and

Serves as the Chairman, GOPIO International. Dr. Thomas Abraham has been honored with the Bharatvanshi Gaurav Award of Anthar Rashtriya Sahayog Parishad and Pravasi Bharatiya Samman for his services to the NRI/PIO communities for the past 50 years since he moved to New York as a graduate student at Columbia University. He has been an architect behind the establishment of several organizations including the Federation of Indian Assocaitons (FIA); National Federation of Indian Associations (NFIA); GOPIO International; and The Kerala Center.

Featured & Cover The Kerala Center In New York To Establish Dr Thomas Abraham Library 3“I have been collecting books on India related to religion, culture, economy, politics, relations with other countries and tourism, which will be housed at the Kerala Center,” Dr. Abraham sated. “In addition, I have personal collection of books on India and Indian Diaspora related books, some of them are not even available at any other place, which will be donated to this library. The Government of India through the Indian Consulate New York has provided several hundreds of India related books.”

The library will be inaugurated on Saturday, April 6th starting at 5 p.m. at the Kerala Center with cocktails, a ribbon cutting ceremony and felicitations followed entertainment and dinner. I request you to keep that date available. An invitation will be sent to you later.

Describing the origins to establishing this library, Dr. Abraham said, “One of my friends floated this idea to me to set up a library since I have served our community for the last 50 years starting many community institutions.:

Dr. Abrham has successfully campaigned on many community issues. He has helped several community members to advance and helped many organizations to flourish. Because of the connections he has with the community for the past fifty years, Dr. Abraham has also accumulated hundreds of Indian Diaspora books.

Dr. Abraham says, “I also felt that my time is also coming up to downsize my activities. And the library is the best place to keep all those books and other community literature and documents so that future generations would know about our community mobilization and what we have done in the last fifty years to benefit our community and India.”

The Library will also be a place for the community to keep historic documents of the major Indian communityThe Kerala Center In New York To Establish Dr Thomas Abraham Library 2 groups and history of Indian Diaspora in different countries. Ultimately, the Kerala Center plans to make it a top Indian Diaspora Resource Center, may be even as a research center with grants from Foundations and government agencies in the future.

The Kerala Center plans to raise $25,000 to modernize the upper conference room as a library room with shelves and a long wooden reading table and chairs in the middle, which can also be used as a conference room. The hall will be used as a hybrid conference room too to host hybrid in person and virtual meetings and seminars.

Dr. Abraham said, “I am approaching my community colleagues and friends to support this project. We have already received a total contribution of $20,000 from friends. We need to raise only $5,000 now and we need your support.   Please contribute whatever amount you can and it is tax deductible. You could send a check to The Kerala Center, 1824 Fairfax St., Elmont, NY 11003 or contribute online using your credit card at the PayPal Link for the Kerala Cetner at http://tinyurl.com/2j3jbsm6. Please do mention that your contribution is for the library project.

The Kerala Center urges people of Indian origin to donate their books to this new library. “If you are downsizing and have India related books to donate, please let me know. We will pick it up.”

The Coming-of-Age of Indian Americans

“Despite constituting less than 1% of the U.S. population, Indian Americans are 3% of the nation’s engineers, 7% of its IT workers and 8% of its physicians and surgeons,” wrote the popular Forbes magazine in 2008. “The overrepresentation of Indians in these fields is striking–in practical terms, your doctor is nine times more likely to be an Indian American than is a random passerby on the street.”

Sixteen years later, in 2024, the Indian American community has grown even stronger; their successes encompassing almost all areas of American life – living  the American Dream.  The less than four million Indian Americans appear to be gaining prominence and have come to be recognized as a model community, and a force to reckon with in this land of opportunities that they have come to call as their adopted homeland.

In 1960, there were only 12,000 Indian immigrants living in the United States, according to the Migration Policy Institute. Today, the number of Indian Americans or Indian immigrants has climbed to more than 4 million, census data shows. Historically, Indians in the US worked in medicine, science & technology, engineering and mathematics-related jobs. Some, like the Patel community from Gujarat, took to the hotel industry and grew to dominate it. Others were entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley after the digital revolution of the 1980s.

In 1997, Ramani Ayer became the CEO of the Fortune 500 financial firm The Hartford, becoming the first in the list of Indian leaders heading American businesses. At present, 2% of the Fortune 500 companies of American origin — including Microsoft, Alphabet, Adobe, IBM, and Micron Technologies — are led by Indian American CEOs. One in every seven doctors in America is of Indian descent.

Among all these fields, if there is one area, where the influential Indian Americans have come to be recognized more than any other is the political arena, where they are seeking to win elections at the national, state and local levels, vying to occupy top jobs across the nation.

The Coming of Age of Indian Americans 3Ever since Gov. Bobby Jindal the first ever major Indian American presidential candidate who had sought to occupy the White House, there have been many others who have followed in his footsteps. Indian Americans have expressed keen interest in carving out their political space at the national table for decades, and now, the fruits of their labor are paying off, with more successes now than ever before.

Four years ago, it was then-California Sen. Kamala Harris, who made headlines and then elected as the vice president, becoming the highest-ranking person of Indian descent in the US government. The rise of Kamala Harris, daughter of an Indian mother, as the Vice President represented a coming-of-age of the Indian American community in the United States. Harris was born to civil rights activist parents a year before the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 was passed; this Act relaxed the quota regime that restricted foreigners. At that time, there was one Indian American lawmaker in the US House of Representatives — the Punjab-born Dalip Singh Saund, also from California.

It’s still a relatively small number, compared with the country’s total population of more than 333 million. But Devesh Kapur, co-author of “The Other One Percent: Indians in America,” said he was not surprised to see three Indian Americans in the political spotlight in the 2024 race. “Indian Americans have been selected to be the outliers — they have been selected for success,” Kapur wrote in his book with Sanjoy Chakravorty and Nirvikar Singh.

The 2024 election season in the United States (US) kicked off and now with less than 10 months to go until Election Day and a week before the next Republican primary, one group that has emerged on the national political stage in a way they never have before in U.S. history: Indian Americans.

The current election cycle is shaping up to be historic for the Indian American community at every level, from local to the presidential. After months of campaigning, only a handful of GOP hopefuls were qualified for the last Republican Party Presdetial Debate; two of them were former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley and Vivek Ramaswamy, an entrepreneur and commentator whose White House bid has skyrocketed his profile.

While insurgent candidate Vivek Ramaswamy bowed out after finishing fourth in the Iowa Caucus, former South Carolina governor, Nikki Haley, emerged with a strong showing and is now poised to give former President Donald Trump a run for his money in South Carolina primary on Tuesday, February 13.

“You have to sit and wonder, we have these two folks who are showing these all-star abilities — will we end up with an Indian American on this ticket?” said Sara Sadhwani, an assistant professor of politics at Pomona College and co-author of the Indian American Election Survey.

Harris, Haley, and Ramaswamy have many notable political differences. In a way, each is competing against the other in the 2024 election. But together, they represent a remarkable moment in American politics, experts say: Indian Americans account for about 1.3% of the country’s population, according to census data — and three Indian American politicians have risen close to the top of both major parties. “Mathematically, you would not have expected this,” said University of California, Riverside, public policy professor Karthick Ramakrishnan.

Haley had made history as the first female governor of South Carolina and the first Indian American to be appointed to a cabinet-level position, serving as the US ambassador to the United Nations in 2016. I am the proud daughter of Indian immigrants who reminded my brothers, my sister and me every single day how blessed we were to live in this country,” said Haley, as she announced her presidential campaign last February.

In addition to the leading Presidential aspirants, there are five Indian American members in the current US Congress —Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), Ami Bera (D-CA), Ro Khanna (D-CA), and Shri Thanedar (D-MI) who are seeking re-elections this year. Each of them is expected to be reelected in 2024 due to the advantages of incumbency and their substantial campaign funding.

According to Indian American Impact, an organization dedicated to strengthening the political influence of the community, there are already more than 200 Indian Americans who are elected to positions ranging from school boards and city councils to state assemblies and senates across the country.

However, what is promising as the nation goes into another round of elections is the prospect of several candidates from a wide range of congressional districts across the country from New York to California, and from Illinois to Alabama, are aiming to join the ranks of the “Samosa Caucus.”

Kevin Thomas, a New York state senator vying to win the fourth congressional district, is a prominent Democratic contender to become the sixth Indian American member of the 119th Congress. The district, currently represented by first-term GOP Rep. Anthony D’Esposito, has historically leaned towards the Democratic party, consistently supporting their presidential nominees in the past eight elections. This favorable trend significantly boosts Thomas’ prospects of winning the primary and securing a seat in Congress.

Ohio state senator Niraj Antani is seeking the GOP nomination from the state’s second congressional district. The 32-year-old, who has been in the state legislature since 2014, is expected to get elected to Congress if he wins the Republican primary, as the district is heavily Republican. “In Congress, I will have a steel-spine in standing for life, our 2nd Amendment rights, and for pro-growth economic policies. As a fiercely pro-Trump Republican, I will work hard every day for our community in Congress to ensure every Ohioan has an opportunity to achieve the American Dream.”

Arizona State Rep. Amish Shah, the first Indian American elected to the Arizona legislature, is seeking the Democratic Party’s nomination for Arizona’s first congressional district. Shah, an emergency physician, has raised more than $1 million for his campaign and will have a fair shot in November if he wins the primary in this seat, currently represented by Republican David Schweikert and leans slightly Republican.

Ashwani Jain, a former Gubernatorial candidate of Maryland, is running for Congress from Maryland’s 6th District. He says, “I am running for Congress in the district I live in and call home – not just to be Maryland’s first Millennial, first Asian-American and first Indian-American ever elected – but because I have specific policy solutions that will open the doors of opportunity for our community.” Jain, a cancer survivor, is focused on issues including immigrant rights, climate change, labor rights and raising teachers’ pay, reproductive justice, and gun violence.

Hoboken Mayor in the state of New Jersey, Ravi Bhalla is running for Congress from the 8th District. At Congress, Bhalla says, he “will be an advocate for New Jersey’s working families as he fights to make healthcare a right for everyone, tackle climate change, protect a woman’s right to choose, and build an economy that works for all New Jerseyans.”

Suhas Subramanyam and Krystle Kaul: Two Indian Americans are vying for the Democratic Party nomination in Virginia’s 10th congressional district. Krystle Kaul Kaul, much like Subramanyam, is focusing on issues such as national security, women’s rights, economy & jobs, healthcare, education, and energy & the environment. Subramanyam, a Virginia state senator has been serving in the state legislature for the past four years. Kaul, a veteran of the defence and intelligence community, is running on her national security experience. If either of them wins the primary, they would be formidable candidates to represent this Democratic-leaning district.

Susheela Jayapal, a candidate for Oregon’s third congressional district, and Rishi Kumar, who is running for California’s 16th congressional district are other Indian Americans, who are “strong candidates who have run for office before and have name recognition.” Jayapal had served as the commissioner of Oregon’s most populous county, Multnomah County. In 2020, Kumar secured nearly 37% of the votes against the incumbent and fellow Democrat Anna Eshoo, who is now retiring, boosting his chances of victory in 2024.

Vimal Patel from Alabama’s 2nd district abd Nikhil Bhatia from Illinois’ 7th District are others who are in the fray to enter the Congress this Fall. Another Republican seeking to win on a Republican ticket is Dr. Prashanth Reddy from Kansas’ 3rd district is a physician, who is focused on defending the nation and standing up for parents and students in addition to securing the border, supporting law enforcement, standing up to China, and protecting taxpayers.

In addition, dozens of highly qualified and experienced Indian American candidates are also vying for statewide offices in this election cycle. Among those who have announced their candidacies for statewide offices, include: Minita Sanghvi, a Democrat currently serving as the Saratoga Springs finance commissioner, vying for the 44th state senate district in New York; Tara Sreekrishnan, a member of the Santa Clara County Board of Education, running for the California state assembly from district 26; Ashwin Ramaswami seeking election to the Georgia state senate from senate district 48; and Seema Singh, a member of the Knoxville City Council, running for district 90 of the Tennessee house of representatives.

Irrespective of political differences, the Indian American community is happy about the sharp increase in their political participation, especially over the last three election cycles, and is proud of the rise of another of their own. As Jon Huntsman, former Governor of Utah and United States Ambassador to China, had said: “In the last half-century, Americans of Indian descent epitomize how new waves of immigrants have been renewing our communities and our economy. ”

Shekar Narasimhan, founder and chairman of the AAPI (Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders) Victory Fund, sums it all, saying that while he is happy to see more Asian-Americans gain prominence in politics,  “A beautiful thing is happening: Indian-Americans are coming to the forefront. If our children see Americans with a name like Ramaswamy run, and a Khanna or Krishnamoorthi can win, that’s a good thing.”

Annie George Mathew Appointed As A Member Of The 16th Finance Commission Of India

Annie George Mathew, a senior of the Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IA & AS) of the 1988 Batch has been appointed as a member of the Sixteenth Finance Commission on Tuesday, January 30th, 2024.

Annie George Mathew recently retired as the Special Secretary Expenditure from the Ministry of Finance, Government of India.  She has over 34 years of experience in areas of Public Finance, Financial Management, Government Audit and Accounts, and Public Procurement including Defense Capital Acquisitions, Human Resource Management

The 16th Finance Commission was constituted on 31.12.2023 with Shri Arvind Panagariya, former Vice-Chairman, NITI Aayog as its Chairman. According to a government order issued on January 30, 2024, three full-time members of the 16th Finance Commission include former Expenditure Secretary Ajay Narayan Jha; former Department of Expenditure official Annie George Mathew; and Niranjan Rajadhyaksha, executive director of policy consultancy firm, Artha Global. Dr. Soumya Kanti Ghosh, Group Chief Economic Advisor, State Bank of India will serve as a Part-time member of the powerful financial body.

“The chairman and other members of the commission shall hold office from the date on which they respectively assume office up to the date of the submission of report or October 31, 2025, whichever is earlier,” the order from President of India, Droupadi Murmu appointing members to the constitutional body stated.

AnnieThe Sixteenth Finance Commission has been requested to make its recommendations available by October 31, 2025, covering an award period of 5 years commencing 1st April, 2026. The Finance Commission usually takes about two years to consult stakeholders in the States and Centre and arrive at their conclusions.

The Finance Commission mainly decides the tax-sharing formula between the Centre and the states.  The Sixteenth Finance Commission’s terms of reference include a review of the present arrangements for financing disaster management initiatives and mooting measures to augment States’ consolidated funds to supplement resources available with panchayats and municipalities.

Per reports, in November last year, the Indian Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi had approved the Terms of Reference for the 16th Finance Commission. As per the terms of reference (ToR), “The Finance Commission shall make recommendations as to the following matters, namely: The distribution between the Union and the States of the net proceeds of taxes which are to be, or may be, divided between them under Chapter I, Part XII of the Constitution and the allocation between the States of the respective shares of such proceeds.”

The commission is expected to make recommendations on the “principles which should govern the grants-in-aid of the revenues of the States out of the Consolidated Fund of India and the sums to be paid to the States by way of grants-in-aid of their revenues under article 275 of the Constitution for the purposes other than those specified in the provisos to clause (1) of that article,” according to a statement issued after the Union Cabinet meeting on November 29.

Ms. Mathew was the Government’s nominee on the Boards of the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) and Indian Overseas Bank (IOB).  She had served earlier on the Board of State Bank of Hyderabad.

She has varied experience in the Indian Audit and Accounts Department through her postings within the country and abroad.  She has also led audit teams working with different international and multi-lateral organizations like the United Nations, and UNHCR in Europe, Africa, and Asia. She has been a member of the International Standards Laying Committees on Auditing.

With her vast experience of working in public finance at various levels in the Ministry of Finance and her exposure to state finances during her tenure in various Accountant General Offices in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Delhi, Ms. Mathew has a deep understanding of  India’s Federal and State finances.

Ms. Mathew graduated from Miranda House and completed post-graduation from the University of Delhi and after that, joined India’s civil services as an IA & AS Officer.

NAM Info Inc Unveils Telecom Services Startup: NAM Infocom

NAM Info Inc Unveils Telecom Services Startup: NAM Infocom

NAM Info Inc, a trailblazing technology and information services provider has announced the official launch of NAM InfoCom, a dynamic telecom services startup poised to redefine communication in today’s digital landscape. NAM InfoCom offers a suite of innovative communication solutions for enterprises, including three flagship products: eNCALL, eNCOM, and eNWEB, meticulously designed to meet the unique needs and challenges of the modern business landscape.

NAM InfoCom is a dynamic telecom services startup poised to redefine communication in today’sdigital landscape. NAM InfoCom offers a suite of innovative communication solutions forenterprises, including three flagship products: eNCALL, eNCOM, and eNWEB, meticulouslydesigned to meet the unique needs and challenges of the modern business landscape.NAM InfoCom has come out with a revolutionary communication framework based on WebRTC technology and ensuring the most important requirement of enterprise which is security.NAM Info Inc Unveils Telecom Services Startup NAM Infocom

“As we embark on this exciting journey with NAM InfoCom, we remain committed to our vision of delivering innovative technology solutions that empower businesses in the digital age,” Vinay Mahajan, President & CEO of NAM Info Inc said. “Our three flagship products, eNCALL, eNCOM, and eNWEB, represent the culmination of extensive research and development aimed at addressing the diverse communication needs of modern enterprises. We firmly believe that secure, efficient, and customized communication is the cornerstone of success in today’s competitive landscape,” Mahajan added.

eNCALL, eNCOM, and eNWEB represent the culmination of extensive research and development aimed at addressing the diverse communication needs of modern enterprises. We firmly believe that secure, efficient, and customized communication is the cornerstone of success in today’s competitive landscape.

Using WebRTC guarantees quality of service (operator values), and can significantly reduce implementation, operation, and maintenance costs for enterprises. Moreover, it is not necessary to maintain high-cost toll-free numbers. WebRTC can be used to deliver video and audio calls to a range of web browsers on any device without the need to download and install any clients. Moreover, WebRTC supports contextual communications that allow the end users to stay on the website, navigating and making calls or sending messages, without the need to use a separate device or to leave the page they are looking at.

All communications using WebRTC are fully encrypted between peers. Unlike legacy PSTN systems, with WebRTC technology, encryption is still a major contributor to end-to-end security for consumers and enterprises.

  • eNCALL– Revolutionizing Contact Centers: eNCALL is a comprehensive platform designed to revolutionize contact centers of all sizes. Boasting an open architecture, IP-centric IVR, ACD, and a wide array of applications, eNCALL provides enterprises with robust GUI tools for call flows, campaign management, agent screen setting, and reporting. This innovative solution enables contact centers to engage customers through voice, video, SMS, email, web chat, and fax, ensuring seamless multichannel interactions. Transaction confirmations, secure payment processing, VIP customer care, support for digital, analog, and IP trunks, SIP compatibility for worldwide coverage, and web widgets and website plug-ins for improved customer involvement are just a few of the significant benefits.
  • eNCOM– Securing Mobile Business Communication: eNCOM offers a reliable solution for secure mobile corporate communication in a time when landlines and email are not as important as mobile communication. Mobile security is critical given the rise of smartphones, VoIP services, and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) guidelines. eNCOM offers IMSI authentication and domain authentication to establish secure connections. All data is encrypted using AES 128/256 algorithms, with additional security features such as message hiding, audit logs, and selective recording management. eNCOM, compatible with Android, iOS, and Windows Mobile, provides audio and video calls, conferencing, messaging, and more.
  • eNWEB-Browser-Enabled Secured Communication: eNWEB addresses the evolving challenges of secure communication in today’s age of information by providing end-to-end encrypted communication in response to the growing significance of data protection. It enables voice, video, messaging, and conferencing, supports private cloud or on-premises data storage, and connects with workplace apps with ease. Whether it is banking sector, an enterprise, a corporation, or government organization, eNWEB provides tailored solutions with customized distinctive features including application customization, security policy implementation, multitenant support, and browser accessibility.

NAM InfoCom is a Telecom services startup in the ever-changing communication landscape that is committed to delivering innovative solutions that empower businesses. The offerings epitomize security, efficiency, and customization, reflecting the core values of NAM Info Inc. Discover the future of communication with NAM InfoCom – secure, efficient, and customized to for your unique needs.

NAM Info Inc is a distinguished technology-driven company renowned for its dedication to innovation and excellence. With a diverse portfolio of services, NAM Info Inc consistently delivers technology solutions that drive business growth and transformation.

For more information about NAM InfoCom and its groundbreaking products, please visit our website https://www.naminfocom.com/For more information about NAM Info Inc. and its services, please visit our website https://www.nam-it.com/

Indian Americans Overwhelmingly Support Tom Suozzi

New York is gearing up for early voting in the New York District 3 Congressional special election scheduled for February 13, with the early voting period set from February 3 to February 11, 2024. The Indian community has thrown its support behind Tom Suozzi, a Democrat and long-time congressman from the district.

The special election for his seat has kicked off a season of intense congressional races in New York as Democrats seek to flip a handful of seats in the state and retake control of the House. Suozzi – who previously held Santos’ seat before leaving Congress to run for governor last year – has a lot going for him: name recognition, close relationships with the Democratic establishment.

Suozzi represented the congressional district – one of the nation’s wealthiest – for three terms from 2016 to 2022. In June 2016, Suozzi won a five-way Democratic primary before going on to defeat Republican state Sen. Jack Martins in the general election. Two years later, he defeated Republican nominee Dan DeBono to win reelection. In June 2020, he won a three-way Democratic primary and then went on to defeat Republican nominee Santos by more than 12 points in the general election. Last year, Suozzi gave up his seat in order to run for governor, which cost him an influential spot on the House Ways and Means Committee.

The special election was triggered by the expulsion of George Santos from Congress due to dishonesty. His opponent, Masi Melesa Philip, is the Nasa County Legislator, but chances of success for the opposition seem slim.

A strong advocate for the Indian community, Suozzi has garnered support from notable figures like State Rep. Jennifer Rajkumar, Sanjeev Jindal, Satnam Prahar, Koshi Thomas, and others who participated in a recent meeting in support of Suozzi.

Suozzi, an attorney and CPA, served as the former Nassau County Executive and Glen Cove Mayor. Over his 30 years of public service, he has championed causes such as environmental protection, gun safety, reproductive freedom, and immigration. His track record also includes advocacy for veterans, affordable health care, and fiscal responsibility.

If Suozzi emerges victorious in the special election, the Republican majority in the House will be reduced to 7 seats. Democratic leaders emphasize Suozzi’s background in securing life in Long Island and Queens in a statement.

Highlighting his extensive experience as an attorney and in executive and political roles, Suozzi pointed to his achievements as mayor, where he improved the city’s healthcare system, revitalized downtown businesses, and spearheaded a $100 million cleanup effort. As Nassau County executive, he reduced crime and led a $150 million environmental program.

While in Congress, Suozzi coined his famous mantra “no SALT, no deal” and brought together a coalition of lawmakers from New York, New Jersey, California and Illinois to demand changes to the SALT cap – which limits the amount of state taxes that taxpayers can deduct from their federal tax bill. He fought to either remove or increase the $10,000 cap on state and local tax deductions in high-tax states, pledging to oppose any sweeping tax measures that didn’t include changes to the SALT cap.

Suozzi’s commitment to fighting corruption is evident through initiatives like ‘Fix Albany,’ and he played a key role in passing the statewide Medicaid cap. As chairman of the New York State Property Tax Relief Commission, he worked for the people. In Congress, Suozzi fought to restore the SALT tax cut, negotiated a bipartisan infrastructure bill benefiting New York, and provided substantial aid to the state’s hospitals, small businesses, and residents during the Covid-19 pandemic as Vice Chair of the Problem Solvers Caucus.

In 2016, Tom Suozzi, then a candidate for election to the US Congress, had announced that if elected, he would join the Congressional Caucus on India and Indian Americans. Soon after his election, he kept the promise by joining the influential Caucus.

Suozzi, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee had announced, “As part of the India Caucus and as a Representative and friend of so many Indian Americans, I hope to play a special role in enhancing the relationship between our two countries. India and the United States share a special bond based on the shared values of democracy, the rule of law and belief in the intrinsic value of every human being. It is essential that during these times of globalization and accelerating technology, as well as threats from common enemies, that the United States and India strengthen our bonds of friendship and collaboration.”

On June 3rd, 2016, the Indian American Voters Forum had honored Congressman Suozzi at a special reception held after he enrolled himself in the India Caucus, in Long Island, New York.

As a congressman, Suozzi has closely aligned himself with the Indian American community. In 2021, for instance, he had sent Holi greetings to Indian-Americans, stating that the festival of colors sends renewed opportunity to celebrate peace, friendship and opportunity.

On December 19, he unveiled a 10-point plan to help restore sanity to Washington and get things done. The intention of Suozzi rolling out his plan is to demonstrate his belief that Congress needs to move beyond petty, partisan, and performative finger-pointing and focus on working across the aisle to get things done for the people he serves.

The plan  details Suozzi’s blueprint to:
1. Lower the Cost of Living, Repeal the SALT Cap, and Further Reduce Prescription Drug Prices
2. Address the Immigration Crisis by Passing the Tom Suozzi-Peter King Compromise
3. Protect the Long Island Sound, Provide Clean Drinking Water, and Address Climate Change
4. Improve Public Safety and Get Guns off the Streets
5. Stand Up to Extreme Attacks on Reproductive Freedom
6. Support Israel and Ukraine
7. Never Forget the Vet
8. Expand Affordable Health Care and Long-Term Care, and Protect Social Security and Medicare
9. Defend Democracy
10. “No Wrong Door”: Comprehensive, Wraparound Social Services for K-12 Students

Suozzi has a long record of working with Democrats and Republicans to tackle the problems that the people of Nassau and Queens face. Suozzi’s 10-Point Plan is in sharp contrast to his opponent Mazi Pilip’s refusing to answer reporter’s questions about her positions on the issues.
“Throughout my career, I have always prioritized delivering results for the people over petty partisan politics,” said Suozzi.

“The growing influence of the far right and far left has led to gridlock in Congress. My 10-point plan is a blueprint to address the real concerns people face and my intention to work with anyone of goodwill who has the same objective of actually addressing challenging problems and working together to come up with a solution.”

New Yorkers Celebrate Inauguration Of Ram Mandir With Car Rally

Being thousands of miles away from Ayodhya, where a monumental Temple in honor of Lord Ram was inaugurated this month, Indian Americans living in the United States and other countries celebrated this historic occasion, showcasing their unbridled enthusiasm and reverence to Lord Ram.

image1Braving the sub-zero temperatures, hundreds of enthusiastic Non-Resident Indians filled the streets of New York with a Car Rally on January 21st, 2024. Devotion to Lord Ram filled up the air in New York as over 150 cars drove through the busy streets starting in Hicksville, NY, while thousands of devotees gathered to celebrate and show their devotion and solidarity to Ram Mandir’s consecration in Ayodhya.

The car rally was organized by the ASA MAI Hindu Temple in New York as a way of expressing gratitude and joy for welcoming Lord Sri Ram to the newly constructed Temple that has been awaited for almost 500+ years.

Starting the car rally from Patel Brothers in Hicksville in Long Island, New York,  a hamlet within the Town of Oyster Bay in Nassau County on Long Island, in New York, with a large Indian American population, the car rally halted midway at a Gurudwara in Hicksville. Dr Raj Bhayani said, “The Hindu, Sikh, Jains and Buddhist communities have all come together to celebrate this historic moment.”\

Floats that were part of the rally had DJ which played Bhajans devoted to Lord Ram, while others played videos on large screens from the epic TV seria, Ramayana, and other floats displayed images of the Rama Mandir.

Indian Americans who were part of the rally wore the saffron scarf with Hanuman and Rama pictures in them, with the bitter cold conditions not dampen the enthusiasm and the celebratory mood.

In addition to the cars, the floats and the LED trucks with children dressed as Ramayana characters such as Rama,image0 Sita, Laxman, and Hanuman,  brought the experience and excitement to the rally. Each car was adorned with saffron-colored flags. The huge lineup of cars finally reached the beautiful AsaMai temple in Hicksville. LED Truck displayed Ramayana and float carried the banners celebrating Ram Mandir. The entire event was telecast live on AASTHA TV AND radio Zindagi.

Dr. Raj Bhayani, Mukesh Modi, Dr. Dipak Nandi, Mohan Wanchoo, Naveen Shah, Chintu Patel, Gary Sikka, and Dr Neeta Jain were among others who had organized the cart rally. The committee comprised of Sunil Hali, Gobind Bhatija, Pradeep Tandon, Dr Urmilesh Arya, Vimal Goyal, Eric Kumar, Kanak Goliya, Kishore Malik, Harahad Bhai Patel, Vibhuti Jha, Mohinder Taneja, Dr Satish Anand, Dr Inderpal Chhabra, and Ajay Patel.

Prof. Bellamkonda Kishore Bestowed With Hind Rattan Award In New Delhi

Prof. Bellamkonda Kishore, M.D., Ph.D., MBA, an academician, innovator, and entrepreneur of Salt Lake City, Utah was honored with the prestigious Hind Rattan (Jewel of India) award during a solemn ceremony at the Constitution Club, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi, India, on the eve of the Republic Day of India, January 25, 2024.

Dr Kishore 2Described as the second highest award given to the Indian diaspora, The ‘Hind Rattan Award’ is given to outstanding Indians by the NRI Welfare Society of India, New Delhi. In conjunction with the national Pravasi Bharatiya award, the highest one (given by the Government of India), the Hindu Rattan award is granted at the society’s annual Congress on the eve of India’s Republic Day. The Hindu Rattan award ceremony is attended by the members of the Prime Minister’s Office, Government officials, Judges and advocates of the Supreme Court of India, international diplomats, and celebrities.

Nearly two dozen of these awards are given annually to people chosen from the several millions of Indian diaspora members for keeping the flag of India high. Most recipients are professionals working in the academics or science and technology industry and who have made an impact in their fields at the international level.

Dr. Kishore is an academician and innovator who turned to entrepreneurship recently. His academic life withDr Kishore 3 research, teaching and mentoring in the field of medicine spans 40 years in Asia (India & Japan), Europe, and the United States, including the Intramural Research Program of the US National Institutes of Health, and the US Department of Veterans Affairs. During this period, Dr. Kishore did impactful research with seminal discoveries in kidney diseases, obesity, and related conditions, and obtained patents for the development of novel therapies. In recognition of his innovative work in academics, Dr. Kishore has been inducted as the Senior Member of the National Academy of Inventors, Washington DC.He has been inducted as a Fellow by professional organizations such as the American Society of Nephrology (FASN), Royal Society of Biology (FRSB), American Physiological Society (FAPS), American Heart Association (FAHA), the International Society of Nephrology (FISN).

In September 2023, Dr. Kishore received Nelson Mandela Leadership Award from the NRI Welfare Society of India. Founded on the life and principles of the Nobel Laureate in Peace, Nelson Mandela, who emphasized that education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world – the NRI Welfare Society felicitates those who matter from various fields for their outstanding services, achievements, and contributions.

Dr. Kishore is also a decorated editor of medical journals, being the Founding Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (JAAPI), and recipient of Outstanding Editor Award from the Frontiers in Renal Physiology and Pathophysiology, a Switzerland-based peer-reviewed journal.

Dr KIshore 4

After directing an internationally recognized kidney research program as a Principal Investigator at the US Department of Veterans Affairs Salt Lake City Health Care System for about 20 years, where he received a Superior Performance Award and News Release local radio broadcast of his research, in May 2020 Dr. Kishore moved out to build ePurines, Inc., a startup drug development company focused on developing innovative purinergic signaling-based therapies for obesity, metabolic syndrome, and kidney and liver disease. Currently, he is an Adjunct Professor of Medicine (Nephrology)  at the University of Utah Health, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Dr. Kishore believes that Passion, Perseverance, and Patience (3Ps) are the only ingredients anyone needs, despite his/her status at the start of career or life. If these three are there, everything will fall in place one day or another. It is just a question of time. Dr. Kishore says that there are still plenty of opportunities to grow in this world and do meaningful work, provided we prepare by changing our attitude and recognize and follow our priorities in life whether they are pleasant to us or not. He says that people fail often not because they are not smart or intelligent, but because they chose wrong priorities in life and pursue them without thinking where they will lead them.

Dr. Kishore adds, a purpose-driven life is far more superior than a success-driven life. Because, a purpose-drive life expands our consciousness and horizons, whereas success-driven life narrows our consciousness and options. By putting together his philosophy and experience in life, Dr. Kishore has written and published two books Tamasoma Jyothirgamaya and Life is Creating Yourself to benefit aspiring students and youth seeking direction and guidance in life beyond the academics. These books are available freely to download as PDF copies by clicking on the hyperlinks. Dr. Kishore considers that academics only prepare us to earn livelihood, but not teach us how to lead our lives. He hopes that his books will provide much needed insights to the youth to shape their lives and thus lead purposeful lives.

Dr. Kishore is a freelance writer and composer in Telugu ad English. His recent poetical tribute, Pandemic Gitanjali on COVID-19 aptly reflects his unique skills as a writer and thoughtful leader.

Dr. Kishore has been active in non-profit and service organizations both locally and at the national level. He received accolades and awards from organizations, such as AAPI, NATA, TANA among others. Please visit his website for more details: https://www.bkkishore.online/

India Celebrates Republic Day 2024

India celebrated its 75th Republic Day today, with President Droupadi Murmu leading the parade and French President Emmanuel Macron as the chief guest on January 26th, 2024 in India’s capital, New Delhi.

The day marks the anniversary of India officially adopting its constitution, making it a sovereign republic. The parade, held in the capital, Delhi, went through the avenue of Kartavya Path (Path of Duty), formerly known as the Rajpath, which connects many important landmarks in the city. It culminated at the Red Fort, a 7th Century monument, about 7km (4.3 miles away).

The day celebrated Nari Shakti (women power), among others, and was marked by a series of firsts, from an all-women tri-service contingent to the reinstatement of the parade buggy.

Part of the parade is a display of the country’s cultural heritage as well as its military might. This year, President Murmu and her French counterpart Macron arrived at the Kartavya Path in New Delhi in a ‘traditional buggy’. For the first time, a French army contingent marched alongside counterparts from the Indian army, navy, air force, and paramilitary troops.

The themes for the parade were ‘Viksit Bharat’ (developed India) and ‘Bharat – Loktantra Ki Matruka’ or India – the mother of democracy.

India’s Republic Day, observed annually on January 26, marks a significant moment in the nation’s history. This day is not only about extravagant parades and tributes to the armed forces but is also a celebration of the finalization of the Indian Constitution. Without this foundational document, India wouldn’t have achieved the greatness it embodies today.

Republic day 5After gaining independence on August 15, 1947, India remained under the British Commonwealth, with the UK’s monarch as its head of state.

But the leaders of India’s independence movement, including Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru, believed the country should be a sovereign, democratic republic. After Mr Nehru became the first prime minister of an independent India, his government began to draft a constitution.

The constitution was officially adopted on January 26, 1950.

Interesting facts about India’s Republic Day

As the 75th anniversary of India’s Republic Day approaches, the country gets ready to commemorate this historic day by showcasing the country’s military strength, rich cultural diversity, unity, achievement and progress.

Going back in time, the Indian constitution went into effect on January 26, 1950, and history continued to be written. The Constitution of India is crucial for citizens to follow as it acts as a legal and political structure, and also as a sign of democracy, justice, and individual rights.

Let us examine some fascinating facts about this auspicious day:
Dr. B.N. Rau, an Indian civil servant and constitutional adviser, was the first to draft India’s constitution. Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar is known as the father of the Indian constitution.

The Drafting Committee which was established by the Constituent Assembly on August 29, 1947, was led by Ambedkar. The Indian Constitution is recognized as the world’s longest-written constitution.

The Republic Day parade is the centre of attention, drawing large crowds of spectators eager to see the amazing demonstration of India’s military prowess, cultural variety, and accomplishments.On January 26, 1950, India’s first President, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, unfurled the country’s flag.The inaugural Republic Day parade was held in 1950 at Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium in New Delhi, which had previously been known as Irwin Amphitheatre.The National Anthem, “Jana Gana Mana,” was originally composed as Bharoto Bhagyo Bidhata in Bengali by Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore on 11 December 1911.

On January 24, 1950, only the first stanza of the hymn Bharoto Bhagyo Bidhata was adopted as India’s National Anthem, which is sung during Republic Day celebrations.With the themes of ‘Viksit Bharat’ and ‘Bharat – Loktantra ki Matruka’, the 75th Republic Day Parade at Kartavya Path on January 26, 2024 will be women-centric.As a first, the 2024 parade is to be heralded by 100 women artists with Indian musical instruments; 16 States/UTs and nine Ministries/Organisations tableaux. (IANS)

AAPI’s Global Healthcare Summit In Manipal Ends, Giving Delegates A Memorable Experience In Scientific Learning And Authentic Karnataka Culture

(Manipal India – Jan. 8th, 2023) The focus of the 17th Annual Global Healthcare Summit by The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) held in Delhi and Manipal’s has been sharing of knowledge and expertise on The Future of Healthcare and Artificial Intelligence, providing hundreds of delegates from abroad and India to interact and learn from one another about the trends in modern technology in healthcare and best practices that can help physicians to provide the best and affordable healthcare to the patients.

The highly acclaimed annual Summit, organized by AAPI in collaboration with AIIMS, Kasturba Medical College in Manipal, the Indian Medical Association, and the Government of the State of Karnataka and the Global Association of Indian Medical Students (GAIMS) was inaugurated with the lighting of the traditional lamp in Manipal, setting the stage for the convergence of profound medical discourse and cultural celebration on January 5th, 2024.

Future of Healthcare and Artificial Intelligence was echoed in every scientific presentation provided by the esteemed speakers from around the world. The multidisciplinary CME conference during the GHS allowed specialists and primary care physicians to interact in an academic forum. World-renowned speakers discussed gaps between current and best practices on a wide-ranging topics during the CME sessions.

“It’s a well-known fact that physicians of Indian origin excel in their respective areas of work and continue to play key roles in patient care, administration, academics and medical research. In order to cater to its diversity of medical specialties, AAPI continues to use a multi-disciplinary conference format. The essence of AAPI is educational,” Dr. Anjana Samadder, president of AAPI, while describing the objectives of CME said. Dr. Samadder expressed AAPI’s commitment to collaborating with prestigious institutes like AIIMS and MAHE.

Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Chair of GHS highlighted the significant Indian involvement in the American health sector and the aim of the global health conference, discussing innovative technologies’ relevance. Stressing the growing focus on AI technology globally, the conference has aimed to explore its possibilities in healthcare, he added.

According to Dr. Shivangi, “The objective of the GHS has translated into numerous Continuing Medical Education (CME) and non-CME seminars by experts in their fields. CMEs during GHS provided comprehensive and current reviews and guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of various diseases with the objective of reducing morbidity and mortality and achieve cost effective quality care outcomes. At the end of the GHS, it is expected that attendees have gained an understanding of the causation, diagnosis and the best clinical practices for the management of the diverse groups of diseases.”

AAPI 2024 Collage 7The AAPI Medical Symposium continued its legacy of delivering engaging and informative sessions, bringing together medical professionals and experts to explore various facets of healthcare. On January 5th, CME Sessions in Manipal was Inaugurated by Indian Medical Association National President, Dr. R .V. Ashokan.

The inaugural CME session was led by Dr. Amit Chakrabarty MD, MS (PGI), FRCS (Edin), FICS, Consultant Urologist USA Chairman, Poplar Bluff Urology PC, who presented his insights on: PSA Testing – Quandaries and Conundrums, Dr Tom Devasia’s presentation focused on: Intracoronary imaging in complex coronary interventions: Indian trends with a focus on Manipal, Experience. “SGLT2-I & HFrEF” was the topic presented by Dr. Dyanand Naik MD FACC, Associate Prof. at Columbia University, New York.

Comparison of USA & India Zoonotic Diseases was eloquently presented by Dr. Jois Krishnamurthy DVM, MVSc,MS, M(ASCP), DM – Retired Veterinary Medical Officer & Director – U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington D. C. Dr. Bantwal Suresh Baliga MD, MRCP(UK) Associate, Prof. Mercer School of Medicine, Mercer University, GA USA had his session on Innovative AI management of Diabetes Mellitius. Dr Karthik Udupa’s session was about Principles of Immunotherapy & its application in clinical practice.

Dr. Unnikrishnan opened the 2nd day of the CME with his eloquent presentation on: Role of Artificial Intelligence in achieving sustainable development goals.  Dr. Srinivasan Vijayakumar, Cancer Care Advisors & Consultants LLC University of Mississippi Medical Center, USA presented on Precision population medicine in cancer care: Potential benefits for cancer care in India.

Dr. Yogeesh Kamath’s focus during his session was on AI in the prevention & treatment of arthritis for young and old. Dr. Sanjay Agarwal MD Pulmonary & Critical Care did his presentation on Advanced Technology and AI focused Care in OBA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea) & Lung Cancer. A session on Management of Snake Bite by Dr. Chakrapan provided practical solutions to a common problem faced by many.

Insights into Impact of Climate Change on Health Systems was offered by Dr. Vikas Kapil, Chief Medical Officer, Associate Director of Science, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Georgia, USA.

Dr. Krishan Kumar MD FAAP FACEP FAEMS, Prof. Pediatrics & Emergency Medicine, NY College New York, USA educated the delegates on: Emergency Medicine and updates – Weapons of Mass Destruction Relevant to the Current World Order. The final session of GHS 20024 was by Dr. Vani Vijaykumar MD who had her presentation focused on: Transthyretin Cardiac Amyloidosis (ATTR-CA) and Alzheimer Disease & Beyond oncology into Autoimmune Diseases- FDG PETCT role in Systemic Vasculitidis.

AAPI 2024 Collage 9The Lifetime Achievement Award was conferred upon Dr. Ramdas Pai, Chancellor of Manipal Education Institute (MAHE). Dr. Ranjan Pai and Mrs. Vasanthi Pai accepted the honor on his behalf, and lauded Dr. Ramdas Pai’s achievements and invited all attending doctors to MAHE. Prominent personalities present at the event included Manipal Education and Medical Group (MEMG) Dr. Ranjan Pai, Dr. H S Ballal Pro Chancellor, MAHE, and Lt Gen (Dr) M D Venkatesh, Chair, GHS, India.

Dr. Arathi Krishna, Deputy Chairman, NRI Forum, Government of Karnataka, while inaugurating the program expressed her happiness about the health summit being organized in Karnataka. She affirmed the government’s commitment to supporting technological and medical sector development.

On January 4th, entertainment by Manipal Cultural Committee was breathtaking, showcasing the rich classical and folk traditions of southern India. This was followed by Live Music & Entertainment, presented by US delegate Dr. Amit Chakrabarty, Vice President of AAPI.

Saturday, January 5, 2024 began with a visit to Udupi Sri Krishna Temple, seeking blessings on all by the delegates. A visit to the Hastha Shilpa Heritage Village Museum Tour was a unique experience appreciated by all participants. Tour of Manipal University provided participants to see and experience the campus, that stands among the best in the world.

Kavyabhinaya performance om January 5th by Manasi Sudhir, led by Kantara, a fame actress & Team was mesmerizing.  The delegates enjoyed cultural programs featuring a captivating Kavybhinaya performance by Manasi Sudhir and team, renowned for their contributions to the show “Kantara.” The night ended with a Musical Extravaganza by the highly acclaimed Anirudh Shastry. The grand finale on Saturday night was by Dr. Mohan Alva, the Cultural Ambassador of India, a unique NUDISIRI Cultural Gala Show, cherished by one and all.

Authentic and delicious Mangalore dishes served on traditional banana leaf was another memorable experience for all delegates during GHS in Manipal. Welcome Dinner by Manipal (MAHE) was served on January 4th.

AAPI 2024 Collage 10The popular CEO Forum had leaders in both the corporate and healthcare field, including, Ganesh Nayak, Executive Director, Zydus Lifesciences Ltd., Jagadish Tande, Prof. Madhav Das Nalapat, Dr. Vijay Gopal, Cardiologist, and Mr. Jagadish K M, CEO of KMF. The CEO Forum chaired by Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Chair of GHS 2024. The CEO Forum was moderated by Dr. Subra Bhat, who was a lead organizer og GHE Manipal along with his wife, Dr. Anu Bhat.

The much-anticipated Women’s Forum had eminent successful women leaders, including: Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of AAPI;  Dr. Arathi Krishna, Deputy Chairperson, NRI Forum of Karnataka, Guest of Honor; Smt. Lakshmi R. Hebbalkar, Princess of Travancore Lakshmi Bayi Nalapat; and Dr. Annapurna Bhat. Co-Chair of Women’s Forum. The Forum was eloquently moderated by Dr. Udaya Shivangi, Chair of AAPI’s Women’s Forum and a key organizer of the GHS 2024 in Manipal.

Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Chair of GHS 2024 expressed his gratitude to all who have been instrumental in organizing the highly successful GHS in Manipal, particularly Dr. Subra Bhat, Dr. Annapurna Bhat, Dr. Udaya Shivangi, Dr. Ballal, Dr. Venkatesh, Dr. Rohit Singh, Dr, Sharat Kumar, Dr. Raj Alappan, Dr. Bantwal S. Baliga, Dr. Unnikrishnan, and Dr, Padmaraj Hegde.

India is making tremendous progress in the healthcare sector and is building modern medical facilities throughout the country. Physicians of Indian origin have earned a name for themselves in the medical field and India is now being touted as a medical tourism hub. With a rise in population, there is an urgent need to create additional health infrastructure, which entails a higher level of investment in the Indian healthcare market in the coming years.

It’s in this context, the groundbreaking AAPI Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) from January 1-6th, 2024 in Delhi and Manipal, Karnataka, organized with participation from some of the world’s most well-known physicians, and industry leaders becomes very critical and significant. This international healthcare summit is a progressive transformation from the first Indo-US Healthcare Summit launched by AAPI USA in 2007.

AAPI is an umbrella organization which has nearly 160 local chapters, specialty societies and alumni organizations. For over 41 years, Indian physicians have made significant contributions to health care in this country, not only practicing in inner cities, rural areas and peripheral communities but also at the top medical schools and other academic centers. Almost 10%-12% of medical students entering US schools are of Indian origin. Headquartered in Oak Brook, Illinois, AAPI represents the interests of over nearly 200,000 physicians, medical students and residents of Indian heritage in the United States. It is the largest ethnic medical organization in the nation. For more details and registration for the convention, please visit:  www.aapiconvention.org and www.aapiusa.org

AAPI Confers Lifetime Achievement Award to Dr. Ramdas Pai, Chair of MAHE During GHS in Manipal

(Manipal, Karnataka — January 6, 2024) During the 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit 2024 by the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) being held in Manipal, Karnataka, Dr. Ramdas Pai, Chancellor of Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) was conferred with the Lifetime Achievement Award for his visionary leadership and dedication to quality education in the nation.

His son Ranjan Pai, an educationist and healthcare baron, who manages the Manipal Group, along with his mother Mrs. Vasanthi Pai, received the award from Dr. Aarti Krishna, Deputy Chair of non-Residents Indian Forum, Karnataka, who was the chief guest at the inaugural ceremony of the GHS – Manipal on January 5, 2024. AAPI’s 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) 2024 being held at the Kasturba Medical College, Manipal in Karnataka from January 4th to 6th, 2023.

AAPI 2024 Collage 7In her remarks, Mrs. Vasanthi Pai said, “Dr Ramdas M Pai has always set a high bar for the institutions he has set up. She shared with the audience the high regards and appreciation Dr. Pai has for AAPI and its valuable services in promoting healthcare and exchange of knowledge and advocacy of policy initiatives in the US.

Recipient of numerous awards, Dr. Pai was honored with the prestigious awards such as Padma Bhushan from the Government of India, ‘Datuk’ Award from the Government of Melaka, Malaysia and the Golden Peacock Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his contribution in the field of education and healthcare.

In her address, Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) said, “I extend my warmest greetings to each and every one of you attending this prestigious 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit in New Delhi and Manipal. As the president of AAPI, I’m honored to welcome a diverse gathering of experts, policymakers, healthcare professionals, and advocates dedicate dedicated to advancing global health. I want to thank was speakers and sponsors for their contributions.”

GHS is being organized by AAPI in collaboration with AIIMS, Kasturba Medical College in Manipal, the Indian Medical Association, and the Government of the State of Karnataka and the Global Association of Indian Medical Students (GAIMS),

Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Chair of GHS 2024 said, “With the rapidly changing healthcare landscape, AAPI has rightly chosen to focus on the Future of Healthcare and Artificial Intelligence during the GHS 2024, and is being organized in collaboration with AIIMs, and University of Manipal, which are in the league of the best academic centers. With the invention of Artificial Intelligence, we want to explore its impact on Medicine and Healthcare in the 21st century.”

In her keynote address, Dr. Aarti Krishna extended her felicitations to AAPI and all the participants at the Global Healthcare Summit in Manipal. She appreciated the special focus being given to the future of healthcare and artificial intelligence, as well as holding a special segment for women. She recalled her long association with AAPI and its leaders during her tenure in Washington DC where she had interacted with several AAPI leaders. She highlighted how “Karnataka has been in the forefront and now the is the foremost state of India in the healthcare sector and has taken numerous and tremendous strides to raise high quality health care to the people of the state. In fact, it has become the hub of healthcare for Indians all over India. I’m confident that initiatives taken up during the GHS 2924 will be mutually beneficial to all.”

AAPI 2024 Collage 8Dr. Krishna said, “AAPI has been a pioneering institution in the United States to support and nurture the Indian American physicians, the pursuit of excellence in professionalism patient care, teaching and research. They steadfastly pursue collective advocacy for furthering the costs of medicine, medical profession, and knowledge of ethics and legislative and regulatory changes in the profession. I’m delighted that AAPI has partnered with India to share the knowledge and progress in both our countries in the field as well as contributing to the health sector in India.”

In a message sent by the honorable Chief Minister of Karnataka Shree Siddaramaiah, he extended his heartfelt greetings to all the participants who are attending the GHS conference in Karnataka. “Karnataka takes immense pride in being at the forefront of health care, and hosting this conference is a testament to our commitment to advancing the field as we bring together minds that have dedicated themselves to the noble cost of healthcare, I am confident that this conference will serve as a dynamic platform for brainstorming and exchanging ideas.”

Lt. Gen. Dr. Venkatesh, Chair of GHS, India described the great achievements of Manipal Academy as one of the most pioneering institutes in the world, among the top six universities in the country, which effectively means that it is number one, multidisciplinary private university in the country. “I think this is a testament to our commitments, more importantly, as the world is grappling with environmental issues, and global warming, we focus on sustainability, targeting our commitment to unwavering support for environment. And today, we are ranked as the number one university in terms of environmental friendliness, and being a green campus,”

Dr. H S Ballal, MAHE Pro Vice Chancellor in his address said, “I’m very happy that AAPI is hosting a scientific conference here in Manipal, today and tomorrow. Congratulations to the more than 100 delegates with their families from the US, who are participating in this conference. Your presence contributes to the richness and diversity to our vibrant community and we are very delighted to have you here.”

The 2 days long sessions in Manipal is packed with top end CMEs delivered by several prominent physicians and academicians who are participating at the GHS and are leading and chairing various academic sessions that are being organized during the summit.

AAPI 2024 Collage 10The awesome hospitality and warmth of the local organizing committee, cultural extravaganza depicting the cultural traditions of southern India, delicious Karnataka special cusine, served on banana leaves and the visits to the local education centers, Temples and cultural sites are added attractions that made the Summit in Manipal unique.

Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Chair of GHS 2024 expressed his gratitude to all who have been instrum ental in organizing the highly successful GHS in Manipal, particularly Dr. Subra Bghat, Dr. Annapurna Bhat, Dr. Udaya Shivangi, Dr. Ballal, Dr. Venkatesh, Dr. Rohit Singh, Dr, Sharat Kumar, Dr. Raj Alappan, Dr. Bantwal S. Baliga, Dr. Unnikrishnan, and Dr, Padmaraj Hegde.

India is making tremendous progress in the healthcare sector and is building modern medical facilities throughout the country. Physicians of Indian origin have earned a name for themselves in the medical field and India is now being touted as a medical tourism hub. With a rise in population, there is an urgent need to create additional health infrastructure, which entails a higher level of investment in the Indian healthcare market in the coming years.

It’s in this context, the groundbreaking AAPI Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) from January 1-6th, 2024 in Delhi and Manipal, Karnataka, being organized with participation from some of the world’s most well known physicians, and industry leaders becomes very critical and significant. This international healthcare summit is a progressive transformation from the first Indo-US Healthcare Summit launched by AAPI USA in 2007.

Providing a forum for innovative opportunities for learning, networking and giving back to our motherland that have now enabled us to plan ahead and prepare for an outstanding event with very prominent and talented physicians and surgeons from abroad, in addition to the hundreds of physicians from India, who are very passionate about serving their homeland, mother India. For more details, please visit: www.aapiusa.org/

AAPI Signs MoU with AIIMS for Collaboration in Research, Student Exchange, and Academics

(New Delhi, India – January 5th, 2024) The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi for collaboration in the areas of Research, Education and Student Exchange for a period of five years during the ongoing 17th edition of AAPI’s Annual Global Healthcare Summit in New Delhi and Manipal Karnataka.

MOU 2The collaboration between the AIIMS and AAPI signed at AIIMS in the presence of representatives from AAPI and AIIMS on January 3rd, 2024, marks a significant initiative to advance research, academia, and the exchange of knowledge, ultimately aiming to enhance patient care in India and has been hailed as a major step forward.

On behalf of AAPI, Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of AAPI signed the MoU, while Dr, M. Srinivasan, Director of AIIMS signed the MoU on behalf of AIIMS marking a new beginning in global collaboration in exchange of knowledge and medical students. Others who were present at the Signing Ceremony included, Dr. Rakesh Garg, Additional Professor in Onco-Anesthesia and Palliative Medicine at Delhi-AIIMS, Dr. Shubham Anand, Chair of GAIMS,  Dr. Ajeeth Kothari and Dr. Gautam Samadder, both past Presidents of AAPI, Dr. Sumul Raval, Secretary of AAPI, Dr. Bhavani Srinivasan, Chair of AAPI Publications, Dr. Inderpal Chabra, President of AAPI QLI, and Dr. Avinash Gupta, a senior leader of AAPI and President of Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) in NY/NJ/CT.

“The meeting today is a great beginning to facilitate collaborative efforts between India and the United States,” said Dr. Samadder. “The MoU between AAPI and AIIMS, India’s most premier Medical Education Institute has been signed for the purpose of furthering cooperation in education, student exchange, and research activities, affirming our intent to promote such academic collaborations and participate in various academic endeavors.”

In his address, Dr, Srinivasan said, “It is my pleasure that we are onboard with AAPI for its 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit. AIIMS New Delhi was established in 1956 to accomplish the trinity of mission, advanced medical education, cutting edge research, and quality patient care. I am certain that this collaboration will act as a platform for exchange of ideas and collaboration across the domains for cutting edge research and breakthrough in medical education. We look forward to meeting professionals, researchers, and experts in the field of healthcare and research from across the globe.”

The MOU envisages fulfilling of the objectives including that AAPI will offer administrative support to AIIMS by cooperation between AAPI and AIIMS and aims at revamping or initiating new fellowship programs at AIMS.

Under the Internship programs at AAPI, undergraduate and post graduate and PhD level students from AIIMS may visit universities/hospitals where AAPI members hold key positions for a period of two to eight weeks to attend Observership programs, specifically designed and offered or as a part of ongoing research at AAPI.

MOU 3Under the Joint Supervision Program, Doctoral level students from either side can be co supervised by faculty members from both the organizations.  AAPI members may permit its members to visit AIIMS for short durations, ranging from one week to one year to teach at AIIMS.

AAPI may invite faculty members from AIIMS to visit AAPI as visiting faculty members as per their designations for research and academic activities at institutions or hospitals where members hold key positions, for limited durations, on mutually agreeable terms.

Through the development and organization of short-term training and certificate courses by AAPI and enabling AIIMS faculty staff or students to take part in ongoing continuing education programs and courses of AAPI.

AAPI and AIIMs will collaborate for the development of new areas of research and extension of technical cooperation the new RP members for infrastructure development, management and upgradation of library and Teaching Research Laboratories

Dr. Rakesh Garg emphasized the importance of evidence-based medicine in the field of medical science. Dr. Garg highlighted the importance of understanding the motivations, findings, and limitations of ongoing studies, allowing for improvements in existing setups and delivering benefits to the broader community and population. He emphasized the efficiency gained through shared knowledge in research and clinical practices.

Featured & Cover MOU 1Dr. Sumul N. Raval, current Secretary of AAPI highlighted importance of the MoU said that this is the most successful outcomes from the GHS 2024 for the purpose of “learning from each other’s experiences, sharing vital insights and collaboration on future endeavors, mutual exchange of ideas, sharing of best practices that are critical for advancing medical education and assuring high standards for protecting public health will positively shape the medical education.”

AAPI hopes the excellence gained through long term vision, insight and hard work with both organizations and exchange of ideas and challenges will benefit the medical education system in India and help tens of thousands of medical graduates coming from India to have recognition in the US, said Dr. Samadder.

Since its inception over four decades ago, AAPI has been in the forefront advocating for medical school education reform and for the medical graduates from India to be treated on par with their counterparts in India. India is already leading the global pharmaceutical industry, and rebooting medical education will help India enter the league of leaders in healthcare around the world.

“The signing of MoU with AAIMS today is a great start, and I look forward to AAPI continuing to lead such efforts in the coming years benefiting the medical fraternity,” said Dr. Samadder. For more information on AAPI and its many initiatives, please visit: www.aapiusa.org

AAPI’s 17th Annual Global Healthcare Summit in New Delhi Concludes with Call to Bridge the Digital Gap In Healthcare Delivery

New Delhi (January 4, 2023): The 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit by the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) came to a close with a call and commitment to help bridge the Digital Gap in Healthcare delivery system in India with the effective utilization of modern technology.

The flagship conference with the theme, “Cutting Edge in Healthcare and Artificial Intelligence” held at the pioneering All India Medical Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and Le Meriden Hotel was attended by over a hundred delegates from around the world and over 250 physicians and medical students from several Medical Schools and Hospitals from across India was held in New Delhi from January 1st to 3rd, 2024.

AAPI 2024 Collage 5In her welcome address, Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) said, “I extend my warmest greetings to each and every one of you attending this prestigious 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit in New Delhi and Manipal. For the first time it is being held in two cities, in collaboration with prestigious institutions, such as AIIMS, New Delhi and MAHE in Manipal. As the president of AAPI, I’m honored to welcome a diverse gathering of experts, policymakers, healthcare professionals, and advocates dedicate dedicated to advancing global health. I want to thank was speakers and sponsors for their contributions.”

For the first time ever, AAPI is hosting the annual Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) in two cities in India, giving delegates, who are coming from the United States to participate and gain a unique perspective and experience India from the North to the South ,

AAPI’s 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) 2024 was held at the at the Le Meridien Hotel from January 1-3rd and will be held at the Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, MAHE in Karnataka from January 4th to 6th, 2023. The GHS was inaugurated at the prestigious Le Meridien Hotel in New Delhi with a memorable New Year’s Day Eve celebration on December 31st, 2023.

GHS is being organized by AAPI in collaboration with AAIMS, Kasturba Medical College in Manipal, the Indian Medical Association, and the Government of the State of Karnataka and the Global Association of Indian Medical Students (GAIMS),

Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Chair of GHS 2024 said, “With the rapidly changing healthcare landscape, AAPI has rightly chosen to focus on the future of Healthcare and Artificial Intelligence during the GHS 2024, and is being organized in collaboration with AIIMs, and University of Manipal, which are in the league of the best academic centers. With the invention of Artificial Intelligence, we want to explore its impact on Medicine and Healthcare in the 21st century.

The annual event of AAPI, GHS has contributed to ushering in new ways of providing healthcare to India’s 1.4 billion people, who live in the congested urban centers and in the rural/remote regions of the country. The 17th annual GHS will build on past initiatives and add several new programs, Dr. Samadder added.

AAPI, which has been leading efforts to help streamline medical education in India to meet the global standards, assembled a galaxy of medical regulatory organization leaders from India, the United Kingdom and the United States during the GHS on January 2, 2024.

Leaders of National Board of Examination in Medical Science (NBEMS) India, National Board of Examination in Medical Science (NBME) USA, and the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) were among the panelists that discussed and educated the aspiring medical students from some of the premium Medical Schools in India who had keenly participated at the panel discussion.
Dr. Lokesh Edara, BOT-Chair Elect, Dr. Sumul N. Raval, current Secretary of AAPI, and Dr. Shubam Anand, Chairman of Global Association of Indian Medical Students (GAIMS) led and coordinated the initiatives.

Dr. Peter Katsufrakis, President and CEO, NBME,USA, Dr Humayun Chaudhry, President and CEO of the Federation of State Medical Boards, Jeffrey D. Carter, MD (Missouri) Chair of the FSMB, Dr. Sarvam TerKonda (Past Chair, FSMB USA), Ms. Katie Templeton JD (Chair-Elect, FSMB,USA), and Prof. Hasmukh Shah, Recruitment and Training in UK were some of the others from the Medical education field, who were part of the distinguished panelists. Dr. Abhijat Sheth represented NMBE – India. FSMB was represented by Dr. Humayun Chaudhry, President and CEO of the Federation of State Medical Boards. Dr. Sheth presented the NBEMS mission and PG NEET examination, FMGE examination and more than 50 specialties for postgraduate and super specialties courses they are conducting and graduating.

AAPI Collage 2 (3)During GHS AAPI entered into a groundbreaking partnership with CLIRNET, India’s leading digital healthcare platform with the objective of running a Mentorship & Observership program jointly. While announcing the new initiative Dr. Samadder emphasized the imperative for healthcare professionals to stay at the forefront of innovation. She also highlighted that the collaboration between AAPI and CLIRNET marks a significant milestone in advancing clinical training in India.

AAPI in collaboration with WHEELS Foundation has announced a $10,000 award towards the Project – Kanya: Sanitary Napkin Machine. The announcement was made during a joint panel discussion held as part of the GHS on ‘Menstrual Health’ (under the banner of ‘Kanya Conference’). The Kanya Challenge Award seeks to catalyze groundbreaking advancements in menstrual hygiene for Indian women through the development and commercialization of absorbent materials made from indigenous Indian resources.

The Panel Session was led by Dr. Anajana Samadder, Dr. Sumul Rawal, Secretary, AAPI, Anitha Thampi (of MCup), Jayadeep Mandal: Aakar Innovations & Aakar Social Ventures, Prof Virendra Kumar Vijay (of IIT-Delhi’s UBA Program) speaking on UBA supporting Saukhyam: Dr. Meenakshi Bharat, a Gynecologist and Fertility specialist who is a green campaigner, an advocate for Clean India. Prof Satish Agnihotri: Professor, Centre for Technology Alternatives for Rural Areas (CTARA), IIT Bombay with messages from Dr. Raj Shah, Dr. Vriti Khurana and Ratan Agarwal.

In his keynote address, Dr. Anupam Sibal, Chair of GHS – Delhi highlighted the enormous accomplishments of India and Indian Americans across many spectrums. He pointed to the advances in Medical Education in India, particularly since its independence, “In the past seven to eight decades, we’ve made considerable progress in higher education, and this is just a snapshot of the area. We have 149 institutes of national importance, more than 1000 universities and more than 50,000 colleges. fourth highest number of doctoral graduates in the world, the fourth highest research output in the world. We produce 6.5 million graduates every year 1.5 million engineers, 300,000 MBAs and 100,000 graduates.:

In his address, M. Srinivasan, Director of AIIMS said, “It is my pleasure that we are onboard with AAPI for its 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit. AIIMS New Delhi was established in 1956 to accomplish the trinity of mission, advanced medical education, cutting edge research, and quality patient care. I am certain that this conference will act as a platform for exchange of ideas and collaboration across the domains for cutting edge research and breakthrough in medical education. We look forward to meeting professionals, researchers and experts in the field of healthcare and research from across the globe.”

Dr. Lokesh Edara, Chair of AAPI BOT said, “AAPI’s GHS is yet another way of continuing with our constant commitment towards making quality healthcare affordable and accessible to all the people of India. In addition, GHS 2024 focusses on promoting Healthcare Technology including Artificial Intelligence in the Healthcare arena.”

Several prominent physicians and academicians are participating at the GHS and are leading the keynote addresses and are chairing various academic sessions that are being organized during the summit. Latest Advances, CME, ELS, Discussions on Research Methodology, and Scientific Writing by Academic Experts are part of the summit.

AAPI Collage 4The CEO Forum addressed by eminent panelists that included, Air Marshal Sadhana Nair, Saurav Kasera, Sreeprasad Guduppa, Sudharshan Jain, Shenoy Robinson, Karthikeyan, IPS, and Suresh Samuel, in their eloquent addresses spoke on Equity, Ethics, and how to adapt to the changing landscape in the healthcare arena and make a positive and lasting impact, benefitting the physicians, industries and the larger population.

Physician Burnout and mitigating mental health issues among physicians was the major theme during the evening session, moderated by Dr. Shubham Anand, Dr. Inderpal Chadda, and Dr. Chanchal Pal. Distinguished panelists included: Dr. Sreenivasan, Director of AIIMS; Dr. Suresh Kumar, Director of LNJP Hospital; Dr. Subhash Giri, Director of LHMC; Dr. Ishwar Singh, Director of Indira Gandhi Hospital; Dr. Vinay Kumar, President, RDA, AIIMS; and Dr. Rohan Krishnan, Chairman, FAIMAR.

Dr. Bhavani Sreenivasan, Chair of AAPI Publications eloquently moderated the Women’s Forum on “Breaking Barriers and Shaping the Future of Women.” Air Marshal Dr. Sadhana Nair, Dr. Anita Ratnam, Dr. Damayante Karkare, Dr. Madhushree Katwal and Mrs. Geetha Athreya shared with the audience, quoting from their personal experiences about how they overcame challenges in life and became role models in their own way.

GHS was packed with day long workshops on various relevant topics, Trainings, Research Contest, Scientific Workshops and Panel Discussions on how modern technology is being used in the vast medical field. On New Years Day, participants went on a pilgrimage to Rishikesh, the holy shrine under the foothills of the Himalayas, seeking blessings from the Almighty.

Dr. Sumul Raval, Secretary of AAPI said, “Harnessing the power of Indian Doctors worldwide, the AAPI Global Healthcare Summit platform has evolved with the support of prominent global and Indian medical associations. AAPI’s mission is to make a positive and meaningful impact on the healthcare delivery system both in the US and in India.”

Healthcare in India is one of the largest sectors, in terms of revenue and employment. India is making significant improvements in its healthcare infrastructure and is building modern medical facilities throughout India. Doctors of Indian origin have made tremendous progress in the 21st century and India is now being touted as a medical tourism hub.

The Global Healthcare Summit has come a long way from the first Indo-US Healthcare Summit launched by AAPI USA in 2007. Since then, AAPI has organized 16 Indo – US/Global Healthcare Summits and developed strategic alliances with various organizations.

Highlighting the importance of the flagship annual GHS, Dr. Samadder said, “This summit serves as a powerful platform for knowledge exchange, collaboration, and the forging of meaningful partnerships. The work we do today paves the way for a healthcare landscape that is more efficient, accessible and affordable toward all individuals. For more details, please visit: www.aapiusa.org/

AAPI & WHEELS Global Announce $10,000 Award for Menstrual Health Project During Global Healthcare Summit in New Delhi

(New Delhi, India – January 3m 2024) Inspired by the physicians and engineers of Indian origin in the United States, the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) in collaboration with WHEELS Global Foundation has announced a $10,000 award towards the Project – Kanya: Sanitary Napkin Machine, during APPI’s 17th annual Global Health Summit held at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi on January 3rd, 2024.

The announcement was made during a joint panel discussion held as part of the GHS on ‘Menstrual Health’ (under the banner of ‘Kanya Conference’). The Kanya Challenge Award seeks to catalyze groundbreaking advancements in menstrual hygiene for Indian women through the development and commercialization of absorbent materials made from indigenous Indian resources.

“To accelerate the journey to a fully affordable, safe, accessible, and domestically self-reliant solution, AAPI & WHEELS are jointly announcing a $10,000 Award with the objective of using the funds to accelerate affordability and access – which when achieved gets us national scale penetration, said Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of AAPI.

The Kanya Challenge Award, Transforming Menstrual Hygiene through Indigenous Innovation will be given to the entity submitting “the best plan, using the funds, to achieve material acceleration of affordability and access of an environment-friendly imports-avoiding solution, with the submissions deadline marked for March 31st, 2024.”

WHEELS and AAPI teams will have a joint panel of experts to select the winning entry for the announcement at the appropriate forum soon after. The Project – Kanya is aimed at developing a high-performance, eco-friendly absorbent material for feminine hygiene products using locally sourced Indian materials; and, commercializing the product, achieving sales and use by 100,000 consumers with at least 50% satisfaction (based on surveys by 10% of users).

The Panel Session was led by Dr. Inderpal Chhabra, Dr. Anajana Samadder, President, AAPI, Dr. Sumul Rawal, Secretary, AAPI, Anitha Thampi (of MCup), Jayadeep Mandal: Aakar Innovations & Aakar Social Ventures, Prof Virendra Kumar Vijay (of IIT-Delhi’s UBA Program) speaking on UBA supporting Saukhyam: Dr. Meenakshi Bharat, a Gynecologist and Fertility specialist who is a green campaigner, an advocate for Clean India. Prof Satish Agnihotri: Professor, Centre for Technology Alternatives for Rural Areas (CTARA), IIT Bombay with messages from Dr. Raj Shah, Dr. Vriti Khurana Founder, Kanya Project and Ratan Agarwal, President of Wheels Global Foundation.

The panel discussion focused on the five compelling solutions we are bringing to the target beneficiaries – to not only address the unmet need for 46m rural girls and women but do it with environmentally friendly (sustainable) solutions that also eliminate India’s import bill.

The panel discussion focused on the innovations by NOBA Initiative for Menstrual Health, M-Cup by Anitha Thampi (IIT-B CTARA graduate) – supported by Prof Satish Agnihotri (IIT-B) and Prof Kannan’s Spoken Tutorials solution (to make it easy to communicate value-proposition to rural residents); Anandi Pads by Jayadeep Mandal, supported by WHEELS’ Yogesh and Arjun Malhotra, Saukhyam founded by IIT-Delhi alum Praveen Bist and Anju Bist – providing Banana fiber-based solution, and, Aashraya Seth providing a low-cost dispenser (Rs. 2,500) for schools along with education curriculum and reusable cloth-based pads.

“Kanya project” was first started by a 14-year-old girl Vriti in 2013, after she had visited a village in Telangana, deeply disturbed and saddened by the lack of support for young girls like herself. She raised funds in the US, collaborating with an Indian company “Aakaar” and had the first self-sustaining “sanitary napkin manufacturing machine” installed in Burgula, Telangana, India in 2018. Today, there are multiple companies that are working towards the same goals and we at WHEELS Global Foundation would like to take the issue of “Period Poverty” forward. (https://twitter.com/WHEELSGF/status/988154191460827136)

UNICEF reports that “in countries where menstrual hygiene is taboo, girls in puberty are typically absent for 20% of the school year”. Most girls drop out at around 11 to 12 years old and miss school not simply because they fear being teased by their classmates if they show stains from their period, but also because they are not educated about their periods, and their need for safe and clean facilities is not prioritized.

WHEELS’ objective is to drive a portfolio of solutions to address the problem at a national scale in the next 3-5 years so there is a right-fit solution to each segment – meeting affordability, accessibility, sustainability, and self-reliance for the country.

Physicians of Indian Origin in the United States are reputed to be leading health care providers, holding crucial positions in various hospitals and health care facilities around the nation and the world. Known to be a leading ethnic medical organization that represents nearly 100,000 physicians and fellows of Indian Origin in the US, and being their voice and providing a forum to its members to collectively work together to meet their diverse needs, AAPI members are proud to contribute to the wellbeing of their motherland India, and their adopted land, the United States. The convention is forum to network, share knowledge and thoughts, and thus, enrich one another, and rededicate for the health and wellbeing of all the peoples of the world. For more details, please visit: www.appiusa.org and wheelsglobal.org

AAPI’s Global Healthcare Summit Begins at AIIMS in New Delhi

New Delhi (January 2, 2023): The 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit by the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) began focusing on the theme, “Cutting Edge in Healthcare and Artificial Intelligence” at the pioneering All India Medical Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi on January 2nd, 2023.

In her welcome address, Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) said, “I extend my warmest greetings to each and every one of you attending this prestigious 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit in New Delhi and Manipal. For the first time it is being held in two cities, in collaboration with prestigious institutions, such as AIIMS, New Delhi and MAHE in Manipal. As the president of AAPI, I’m honored to welcome a diverse gathering of experts, policymakers, healthcare professionals, and advocates dedicate dedicated to advancing global health. I want to thank was speakers and sponsors for their contributions.”

For the first time ever, AAPI has planned to have the annual Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) in two cities in India, giving delegates, who are coming from the United States to participate in GHS and gain a unique perspective and experience India from the North and the South ,

AAPI’s 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) 2024 being held at the at the Le Meridien Hotel from January 1-3rd and at the Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, MAHE in Karnataka from January 4th to 6th, 2023. The GHS was inaugurated at the prestigious Le Meridien Hotel in New Delhi with a memorable New Year’s Day Eve celebration on December 31st, 2023.

GHS is being organied by AAPI in collaboration with AAIMS, Kasturba Medical College in Manipal, the Indian Medical Association, and the Government of the State of Karnataka and the Global Association of Indian Medical Students (GAIMS),

AAPI Collage 1The annual event of AAPI, GHS has contributed to ushering in new ways of providing healthcare to India’s 1.4 billion people, who live in the congested urban centers and in the rural/remote regions of the country. The 17th annual GHS will build on the past initiatives and add several new programs, Dr. Samadder added.

Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Chair of GHS 2024 said, “With the rapidly changing healthcare landscape, AAPI has rightly chosen to focus on the future of Healthcare and Artificial Intelligence during the GHS 2024, and is being organized in collaboration with AIIMs, and University of Manipal, which are in the league of the best academic centers. With the invention of Artificial Intelligence, we want to explore its impact on Medicine and Healthcare in the 21st century.

In his keynote address, Dr. Anupam Sibal, Chair of GHS – Delhi highlighted the enormous accomplishments of India and Indian Americans across many spectrums. He pointed to the advances in Medical Education in India, particularly since its independence, “In the past seven to eight decades, we’ve made considerable progress in higher education, and this is just a snapshot of the area. We have 149 institutes of national importance, more than 1000 universities and more than 50,000 colleges. fourth highest number of doctoral graduates in the world, the fourth highest research output in the world. We produce 6.5 million graduates every year 1.5 million engineers, 300,000 MBAs and 100,000 graduates.:

In his address, M. Srinivasan, Director of AIIMS said, “It is my pleasure that we are onboard with AAPI for its 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit. AIIMS New Delhi was established in 1956 to accomplish the trinity of mission, advanced medical education, cutting edge research, and quality patient care. I am certain that this conference will act as a platform for exchange of ideas and collaboration across the domains for cutting edge research and breakthrough in medical education. We look forward to meeting professionals, researchers and experts in the field of healthcare and research from across the globe.”

AAPI Collage 3Dr. Lokesh Edara, Chair of AAPI BOT said, “AAPI’s GHS is yet another way of continuing with our constant commitment towards making quality healthcare affordable and accessible to all the people of India. In addition, GHS 2024 focusses on promoting Healthcare Technology including Artificial Intelligence in the Healthcare arena.”

Several prominent physicians and academicians are participating at the GHS and are leading the keynote addresses and are chairing various academic sessions that are being organized during the summit. Latest Advances, CME, ELS, Discussions on Research Methodology, and Scientific Writing by Academic Experts are part of the summit.

The CEO Forum addressed by eminent panelists that included, Air Marshal Sadhana Nair, Saurav Kasera, Sreeprasad Guduppa, Sudharshan Jain, Shenoy Robinson, Karthikeyan, IPS, and Suresh Samuel, in their eloquent addresses spoke on Equity, Ethics, and how to adapt to the changing landscape in the healthcare arena and make a positive and lasting impact, benefitting the physicians, industries and the larger population.

Physician Burnout and mitigating mental health issues among physicians was the major theme during the evening session, moderated by Dr. Shubham Anand, Dr. Inderpal Chadda, and Dr. Chanchal Pal. Distinguished panelists included: Dr. Sreenivasan, Director of AIIMS; Dr. Suresh Kumar, Director of LNJP Hospital; Dr. Subhash Giri, Director of LHMC; Dr. Ishwar Singh, Director of Indira Gandhi Hospital; Dr. Vinay Kumar, President, RDA, AIIMS; and Dr. Rohan Krishnan, Chairman, FAIMAR.

Dr. Amit Chakrabarty, Vice President of AAPI, said, “It is these learning opportunities and collaborative relationships that have now enabled AAPI and participating organizations to be part of an outstanding event attended by nearly 100 prominent and experienced physicians and surgeons of Indian origin from around the world, who are very passionate about serving their homeland, Mother India.”

Dr. Sumul Raval, Secretary of AAPI said, “Harnessing the power of Indian Doctors worldwide, the AAPI Global Healthcare Summit platform has evolved with the support of prominent global and Indian medical associations. AAPI’s mission is to make a positive and meaningful impact on the healthcare delivery system both in the US and in India.”

AAPI Collage 4“AAPI GHS offers an opportunity to meet directly with these physicians who are leaders in their fields and play an integral part in the decision-making process regarding new products and services,” Dr. Sreeni Gangasani, Treasurer of AAPI said.

Healthcare in India is one of the largest sectors, in terms of revenue and employment. India is making significant improvements in its healthcare infrastructure and is building modern medical facilities throughout India. Doctors of Indian origin have made tremendous progress in the 21st century and India is now being touted as a medical tourism hub.

The Global Healthcare Summit has come a long way from the first Indo-US Healthcare Summit launched by AAPI USA in 2007. Since then, AAPI has organized 16 Indo – US/Global Healthcare Summits and developed strategic alliances with various organizations.

Highlighting the importance of the flagship annual GHS, Dr. Samadder said, “This summit serves as a powerful platform for knowledge exchange, collaboration, and the forging of meaningful partnerships. The work we do today paves the way for a healthcare landscape that is more efficient, accessible and affordable toward all individuals. For more details, please visit: www.aapiusa.org/

AAPI Brings Together Leaders In Medical Education Regulatory Boards From India, USA & UK During GHS 2024

India, home to one of the oldest medicinal systems in the world has made remarkable progress in medical education in the recent past. As the world is evolving to meet the ever-changing needs, medical education in India is moving forward with the objective of enabling every medical graduate and postgraduate to be the best in the world. Several changes are being made for graduates from Indian schools to be at par and for easy mobilization around the world, with the goal of making India the medical education hub for the world.

AAPI Global edIn this context, the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), which has been leading efforts to help streamline medical education in India to meet the global standards, assembled a galaxy of medical regulatory organization leaders from India, the United Kingdom and the United States during the 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit in New Delhi, India on January 2, 2024.

Leaders of National Board of Examination in Medical Science (NBEMS) India, National Board of Examination in Medical Science (NBME) USA, and the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) were among the panelists that discussed and educated the aspiring medical students from some of the premium Medical Schools in India who had keenly participated at the panel discussion.

Dr. Lokesh Edara, BOT-Chair Elect and Dr. Sumul N. Raval, current Secretary of AAPI led and coordinated the initiative. During a prior meeting with AAPI leaders last year, they had invited AAPI leaders and those from other US regulatory bodies at the meeting to visit his office in New Delhi during their current visit to India. AAPI leaders invited the leadership of these regulatory groups to the AAPI annual convention in Philadelphia in July 2023 and to the AAPI Global Healthcare Summit meeting in New Delhi in January 2024.

Describing the initiative as “a historic mile stone and a testament to the commitment of AAPI towards Global Medical Education,” Dr. Lokesh Edara said, “AAPI is providing amazing opportunity to connect the medical education and licensing boards of USA (NBME, FSMB) and from India (NMC, NBEMS, AIIMS) to learn from one other’s experiences, sharing vital insights and collaboration on future endeavors, mutual exchange of ideas, sharing of best practices that are critical for advancing medical education and enhancing examination process, assuring high standards for protecting public health will positively shape the medical education.”

20240102 153214AAPI Global Medical Education has led this effort taking the delegation to the Indian National Board of Examinations in medical science NBEMS (nbe.edu.in) which conducts examination for the 1.8 million students and UG entrance examination across India and conduct the PG NNET entrance examination for 200,000 students annually. AAPI has been able to connect their visits to the National Medical Commission (NMC – nmc.org.in) that monitors ll700+ medical collges,100,000 MBBS admisisions,60,000 post graduate admissions and their education. During panel discussions lasting more than 3 hours of their experiences and their challenges.

The Indian delegation consisted of Dr. B.N. Gangadhar, Chairman, National Medical Commission; Dr. Aruna V. Vanikar, President, Undergraduate Medical Education Board, Dr Vijay Oza, President, Postgraduate Medical Education Board.

NBEMS (INDIA) was represented by Dr Abhijat Sheth, President of NBEMS, Dr Minu Bajpai, Executive Director of NBEMS; Dr Rakesh Sharma, member Director of NBEMS. NBEMS India also has more than 14000 PG seats in many specialties.

FSMB delegates included: Dr. Humayun Chaudhry, President CEO of FSMB, Dr Jeffery Crater, Chair Board of directors FSMB, Kate Lynn Templeton, Chair-Elect Board of directors FSMB, and Dr Sarvam Terkonda, past Chair Board of directors FSMB.

NBME had the following members at the Panel: Dr. Peter Katsufrakis President CEO of FSMB and Dr. Reena Karani, Chair Board of directors NBME (USA).

Jeffrey D. Carter, MD (Missouri) Chair of the FSMB is a distinguished medical professional, and was elected to the FSMB Board of Directors in 2017. Dr. Sarvam TerKonda (Past Chair, FSMB USA) is a highly regarded plastic surgeon based in Jacksonville, Florida.

Ms. Katie Templeton JD (Chair-elect, FSMB,USA), and Prof. Hasmukh Shah, Recruitment and Training in UK were some of the others from the Medical education field, who were part of the distinguished panelists.

Dr. Sheth presented the NBEMS mission and PG NEET examination, FMGE examination and more than 50 specialties for postgraduate and super specialties courses they are conducting and graduating. Dr. Katsufrakis provided an update on the NBME history and current examination-system.

Se, Edara urged Dr. Sheth to increase family medicine PG seats and nationalized formative assessment tests in theory part for all postgraduates and for post-graduate exit theory examination suggested computerized online test. Nationwide E-Learning systems for higher transfer of Knowledge in medical education.

Feature and Cover AAPI Brings Together Leaders In Medical Education Regulatory Boards From India USA & UK During GHS 2024Dr. Raval said, “In order for us to meet the unprecedented demand and to bring up the quality of education, the Indian medical education system is changing rapidly. The meeting today was a great beginning to facilitate collaborative efforts between India and the United States.”

Medical education has many challenges in the transfer of knowledge and quality. India is introducing the NEXT examination, which is the licensing examination similar to USML in the US, while the UKMLE is starting in the UK in 2024 in the place of PLAB examination. NMC has applied for WFME Recognition status, which is mandatory to apply for USMLE examination.

NBEMS is responsible for NEET PG Entrance Test, which is taken up by more than 200,000 students annually. 694 Medical schools in India with106,083 MBBs admissions per year selected from 2.1 million applicants through the UG NEET examination across India in 3 hours. The current government policy has been to have one medical college in every district to meet the growing needs of India,

FSMB federation of state medical boards leadership (fsmb.org) and NBME National board of examination USA (nbme.org) leadership is visiting India for the first time in 30 years.

“Overview National Board of Examinations” was the main theme discussed during the meeting. AAPI hopes the excellence gained through long term vision, insight and hard work with both organizations and exchange of ideas and challenges will benefit the medical education system in India and help tens of thousands of medical graduates coming from India to have recognition in the US.

AAPI educationExpressing appreciation for Dr. Edara and Dr. Raval for taking the lead in facilitating interaction and dialogue between the Medical Education Boards of India and the United States, Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of AAPI said, “Since its inception over four decades ago, AAPI has been in the forefront advocating for medical school education reform and for the medical graduates from India to be treated on par with their counterparts in India. India is already leading the global pharmaceutical industry, and rebooting medical education will help India enter the league of leaders in healthcare around the world. The meeting today was a great start, and I look forward to AAPI continuing to lead such efforts in the coming years benefitting the medical fraternity.” For more information on AAPI and its many initiatives, please visit: www.aapiusa.org

AAPI Partners With CLIRNET to Unveil Transformative Mentorship & Observership Model During  the 17th Global Healthcare Summit

●      The initiative will provide Indian doctors with the opportunity to learn from experienced AAPI physicians and apply for observerships in the USA in various medical specialties

●      CLIRNET and AAPI will facilitate interactive sessions, webinars, and forums, fostering collaborative learning and the exchange of medical knowledge

●      The initiative extends beyond general medicine, focusing on various specialties to advance medical research and address healthcare challenges

New Delhi, India (January 2nd, 2023)  In continuing its efforts to collaborate with and expands its numerous initiatives, the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) that represents a conglomeration of more than 80,000 practicing physicians in the United States, and  serving as the platform for more than 40,000 medical students, residents and fellows of Indian origin, has entered into a ground breaking partnership with CLIRNET, India’s leading digital healthcare platform with the objective of running a Mentorship & Observership program jointly.

While announcing the new initiative at the 17th Global Healthcare Summit, Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of AAPI, emphasized the imperative for healthcare professionals to stay at the forefront of innovation. She also highlighted that the collaboration between AAPI and CLIRNET marks a significant milestone in advancing clinical training in India.

Saurav Kasera, Co-Founder of CLIRNET said, “We’re excited to partner with AAPI in this groundbreaking venture. This collaboration is more than just sharing knowledge; it’s about forging a future where Indian healthcare professionals are equipped with global expertise, ultimately elevating patient care and medical standards in India.”

The 17th annual GHS themed ‘Cutting Edge in Healthcare & Artificial Intelligence,’ is being held in collaboration with the Global Association of Indian Medical Students and the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi from January 1st t0 7th in New Delhi and Manipal, India.

20240102 144200The GHS began here at AAIS this morning with an eloquent address by Dr. Anupam Sibel, GHS Chair – New Delhi, who spoke on India becoming Vishavaguru in almost all areas of international standing, including in healthcare, technology, finance and scientific research, The scientific sessions moderated and presented by world renowned physicians of Indian origin are being attended by Fellows, Residents and Medical students at AIIMS and the dozens of delegates from the United States.

The Mentorship & Observership Model aims to provide valuable inputs and expertise from AAPI medical experts in USA to young and emerging healthcare professionals in India. Mentorship, a crucial component of medical training, is an important component in enhancing career development, professional satisfaction, and overall well-being of trainees. The program will also offer doctors in India the opportunity to apply for observerships with AAPI physicians in the USA across various medical specialties.

As per the agreement, experienced AAPI physicians will facilitate interactive sessions, webinars, and forums, encouraging collaborative learning and the exchange of clinical knowledge. AAPI is committed to training approximately 200,000 physicians in the coming year, focusing on general medicine and various specialties addressing evolving healthcare needs.

The intent of the initiative is to involve 60% of AAPI practitioners in training programs to contribute their expertise to shape the next generation of healthcare professionals.

The Mentorship & Observership Model represents a paradigm shift in clinical education and global collaboration. This initiative is poised to significantly contribute to the professional growth of healthcare practitioners across India including the remotest of places, fostering a culture of continuous learning and innovation in the healthcare sector.

CLIRNET stands as the world’s largest UGC (user-generated content) platform for doctors. The platform activities led by eminent institutions & physicians, spanning a multitude of specialties, have garnered active participation from lacs of doctors, establishing CLIRNET as a premier hub for knowledge dissemination, UGC and professional collaboration.

Physicians of Indian Origin in the United States are reputed to be leading health care providers, holding crucial positions in various hospitals and health care facilities around the nation and the world. Known to be a leading ethnic medical organization that represents nearly 100,000 physicians and fellows of Indian Origin in the US and being their voice and providing a forum to its members to collectively work together to meet their diverse needs, AAPI members are proud to contribute to the wellbeing of their motherland India, and their adopted land, the United States.

Founded in 1982, the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin represents a conglomeration of more than 80,000 practicing physicians in the United States and over 40,000 medical students, residents and fellows of Indian origin in this country, who serve 1 in every 7 people in the USA. For more details, please visit: www.aapiusa.org

ITServe Members Serve As Judges At The United States Congressional App Challenge Contest

Members of ITServe Alliance, the largest association of IT Services organizations across the United States, comprising of over 2200 small and medium-sized businesses were chosen to be and were part of the Judges Panel at the prestigious United States Congressional App Challenge Contest held last month.

App ChallengeEstablished by members of the U.S. House of Representatives in 2013, the Congressional App Challenge is designed to engage student creativity and encourage their participation in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education fields. The nationwide contest allows high school students from across the country to compete with other students who reside in their congressional district by creating and exhibiting their software application, or “APP” for mobile, tablet, or computer devices on a platform of their choice.

During the event organized by Illinois’s 11th Congressional District, Vinay Mahajan addressed the APP participants and congratulated the winner, a 10th grader from Illinois who developed the Dermidetect APP, a skin cancer detector using AI.

“We are extremely proud that Omprakash Nakka, Tanuj Gundlapalli, Jagan Chitiprolu, and Venkat Yerubandi, allVinay Mahajan active members of ITServe had the privilege of serving as Judges for the Congressional App Challenge Program,” said Mr. Vinay Mahajan, President of ITServe Alliance. “Such contests across the nation by Congressional Offices is very encouraging of our young and aspiring entrepreneurs and is in sync with the objectives of ITServe Alliance in promoting and advocating for local talents and resources that are aimed at the United States maintaining its leadership in technology and innovation,” Mahajan added.

Siva Moopanar, Director of ITServe Alliance Policy Advocacy Committee (PAC), who has been instrumental in coordinating with the Congressional Offices for ITServe’s participation in the Congressional APP Challenge said, “We acknowledge that this program provides a great opportunity for us at ITServe to engage with Lawmakers and make a positive impact on our upcoming generation of innovators in Science and Technology.”

Congressional App JudgesITServe recognizes that this is a great program and has plans to engage with more Congressmen for similar opportunities in the coming years.  ITServe has offered allocating funds from its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) STEM Funds to support this program by collaborating directly with the congressional App challenge organizers. ITServe has advocated for and has invested Millions of Dollars on its STEM Education Program to promote the “American Ingenuity Account” to fund State-administered grants for STEM education and worker training.

The Congressional App Challenge is sponsored by the Internet Education Foundation (IEF), which assists offices in hosting the challenges in their individual districts. Those interested in participating may visit the Congressional App Challenge website for more details. Participation in the contest is at the discretion of each Congress Member office. Please visit the Congressional App Challenge website to confirm your district’s participation and obtain guidance on entry guidelines and other details.

ITServe Alliance represents many prestigious IT companies functioning with similar interests across the United States. With an active membership of 2,200 + members who are small & medium-sized companies, ITServe has 21 Chapters and doing business all over the U.S. Together, the Itserve members have 175,000+ IT professionals employed throughout the U.S and generate over $12 billion in revenue annually. Its members play a critical role in developing and maintaining essential IT systems for corporations, governments, and various organizations. For information on ITServe and its many noble initiatives, please visit: www.itserve.org

ITServe Leadership Welcomes H-1B Visa Renewal Program Benefitting IT Professionals

ITServe Alliance, with an active membership of 2,200 + members who are small & medium-sized prestigious IT service companies, with similar interests across the United States, has expressed its overwhelming support for the new U.S. State Department’s Pilot Domestic Visa Renewal Program, limited to H1B Visas, which is launched in December of this year, mainly benefiting Information Technology professionals.

The pilot initiative by the U.S. State Department aims to alleviate long wait times for visa appointments, initially issuing 20,000 visas to foreign nationals already in the US in the IT sector with their significant skilled workforce presence.

Highlights of the H-1B Visa Renewal Program:

> The Pilot Visa Renewal Program aims to have around 20,000 work visa renewals, constituting approximately 10% of the anticipated 583,420 H-1B visa holders.

> The program will reduce the waiting period, ease the process of renewals, and eradicate the need for individuals to go back to their home country for appointments.

> Presently, visa applicants must wait for an average period of 130 days for appointments in their home country. Moreover, individuals are restricted from traveling abroad until their visa has been renewed every three years.

> The streamlined renewal process also intends to free up valuable time for US missions abroad to concentrate on new candidates.

> A formal notice in the U.S. Federal Register will be published this month and it will detail the procedures, requirements, and guidelines for the first round of applicants, covering 20,000 cases from December to February. This will pave the way for the State Department’s plan to extend the program for more employment categories in 2024.

Lobby Day ITServeIn the past few years, ITServe leadership has continuously reiterated the need for a Domestic Visa Renewal Program with the US Congress and Department of State officials. ITServe has expressed gratitude and appreciation to Department of State for listening to its request and now bringing back this program.

“The U.S. needs to maintain its leadership in technology and innovation,” Vinay Mahajan, ITServe Alliance President said. “The U.S. has a large skills gap – availability of workers vs the openings for talent in the IT sector. We need the brightest minds from all over the world to keep our wide lead in technology and innovation.This new initiative is a good step to achieve this goal. ”

A major objective of ITServe has been to educate lawmakers and the larger American community, using digital and traditional methods on the benefits of favorable immigration programs to businesses and eliminate misconceptions by meeting, collaborating, and lobbying with Congressmen and Senators to work together and help write and amend laws that are helpful to ITServe community.

Vinod Babu Uppu, ITServe Governing Board Chair said, “I want to express our sincere gratitude and appreciation to the hundreds of ITServe members, who continue to advocate with their local Lawmakers on behalf of ITServe, and make our voices heard on the corridors of power.”

H-1Bs are temporary, nonimmigrant visas for foreign workers with at least a bachelor’s degree, and they often go to technology workers. Currently, the number of H-1B visas is limited to 65,000 each year, although there are an additional 20,000 available to workers who have a master’s degree or higher from a US university. Enhancing the current H1-B CAP limits – from 65,000 to 130,000 per year has been a major area where ITServe has placed its efforts in recent years.

Lobby Day 2ITServe is aware that H-1B visa holders play a critical role in bolstering the U.S. economy, fostering innovation, and enriching the fabric of American society through their skills, contributions, and diverse backgrounds, and knowledge to American workplaces. They facilitate knowledge transfer and skills development by engaging in research and development activities, particularly in STEM fields, which contribute to scientific advancements and technological progress.

H-1B visa holders, possessing specialized skills and expertise in fields like STEM, which are vital for American companies to stay competitive in the global market, are a highly skilled foreign workers pool that brings numerous benefits to the United States. They fill in critical skill gaps in the labor market, contributing to economic growth and innovation, thus leading to increased productivity and competitiveness in various industries, by creating new job opportunities by starting businesses and driving entrepreneurship.

High-Skilled Immigration Reform for Employment (HIRE) Act, introduced by US Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Illinois covers the above increase. The Bill would strengthen U.S. competitiveness by helping to close the skills gap – the space between the skills required for jobs that employers need to fill, and the skills possessed by current prospective employees.

Lobby Day 3ITServe leadership believes that immigration laws are becoming more inclusive, which is a positive development with a commitment to easing restrictions on lawful immigrants. The evolving landscape aims to create a more accessible and accommodating environment for skilled professionals seeking opportunities in the United States.

“ITServe Alliance will continue to support and advocate for immigration reforms that will help America maintain its tech leadership in the world,” said Siva Moopanar, Director of ITServe Alliance Policy Advocacy Committee (PAC).

Founded in 2010, ITServe’s vision has been to empower local communities by creating, retaining, and fostering employment opportunities within the United States. Moreover, ITServe is committed to corporate social responsibility (CSR) and actively contributing to local communities nationwide, particularly in the realm of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education. For more details, please visit: www.itserve.org

Rep. Kevin Kiley Emphasizes Importance Of Itserve Alliance Members’ Contributions To The Nation, And Expresses Support For High Skilled Immigration Reform

The ITServe Alliance Policy Advocacy Committee (PAC) hosted a panel discussion on October 27th, 2023 during its annual conference, Synergy 2023.  The purpose of the panel was to review the current issues facing Congress and the Administration, especially the regarding the need for high-skilled immigration reform in the United States.

Attended by over 2,200 members of ITServe Alliance, who are small and medium-sized companies of Information Technology, Synergy 2023 was held from October 26th to 27th, 2023 at the popular Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City, NJ.

Congressman Kevin Kiley, representing California’s 3rd Congressional District, and serving on the House Judiciary Committee was the featured speaker on the panel.  The House Judiciary Committee is primarily tasked with handling high-skilled immigration reform.

During his remarks, Congressman Kiley emphasized the importance of ITServe Alliance members’ contributions to the local economies and his support for high-skilled immigration reform, and expressed his support for H.R. 4647, “High-Skilled Immigration Reform for Employment (HIRE) Act,” introduced by US Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Illinois on July 14th, 2023.

The Bill would strengthen U.S. competitiveness by helping to close the skills gap – the space between the skills required for jobs that employers need to fill, and the skills possessed by current prospective employees. As introduced, the bill would raise the current H-1B limit from 65,000 to 130,000, remove the H-1B cap for those with a Master’s Degree or PhD, and create a STEM grant program. The HIRE Act has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee for consideration by the Committee, where Rep. Kiley is a member.

Vinay Mahajan, President of ITServe said, “Having the presence of elected officials such as Rep. Kevin Kiley at Synergy 2023 has effectively served as a powerful platform in educating policymakers on the issues that are important to our members and the business community, ensuring that our needs and views are reflected in policy debates and outcomes on Capitol Hill. The U.S. needs to maintain its leadership in technology and innovation,” added Mahajan.

Congressman Kiley also discussed the need for all ITServe Alliance members to work with their local members of Congress to garner their support for the HIRE Act.

“Enhancing local employment and Innovation are the primary objectives of ITServe’s Policy Advocacy,” said Siva Moopanar – Director of ITServe Alliance Policy Advocacy Committee (PAC). “Innovation is very important for job creation and the economic growth of a country. We want the best and the brightest from around the world over here which triggers the technology revolution and jobs. Our country should be on top of the world for several hundred years.”

ITServe Alliance was established in 2010 to safeguard the rights of Information Technology (IT) companies in the United States. Through its various bodies, ITServe, which has now become the collective voice of small and medium-sized IT companies across the United States, fulfills its mission to achieve its core mission and objectives.   The three fundamental pillars of the ITServe PAC are: to educate, lobby, and litigate.

The ITServe Alliance PAC team has created an easy way to contact your local member of Congress regarding the HIRE Act. Simply scan the QR code below, enter your home address and click send.  Your participation is vital to get this important legislation passed in the Congress.  For more details, please visit: www.itserve.org

Nicaragua’s Sheynnis Palacios Crowned Miss Universe 2023 In History-Making Contest

In a histroy making beauty pageant, Miss Nicaragua Sheynnis Palacios won the coveted Miss Universe 2023 title, beating her 83 coconstaentans from as many countries during a dazzling pageant on November 18th, 2023 in San Salvador, El Salvador. Tis is the first time ever in the 72 year-old history of the pageant, a conteststant from Nicaragua, a central American country has won the covetetd ttile.

Palacios, 23, a mental-health activist and audiovisual producer, became the first woman from Nicaragua to win the crown at Saturday night’s pageant. The organization shared on Instagram that the new winner copes with anxiety and launched a TV segment called “Understand Your Mind,” in which she interviews experts in emotional care.

Last year’s winner, Miss Universe and Miss USA R’Bonney Gabriel crowned Palacios with the prestigious crown. The 23-year-old, a TV host and model, beat first runner-up Anntonia Porsild from Thailand and second runner-up Moraya Wilson from Australia. The other contestants who made the top 10 to appear in the final were Colombia’s Camila Avella, El Salvador’s Isabella García-Manzo, Peru’s Camila Escribens, the Philippines’ Michelle Dee, Puerto Rico’s Karla Guilfú Acevedo, Spain’s Athenea Pérez and Venezuela’s Diana Silva.

Palacios appeared to secure the win when she confidently answered the question of which woman’s shoes would she like to spend a year in by saying Mary Wollstonecraft, the 18th-century English writer and philosopher. Wollstonecraft was an advocate of women’s rights and is considered one of the forerunners of feminism. Palacios said she wants to work to close the salary gap between the genders so that women can work in any area.

Miss Universe was last held in El Salvador in 1975. This year’s event was another opportunity for President Nayib Bukele to tout changes made under his administration, especially greatly improving the country’s safety.

“El Salvador has changed for good and we have shown it again,” Bukele said Saturday night. “Miss Universe has given us the opportunity to show the world what we are capable of. Thank you for choosing to be part of El Salvador’s rebirth.”

Shweta Sharda, who had represented India at this year’s Miss Universe pageant did not make it to the top 10. Shweta – a 23-year-old model from Chandigarh – won the prestigious Miss Diva Universe title this year. Shweta made Mumbai her home with her mother at the age of 16 to make a career in modelling. Shweta has made silverscreen appearances on several reality shows. She has appeared in Dance India Dance, Dance Deewane, and Dance Plus. Shweta also used to work as a choreographer in the dance reality show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa. Shweta holds a bachelor’s degree from Indira Gandhi National Open University, and she won the Miss Diva 2023 title this year. Shweta did not make it to the top 10 this year.

Hours before the final, Palacious, who had competed in many pageants before, shared a heartfelt message on Instagram about fulfilling a childhood dream to take part in the global competition.

“Tonight, I dedicate it to my inner child and to each of the girls who yearn to fulfill this dream,” she wrote in Spanish, “even the sky itself is the limit, dream so big that people think it is impossible to achieve, because that is where you know that your dreams and goals will exceed obstacles, and remember to accompany them with determination, perseverance and passion.”

She continued, “My beautiful homeland, thank you for allowing me to be an ambassador of your culture, of your landscapes, of our identity and colonial beauty, my Nicaragua…will be an honor to scream one more night your name and prove to the universe that the homeland may be small but we are full of big dreams.”

Nicaragua’s Sheynnis Palacios Crowned Miss Universe 2023 In History Making Contest

Eighty-four contestants — each representing their home countries — were in contention, but most only briefly: at the beginning of the competition, the field then narrowed to 20 semi-finalists, selected based on their performance in the pageant’s preliminary stage and, in one case, a global fan vote.

As the night progressed, the field was further winnowed; by the time the pageant’s evening gown round played out, only 10 contestants were in the running for the Miss Universe title (and tiara, of course). While it was tradition for the eliminated beauty queens to walk the stage, en masse, to show off their looks at this point, it was usually just a brief — and tightly-choreographed — glimpse at all the sequins, corsetry and fishtail trains.

All that fashion finery was not lost entirely in the blink of an eye, however: each contestant had their runway moment during the aforementioned preliminary proceedings. At the end of it all, multiple other contestants made Miss Universe history at the 72nd event, hosted by Olivia Culpo, Maria Menounos and Jeannie Mai.

Nicaragua’s Sheynnis Palacios Crowned Miss Universe 2023 In History Making Contest

Miss Colombia Camila Avella, a married mother, made the top five. After winning the Miss Colombia title, she posted portraits of herself in her crown and sash, hugging her young daughter, Amelia, and tux-clad husband Nassif Kamle. “Without them, and without the teachings that leave me each day to day, none of this would be possible,” she wrote on Instagram at the time.

2023 was the first year, married women and mothers were allowed to compete. Avella competed alongside Miss Guatemala Michelle Cohn, a mother of two. “MOM QUEEN,” Cohn captioned a pageant portrait of herself on Instagram with her two children.

Plus-size contestant Miss Nepal Jane Dipika Garrett was the pageant’s first body-inclusive contestant and finished in the top 20. “I love my curves! My body is my temple and I will take care of it as holy ground,” she wrote on Instagram, sharing a photo of herself from the swimsuit competition.

For the first time, the pageant included a Miss Pakistan, Erica Robin, who wore a pale-pink, floor-length caftan for the swimsuit competition. “When I was young, I always watched Miss Universe and I used to believe that a woman from Pakistan couldn’t join the greatest Olympics of its kind,” she wrote on Instagram after winning the Miss Pakistan title and celebrated “being able to use my platform for good change and transformation.

Nicaragua’s Sheynnis Palacios Crowned Miss Universe 2023 In History Making Contest

This year’s competitors also included two transgender women: Miss Portugal Marina Machete, who placed in the top 20, and Miss Netherlands Rikkie Valerie Kollé. On Instagram, Machete gave thanks for “the opportunity to share my story and represent the diversity and unshakable strength we have as women” and added, “I’ll keep inspiring the change I want to see in the world!”

Miss Universe pageant represents the most beautiful women in the entire universe. A woman can stand tall and be Miss Universe only if she is ‘confidently beautiful’. Governed by the Miss Universe organization from the US, nearly a hundred women compete annually across the globe for this most celebrated and coveted crown. According to the organisers, the contestants were judged based on several metrics – personal statements, in-depth interviews and presentations in evening gowns and swimwear.  Besides beauty, one’s grace, elegance, attitude, and culture are key aspects that decide the winner.

The winner of this highly honored title righty echoed these sentiments: “Nicaragua, I feel you in my heartbeat, the sound of your marimba runs through my veins,” Palacios, the new Miss Universe 2023 wrote on Instagram. “I will show what Nicaraguans are made of: valor, courage and determination.”

Indian American Announces Bid For Congress Seat In Ohio

Ohio State Senator Niraj Antani, a Republican, announced his campaign for Congress November 14, 2023 from Ohio’s 2nd Congressional District, which leans significantly Republican.

State Sen. Antani’s announcement came on the heels of Congressman Brad Wenstrup, a Republican, making public on Nov. 9, that he will not seek re-election and will retire from Congress. The Republican primary in Ohio will take place on March 19, 2024, when Sen. Antani hopes to get the support of the GOP to run in the November 2024 general elections.

If elected to the US Congress, he would become the youngest Hindu and Indian American Member of Congress in the nation’s history and the 1st Republican Hindu Member of Congress in the country’s history.

Indian American Announces Bid For Congress Seat In Ohio 2In a statement, Antani said, “As the 1st Hindu and Indian American State Senator in Ohio history, I’ve worked hard every day to ensure every Ohioan has an opportunity to achieve their American Dream. Now, I am running for Congress to be a warrior for our community’s values and fight against those who seek to wreak havoc on us. I will stand steel-spined for the policies that benefit our community and strongly oppose those who kowtow to those against us.”

Born and raised in southern Ohio, Sen. Antani is serving his first term in the Ohio Senate, having previously served three terms as State Representative in the Ohio House of Representatives. He has received numerous awards from organizations for veterans, community college, small businesses, and more. Sen. Antani is a graduate of The Ohio State University.

“I am incredibly excited to announce I am running for Congress in 2024!   Current Congressman Brad Wenstrup (OH-2) has served southern Ohio with honor in Congress and as a combat surgeon in the Army and I wish him well as he announced his retirement,” he wrote.

In his announcement, Antani said the American Dream is “under attack” and he is running for Congress to “defend” it. “I’ll be a tireless warrior in Congress for our community and I’ll never stop working hard for our shared value and ideals.” The Republican primary in Ohio is set for March 19, 2024.

A win in the 2024 congressional elections would make Antani the youngest Indian American member of Congress and the first GOP Hindu member of Congress in U.S. history, as per a report.

The young politician became involved in politics in his early twenties. He was elected to the Ohio house at age 23 and to the State Senate at age 29. From 2014-2020, he served as the State Representative for the 42nd House District in the Ohio House of Representatives.

While in the House, Antani served as Vice Chairman of the Rules and Reference Committee and as Vice Chairman of the Committee on Insurance, and as a member of the Committee on Health, Committee on Public Utilities, and Joint Medicaid Oversight Committee. In 2015, Forbes featured him on the list of “30 Under 30” people in the United States for Law & Politics.

India To Take On Australia In World Cup 2023 Final

India will take on Australia in the final of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 on Sunday, November 19 at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. It is going to be a special occasion at the largest stadium in the world as Team India will chase their third title in what has been dubbed as the ‘3 ka dream’ while the five-time champions, Aussies will eye a record sixth title.

India are on course for a historic third One Day International World Cup title, having just reached the final of the 2023 Cricket World Cup. The Men in Blue defeated New Zealand to book their place in the final of the 2023 edition. With that, India’s unbeaten run in the World Cup is now extended to 10 matches.

Only one win remains in between the Rohit Sharma-led Indian cricket team and the Cricket World Cup trophy. India have not an ICC trophy since 2013 and the Indian cricket team is on the cusp of ending that drought at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Sunday.

India To Take On Australia In World Cup 2023 Final (The Guardian)
Picture: The Guardian

Australia beat South Africa by three wickets in the second semi-final of the ICC ODI World Cup. Australia crept into Sunday’s World Cup final against India after winning a low-scoring thriller against South Africa at Eden Gardens by three wickets.

Chasing 213 after a superb century from David Miller had helped the South Africans recover from 24 for four and 116 for six, Australia’s batsmen took it in turns to throw away their wicket in front of a crowd of nearly 48,000.

India and Australia had last clashed in the final of a World Cup back in 2003. Australia won that game by 125 runs and lifted the World Cup trophy for the third time. It also went on to win the following edition in 2007.

This would be the fourth final for India in the ODI World Cups and the country that started the trend of winning the World Cup on home soil when they won it in 2011 under MS Dhoni’s captaincy, would look to continue on the momentum.

Since then, Australia and England won the World Cup on their home soil in 2015 and 2019 as well. This will also be India’s first victory against Australia in a World Cup final and after West Indies and Sri Lanka, they could become the second team to defeat the Aussies in a World Cup final. The last time these two teams met in a final, India lost badly in 2003 in South Africa.   India last won the title in 2011 after beating Sri Lanka in the final at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. It won its first World Cup title in 1983 under the captaincy of Kapil Dev.

India would also become only the second team after Australia to win the World Cup three times or more, Currently, they are tied at two along with the West Indies. India would also become the only team to win the World Cup twice at home after having hosted it four times.

Sterley Stanley Reelected To New Jersy’s State Assembly

Sterley Stanley of Indian Origin has been elected overwhelmingly to  New Jersey’s State Assembly from the state’s 18th District during the recently held elections on November 7th, 2023.

New Jersey voters headed to their local polling stations on Tuesday with the entire New Jersey Legislature up for grabs. All 40 seats in the state Senate and the 80 seats in the state Assembly were on the line. All but two races were uncontested. General Assembly seats are two-year terms, while the Senate is four years.

In New Jersey, there are 6,494,988 registered voters for this general election, with 2,503,776 declared Democrats and 1,541,671 Republicans, according to the state Division of Elections website.

Here’s a look at the unofficial results to the DISTRICT 18:

Sterley Stanley Reelected To New Jersy’s State Assembly (TAPinto)
Picture: TAPinto

Sterley S. Stanley, Democrat polled 20,662 votes in the elections and was relected to the Assembly, convincingly beating the Republican candidates, Teresa A. Hutchison, who got 13,012 votes and Joseph C. Wolak, another Republican polled 12,815 votes. Stanley’s Democratic colleague, Robert J. Karabinchak received  20,805 votes as both of them will represent the 18th District in 2024-25.

Three years ago, Sterley Stanley won a special election for New Jersey State Assembly in the 18th district, capturing the seat left vacant this month after Nancy Pinkin (D-East Brunswick) resigned to become the new Middlesex County Clerk. He had defeated Edison Councilman Joseph Coyle by a 58%-42% margin.

The 18th has the highest percentage of Asian Americans of any legislative district in the state.

Republicans have not won an Assembly race in the 18th since 1993, although the Senate seat was held by a Republican until the 2001 election.

The 57-year-old Stanley was elected to his East Brunswick council seat in 2020 against Republican Suzanne Blum. He served as council president until his election to the Assembly in 2021.

“It has been my great honor to represent the 18th Legislative District in the General Assembly,” Stanley who serves as the Vice Chair of the Assembly’s Environment and Solid Waste and as a member of the Committees on Health as well as on Law and Public Safety.

Secretary Of State Hillary Clinton Expresses Profound Appreciation For The Invaluable Contributions Of ITServe Alliance

Networking, learning and sharing of knowledge, great and highly acclaimed speakers, insightful workshops, collaborating with one another, strengthening bonds, cultural and fun events, awards ceremony, showcasing of business booths and products, and delicious and multi-ethnic cuisine were the highlights of the ITServe Alliance’s flagship Synergy 2023 held from October 26th to 27th, 2023 at the popular Harrahs Resort in Atlantic City, NJ. Attended by over 2,200 members of ITServe Alliance, who are small and medium size companies of Information Technology, the annual event was a way of celebrating ITServe Members’ achievements and accomplishments.

In his address to the membership, Vinay K. Mahajan, National President of ITServe Alliance highlighted how under his able leadership, ITServe has grown and strengthened in its mission in protecting members’ interest, enhancing membership benefits, empowering local employment, empowering local community through various CSR programs including STEM education, and empowering the ecosystem of innovation and thus maintaining the leadership of US in Technology.

“Travelling to all the 21 Chapters across the United States in 8 months after I assumed office, I was instrumental in achieving membership to newer heights with more than 700+ new members added in 2023. Two new Chapters were launched. IT Serve Alliance is led by highly talented individuals, phenomenally successful entrepreneurs, and Innovators who are enthusiastic about giving back to the community.” He strengthened STEM Education program by adding STEM Training and Internship programs and enhancing STEM scholarships program.”

Venu Sangani, Director of Synergy 2023, who led a dedicated and visionary team organizing this historic event said, “Synergy 2023 is our landmark flagship gathering, you have opportunities for growth and learning, forging a path with connections, with featuring seven keynote sessions from seven different domain panels, panel discussions, interactive breakout sessions. The essence of Synergy lies not only knowledge exchanges but inspiring one another. Let the success stories of fellow entrepreneurs ignite your ambitions.”

Vinodbabu Uppu, Governing Board Chair of ITServe said, “Synergy 2023 is the only one-of-a-kind conference delivering innovative strategies, unique insights, and proven tactics for success, exclusively for IT service companies and individuals. Synergy 2023 focused on developing strategic relationships with our partner organizations, sponsors, and supporters to work for a better technology environment by building greater understanding.”

Venu Sangani, Director of Synergy 2023, who led a dedicated and visionary team in organizing this historic event said, “Synergy 2023 is our landmark flagship gathering, with opportunities for growth and learning, forging a path with connections, featuring seven keynote sessions from seven different domain panels, panel discussions, and interactive breakout sessions. The essence of Synergy lies not only in knowledge exchanges but inspiring one another. Let the success stories of fellow entrepreneurs ignite your ambitions.”

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, the Chief Guest at ITServe Alliance’s Synergy 2023, shared with the audience about her life and aspirations, expressed appreciation for the contributions of the high skilled immigrant community and urged them to play an active role in the society. Ms. Clinton, the 67th Secretary of State of the United States has dedicated over four decades of her life in public service, serving as an advocate, attorney, First Lady, and US Senator.

Secretary Clinton praised the contributions and accomplishments of the high-skilled immigrants to this country. She said, “I’m so proud of the many accomplishments of the ITServe member companies in the United States. I really want to thank you and commend you for the extraordinary contributions to the nation.  I was so impressed by the many contributions you’ve made, in addition to building your businesses and providing employment for people.

Secretary Clinton stressed the importance of Health Insurance program particularly for the children. When it comes to US immigration issues, she advocated for reforming our immigration system to attract the most talented individuals from around the globe. This, in turn, would drive innovation and foster growth in our nation. Additionally, she advocated for a bipartisan approach to address this issue.

ITServe members were filled with immense pride as they welcomed distinguished guests to their Synergy events. In 2021, they were honored to host President George W. Bush in Dallas, followed by President Bill Clinton and a former US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley in 2022 in Orlando. The pinnacle of their achievements came in 2023, as they were graced by the presence of Secretary Ms. Clinton at Synergy in Atlantic City.

These momentous occasions were a testament to the organization’s commitment to excellence and its ability to attract influential figures to its gatherings. These remarkable leaders graced the Synergy events with their presence, making each gathering a memorable and prestigious occasion for ITServe and its members.

Founded in 2010, ITServe Alliance is the largest association of Information Technology Services organizations functioning across the United States. Established to be the voice of all prestigious Information Technology companies functioning with similar interests across the United States, ITServe Alliance has evolved as a resourceful and respected platform to collaborate and initiate measures in the direction of protecting common interests and ensuring collective success. ITServe Alliance now has 21 Chapters in several states across the United States, bringing the Synergy Conference to every part of this innovation country. For more information, please visit: www.itserve.org

ITServe Alliance’s Highly Successful Synergy 2023 Sets the Path for a Brighter Future

(November 9th, 2023: Atlantic City, NJ) Networking, learning, and sharing of knowledge, great and highly acclaimed speakers, insightful workshops, collaborating with one another, strengthening bonds, celebrating one’s achievements and accomplishments, cultural and fun events, awards ceremony, showcasing of business booths and products, and delicious and multi-ethnic cuisine, and attended by over 2,200 members of ITServe Alliance, who are small and medium size companies of Information Technology were only some of the highlights of ITServe Alliance’s flagship Synergy 2023 held from October 26th to 27th, 2023 at the popular Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City, NJ.

In his presidential address, Vinay K. Mahajan, National President of ITServe Alliance, welcomed the members, leaders, chapter presidents, sponsors, and volunteers to Synergy 2023 and expressed his “sincere gratitude for your unwavering commitment, and dedication, and for investing your time and energy and resources. You are the backbone of our organization, and your unwavering commitment is what propels us forward.”

Describing the mission of ITServe Mahajan said, “We are the voice representing the interests of small and medium scale enterprises of IT industry, protecting our members’ interests. We give back to the community and invest in startups, which is to help the United States maintain its leadership in innovation and technology. It is about coming together, collaborating, and liberating our collective strength. It is about finding synergy, not only within our own businesses but also across our entire community.”

Vinodbabu Uppu, Governing Board Chair of ITServe said, “Synergy 2023 is the only one-of-a-kind conference delivering innovative strategies, unique insights, and proven tactics for success, exclusively for IT service companies and individuals. Synergy 2023 will focus on developing strategic relationships with our partner organizations, sponsors, and supporters to work for a better technology environment by building greater understanding.”

Venu Sangani, Director of Synergy 2023 said, “As we gather here, let’s remember that our unity as a community is our strength. I took on this leadership role, an opportunity, driven with a single objective: to help at the end of the conference, each attendee departs with concrete insight to grow their business to the next level. Because in all of you here today, there is both gratitude and a deep sense of accomplishment, knowing our collective vision is alive and thriving.”

Sangani, who led a dedicated and visionary team organizing this historic event said, “Synergy 2023 is our landmark flagship gathering. The essence of synergy lies not only very knowledge exchange but inspiring one another. Let the success stories of fellow entrepreneurs ignite your ambitions, be it scaling your business to the next level, diversifying investments or starting new territories. Let’s make the most of Synergy.”

Jagadish Mosali, President-Elect of ITServe said, “Hope everyone at our flagship event has enjoyed Synergy 2023. Some of you know and some might not know the countless amount of time our “Volunteer CEOs” from the Synergy Team as well as the Board have spent to make the event successful as you have seen. My deepest appreciation to both Sung Hero’s as well as  the “Unsung Heroes. Thank you all for your service and commitment to the organization and giving back to the community.”

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, the Chief Guest at Synergy 2023 delivered the Keynote Address during an interactive session with ITServe members on October 27th evening. Ms. Clinton, the 67th Secretary of State of the United States has dedicated over four decades in public service as an advocate, attorney, First Lady, and US Senator.

During a candid “Fireside Chat” Secretary Clinton shared with the audience very candidly about her private life, growing up as a child, her marriage to Bill Clinton, struggles in managing careers as a daughter, wife, mother, and a public figure holding numerous important positions locally, nationally and internationally.

Secretary Clinton praised the contributions and accomplishments of the fast-growing and influential ITServe Alliance members. She said, “I’m so proud of the many accomplishments of the Diaspora in the United States. I want to thank you and commend you for your extraordinary contributions to the nation.  I am so impressed by the many contributions you’ve made, in addition to building your businesses and providing employment for people.”

Secretary Clinton urged the ITServe member community “to continue to be involved in your communities, to be members of civic clubs, volunteer groups and take part in American society in every way possible, and also decide if you so may choose to become an American citizen. And for those of you who have children, who are American citizens, guide them to be very active. Not just getting their education or being a successful person economically but being involved in civic life. There’s a lot to it. I know you are good role models for people in many parts of our country. So, I am very grateful for the many contributions that you are making and will make in the future.”

Steve Forbes, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Media spoke about “Leadership Lessons: The Stunning Parallels Between Great Leaders of the World and Today’s Top Business Leaders.” He said, “You have to do things even if you feel you’re not fully ready to do it. The next year or two will be very severe. But also keep in mind that enormous positive changes are coming. There will be in 2025, after the elections, with your help a new immigration law on H1 B Visas, virtually unlimited to meet the needs of a growing economy.” Giving hope in this world of wars, Forbes pointed to areas of hope. “We saw it in the meeting between President Biden and Prime Minister Modi weeks ago. These forces are coming together to make sure there is peace in the world.”

Phaneesh Murthy, Founder & CEO of Primentor addressed the audience with his insightful talk on, “Strategies for Scaling and Sustaining a Successful IT Company from One to 100 Million Plus” The keynote address by Zack Kass, Technology Futurist, and Generative AI Solutions Specialist focused on: “AI for Small Business Success: Navigating the Future of Entrepreneurship.”

Ashish Agarwal from Turbo Start, DVC led the Startup Cube Panel on “GTM Pitfalls Faced by Growing Startups.”  Post Lunch, a Financial Panel Discussion explored “Alternative Investments for Diversified Business Portfolios and Funding Solutions for Diversified Growth.” The Breakout Session in the Afternoon was about: “Mastering the Art of Effective Recruiting in the Staffing Industry” by Barbara Bruno.

“State, County, City, High-Ed & Federal Government Contracting: Opportunities & Challenges” was yet another important topic at the Breakout Session in the afternoon and was led by Nazeera Dawood, CEO of Vendorship.net. The M & A Panel Discussion deliberated on, “Driving Growth and Value Through Strategic M&A: Opportunities and Challenges: Accelerating Business Expansion.”

Another interesting Breakout Session on the first day was about, “Increase Cash Flow $$$ and Collect Bad Debt,” led by Douglas Fuchs at Goldman, Evans & Trammell LLC.

Kevin O’Leary, a Venture Capitalist and Star of ABC’s Shark Tank delivered the Evening keynote address on: “The Path to Profit: Strategies for Building a Successful Business.” Through specific portrayals from his popular Shark Tank, his insightful address to the loud applause from the crowd referred to successful business strategies to enhance business profits.

During the Gala ITServe honored the Grand Sponsors: Four Oaks Insurance and TrackEx, as well as the Platinum Sponsors of Synergy 2023: AG FinTax, BBI Law Group, Ceipal, Imagility, Oorwin, Q 1 Technologies, SOMIREDDY Law, Tech Insurance Agency, and Vitel Global were honored for their generous support to ITServe Alliance and its Synergy 2023. In addition, 20 Platinum Members of ITServe were honored during the Gala with Mementos.

The morning of October 27th began with the keynote address on “Navigating the Financial Crises and Regulatory Landscape: Lessons Learned and Insights for IT Staffing Company Owners” by Sheila Bair, Former FDIC Chair.

Other sessions in the morning included a Startup Cube Finals on GTM Pitfalls Faced by Growing Startups, which Ashish Agarwal, Turbo Start, DVC led. The Immigration Panel Discussion focused on “Navigating Immigration Challenges and Policies.” The CXO Panel focused on “The Evolving Role of IOs and CTOs in AI and ChatGPT Powered Digital Transformation.” Other panel discussions addressed issues related to “Contracts And Litigations,” and “Direct Client Engagement in the World of Contingent Workforce.”

A Special Guest Session at Synergy was a “Dialogue with Yuvraj Singh,” a highly popular international Cricketer, Entrepreneur, and Philanthropist. Synergy 2023 will conclude with a Live Musical Concert by Bollywood Playback Singer and Filmfare Awardee Kanika Kapoor.

During Synergy 2023, ITServe honored high-achieving Entrepreneurs with Leadership Awards. ITServe Alliance recognized and honored companies that have demonstrated exceptional growth and success during a specific period. The ITServe Fastest Growing Company Awards were a testament to the impact of businesses that embrace innovation and strive for excellence.

Ashok Dandamudi, PR Director for ITServe said, “Synergy 2023 offered participants a platform to come together to hear industry leaders speak, engage in discussions with lawmakers, participate in interactive breakout sessions, deliberate on the latest trends, challenges, and opportunities in the world of IT Staffing and Technology.

Amar Varada, Chair of Synergy 2023 said, “Synergy 2023 had prominent speakers, and valuable sponsorships, and helped grow a community network of industry professionals across the country. We are grateful to the unwavering support of our members, volunteers, and sponsors, whose collective efforts made this event a memorable one for all.”

Anil Atyam, Chair of Speakers for Synergy 2023 emphasized the curated lineup of speakers and panels. “We are thrilled to have a diverse and esteemed set of speakers for this year’s conference. From policymakers, and technology leaders to industry innovators, our speakers are pivotal in shaping the discussions and providing invaluable insights that can be immediately applied in various sectors of the IT industry.”

As a participant at Synergy put it, “Synergy 2023 an incredible experience, and I feel so grateful to have been a part of it. The energy and enthusiasm that you brought to the event were truly inspiring, and I came away with a wealth of knowledge and new connections. Once again, thank you for all of your hard work in putting together such a fantastic event.”

With cultural events, music, dance, and sumptuous food, in addition to all the learning and sharing of knowledge, Synergy 2023 provided actionable insights and strategies that companies can directly implement, serving as a catalyst for taking businesses to the next level. Beyond being an arena for networking and knowledge sharing, Synergy 2023 has proved to be a veritable marketplace for ideas and innovations.

Led by an amazing, energetic, and inspiring leadership, ITServe is a fully voluntary organization, where its members and leaders dedicate their valuable time and resources, working selflessly to strengthen the organization and its mission to give back to the larger society. ITServe’s core leadership consists of: Vinodbabu Uppu, Governing Board Chair; Vinay Mahajan, President; Jagadeesh Mosali, President-Elect; Anju Vallabhaneni, Secretary; Mahesh Sake, Treasurer; Ravi K. Komatireddy, Joint Secretary; Sunil Savili, Joint Treasurer. The Governing Board Members include Vinodbabu Uppu, Governing Board Chair; Shashidhar Devireddy, National President 2016; Gopi Kandukuri, National President 2018; Amar Varada, Synergy Chair 2023, & National President 2020; Raghu Chittimalla, National President 2021; Devender Aerrabolu, National President 2022; and, Vinay Mahajan, current National President.

In addition to the 21 ITServe Chapter Presidents across the United States and the dozens of various Committee Chairs, the Executive Board of Directors of ITSeve, who play a critical role in enhancing the mission and vision of ITServe Alliance include: Manish Mehra, Director Chapter Relations; Samba Movva, Director-Corporate Social Responsibility; Srikanth Dasugari, Director-Membership; Ram Nandyala, Director-Benefits & New Chapters Launch; Siva Moopanar, Director-Political Action Committee; Ashok Dandamudi, Director – Public Relations  & Media; Omprakash Nakka. Director- Products & Startups; Dasarath Kunapaneni, Director – Sponsorship; Venu Sangani, Director – Synergy; Vinay Parachuri, Director – Bylaws; and, Anil Atyam, Director – Technology.

Founded in 2010, ITServe Alliance is the largest association of Information Technology Services organizations functioning across the United States. Established to be the voice of all prestigious Information Technology companies functioning with similar interests across the United States, ITServe Alliance has evolved as a resourceful and respected platform to collaborate and initiate measures in the direction of protecting common interests and ensuring collective success. ITServe Alliance now has 21 Chapters in several states across the United States, bringing the Synergy Conference to every part of this innovation country. For more information, please visit: www.itserve.org

AAPI’s Historic 2019 Expedition to Antarctica

Several years of meticulous planning, discussions, and organization, came to fruition as 190 delegates of American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) Families and Friends from across the United States and India embarked on the Ocean Atlantic Ship operated by Albatros Expeditions on November 30th, 2019 from Ushuaia, the southernmost town on Earth in Argentina on a voyage to Antarctica, the seventh Continent, known as the Last Horizon on Earth.

The voyagers were welcomed on board by AAPI’s young and dynamic President, Dr. Suresh Reddy, who has been working very hard, coordinating the efforts with Vinod Gupta from the Travel Agency, ATG Tours, the crew and leadership of the Cruise and the AAPI leaders and members with varied interests and ages ranging from 10 to 90, who had flown in from around the world for this once in a lifetime memorable and historic voyage to the White Continent.

Earlier, the AAPI delegates had toured the beautiful and serene National Park in Ushuaia, on the world famous Route 3 that runs from Alaska to the southern tip of the world in Argentina. At the Park, Dr. Reddy led the AAPI delegates carrying the AAPI banner, spreading the message of Obesity Awareness, which is a major objective of Dr. Reddy’s Presidency, taking the message of Obesity Awareness Around the World.

On the Ship, immediately after settling down in each one’s cabin, the voyagers were invited to learn about safety on the ship and participated in a safety drill. Shelli Ogilvy, the Veteran Expedition Leader introduced the 22 Expedition Members with extensive maritime experiences from around the world, and over 60 other crew members to the voyagers.

The Ship carrying the sailors began its journey on November 30th, 2019 from the Ushuaia Sea Port with a prayer song to Lord Ganesh, chanted by Dr. Aarti Pandya from Atlanta, GA.

Later in the evening, the voyagers sat down for a sit down dinner at the elegantly laid tables at the Restaurant with delicious Indian Cuisine, prepared by Herbert Baretto, a Chef from Goa, India, specially flown in to meet the diverse needs of the Indians who are now the exclusive Voyagers on Ocean Atlantic.

The evenings are fun filled with members spending time together with their select friends and families, singing, playing cards games, discussing politics to medicine to healthcare and sharing jokes and snippets with one another in smaller groups. The cultural events included live music sung by Dr. Radhika from Chicago, Dr. Aarti Pandya and Dr. Badlani, in addition to several local talents of AA{I’s own, leading and vying to win the Anthakshri contest.

The finale on December 8th was a colorful Indian Dress Segment, where the adorable AAPI women and men walked the aile in elegantly dressed in Indian ethnic wear depicting different states of India. On December 7th evening, the voyagers had Black Tie Nite with many of them learning and playing Pokers until the early hours of the morning.

As the sun was still shining beyond midnight, members of the voyage were seen posing and taking pictures on board the ship with the background of the mighty ocean and the scenic mountains of Argentina at the background.

On December 1st morning, AAPI members were alerted to be mindful of the most turbulent Drake Passage, where the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean merge, through which our ship was now sailing with winds gusting through over 50 kms an hour from the south west. The rough with fast moving sea currents contributing to a turbulent weather, several voyagers took shelter in anti-nausea meds.

Throughout the day, there were special safety classes periodically throughout the day, helping the voyagers on ways to navigate the zodiacs, the kayaks, the walks on the ice and snow once we reach our final destination. They were also educated on the many aspects of wildlife on Antarctica, the species, especially the varieties of penguins, the mammals and the birds that inhabit the Continent and the ways for the voyagers to deal with them. The participants were educated on the Antarctic Treaty, Climate Change and Impact, Whale Hunting, and many more relevant topics with scientific data by the Expedition Crew.

The evening was special for the voyagers as the Captain of the ship welcomed the delegates to the Ship and to the Expedition to Antarctica. He introduced his crew leaders to the loud applause from the delegates, as he toasted champagne for a safe and enjoyable journey to Antarctica.

On December 2nd morning, we woke up to milder weather and calmer ocean with the winds subsiding to about 20 kms an hour and ship sailing smoother with the temperatures below 7 degree Celsius. The crew on the ship described the sail to be the smoothest and the weather and wind conditions to be one of the calmest they have ever witnessed. However, the entire day was cloudy with the sun hiding behind the thick clouds upon the ocean.

AAPI in Antarctica

After sailing across the Pacific and the Atlantic Oceans and through the turbulent Drake Passage, and the South Ocean, finally, the day arrived for the Voyagers. The one they had been eagerly waiting for. On December 3rd, our ship, the Ocean Atlantic anchored on Danco Island, off the coast of the 7th Continent, Antarctica, officially discovered in 1820, although there is some controversy as to who sighted it first
The excitement of the voyagers had no bounds as they dressed up in their waterproof trousers, navy blue jackets, with hats and glouce and mufflers. They set out in groups marching off the Ship into the Zodiacs in tens in each Zodiac.

The wind and the ocean were calmer. The sun continued to hide behind thick clouds. The Expedition Crew from the ship drove the AAPI delegates to the shore on the island for the first time. The glaciers, mighty mountains covered with pristine and shiny snow, the icebergs on the ocean floating on the Bay, made the Zodiac ride to the shore a memorable experience for each.

As the voyagers walked to the shore on a narrow path on the soft snow surface, leading up the snowcapped mountains, it was a dream come true for all. The fresh water melting from the glaciers and the ice on the one side and on the other little rocks and mountains filled with snow, the Danco Island was picture perfect.

Head off in a Zodiac to view icebergs, or land on a beach studded with penguins. Kayak in the greatest silence on Earth. Take a long hike or a short walk on a shore lined with ghostly remnants of the whaling industry.

Penguins in small colonies of their own seemed unaffected by the voyagers landing onto the Penguin land. Hearing their unique and enchanting voices for the first time, as most of them sat steady, while a few walked from one end to the other, it was a scene everyone long dreamt to be part of, as it was another memorable experience in the life of everyone.

In the afternoon, after lunch and a lecture on the history of Antarctica, the Ocean Atlantic ship, travelling about 25 nautical miles, for the first time ever, landed on the Antarctic Continent as she reached the shores of Paradise Bay, a beautiful island, where the famous Brown Center, the Argentinian Research Station was located.

Trekking up the Hill on the snow and ice filled terrains, even as the serene and picturesque glaciers in vivid shapes and texture, it was mesmerizing and the Bay on either side, was breathtaking.
On December 4th morning, the voyagers got onto the Zodiacs and sailed to Port Lockroy, a sheltered harbor with a secure anchorage on the Antarctic Peninsula since its discovery in 1904. The Port also is home to a Museum and a British Post Office, where the early visitors to the Continent lived and explored the wildlife of the last Horizon. The Museum has preserved the antiques used by the early voyagers, who are an important part in the history of Antarctica.
Bright sun light flashing on the Lamoy Point on our way south towards the northern peninsula of the white Coneinent greeted us all this morning on December 5th. The greetings over the microphone at 6.15 woke us all up letting us know of the .mild weather conditions with 7 degrees celcius and 27 km s wind speed with bright sunny day was a welcome change from yesterday.

Immediately after breakfast we set out in small groups of ten on each Zodiac to cruise on the pristine blue waters of the Lamoy Bay.

Bright sun light flashing on the Lamoy Point on our way south towards the northern peninsula of the white Coneinent greeted us all this morning on December 5th. The greetings over the microphone at 6.15 woke us all up letting us know of the .mild weather conditions with 7 degrees celcius and 27 km s wind speed with bright sunny day was a welcome change from yesterday.

Immediately after breakfast we set out in small groups of ten on each Zodiac to cruise on the pristine blue waters of the Lamoy Bay.

The wind of 25 kms an hour made the waters of the Bay mildly rough as we set out from the ship. For the first time during the voyage, to the much delight of the AAPI delegates, the sun chose to come out from behind the clouds and shone brightly on the voyagers, making the snow shining and glowing with the rays of the sun filling the surface of the earth. It was delightful to see the Penguins close to the AAPI delegates, some of them walking beside them crossing their pathway.
After a lunch Barbeque on Deck Seven of the Ship, the Ocean Atlantic took us through the beautiful Lemaire Channel on the Continent. Braving the cold and gusty winds, the voyagers got together for a group picture of the entire voyager group on Deck Eight of the ship, as they were awed by the beautiful glaciers, the mighty snow-caped mountains, and the floating ice bergs.

It was an amazing experience as the Ship sailed through the Bay filled with Ice Sheet Rocks that are over a meter thick, slowly but steadily marching forward towards the Plenau Bay, where the 38 brave AAPI members had the unique experience of taking “Polar Plunge” in the Sea Water, which was 0.78 degree calcium while the rest of the AA{I delegates watched the brave men and women taking a memorable dip and swim back to the ship in the freezing cold waters of the Antarctic Continent.
This afternoon we were invited to climb up to the Decks 8 and 9 of the ship to view the entrance/passage to the famous Deception Island. Ad the ship sailed through this narrow path into the Island with majestic dark mountains on our right side while on the left snowcapped mountains overlooking the Bay. As the gusty winds made us shiver the voyagers standing on the top deck of the Atlantic Ocean posed for pictures while many others were lost in the stunning beauty created by Mother Nature for all of us to enjoy and cherish for ever.

The tallest mountain Mount Franceswithe height of 2300 meters high behind the backdrop, our zodiacs elegantly cruised fhrough the calmer waters to the mountain range called the Princes and the seven dwarfs.

The stunning views of the glaciers and the mountains and the soft and shiny snow spread across the shore led us all to the top of the snowy hills as we trekked to the top.

Colonies of penguins in smaller groups greeted us with their enchanting voices. We watched in awe as tiny penguins walking up flapping their feathers occasionally from the bottom of the hill to the top.
Many if us waited patiently to have an opportunity to view the eggs upon which the Penguins were sitting to hatch their eggs. Some were lucky to photograph a few couples mating while we were trying to figure out the male from female.

Leaving the breath taking landscapes was not an easy choice as we were soon called to embark on the zodiacs and return to Ocean Atlantic our ship as she was patiently waiting to take us to the next destination of our expedition to the Last Horizon.

We woke up this morni g on Friday December 6th to a bright and sunny day, calmer ocean with 9 kms of wind speed….a picture perfect day for expedition.
We went on zodiacs cruising through the blue waters of the Half Moon Island, a cluster of snowy mountains shaped as a half moon. Searching for wild life in the ocean with the voyagers looking out eagerly for any seals or whales did not seem to result in success as the sea animals and those on the shore seemed to hide in their resting places.
Finally the zodiac captains took us to the shore where for the first time we landed on dark stony surface full of rocks stones and pebbles. Our expedition crew leader reported that the shore was completely covered with ice and snow in the beginning of the season barely a month ago.

The glaciers and the imposing mighty mountains around us we hiked up the hill intruding sometimes into the Penguin Hoghways where we saw colonies of penguins resting under the bright sun. It was delightful to watch a few hopping on tiny rocks from one to another unnerved by the visitors from the Other Continents on earth.
A relaxing and rejuvenating morning walks across the island with breath taking views in abundance of Mother Nature will last a life time for everyone who has been part of the historic expedition to the 7th Continent.

After journeying about five hours we reached this evening at the Melchiors Island as the bright sun shining on us. On our way during lunch and later on the voyagers were thrilled to spot whales showing up their heads periodically.

The journey through the Bay was another memorable experience with the stunning landscape all along the route especially as the sun continued shine brightly on the snow peaked mountains turning the waters closer the glaciers turning from blue to green.

We had over an hour of zodiac cruise exploring the sea life on the Antarctic’s South Ocean.

For the first time we were delighted to watch different kinds of Penguins sitting on a single rock glazing at the ocean waters.
We spotted a few huge Cedder Seals resting on the rocks unmoved by the voyagers in several zodiacs watching them in awe.

The bright sun and the gentle breeze embracing the cheeks of the voyagers it was a perfect day to cruise and explore the White Continent.

190 Members of American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin AAPI under the leadership of Dr. Suresh Reddy and a over 50 strong crew and 22 member expedition team set on sail from Urshuaia the southernmost township on earth located in the beautiful country Argentina on Saturday November 30th 2019

The AAPI delegates came from across the United States with some members of the extended family of AAPI delegates coming from india on this once in a lifetime experience to the sea enth continent Antarctica.

Earlier the AAPI delegates spent a day in Urshuia touring the National Park and lake wearing yellow hats and shirts carrying a banner spreading the message of the need for obesity awareness.

On the ship the voyage to the White continent began with a Prayer song by Dr.Aarti Pandya from Atlanta to Lord Ganesha seeking his blessings and prayers to remove all obstacles out of the way.

The sit down dinner on the first night as the ship sailed through the passage towards the south ocean was an amazing experience even as the sun shone on the west until 11 pm.

The 2nd day the Voyagers were woken up by announcement from crew of heavy winds of 50 km an hour and rough sea as the majestic ship moved ahead with braving the tumultuous weather and mighty ocean.

The 2nd night on the ship was special with the captain hosting the dinner and the delegates interacting with the crew and the delegates.

AAPI’s Historic Expedition

Today, on December 4th, the voyagers got onto the Zodiacs and sailed to Port Lockroy, a sheltered harbor with a secure anchorage and the Antarctic Peninsula since its discovery in 1904. The Port also is home to a Museum and a British Post Office, where the early visitors to the Continent lived and explored the wildlife of the last Horizon. The Museum has preserved the antiques used by the early voyagers, which is an important role in the history of Antarctica.

The wind of 25 kms an hour made the waters of the Bay mildly rough as we set out from the ship. For the first time during the voyage, to the much delight of the AAPI delegates, the sun chose to come out from behind the clouds and shone brightly on the voyagers, making the snow shining and glowing with the rays of the sun filling the surface of the earth. It was delightful to see the Penguins close to the AAPI delegates, some of them walking beside them crossing their pathway.

After a lunch Barbeque on Deck Seven of the Ship, the Ocean Atlantic took us through the beautiful Lemaire Channel on the Continent. Braving the cold and gusty winds, the voyagers got together for a group picture of the entire voyager group on Deck Eight of the ship, as they were awed by the beautiful glaciers, the mighty snow-caped mountains, and the floating ice bergs.

It was an amazing experience as the Ship sailed through the Bay filled with Ice Sheet Rocks that are over a meter thick, slowly but steadily marching forward towards the Plenau Bay, where the 38 brave AAPI members had the unique experience of taking “Polar Plunge” in the Sea Water, which was 0.78 degree calcium while the rest of the AA{I delegates watched the brave men and women taking a memorable dip and swim back to the ship in the freezing cold waters of the Antarctic Continent.

Bright sun light flashing on the Lamiy Bay on our way up north towards the northern peninsula of the white Coneinent greeted us all this morning on December 5th. The greetings over the microphone at 6.15 woke us all up letting us know of the .mild weather conditions with 7 degrees celcius and 27 km s wind speed with bright sunny day was a welcome change from yesterday.

Immediately after breakfast we set out in small groups of ten on each Zodiac to cruise on the pristine blue waters of the Lamoy Bay.
The tallest mountain Mount Franceswithe height of 2300 meters high behind the backdrop, our zodiacs elegantly cruised fhrough the calmer waters to the mountain range called the Princes and the seven dwarfs.

The stunning views of the glaciers and the mountains and the soft and shiny snow spread across the shore led us all to the top of the snowy hills as we trekked to the top.

Colonies of penguins in smaller groups greeted us with their enchanting voices. We watched in awe as tiny penguins walking up flapping their feathers occasionally from the bottom of the hill to the top.
Many if us waited patiently to have an opportunity to view the eggs upon which the Penguins were sitting to hatch their eggs. Some were lucky to photograph a few couples mating while we were trying to figure out the male from female.

Leaving the breath taking landscapes was not an easy choice as we were soon called to embark on the zodiacs and return to Ocean Atlantic our ship as she was patiently waiting to take us to the next destination of our expedition to the Last Horizon.
After journeying about five hours we reached this evening at the Melchiors Island as the bright sun shining on us. On our way during lunch and later on the voyagers were thrilled to spot whales showing up their heads periodically.

The journey through the Bay was another memorable experience with the stunning landscape all along the route especially as the sun continued shine brightly on the snow peaked mountains turning the waters closer the glaciers turning from blue to green.

We had over an hour of zodiac cruise exploring the sea life on the Antarctic’s South Ocean.

For the first time we were delighted to watch different kinds of Penguins sitting on a single rock glazing at the ocean waters.
We spotted Seals resting on the rocks unmoved and unaffected by the voyagers in several zodiacs watching them in awe.

The bright sun and the gentle breeze embracing the voyagers it was a perfect day to cruise and explore the White Continent.
Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone

Bright sun light flashing on the Lamiy Bay on our way up north towards the northern peninsula of the white Coneinent greeted us all this morning on December 5th. The greetings over the microphone at 6.15 woke us all up letting us know of the .mild weather conditions with 7 degrees celcius and 27 km s wind speed with bright sunny day was a welcome change from yesterday.
Immediately after breakfast we set out in small groups of ten on each Zodiac to cruise on the pristine blue waters of the Lamoy Bay.
The tallest mountain Mount Franceswithe height of 2300 meters high behind the backdrop, our zodiacs elegantly cruised fhrough the calmer waters to the mountain range called the Princes and the seven dwarfs.

The stunning views of the glaciers and the mountains and the soft and shiny snow spread across the shore led us all to the top of the snowy hills as we trekked to the top.

Colonies of penguins in smaller groups greeted us with their enchanting voices. We watched in awe as tiny penguins walking up flapping their feathers occasionally from the bottom of the hill to the top.
Many if us waited patiently to have an opportunity to view the eggs upon which the Penguins were sitting to hatch their eggs. Some were lucky to photograph a few couples mating while we were trying to figure out the male from female.

Leaving the breath taking landscapes was not an easy choice as we were soon called to embark on the zodiacs and return to Ocean Atlantic our ship as she was patiently waiting to take us to the next destination of our expedition to the Last Horizon.

After journeying about five hours we reached this evening at the Melchiors Island as the bright sun shining on us. On our way during lunch and later on the voyagers were thrilled to spot whales showing up their heads periodically.

The journey through the Bay was another memorable experience with the stunning landscape all along the route especially as the sun continued shine brightly on the snow peaked mountains turning the waters closer the glaciers turning from blue to green.

We had over an hour of zodiac cruise exploring the sea life on the Antarctic’s South Ocean.

For the first time we were delighted to watch different kinds of Penguins sitting on a single rock glazing at the ocean waters.
We spotted a few huge Cedder Seals resting on the rocks unmoved by the voyagers in several zodiacs watching them in awe.

The bright sun and the gentle breeze embracing the cheeks of the voyagers it was a perfect day to cruise and explore the White Continent.
After journeying about five hours we reached this evening at the Melchiors Island as the bright sun shining on us. On our way during lunch and later on the voyagers were thrilled to spot whales showing up their heads periodically.

The journey through the Bay was another memorable experience with the stunning landscape all along the route especially as the sun continued shine brightly on the snow peaked mountains turning the waters closer the glaciers turning from blue to green.

We had over an hour of zodiac cruise exploring the sea life on the Antarctic’s South Ocean.

For the first time we were delighted to watch different kinds of Penguins sitting on a single rock glazing at the ocean waters.
We spotted a few huge Cedder Seals resting on the rocks unmoved by the voyagers in several zodiacs watching them in awe.

The bright sun and the gentle breeze embracing the cheeks of the voyagers it was a perfect day to cruise and explore the White Continent.
We woke up this morni g on Friday December 6th to a bright and sunny day, calmer ocean with 9 kms of wind speed….a picture perfect day for expedition.
We went on zodiacs cruising through the blue waters of the Half Moon Island, a cluster of snowy mountains shaped as a half moon. Searching for wild life in the ocean with the voyagers looking out eagerly for any seals or whales did not seem to result in success as the sea animals and those on the shore seemed to hide in their resting places.
Finally the zodiac captains took us to the shore where for the first time we landed on dark stony surface full of rocks stones and pebbles. Our expedition crew leader reported that the shore was completely covered with ice and snow in the beginning of the season barely a month ago.

The glaciers and the imposing mighty mountains around us we hiked up the hill intruding sometimes into the Penguin Hoghways where we saw colonies of penguins resting under the bright sun. It was delightful to watch a few hopping on tiny rocks from one to another unnerved by the visitors from the Other Continents on earth.
A relaxing and rejuvenating morning walks across the island with breath taking views in abundance of Mother Nature will last a life time for everyone who has been part of the historic expedition to the 7th Continent.

This afternoon we were invited to climb up to the Decks 8 and 9 to view the entrance/passage to the famous Deception Island. Ad the ship sailed through this narrow path into the Island with majestic dark mountains on our right side while on the left snowcapped mountains overlooking the Bay. As the guest winds made us shiver the voyagers standing on the top deck of the Atlantic Ocean posed for pictures while many others lost in the stunning beauty created by Mother Nature for all of us to enjoy and cherish for ever.

The final landing on the Last Horizon on Friday December 6th afternoon wa sdcc at the Deception Island for the AAPI Votagers.
An unusually bright shi ing sky with gentle winds welcomed us to the shore of the black sandy with little stones spread all along the 36 kms wide island.
The volcanic eruption here over 50 years ago has turne DC the island the mountains into dark colored. Saw a huge deal on the shore resting with birds and few penguins of the Contindnt enjoying the mild weather, the voyagers trekked up.the hill on the dark sand while the panoramic and breath taking views on the snowy mountains beyond the Bay hovering over blue waters of the Last Horizon.

Each evening at cocktail hour the entire expedition community gathers in the lounge for a ritual we call Recap. As you enjoy cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, various naturalists give talks, the undersea specialist may show video, and your expedition leader will outline the following day’s schedule.

penguins. Gentoo, Adelie, chinstraps in the thousands; rockhopper, macaroni and king penguins in the Falklands; and king penguins at a staggering scale in South Georgia.
We were all excited about the sightings of a rare black and a rare white penguin, as well as a lone Emperor colony at our farthest south.
Penguin behavior is endlessly fascinating. In the Antarctic spring, hundreds of gentoo penguins parade before us, reestablishing their bonds, mating, staking their claims, and thievishly stealing stones from one another for their nests.

The photo ops are simply incredible. And while penguins are delightful in films and nature documentaries, watching the often-madcap business of penguin life being lived around you is simultaneously uplifting and humbling: the animal kingdom indeed.
We’ll find it resting on ice floes, and often will have the opportunity to approach closely in Zodiacs for excellent photo ops. We’ll also likely be able to observe Weddell and crabeater seals, as well as Antarctic fur seals, whose populations have rebounded since the 1959 Antarctic Treaty and the 1972 Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Seals.
Antarctic birds
See Arctic terns and other pelagic birds, including fulmars and petrels. The opportunity of a lifetime for bird lovers, however, lies in venturing further—into the lands of the albatross,
The beautiful black-browed albatross crowd the ledges
The wandering albatross, with the largest wingspan of any bird, is one of the many wildlife spectacles South Georgia affords.

We woke up sailing on choppy seas with northerly winds of 45 knots.
When we reached the western side of the island, we found ourselves at the top of the spectacular colony of rockhopper penguins, and black-browed albatross. Brown skuas flew over the colony while penguins, albatross, and shags took care of their eggs.
We spend a good bit of time photographing the birds and generally taking in such wonderful experience and close views of the wildlife.

Settling into the calm waters of Cierva Cove, we headed out for a morning of Zodiac cruising. As the ship disappeared behind us in the mist, we hugged the shoreline to enjoy views of the Argentine research station Base Primavera, rolling swell around dramatic icebergs, and an undisturbed colony of gentoo penguins going about their usual Sunday morning business.

Highlights of the morning included great sightings of Weddell seals snoozing on ice and swimming curiously in the turquoise waters. As the fog began to lift, dramatic mountain peaks showed through the clouds and we were treated to stunning views of the surrounding glaciers and impressive icebergs throughout the cove.
Dramatic sculpture-like structures made for fantastic photo opportunities, and it was tough to return in time for lunch from such a beautiful morning out on the water.
Before long, we lost count of the number of emperor penguins we laid our eyes on. Cut loose upon the sea ice, our guests took to skiing and snowshoeing to explore the icy landscape and spend time with a gaggle of the largest penguin species on our unique planet.

Today, Antarctica is certainly one of the ultimate tour destinations of the world. However, for more than 150 years after its discovery, Antarctica was too far, too remote, too extreme, too dangerous, and too expensive for all but the most stout-hearted explorers and adventurers.

Those people willing to risk everything for the tasks at hand and fortunate enough to have the financial backing of governments or wealthy organizations. Few simple travelers could dare venture into this domain. To go there meant outfitting an expedition, and necessitated making preparations for all kinds of contingencies.
The human history of Antarctica contains some of the most exciting stories of endeavor and persistence imaginable, and includes many survival tales of people overcoming almost unimaginable odds. It is also wrought with many heart-wrenching tragedies.
But, whatever their reasons for going to Antarctica, these people were first and foremost adventurers at heart. It has taken the efforts of these many expeditions and fearless explorers to reduce much of the Antarctic mystery and danger.

The ship could carry 92 passengers along with about 60 crew members, naturalists, and lecturers.
inflatable boats called Zodiacs provided the means for his passengers to get ashore almost anywhere, under a multitude of conditions.

There are two major types of ice in the polar regions, sea ice and glacial ice, and they form through different methods. Sea ice forms in oceanic water when the ambient temperature is lowered to the freezing point of salt water. Glacial ice (including ice caps) forms through the simple accumulation of snow which becomes compressed by its own weight into solid ice. Sea ice formation is a seasonal phenomenon (although individual pieces of sea ice may last for several years), while glacial ice is generally a long-term structure lasting decades, centuries, or even millennia.

If conditions are calm, the crystals join together, thicken, and form a fibrous structure called young ice.
Sea ice prevents the ocean waters from warming the coasts significantly. It is important to note that islands within the limits of Winter pack ice (such as the South Shetlands, South Orkneys, etc.) compare closely with the continent in seasonal temperatures, soils types, flora, and fauna.
Glaciation, however, is much more complicated. When snow accumulates over a period of many years (that is, it doesn’t melt away after one season), the buildup creates a thick deposit in which the overlying mass tends to compress the lower snow layers into solid ice. During this, the individual snowflakes change into granules, which fuse into crystals of ice. Often, the air between the flakes becomes trapped, thereby creating air bubbles within the ice crystals. In polar areas, this produces huge and massive ice caps that can overwhelm and cover the entire landscape, including even mountains. Eventually, the ice mass thickens to the point where it begins to move due to a combination of gravity and the shape and slope of the ground surface. On steeper slopes this can occur when the thickness of the combined snow and ice reaches 15 m (50 feet) in depth. This is often referred to as glacial ice. If the flowing ice is constrained by mountains, valley walls, or other land surface formations, it is known as a glacier.
Glacial ice is the world’s largest reservoir of fresh water, albeit in solid form. Nearly 99% of all glacial ice on Earth is contained within the huge ice sheets in the polar regions. In fact, this volume of ice is so large that if the ice sheets of both Greenland and Antarctica were to melt, it would cause sea levels to rise about 70 meters (230 ft). In addition to Antarctica, Greenland, Canada, Iceland, and Svalbard, there are also significant glaciers scattered around the world outside of polar regions, including Alaska and Chilean Patagonia.
Permanent ice probably began forming in Antarctica as early as Miocene times, perhaps 20 million years ago.

There are 17 species of penguins in the world and they have various qualities in common. They are all found in the southern hemisphere, although one species, the Galapagos penguin, actually ranges a few miles north of the equator. Penguins are the most aquatic of the sea birds, and they generally spend most of their lives at sea (except when molting or rearing young). All penguins are flightless and adapted for life in cold water, so even those found in the low latitudes are dependent upon cold water currents for their livelihood.

Except for the feet and perhaps bare patches on the face, the entire body is covered with small, dense, overlapping, scale-like feathers, and there is a downy tuft at the base of each feather which increases the heat retention abilities even more. Feathers account for about 80% of the penguins’ insulative properties, while fat provides the other 20%. Penguins have very high internal body temperatures (about 38° C, or 101° F), as well as high metabolic rates. With all this taken into account it is easy to understand how the Antarctic species in particular can survive, and even thrive, in a cold, harsh climate.

Around the Antarctic Peninsula, we commonly see gentoo (Pygoscelis papua), Adélie (Pygoscelis adeliae), chinstrap (Pygoscelis Antarctica), emperor (Aptenodytes forsteri), and rarely Macaroni (Eudyptes chrysolophus) penguins.

On South Georgia, we can see king (A. patagonica), gentoo (P. papua), chinstrap (P. Antarctica), and Macaroni (Eudyptes chrysolophus) penguins.

Whales (this term applies to all whales, dolphins, porpoises, etc.) are air breathing mammals, but have perfected the ability to live entirely in water over the past 50 to 60 million years.

ITServe’s Flagship Synergy 2023 Held In Atlantic City

(November 1st, 2023: Atlantic City, NJ) Networking, learning and sharing of knowledge, great and hignly acclaimed speakers, insightful workshops, collaborating with one another, strengthening bonds, celebrating one’s achievements and accomplishments, cultural and fun events, awards ceremony, showcasing of business booths and products, and delicious and multi-ethnic cuisine, and attended by over 2,200 members of ITServe Alliance, who are small and medium size companies of Information Technology were only some of the highlights of ItServe Alliance’s flagship Synergy 2023 held from October 26th to 27th, 2023 at the popular Harrahs Resport in Atlantic City, NJ.

In his Presidential address, Vinay K. Mahajan, National President of ITServe Alliance, welcomed the members, leaders, chapter presidents, sponsors, and volunteers to Synergy 2023 and expressed his “sincere gratitude for your unwavering commitment, and dedication, and for investing your time and energy and resources. You are the backbone of our organization, and your unwavering commitment is what propels us forward.”

Describing the mission of ITServe Mr. Mahajan said, “We are the voice represent the interests of small and medium scale enterprises of IT industry, protecting our members’ interests. We give back to the community, and invest in startups, which is to help the United States maintain the leadership in innovation and technology. It is about coming together, collaborating and liberating our collective strength. It is about finding synergy, not only within our own businesses but also across our entire community.”

Venu Sangani, Director of Synergy 2023 said, “As we gather here, let’s remember that our unity as a community is our strength. I took on this leadership role, an opportunity, driven with a single objective: to help at the end of the conference, each attendee departs with concrete insight to grow their business to the next level. Because in all of you here today, there is both gratitude and deep sense of accomplishment, knowing our collective vision is alive and thriving.”

Sanghani, who led a dedicated and visionary team organizing this historic event said, “Synergy 2023 is our landmark flagship gathering. The essence of it so synergy lies not only very knowledge exchange, but inspiring one another. Let the success stories of fellow entrepreneurs ignite your ambitions, be it scaling your business to the next level, or diversifying investments or starting new territories. Let’s make the most of Synergy.”

Vinodbabu Uppu, Governing Board Chair of ITServe said, “Synergy 2023 is the only one-of-a-kind conference delivering innovative strategies, unique insights, and proven tactics for success, exclusively for IT service companies and individuals. Synergy 2023 will focus on developing strategic relationships with our partner organizations, sponsors, and supporters to work for a better technology environment by building greater understanding.”

Jagadish Modsali, President-Elect of ITServe said, “Hope everyone at our flagship event has enjoyed Synergy 2023. Some of you know and some might not know the countless amount of time our “Volunteer CEOs” from Synergy Team as well as the Board have spent to make the event successful as you have seen. My deepest appreciation to both Sung Hero’s as well as  the “Unsung Heroes.”. Thank you all for your service and commitment to the organization and giving back to community.”

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, the Chief Guest at Synergy 2023 delivered the Keynote Address during an interactive session with ITServe members on October 27th evening. Ms. Clinton, the 67th Secretary of State of the United States has dedicated over four decades in public service as an advocate, attorney, First Lady, and US Senator.

During a candid “Fireside Chat” Secretary Clinton shared with the audience very candidly about her private life, growing up as a child, her marriage to Bill Clinton, struggles in managing careers as a daughter, wife, mother, and a public figure holding numerous important positions locally, nationally and internationally.

Secretary Clinton praised the contributions and accomplishments of the fast-growing Indian Americans. She said, “I’m so proud of the many accomplishments of the Indian diaspora in the United States. I really want to thank you and commend you for the extraordinary contributions to the nation.  I was so impressed by the many contributions you’ve made, in addition to building your businesses and providing employment for people.:

Secretary Clinton urged the Indian Diaspora “to continue to be involved in your communities,to be members of civic clubs. volunteer groups, and really take part in American society in every way possible, and also to make the decision if you so choose, to become an American citizen and as you wish to do. And for those of you who are the children, who are American citizens, guide them to be very active. Not just getting their education or being a successful person economically, but to be involved in things. There’s a lot to it. So, I think that the Indian diaspora, you know are good role models for people in many parts of our country. So, I personally am very grateful for the many contributions that you are making and will make in the future.”

Steve Forbes, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, Forbes Media spoke about “Leadership Lessons: The Stunning Parallels Between Great Leaders of the World and Today’s Top Business Leaders.” He said, “You have to do things even if you feel you’re not fully ready to do it. The next year or two will be very severe. But also keep in mind that enormous positive changes are coming. There will be in 2025, after the elections, with your help a new immigration law on H1 B Visas, virtually unlimited to meet the needs of a growing economy.” Giving hope in this world of wars, Forbes pointed to areas of hope. “We saw it in the meeting between President Biden, Prime Minister Modi weeks ago. These forces are coming together to make sure there is peace in the world.”

Phaneesh Murthy, Founder & CEO of Primentor addressed the audience with his insightful talk on, “Strategies for Scaling and Sustaining a Successful IT Company from One to 100 Million Plus” The keynote address by Zack Kass, Technology Futurist, and Generative AI Solutions Specialist focused on: “AI for Small Business Success: Navigating the Future of Entrepreneurship.”

Ashish Agarwal from Turbo Start, DVC led the Startup Cube Panel on “GTM Pitfalls Faced by Growing Startups.”  Post Lunch, a Financial Panel Discussion explored “Alternative Investments for Diversified Business Portfolios and Funding Solutions for Diversified Growth.” The Breakout Session in the Afternoon was about: “Mastering the Art of Effective Recruiting in the Staffing Industry” by Barbara Bruno.

“State, County, City, High-Ed & Federal Government Contracting: Opportunities & Challenges” was yet another important topic at the Breakout Session in the afternoon and was led by Nazeera Dawood, CEO of Vendorship.net. The M & A Panel Discussion deliberated on, “Driving Growth and Value Through Strategic M&A: Opportunities and Challenges: Accelerating Business Expansion.” Another interesting Breakout Session on the first day was about, “Increase Cash Flow $$$ and Collect Bad Debt,” led by Douglas Fuchs at Goldman, Evans & Trammell LLC.

Kevin O’Leary, a Venture Capitalist, Star of ABC’s Shark Tank delivered the Evening keynote address on: “The Path to Profit: Strategies for Building a Successful Business.” Through specific portrayals from his popular Shark Tank, his insightful address to the loud applauses from the crowd referred to successful business strategies to enhance business profits.

During the evening Gala Grand Sponsors: Four Oaks Insurance and TrackEx as well as the Platinum Sponsors of Synergy 2023: AG Fintax, BBI Law Group, Ceipa; Corp, Imagility, Oorwin, Q 1  Technologies, Somireddy Law, T I A Tech Insurance Agency, and Vitel Global were honored for their generous support to ITSereve Alliance.

As a participant at Synergy put it, “Synergy 2023 an incredible experience, and I feel so grateful to have been a part of it. The energy and enthusiasm that you brought to the event were truly inspiring, and I came away with a wealth of knowledge and new connections. Once again, thank you for all of your hard work in putting together such a fantastic event.”

With cultural events, music and dance, sumptuous food, in addition to all the learning and sharing of knowledge, Synergy 2023 provided actionable insights and strategies that companies can directly implement, serving as a catalyst for taking businesses to the next level. Beyond being an arena for networking and knowledge sharing, Synergy 2023 has proved to be a veritable marketplace for ideas and innovations.

“Synergy 2023 had prominent speakers, and valuable sponsorships, and helped grow a community network of industry professionals across the country,” said Amar Varada, Chair of Synergy 2023.

Anil Atyam, Chair of Speakers for Synergy 2023 emphasized the curated lineup of speakers and panels. “We are thrilled to have a diverse and esteemed set of speakers for this year’s conference. From policymakers, and technology leaders to industry innovators, our speakers are pivotal in shaping the discussions and providing invaluable insights that can be immediately applied in various sectors of the IT industry.”

Ashok Dandamudi, PR Director for ITServe said, “Synergy 2023 offered participants with a platform to come together to hear industry leaders speak, engage in discussions with lawmakers, participate in interactive breakout sessions, deliberate on the latest trends, challenges, and opportunities in the world of IT Staffing and Technology.

The morning of October 27th began with the keynote address on “Navigating the Financial Crises and Regulatory Landscape: Lessons Learned and Insights for IT Staffing Company Owners” by Sheila Bair, Former FDIC Chair.

Other sessions in the morning included a Startup Cube Finals on GTM Pitfalls Faced by Growing Startups, which were led by Ashish Agarwal, Turbo Start, DVC. The Immigration Panel Discussion focused on “Navigating Immigration Challenges and Policies.” The CXO Panel’s focused on “The Evolving Role of IOs and CTOs in AI and ChatGPT Powered Digital Transformation.” Other panel discussions addressed issues related to “Contracts And Litigations,” and “Direct Client Engagement in the World of Contingent Workforce.”

A Special Guest Session at Synergy was a “Dialogue with Yuvraj Singh,” a highly popular international Cricketer, Entrepreneur, and Philanthropist. Synergy 2023 will conclude with a Live Musical Concert by Bollywood Playback Singer and Filmfare Awardee Kanika Kapoor.

During Synergy 2023, ITServe honored high achieving Entrepreneurs with Leadership Awards. ITServe Alliance recognized and honored companies that have demonstrated exceptional growth and success during a specific period. The ITServe Fastest Growing Company Awards were a testament to the impact of businesses that embrace innovation and strive for excellence.

Founded in 2010, ITServe Alliance is the largest association of Information Technology Services organizations functioning across the United States. Established to be the voice of all prestigious Information Technology companies functioning with similar interests across the United States, ITServe Alliance has evolved as a resourceful and respected platform to collaborate and initiate measures in the direction of protecting common interests and ensuring collective success. ITServe Alliance now has 21 Chapters in several states across the United States, bringing the Synergy Conference to every part of this innovation country. For more information, please visit: www.itserve.org

The Kerala Center Honors 8 Distinguished NRIs At Annual Gala

The Indian American Kerala Cultural and Civic Center honored eight Indian Americans with Excellence Awards for their outstanding accomplishments in their respective fields of specialization and contributions to the larger society during the 31st Annual Awards Banquet held on October 28, 2023, in Elmont, New York. The prestigious awards ceremony was attended by nearly 200 people from across the United States and Canda, including several elected officials, community and business leaders.

This year’s honorees were: Dr. Shyam Kottilil (Baltimore, MD) – Life Time Achievement Award; Sajeeb Koya (Pickering, Ontario, Canada) – Entrepreneurship; Dr. Anna George (Long Island, NY) – Nursing; Shelby Kutty (Baltimore, MD) – Medicine; Ajay Ghosh (Trumbull, CT) – Media and Journalism; Lata Menon (Mississauga, Ontario, Canada) – Legal Services; Jayant Kamicheril (Reading, PA) – Pravasi Malayalam Literature; and Gopala Pillai (Dallas, Texas) – Community Service.

“Kerala Center is very happy to honor American Malayalees who excel in their professions and who work for social progress — their examples should be an inspiration for others,” said Dr. Madhu Bhaskaran, Chairman of the Board of Directors. Dr. Madhu Bhaskaran, who is also the Award Committee Chairman introduced the other members of the Awards Committee, including Dr. Thomas Abraham, Daisy P. Stephen and Varkey Abraham.

“The Kerala Center has been honoring outstanding achievers since 1992. Every year we invite nominations and the committee has to make a unanimous choice for a candidate in a category to receive the award and this year is no different from previous years in terms of their achievements. The Center has recognized nearly 200 American Malayalees in the last 31 years and it is great to see that they have continued to rise further in their careers and serve the society,” said Dr. Thomas Abraham, Kerala Center’s Trustee Board Chairman and Award Committee Member¸ who had played a pivotal role in the establishment of Kerala Center. Alex K. Esthappan, Kerala Center President said, “The Kerala Center, a non-profit, member supported organization, is the only center of its kind serving the Keralites and the Indian American community in the tri-state New York area,” he said. “It was founded to provide a platform to discuss the issues that are of concern to us, share our experiences, celebrate our festivals, promote our culture and traditions, and to bring our people together.” Raju Thomas, General Secretary of the Kerala Center in his remarks said, “We at the Indian American Kerala Cultural and Civic Center in Long Island, New York are very pleased to honor the distinguished members of our commnity with the prestigious award during the solemn ceremony here at our Center.”

Inaugurated in 1993, past awardees of the Kerala Center include, US Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, Dr. Shashi Tharoor, NY State Senator Kevin Thomas, Missouri City Mayor Robin Elackatt, American College of Physicians President Dr. George Abraham, Venture Capitalist Sreedhar Menon, Shanti Bhavan Founder Dr. Abraham George and Prof. P. Somasundaran of Columbia University.

In her very eloquent introductory remarks, Daisy Stephen, Vice President of the Kerala Center and Emcee for the ceremony said, “From a modest beginning 31 years ago, the Kerala Center has come a long way to play a vital role in the life of the Malayalee community in the United States.” She lauded the pioneers who had the vision to start the Kerala Center and dealt with many challenges of starting such an institution. “Today, the Kerala Center has become truly a ‘Shining Center’ of our culture and heritage. The Center has outgrown its initial objectives for which it was founded and has become a facility that serves the various needs of the larger Indian American community,” she said.

“I congratulate you on your success,” Kevin Thomas, New York State Senator told the awardees and the Non Resident Keralite community members. He praised the eight honorees for “showing the way” to the rest of the community, and the Kerala Center for being at the center of the Indian Diaspora in New York. “Over the past three decades, it has become a focal point for Indian Americans, coordinating programs, activities, and services to the members and groups of the community in the New York region.”

Dr. Shyam Kottilil, who was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award delivered the keynote address. He provided a brief introduction to Infectious diseases and how the measures initiated by the US Government has saved humanity. While cautioning about the “total lockdown” imposed on the world due to Covid, Dr. Kotilil shared about the many lessons learned and the ways we as members of the larger community can protect ourselves from future pandemics. As part of the Award Ceremony, a Souvenir was released depicting the history and the journey of the Kerala Center. James Thottam was the chairman of the Awards Dinner. Board members Abraham Thomas, Mathew Vazhappally and John Paul coordinated the event. A variety entertainment program curated by and performed by talented artists from Nupura School of Dances and a fabulous dinner was a treat to the body and soul of the participants. Bincy Cherian delighted the audience with beautiful melodies. Kerala Center Exceutive Director, Thambi Thalappillil concluded the ceremony with a vote of thanks to the guests, awardees, audience, sponsors and everyone worked so hard to make it a successful event.

Dr. Shyam Kottilil – Life Time Achievement Award

Dr. Shyam Kottilil is a world renowned virologist and immunologist who has made pivotal contributions in the field of Hepatitis and HIV. He is currently the Interim Director of the Institute of Human Virology in Baltimore, MD, the first and foremost Virology Institute in the world. Dr. Kottilil has had an illustrious career with over 350 major publications, as well as awards and accolades from premier societies in Medicine, Infectious Diseases, Hepatology and the National Institutes of Health.

Sajeeb Koya – Entrepreneurship

Sajeeb Koya, a North American Malayali, is the man behind the LED Façade lighting that lights up Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. Sajeeb and his team are proud to be part of this project which owns 2 Guinness World Records. His company 3S International Inc., which has its headquarters at Pickering (Ontario, Canda), has executed  numerous vibrant Architectural and Media Façade LED projects all over the world. People just see lights as utilitarian, whereas Sajeeb sees multitude of colors, shades, movements, and blends the beauty of light with technology.

Sajeeb Koya hailing from Trivandrum, is an Electrical Engineer graduated in 1987 from CET Trivandrum. He has held key positions with several Multi Nationals before starting his own business in Canada in 2001. He lives with his family at Pickering, Ontario, Canada. He is very active since childhood in the fields of photography, music and acting. He is currently involved in key positions with several community & charity organizations.

Dr. Anna George – for Nursing

Dr. Anna George is the current President of the Indian Nurses Association of New York (INANY). She is a Nurse, a nurse practitioner, human rights advocate, and a social activist. She works at Molloy University as an Associate Professor, teaching the Nurse Practitioner Track and as a Nurse Practitioner at Northwell Health.

Dr. Shelby Kutty – Medicine

Dr. Shelby Kutty is a physician scientist and academic leader, serving as the Helen B. Taussig endowed professor and director of pediatric and congenital cardiology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He also chairs the analytic intelligence program at Johns Hopkins. One of the world’s preeminent experts on multimodality cardiovascular imaging with over 400 peer-reviewed publications, Dr. Kutty is passionate about patient outcomes and evidence-based assessment of new technologies.

Lata Menon, Esq. – Legal Services

An accomplished Barrister and Solicitor and active community member, Lata Menon has become a recognized name in the legal community in Ontario, as well as the Indian states of Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Kerala, where she practiced as a lawyer before immigrating to Canada. In addition to her professional activities as a lawyer, Lata devotes her time to the community at large and has become an active supporter and champion of women’s equality and rights. She is actively engaged in several social and community programs in her capacity as a Founder, Board Member, Secretary, Legal Advisor, and many other positions. As a professional, Lata has touched the lives of several of her clients who came to her in distress when faced with family discord, domestic violence, abuse, and family disputes, which she has influenced many of her clients to pull their lives together and persevere in the face of adversity. Lata’s achievements and success makes her a true leader, mentor, formidable force, influence, and inspiration to many.

Jayant Kamicheril – Pravasi Malayalam Literature

Jayant Kamicheril is a recipient of Kerala Sahithya Academy award for 2022 for his book “Oru Kumarakom Karantay Kuruthamketta Likhithangal”. He won LANA Award in 2019 for his book: Kumarakathu Oru Pesaha. His essays and stories in English and Malayalam have been published in N. America and India. He lives in Reading, PA with wife Anita Namboodiri and they have two daughters – Aloka and Shreela.

Gopala Pillai –Community Service

Gopala Pillai has served as the President and Board Member of several organizations in CultureTexas and Detroit, and has been with the World Malayali Council from1995 as its Secretary, President and Chairman. Through these organizations he has been able to provide many services for the good of society. His life’s work reflects his unwavering commitment to both the local community in the USA and the betterment of the less privileged in Kerala, India. He has degrees in Economics, Journalism, and Computer Science, pursuing a successful career in Information Technology in the USA since 1975.

Ajay Ghosh Honored With Excellence In Media & Journalism Award

Ajay Ghosh – Media and Journalism

Ajay Ghosh is the Chief Editor and co-publisher of The Universal News Network (www. theunn.com ), an online publication, launched in 2012, focusing on possibility oriented storytelling that fuels hope and sparks innovative ideas and actions; seeking to lead discussions, creating, disseminating, and using news and information that serves us all, and providing a platform for diverse voices, forms, and continually engaging everyone.

Ajay graduated with a Master’s Degree in Journalism from Marquette University , Milwaukee, WI in 1998.  Prior to coming to the United States, Ajay was the Chief Editor of The Voice Delhi and contributed articles to several national publications in India.

Starting his journalistic career as a reporter in 1999 for India Post, Ajay had worked as the New York Bureau Chief of Indian Reporter and  World News , and he served as the New York Bureau Chief of India Tribune, a weekly newspaper published from Chicago. Ajay was the Executive Editor of NRI Today, and the Bureau Chief of The Indian Express, North American Editions. He was the Chief Editor of The Asian Era, a monthly publication from New York since its launch in 2005 to 2018.

Since 2014, Ajay has been serving as the Media Coordinator of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), the largest ethnic medical organization in the United States, representing 100,000 physicians of Indian origin. In 2023, he was appointed as the Media Consultant for Public Relations for ITServe Alliance, the largest association of IT Solutions and services organizations in the United States, with over 2,200 small and medium sized member companies of Information Technology.

Ajay had graduated with a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Delhi University in 1989. Ajay served as an Adjunct Faculty, teaching Social Work Seminar and guiding MSW students at the Fordham Graduate School of Social Work in New York City from 2006 to 2016. He was an Adjunct Professor at Bridgeport University, where he taught Psychology.

Ajay works as a Psychiatric Social Worker at Yale-New Haven Psychiatric Hospital from 2017 onwards, and currently serves as a full-time Licensed Clinical Social Worker at Bridgeport Hospital. He worked as a Social Worker at Hartford Health at Home from 2019 to 2022. Ajay served as the Administrator of the Mental Health Clinic at St. Dominic’s Home, Bronx, NY from 1999 to 2015.

In 2019, Ajay was part of a nearly 200-member expedition to Antarctica, the 7th Continent on Earth. Ajay served as the founder President of the Indo-American Press Club (IAPC) in 2014. He currently serves as the Secretary of the Borad of Directors of IPAC.

Ajay was honored with the Excellence in Reporting Award by AAPI for several years. In 2018, Ajay received the Excellence in Journalism Award from NAMAM, a North American Community Organization. In October 2023, Ajay received the prestigious Excellence in Journalism & Media Award by The Kerala Center in New York.

Ajay is married to Mini, and the couple are blessed with three adorable daughters, Archana, Navya, and Ahana.

Ajay Ghosh Honored With Excellence In Media & Journalism Award

Ajay Ghosh, the Chief Editor and co-publisher of The Universal News Network (www.theunn.com) was awarded with the prestigious Kerala Center Annual Award for Excellence in Journalism during the 31st Annual Awards Banquet held on October 28, 2023 at The Indian American Kerala Cultural and Civic Center in Elmont, New York. New York State Senator Kevin Thomas presented the Award to Ajay Ghosh, during the awards ceremony that was attended by nearly 200 people from across the United States and Canda, including several elected officials, community and business leaders.

Ajay was among the eight distinguished honorees from across the United States and Canada, who were bestowed with the prestigious awards with Excellence Awards for their outstanding accomplishments in their respective fields of specialization and contributions to the larger society. Others who were honored included: Dr. Shyam Kottilil (Baltimore, MD) – Life Time Achievement Award; Sajeeb Koya (Pickering, Ontario, Canada) – Entrepreneurship; Dr. Anna George (Long Island, NY) – Nursing; Shelby Kutty (Baltimore, MD) – Medicine; Lata Menon (Mississauga, Ontario, Canada) – Legal Services; Jayant Kamicheril (Reading, PA) – Pravasi Malayalam Literature; and, Gopala Pillai (Dallas, Texas) – Community Service.

In his response, Ajay shared with the audience his close association with the Kerala Center since his arrival in New York 2019. While referring to the importance of the media, Ajay said, “Media serves as the link that connects people, and is the mirror that reflects the world that we call our home.” He pointed to the challenges faced by the journalists around the world. “In much of the world, press freedom is either limited or virtually nonexistent. Reporters are often thrown in jail, beaten, subdued, intimidated, or even killed for doing their jobs. All of these things are of great concern to professional journalism.” He dedicated his award to the brave journalists who are at the front lines, endangering their own lives, while reporting and speaking, standing up for truth.

Ajay graduated with a Master’s Degree in Journalism from Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI in 1998. Prior to coming to the United States, Ajay was the Chief Editor of The Voice Delhi and contributed articles to several national publications in India.

Starting his journalistic career as a reporter in 1999 for India Post, Ajay had worked as the New York Bureau Chief of Indian Reporter and World News, and he served as the New York Bureau Chief of India Tribune, a weekly newspaper published from Chicago. Ajay was the Executive Editor of NRI Today, and the Bureau Chief of The Indian Express, North American Editions. He was the Chief Editor of The Asian Era, a monthly publication from New York since its launch in 2005 to 2018.

Since 2014, Ajay has been serving as the Media Coordinator of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), the largest ethnic medical organization in the United States, representing 100,000 physicians of Indian origin. In 2023, he was appointed as the Media Consultant for Public Relations for ITServe Alliance, the largest association of IT Solutions and services organizations in the United States, with over 2,200 small and medium sized member companies of Information Technology.

The Universal News Network is an online publication, launched in 2012, focusing on possibility-oriented storytelling that fuels hope and sparks innovative ideas and actions; seeking to lead discussions, creating, disseminating, and using news and information that serves us all, and providing a platform for diverse voices, forms, and continually engaging everyone.

Prior to coming to the United States, Ajay had graduated with a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Delhi University in 1989. Ajay served as an Adjunct Faculty, teaching Social Work Seminar and guiding MSW students at the Fordham Graduate School of Social Work in New York City from 2006 to 2016. He was an Adjunct Professor at Bridgeport University, where he taught Psychology.

Ajay works as a Psychiatric Social Worker at Yale-New Haven Psychiatric Hospital from 2017 onwards, and currently serves as a full-time Licensed Clinical Social Worker at Bridgeport Hospital. He worked as a Social Worker at Hartford Health at Home from 2019 to 2022. Ajay served as the Administrator of the Mental Health Clinic at St. Dominic’s Home, Bronx, NY from 1999 to 2015.

In 2019, Ajay was part of a nearly 200-member expedition to Antarctica, the 7th Continent on Earth. Ajay served as the founder President of the Indo-American Press Club (IAPC) in 2014. He currently serves as the Secretary of the Borad of Directors of IPAC.

Ajay was honored with the Excellence in Reporting Award by AAPI for several years. In 2018, Ajay received the Excellence in Journalism Award from NAMAM, a North American Community Organization. In October 2023, Ajay received the prestigious Excellence in Journalism & Media Award by The Kerala Center in New York. Ajay is married to Mini, and the couple are blessed with three adorable daughters, Archana, Navya, and Ahana.

Synergy 2023 Begins in Atlantic City, Celebrating Remarkable Achievements of ITServe Members

(October 27, 2023: Atlantic City, NJ) ItServe Alliance’s flagship Synergy 2023 was inaugurated here on Thursday, October 26th, 2023 as over 2,200 members of ITServe Alliance, who are small and medium size companies of Information Technology came together at Harras Resort in Atlantic City in New Jersey for networking, learning and sharing of knowledge, collaborating with one another, strengthening bonds, and celebrating their achievements and accomplishments.

In his Presidential Welcome address, Vinay K. Mahajan, National President of ITServe Alliance, welcomed the members, leaders, chapter presidents, sponsors, and volunteers to Synergy 2023 and expressed his “sincere gratitude for your unwavering commitment, and dedication, and for investing your time and energy and resources. You are the backbone of our organization, and your unwavering commitment is what propels us forward.”

Describing the mission of ITServe Mr. Mahajan said, “We’re in the forefront, guiding and empowering its members. ITServe today is a powerful force focused on safeguarding the interests of small and medium business enterprises. We have more than 2,200 member companies, spread over 21 Chapters, they generate 175,000 high paying jobs across the United States. Our members contribute almost $12 billion to the US GDP. We at ITServe Alliance are immensely proud of us for being very successful. We are the voice represent the interests of small and medium scale enterprises of IT industry, protecting our members’ interests. We give back to the community, and invest in startups, which is to help the United States maintain the leadership in innovation and technology.”

Mahajan went on to say, “I always thank you members, because of you, we are all strong together. Our success today is not about working alone in isolation. It is about coming together, collaborating and liberating our collective strength. It is about finding synergy, not only within our own businesses but also across our entire community. As we navigate the challenges and opportunities of the digital age, our role today is even more critical. We are not just service providers. We are architects of transformation. We shape the future of industries and enhance the lives of individuals worldwide. This event is dedicated to you. Together we will innovate and lead the way in the IT services industry. Thank you for being part of synergy. Let us embark on the journey together and fueled by the spirit of collaboration and the pursuit of success.”

In his opening remarks, Venu Sangani, Director of Synergy 2023 said, “As we gather here, let’s remember that our unity as a community is our strength. Last year in Orlando, Florida, I took on this leadership role, an opportunity, driven with a single objective:  to help at the end of the conference, each attendee departs with concrete insight to grow their business to the next level. Because in all of you here today, there is both gratitude and deep sense of accomplishment, knowing our collective vision is alive and thriving.”

Sanghani, who led a dedicated and visionary team organizing this historic event said, “ Synergy 2023 is our landmark flagship gathering, whether you’re a familiar face from previous years, or you’re experiencing this your first time, I promise you that the opportunities for growth and learning forging a path with connections during this event unmatching with featuring seven keynote sessions from seven different domain panels, panel discussions, interactive breakout sessions and I encourage each one of you to be fully present, engage dynamically and above all, collaborate with fellow members. The essence of it so synergy lies not only very knowledge exchange, but inspiring one another. Let the success stories of fellow entrepreneurs ignite your ambitions, be it scaling your business to the next level, or diversifying investments or starting new territories. That is going to happen at Synergy 2023. Let’s make the most of Synergy.”

Vinodbabu Uppu, Governing Board Chair of ITServe said, “Synergy 2023 is the only one-of-a-kind conference delivering innovative strategies, unique insights, and proven tactics for success, exclusively for IT service companies and individuals. Synergy 2023 will focus on developing strategic relationships with our partner organizations, sponsors, and supporters to work for a better technology environment by building greater understanding.”

In his inspiring inaugural keynote address, Steve Forbes, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, Forbes Media sooke about “Leadership Lessons: The Stunning Parallels between Great Leaders of the World and Today’s Top Business Leaders.” Forbes said, “You have to do things even if you feel you’re not fully ready to do it. The next year or two will be very severe. But also keep in mind that enormous positive changes are coming. For example, the issue of immigration today looks hopeless in a town called Washington, which is becoming the epitome of hopelessness. There will be in 2025, after the elections, with your help a new immigration law on H1 B Visas, virtually unlimited to meet the needs of a growing economy.”

Referring to the global situation, Forbes said, “We know we live in a world today, where Russia, China, North Korea and Iran feel that the United States is a declining power. China has made very clear it wants world domination. Russia under Putin has made it very clear he wants to recreate the Soviet empire. Iran wants to be the hegemony of the Middle East and control the oil and dominate the region and ultimately eliminate Israel. In the crazy border wars, China keeps pushing against India. Not a good environment.”

Giving hope in this world of wars, Forbes pointed to areas of hope. “We saw it in the meeting between President Biden, Prime Minister Modi weeks ago. The meetings with South Korea, Japan and the United States. Whoever would have thought that Japan and South Korea would be cooperating with one another. These forces are coming together to make sure there is peace in the world.” In the domestic front, Forbes advocated for tangible, practical and cost-effective measures with minimum regulations to address the issues affecting the United States, which includes, rising inflation, climate change, labor market and annual growth of the economy.

Phaneesh Murthy, Founder & CEO of Primentor addressed the audience with his insightful talk on, “Strategies for Scaling and Sustaining a Successful IT Company from One to 100 Million Plus” The keynote address by Zack Kass, Technology Futurist, and Generative AI Solutions Specialist focused on: “AI for Small Business Success: Navigating the Future of Entrepreneurship.”

Ashish Agarwal from Turbo Start, DVC led the Startup Cube Panel on “GTM Pitfalls Faced by Growing Startups.”  Post Lunch, a Financial Panel Discussion explored “Alternative Investments for Diversified Business Portfolios and Funding Solutions for Diversified Growth.” The Breakout Session in the Afternoon was about: “Mastering the Art of Effective Recruiting in the Staffing Industry” by Barbara Bruno.

“State, County, City, High-Ed & Federal Government Contracting: Opportunities & Challenges” was yet another important topic at the Breakout Session in the afternoon and was led by Nazeera Dawood, CEO of Vendorship.net. The M & A Panel Discussion deliberated on, “Driving Growth and Value Through Strategic M&A: Opportunities and Challenges: Accelerating Business Expansion.” Another interesting Breakout Session on the first day was about, “Increase Cash Flow $$$ and Collect Bad Debt,” led by Douglas Fuchs at Goldman, Evans & Trammell LLC.

Kevin O’Leary, a Venture Capitalist, Star of ABC’s Shark Tank delivered the Evening keynote address on: “The Path to Profit: Strategies for Building a Successful Business.” Through specific portrayals from his popular Shark Tank, his insightful address to the loud applauses from the crowd referred to successful business strategies to enhance business profits.

During the evening Gala Grand Sponsors: Four Oaks Insurance and TrackEx as well as the Platinum Sponsors of Synergy 2023: AG Fintax, BBI Law Group, Ceipa; Corp, Imagility, Oorwin, Q 1  Technologies, Somireddy Law, T I A Tech Insurance Agency, and Vitel Global were honored for their generous support to ITSereve Alliance.

With cultural events, music and dance, sumptuous food in addition to all the learning and sharing of knowledge, Synergy 2023 has been curated to provide actionable insights and strategies that companies can directly implement, serving as a catalyst for taking your business to the next level. Beyond being an arena for networking and knowledge sharing, Synergy 2023 has proved to be a veritable marketplace for ideas and innovations.

Founded in 2010, ITServe Alliance is the largest association of Information Technology Services organizations functioning across the United States. Established to be the voice of all prestigious Information Technology companies functioning with similar interests across the United States, ITServe Alliance has evolved as a resourceful and respected platform to collaborate and initiate measures in the direction of protecting common interests and ensuring collective success. ITServe Alliance now has 21 Chapters in several states across the United States, bringing the Synergy Conference to every part of this innovation country. For more information, please visit: www.itserve.org

Indo-American Press Club’s 9th International Media Conference Held In Stamford, CT

Media Seminars, Workshops, Motivational Sessions, Awards Gala Dinner, Musical/Cultural Program by Hedge Group with renowned artist from India and the United States, and Networking were the key highlights of the 9th annual International Media Conference organized by the Indo-American Press Club (IAPC) at the Hilton Stamford Convention Center in Stamford, CT from October 7th to 9th, 2023.

The theme for this year’s conference was “Bridging Borders: Media’s Role in a Globalized World,” a topic that holds immense significance in today’s interconnected and rapidly changing world. Dozens of media persons from the United States, Canada and India participated at the power packed conference which included workshops and panel discussions on social media influencing and defamation laws and a motivational talk by a corporate trainer on ‘Emotional Intelligence: How to Become a Success Magnet.’

In his inaugural address, Kamlesh C. Mehta, Chairman of IAPC said, “It is an absolute honor to stand before you as the Chairman of this prestigious organization. I am deeply humbled by the opportunity to address this gathering of media professionals, journalists, and distinguished guests. The Indo-American Press Club has always been at the forefront of promoting cultural exchange, fostering dialogue, and encouraging collaboration between India and the United States. This conference embodies our commitment to these ideals.”

Mr. Mehta said, “In the spirit of our conference’s theme, let us pledge to continue building bridges, not walls. Let us commit to facilitating open and honest dialogues that transcend boundaries and promote mutual respect. Let us strive for a world where information is a force for unity, not division. I want to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to all the speakers, panelists, and participants who have traveled from near and far to share their insights and expertise during this conference. Your contributions will undoubtedly enrich our discussions and contribute to the growth of the Indo-American Press Club as a platform for constructive dialogue.”

The inaugural ceremony began with a welcome speech by IAPC General Secretary C G Daniel and was followed by the lighting of the lamp by IAPC leaders and local Chapter leaders. Ginsmon Zachariah, founder chairman of IAPOC administered the oath of office to a dozen new members, who joined IAPC as its new members.

Prof. Sujata Gadkar-Wilcox, in her keynote address said, “This is a particular honor for me because I feel connected to this community and this work for two reasons. First, as the child of Indian immigrants, I see the world through a kind of duality of cultures. Culturally, my values reflect a South Asian immigrant household that recognizes the role of education in breaking down barriers, the role of communities in uplifting the individual, and the centrality of family in the background of every personal and professional opportunity. My values also reflect a commitment to democracy, equality, and justice that come from my lifelong engagement with the United States Constitution.”

Prof. Gadkar-Wilcox reminded the media persons that “Journalists provide the foundations of that democratic culture, by enabling facts to be presented, truths to be told, and vulnerabilities to be exposed. And you bring a particularly unique voice to this work, as I have learned that I bring to public life, because you live in this duality as well. You understand both global and local perspectives and you bring that intersectionality to life in your stories. Thank you for all that you do to help strengthen our democracy.”

According to Prof. Gadkar-Wilcox, “Journalism provides us an opportunity to strengthen human rights by strengthening our democracy. Journalism educates, it helps people relate to one another, and brings together those who may be different, but who can advocate for a common cause. Thank you for helping us all maintain that commitment to democracy and human rights! And thank you for educating the public!”

Sujata Gadkar-Wilcox is Chair of the Department of Justice and Law, and Associate Professor of Legal Studies at Quinnipiac University. She is also Executive Director of the Oxford Consortium for Human Rights and a Fulbright-Nehru Scholar. Sujata was recently appointed by Governor Ned Lamont to serve as a Commissioner on the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities in Connecticut (CHRO).

The first day of the conference came to a close with a colorful and thrillingly enjoyable  musical and dance extravaganza presented by RHYTHM 2023, led by Anna Prasad, Aishwarya Devan, Vidya Vinu Mohan, Abhijith, Kalpana (Choreographer) George (Keyboard) and Sunitha- Dance Co Ordinator. Jacob Abraham from the popular Hedge Funds Entertainment hosted the evening cultural show. The inaugural event on the first day ended with the Vote of Thanks proposed by IAPC Treasurer, Joji Kavanal.

In her keynote address during the Awards Gala, Meera Gandhi spoke about “The Role Of Media In A Polarized World”  and drew the attention of the audience to the fact that “Most news organizations today aspire to a goal of delivering quality information that can promote healthy dialogue among members of the communities some succeed better than others, but it’s more challenging to do this in a society today, in the midst of partisan, polarization, culture wars, foreign campaigns using technology platforms to divide, there is a shortage of moderate voices among political leaders, and no shortage of activists exploiting, extreme and divisive rhetoric “

Ms. Gandhi suggested 3 strategies to reach polarized audiences: “1.affirm a common sense of humanity deeply understand we are one consciousness, and one human connected by breath. This will affect your reporting; 2. story framing have conversations within your news rooms before putting out stories so that better framing could have power to deliver more truthful information to polarized audiences; and, 3. Do richer interiors. Avoid divisive, nuances and softer textures should be used to discuss potential problems in a non-divisive manner.”

Ms. Gandhi reminded the media persons that “The future of millions of people are in your hands you the press, the journalists, the media outlets, the O TP platforms – you have a very serious responsibility —do not handed over to demagogues and self-interest people. We are an amazing race let’s stay connected, undivided, happy and informed. You the journalist here today can make this happen. I salute all your efforts!”

Ginsmon Zachariah said, “IAPC members are dedicated to fulfilling the vision of enhancing their own journalistic skills, while striving to help fellow journalists and future generations work towards the common cause of enhancing the well-being and efficiency of all peoples of the world.”

In his welcome address, Ajay Ghosh, Secretary of the Board of Directors, IAPC said, “IAPC was formed to bring together media groups and the Indian media fraternity, across North America, under one umbrella, to work together, support one another, and provide a unified voice to the mainstream media world and the larger community.”

Among the distinguished guests who attended and graced the Conference included, Ms. Nimmi Mehta, Advocate A. Jayashankar, PP James, Editor in Charge at 24 News,  V. Aravind, Assistant Executive Editor at 24 News.

An IAPC souvenir 2023 was released during the Conference. Its editorial team led by Dr. Mathew Joys, a well-known writer and Columnist in North America, and Shan Justus, a tech expert presented the 1st copy to IAPC Chairman Kamalesh Metha. A book, “Padmasreeyum Swathanthryavum” by Joseph John from Calgary was also released during the Conference.

Social Media Influencer Awards were presented to: Korason Varghese, a columnist with Malayala Manorama, a leading Malayalam News; Dr. Alice Mathew, a professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, known as an inspirational professor and a motivational speaker; and Meera Nair, a Cine actress, poet, dancer, writer, and media person. Joseph John Calgary, a freelance journalist and founding member of the Canadian Freelance Guild and CWA Canada was presented with Community Leader Award.

The Essay Competition Prize winner in Senior Category was Gautham Krishna Saji, 11th Grade Midwood High School, NY for his Essay on: PRESS FREEDOM IN DANGER. The winner in the in Juniors Category was Sameera Kavanal, 9th Grade, Yorktown High School, NY for her essay on: WHY I LIKE/DISLIKE SOCIAL MEDIA. Kaitlyn Dan Thomas, Grade 5 at the Calvary Christian School, Atlanta was given a Prize of Appreciation.

A lively seminar on “Social Media Influencers: Challenges & Scopes” moderated by Dr. Mathew Joys had Adv. Jayasankar, Korason Varughese, Joseph Jøhň (Calgary), Meera Nair, Dr. Alice Mathew, Nisha Jude, P P James and B Aravind as panelists.

Ashok Arora President NRI International Love All, Motivational Speaker, Author, Lawyer, Teacher, Human Rights Activist, Film Maker, and  Mediator offered a special presentation on Media and Legal Issues. Arora spoke in detail about the defamation case on Rahul Gandhi, and answered questions from the audience. Prof. Anil Bhatnagar, a motivational speaker inspired the audience with his power speech.

Able Cherian, a proud supporter of IAPC and coming from Dubai to be part of the Conference was felicitated with a Memento. Also, Regi Philip, Director IAPC, CEO GTE Travels on Stage was felicitated for his support to IAPC.  Felicitation by community leaders and IAPC members included: A. Jayashankar, Jacob Kudasanad, Sunil Manjanikkara and James Chacko. Azad Jayan from IAPC Niagara Chapter proposed the vote of thanks. The Conference was eloquently emceed by Aditi Vyas.

Lifetime Achievement Award

The prestigious Lifetime Achievement Awards were conferred during the closing gala on the evening of Sunday the 8th. The honorees who received the awards included:

  • VINAY MAHAJAN (Entrepreneurial Excellence). He is the National President of ITServe Alliance Inc., an association of 2200 + SME US IT companies.
  • Padma Shri H.R. SHAH (Media & Arts), Chairman & CEO of TV Asia Group.
  • MEERA GANDHI (Philanthropist). She is the founder of the Giving Back Foundation and a recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor (2015).
  • Dr. SAMPAT SHIVANGI (Community service, medicine). A physician, he is a veteran leader of AAPI, recipient of the PBD Samman Award in 2016 and Ellis Island Medal of Honor 2008.
  • SHAJAN SKARIAH (Excellence in Journalism). He is a promoter and editor of the online portal “Marunadan Malayali”.
  • Dr. RENU ABRAHAM VARUGHESE (Excellence in Elder Care). She is an Associate Professor at the School of Health and Natural Sciences, Mercy University, NY.

IAPC was formed to unite the Indian diaspora media fraternity across North America under one umbrella to work together, support one another, and provide a unified voice in front of the mainstream media and the larger community. Every year IAPC hosts media conferences bringing together renowned journalists and media professionals from various countries around the world, and hosts workshops and seminars. For information regarding IAPC, please visit: www.indoamericanpressclub.org

Vinay Mahajan Honored With IAPC ‘s Lifetime Achievement Award

Vinay Mahajan, the national President of ITServeAlliance Inc., an association of 2200 + SME US IT companies was honored with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award during the 9th annual Gala and Awards ceremony organized by the Indo-American Press Club on Sunday, October 8th, 2023 at the Stamford Hilton, CT.

 Vinay Mahajan is the President & CEO of NAM Info Inc, a software services firm dealing in software consulting and ongoing software development projects, As the head of this multi-national company, Mahajan led the development team for approval of two patents for SAFE, a fire safety APP for high rise buildings. Current projects under development are AI application APAR and browser based universal communication. He recently acquired a company in Telecom Services space.

An Engineering Graduate and MBA from premier institutes, Mahajan is a serial entrepreneur with over 40 years of industry experience in leadership, marketing, finance, and engineering, creating and building multiple entities. Entrepreneurial expertise through 100+ Communication/IVR/Call Centers software projects across India, and Healthcare Practice Management Software in the United States.

Mr. Mahajan received the award from IAPC Chairman Mr: Kamalesh Metha.  In his address, Mr. Mahajan highlighted the many noble initiatives undertaken by ITSErve since its inception in 2010. “ITServe has grown and strengthened in its mission in protecting members interest, enhancing membership benefits, empowering local employment, empowering local community through various CSR programs including STEM education, and empowering ecosystem of innovation and thus maintaining the leadership of US in Technology,” Mr. Mahajan said.

Travelling to all the 21 Chapters across the United States in 8 months after he assumed office, Mr. Mahajan was instrumental in achieving membership to newer heights with more than 700+ New members added in 2023. Two new Chapters were launched under his leadership. He strengthened STEM Education program by adding STEM Training and Internship programs and enhancing STEM scholarships program.

“IT Serve Alliance is led by highly talented individuals, phenomenally successful entrepreneurs, and Innovators who are enthusiastic about giving back to the community,” Mr. Kahajan said.

Others who were bestowed with Lifetime Achievement Awards during the Gala included;

  • Padma Shri H.R. SHAH (Media & Arts), Chairman & CEO of TV Asia Group.
  • MEERA GANDHI (Philanthropist). She is the founder of the Giving Back Foundation and a recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor (2015).
  • SAMPAT SHIVANGI (Community service, medicine). A physician, he is a veteran leader of AAPI, recipient of the PBD Samman Award in 2016 and Ellis Island Medal of Honor 2008.
  • SHAJAN SKARIAH (Excellence in Journalism). He is a promoter and editor of the online portal “Marunadan Malayali”.
  • RENU ABRAHAM VARUGHESE (Excellence in Elder Care). She is an Associate Professor at the School of Health and Natural Sciences, Mercy University, NY.

IAPC was formed to unite the Indian diaspora media fraternity across North America under one umbrella to work together, support one another, and provide a unified voice in front of the mainstream media and the larger community. Every year IAPC hosts media conferences bringing together renowned journalists and media professionals from various countries around the world, and hosts workshops and seminars. For information regarding IAPC, please visit: www.indoamericanpressclub.org

India Shows the Way in Expanding an Inclusive Medical Education

Ever since the first medical college was established in 1835 in Kolkata in India, the scope and breadth of health education in India has widened, especially in the past decade. From just 19 medical colleges and nearly 1,000 students in 1947, the number of medical schools in India has grown tremendously, having one of the largest number of medical colleges in the world.

Incorporating principles of diversity, inclusiveness, and expansion by adding new medical schools every year with specialized areas of Medicine, India’s model of medical education has now come to be a model for the rest of the world to emulate.

According to Dr. Lokesh Edara, who has been leading the efforts for AAPI’s Global Medical Education Initiatives and currently serving as the Chair of Board of Trustees of The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), ever since gaining Independence from the colonial British rule, India has expanded its medical education program with 19 medical schools to now having 706 medical colleges in 77 years.

Picture : Fast Voice Media

Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India has taken medical education to newer heights. India created in a span of nine years, 317 new medical schools. Dr. Edara says, in 2014, there were 387 medical colleges having a total of 51,348 MBBs seats in the country. In 2023, the number of medical schools has expanded to 706 colleges with a total of 108,898 medical seats across the nation.

When it comes to the prestigious All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), India had seven AIIMS in 2014. Today, the number of AIIMS has increased to 22. “The Indian model of AIIMS funded by the federal government should be a model to the rest of the world,” Dr. Edara said.

Another area, where the Indian model is significant for the rest of the world to emulate is its inclusiveness and encouraging of minority communities in the nation. India is the only country that has its constitution facilitating the establishment of minority institutions. India is home to the people of several minority religions, resulting in 2 medical schools for the Sikhs, 2 Christian medical schools, 2 Jain medical institutes, one Buddhist medical school and as many as 26 Muslim institutions, in addition to 6 Linguistic minority medical colleges.

Indian laws also provide reservation to students from minority and backward communities, with more than 50% of medical schools’ seats reserved for admission. “This is one of the best examples of diversity and inclusiveness in education in the world,” Dr. Edara said.

The presence of growing number of specialty education in Medicine, catering to the diverse, rural, urban and complex needs of the patients in each medical school is where India again leads the world. The MCI/NMC in India has mandated that there be departments catering to the specialty areas, catering to the special needs of each patient.

AAPI has been spearheading medical education advocacy programs for India, Dr. Edara pointed out. “The uniqueness of medical education in India is that Indian medical colleges have been mandated and they have as many as 23 specialized departments of medicine. NMC, NBEMS are also models in India for the rest of world for generating specialties of physicians.

Picture : TheUNN

Advancing medical education from High School onwards, many states in India have mandatory anatomy, physiology and biochemistry deportments, making them as essential subjects for students admitted from 12th Grade onwards. And for para medical departments, there are similar programs along with medicine, surgery, OBGYN and pediatrics.

Today, India boasts of more medical graduates with specialties in comparison with the rest of the world due to the establishment of clinically mandatory departments in medical colleges. For instance, in ophthalmology, India has 1927 seats vs the United States having 509 seats, which is 374% higher than that of the US. In the field of MS ENT/Otolaryngology, India has 1417 seats, while the US has 373 seats, an increase of 380% in India.

Seats for Orthopedics in India is 2847, while the US has 899 seats, with 222% greater number of seats in India. In Anesthesiology, India has 429 colleges with 4687 seats, while the US has 1746 seats, which is 268% more seats in India. There are as many as 2544 seats in India vs US having 1274 seats for post graduate studies in Hematology, which is 266% higher in India than USA.

With 1408 seats in India as against 528 seats in the US for Radio Diagnosis, which is 200% higher in India than in the US. Radiation Therapy/Oncology seats are 239% higher in India than the US with 457 seats in India vs 191 admissions in the US. There are as many as 1360 Psychiatry seats in India to the 2164 seats in the United States annually. In the field of Pulmonary/TB & Respiratory, the US has 1172 seats while India has 1045 MD seats today.

India is planning to create one Post Graduate seat to each MBBS graduate passing out from medical schools. AAPI has been advocating for post graduate seats in family medicine with at least 20 % of all Post graduate seats as India has 25 million newborn babies every year, urging the Government of India to increase neonatologists, Dr. Edara pointed out.

NBEMS has created more postgraduation and super specialty physician programs at private and government run hospitals helping the capacity building across India. This model of medical colleges is unique to India not only for producing more specialists, but they are also delivering much needed specialty services across India both at medical colleges and in private practice.

AAPI has been advocating for formative assessment of postgraduates and changing to high quality computer based high order assessment for MBBS and postgraduates. “I request eLearning platform to MBBS, postgraduate, super specialty, nursing and para medical education for higher transfer of knowledge and the help protect public health,” Dr. Edara said.

India is aliso a model in expanding medical colleges and health delivery. India is concentrating on its challenges to address National Eligibility Test (NEXT) similar to USMLE of USA and UKMLE of UK. AAPI has successfully advocated that NMC made emergency medicine department mandatory in all medical schools with post graduate programs.

In addition, AAPI has been advocating for the implementation of multiple-choice theory assessment option for Post Graduate Final Theory Examinations by NMC has bridged the assessment gap for Indian students aspiring to compete with students from the rest of the world. This approach also helps high level of transfer of knowledge.

According to a JAMA published article in August 2020, the projected estimates of African medical graduates in closed Historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU)medical schools were established between 1868 and 1904 surrounding the 1910 Flexner report, consequences associated with the closure of historically Black medical schools.

If the 5 closed historically Black medical schools had remained open, the steady expansion and rapid expansion models indicated that these schools might have collectively provided training to an additional 27, 773 graduates and 35,315 graduates, respectively, between their year of closure and 2019.

Quoting from a study by researchers from the Health Resources and Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the AAMC that was published in JAMA Network Open that linked a higher prevalence of Black doctors to longer life expectancy and lower mortality in Black population, Michael Dill, the director of workforce studies at the Association of American Medical Colleges and one of the study’s co-authors said, “This is adding to the case for a more diverse physician workforce. What else could you ask for?”

It is enocuraging to note that the United States and  AAMC have been addressing  disparity un the recent past. As a result, the number of Black or African American matriculants increased by 9%. Black or African American students made up 10% of matriculants in 2022-23, up from 9.5% in 2020-21. First-year Black or African American men increased by 5%.

Matriculants who are Hispanic, Latino, or of Spanish origin increased by 4%. Individuals from this group made up 12% of total matriculants. American Indian or Alaska Native matriculants declined by 9%, comprising 1% of matriculants.

“The increases in first-year enrollees from historically underrepresented groups reflect the efforts of the nation’s medical schools to increase diversity and further address the nation’s public health needs,” said Geoffrey Young, PhD, AAMC, senior director. “The AAMC is focused on diversifying the physician workforce, including American Indian and Alaska Native students, to ensure the next generation of physicians reflects the communities they serve.”

Recommendations

Modeling India, the rest of the world can address minority medical schools. The United States has addressed diversity by establishing minority medical schools. However, given the ratio, the United States can afford and fund minority medical schools from  4 to another 15 schools.  There were 10 HUCU minority medical schools in 1920, due to quality issues, there are only 3 minority medical schools continuing to function, namely, Howard, More House, Meharry, producing 14% of medical students from the minority community.

Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science (CDU) is a private, nonprofit, community-founded, student-centered University, committed to cultivating diverse health professionals,  who are dedicated to social justice and health equity for the underserved populations through outstanding education, clinical service, and community engagement. Minority students represent over 67 percent of its total enrollment.

There ar some enocuraging sings recently. African American student enrollment is more than double the national average (32 percent CDU compared to 14 percent nationally). Also, Hispanic student enrollment is above the national average (17 percent CDU compared to 14 percent nationally).

While India with its annual GDP of 3 trillion Dollars is able to invest in establishing 317 new medical schools in less than 10 years, adding 40,000 new medical seats to these colleges, the United States with an economy of 33 trillion Dollars should be able to invest far greater in the education, especially for the minority communities.

The USA can add at least one minority school for each state, beginning with at least 15 more new minority medical schools in the states with a sizable number of minority population. The United States can multiply the model to most states similar to the model India has.

Federal funding of 2 billion dollars per medical school, in addition to philanthropic contributions will go a long way in enhancing the participation of minority communities, including African American, Hispanic and Native Americans in the much-needed medical education, and contribute towards adding more minority and HBCU medical schools creating a minimum of 1,500 or more minority physicians per year to the main pool of physicians’ community and provide needed health care in the community.

Similarly, establishing medical schools for Native American Indians can address this gap in giving representation to this population. Out of the estimated 5.2 million American Indians and Alaska Natives (AIAN) in the U.S., there are only about 3,400 are physicians, just 0.4% of the physician workforce, according to a 2018 AMA Council on Medical Education report, “Study of Declining Native American Medical Student Enrollment.

In addition, the United States must work towards capacity building in Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners from the Minority communities in bridging the wide gap that is present today.

The India model of minority medical schools and capacity building can be followed across world. The India model of mandatory departments can help build specialists, catering to the country’s needs. India’s model of one medical college every district can help access to high quality health care in the rural and remote areas of the country.

World Heart Day, September 29
Heart Disease Among Indian Diaspora

An Interview with Indo-US Resuscitation Advocate: Vemuri S Murthy, MD
Cardiovascular Diseases (CVD) are the leading cause of death and disability among people of Indian origin. The CVD epidemic in Indians is characterized by a higher relative risk burden, an earlier age of onset, higher case fatality and higher premature deaths. For decades, researchers have been trying to understand the reason for this increased burden and propensity of CVD among Indians.
September 29th every year is marked as the “World Heart Day.” Dr. Vemuri S Murthy, in an exclusive interview with our readers, talks about the factors causing Cardiovascular Diseases, the ways to prevent it, and the available treatment modalities.
Picture : TheUNN

Odisha is the first Indian State to officially launch a statewide CPR training project (community, police, and high school/college students), which was inaugurated by the Hon’ble Chief Minister Mr. Naveen Patnaik in Bhubaneswar on February 2, 2023, supported by Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organizations, Odisha, and Sri Jagannatha Service Foundation,

Dr. Murthy is an Associate Professor (Adjunct) in Emergency Medicine at the University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois, USA. He is an Honorary Advisor (CPR) to the Government of Odisha (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) and a Visiting Professor to Indian Medical Institutions such as AIIMS (Mangalagiri, Andhra Pradesh).

A longtime American Heart Association (AHA) International Training Center Faculty and Advisor, Dr. Murthy has been involved with teaching and training Basic and Advanced Cardiac Life Support courses and Community Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) initiatives for more than two decades in India and USA. He has also been involved with Indian Cardiac Arrest Research Projects affiliating with Indian Resuscitation experts.

Q. Good morning, Dr. Murthy. We are happy to have you with us today to discuss the number one Global Killer “Cardiovascular Disease” with a focus on Indians and Indian diaspora on the occasion of the “World Heart Day” on September 29.

A. Thank you! As you may be aware, “World Heart Day” is a global, multi-country, multi-lingual celebration day that was initiated by the World Heart Federation (WHF) in 1999 in conjunction with the World Health Organization (WHO) to raise awareness of Heart Disease and reminding everybody “to take care of their Hearts.” The theme for World Heart Day 2023 is “Use Heart for Every Heart”.

Q. Can you elaborate on the impact of Heart Disease in the World and India?

A. Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) is a disease of the Heart and the Blood Vessels leading to Heart Attack, Stroke, and Heart Failure, resulting in the deaths of about 20.5 million people annually in the world. 80% of these deaths are preventable.

According to the Cardiological Society of India (CSI), 36% of deaths in India are due to heart disease. The incidence of heart disease among Indians is 50-400% higher than other ethnic groups. About 50% of heart attacks occur in Indian men under the age of 50 years. 25% occur under 40 years. Indians (as South Asian Ethnic group) are more susceptible to heart disease than any other ethnic counterparts. More than 4200 sudden cardiac arrests occur per one lakh of the population in India annually, heart disease being the major contributor. 30-40% of these deaths occur between 35-64 years of age.

Q. What is the difference between a “Heart Attack” and a “Cardiac Arrest”?

A “Heart Attack” is due to obstruction of blood flow (block) in the Heart’s blood vessels (coronary arteries). The heart muscle starts dying quickly after a heart attack. A heart attack can lead to sudden cardiac arrest and death. Sudden Cardiac Arrest, SCA, (stoppage of the Heart) is Heart’s electrical activity failure due to several causes, primarily a heart attack.

Q. What are the other causes of Sudden Cardiac Arrest?

Besides a heart attack, sudden stoppage of the Heart can happen due to congenital abnormalities of the Heart, such as “Cardiomyopathies” (involving the heart muscle), valves and blood vessels of the Heart, infections of the Heart and electrolyte abnormalities (esp. Potassium and Sodium), drug overdose (Narcotics like Fentanyl, Cocaine and recreational street drugs), and sudden “injury or blow” to the chest (Commotio Cordis).

Commotio Cordis needs a special mention here. It’s due to sudden impact injury to the chest seen commonly in sports such as Cricket, Baseball, and Hockey. I can quote several anecdotes about Commotio Cordis (Sudden Cardiac Arrests) that were managed immediately on the spot with Bystander Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) with complete recovery. It’s sad to see anybody of any age dying due to Sudden Cardiac Arrests due to lack of immediate “simple” help through “Bystander Hands-only or Compressions-only CPR.”

Q. How do you recognize a “Heart Attack”?

A. A “Classical” Heart Attack seen in the majority of people (especially men) is experienced as chest pain (mild, moderate, or severe) or discomfort (pressure or squeezing sensation) that radiates to the left shoulder, arm, back of chest, jaw/teeth. It may or may not be associated with sweating, nausea, dizziness, heartburn, or shortness of breath. Rarely, during “Silent Heart Attacks,” none of these symptoms may exist or are minimally experienced.

Heart attacks in women need special attention. Most women experience “shortness of breath” instead of chest pain, which is common in men. This is an important evidenced-based information in light of the known fact that women’s heart attacks are under-addressed, under-diagnosed, and under-treated globally.

Q. How do you know if somebody is in Sudden Cardiac Arrest?

A. Firstly, any person of any age can have “Sudden Cardiac Arrest” anywhere and at any time.

From a layperson’s perspective, a person collapses suddenly, becomes unconscious with minimal or no breathing, and has no pulse. Prior symptoms such as chest pain, dizziness, palpitations, shortness of breath, vomiting, etc. may or may not be present.

Q. What happens if nothing is done immediately?

A. If no immediate emergency bystander help is available, the person will die in a few minutes. Our body needs oxygen all the time. In cardiac arrest, there is no blood supply and oxygen to any of the organs. The brain is most susceptible to lack of oxygen and starts “dying” in a few minutes much ahead of other organs. In most cases, the brain is “irreversibly damaged” in about 10 minutes or less without oxygen. The proportion of brain damage depends on the delay in commencing the CPR to restart the Heart and reestablish blood supply to the brain.

Q. What is Bystander CPR? What is the science behind it?

In most Adults, there will be some amount of oxygen left in the body for about 4-5 minutes after cardiac arrest for survival with or without brain damage. With regard to “Bystander Hands-only or Compressions-only CPR”, there is enough evidence-based information to support the fact that only chest compressions (100-120 per minute in the center of chest) performed by bystander in the initial few minutes of cardiac arrest will be as effective as “Conventional CPR” performed with both compressions and breaths (30 compressions and two breaths sequence). Beyond 4-5 minutes or so, “breathing for the victim” is vital in addition to chest compressions. In infants, children, and persons with heart and lung conditions, drug overdose, and drowning, “Conventional” or “Compressions plus Breaths” CPR is needed for survival. Without immediate CPR, 90% of the victims die. Bystander CPR increases the chances of the victim’s survival two to three times. Using an electrical device called “Automated External Defibrillator” (AED) soon with CPR will increase survival rates of the victims significantly.

Q. How to get trained in CPR?

A. The lifesaving Bystander CPR technique and using an AED are easy to learn. Taking a “CPR Training” class from any authorized organization is necessary. There are also videos available to teach the basics of Hands-only CPR. It is also essential to follow Governmental “Good Samaritan Laws” for liability protection while providing any emergency help.

Q. Are there any specific precautions for Bystander CPR during COVID-19 era?

A. Certainly! CPR is an aerosol (droplet)-generating procedure. Safety precautions must be taken for personal protection. Cover your and victim’s mouth and nose with any readily available face cover, cloth/mask before starting CPR. Thorough handwashing with soap and water should be done after providing CPR help. From the currently available information, the chances of getting infection while performing CPR are very minimal or insignificant.

Q. What are your thoughts on the progress and advances in the arena of Resuscitation in India in recent years?

Having been involved with Indian Resuscitation Medicine teaching, training, and research for some time, I am happy that India is making significant advances on several fronts of Resuscitation Medicine.

First, the academic curriculum in Indian Medical Colleges includes “Mandated Resuscitation” training for Medical Students, Residents, and Nurses. The training faculty has been providing Resuscitation Training in Governmental and Private Medical colleges. Some of the Institutions are also utilizing advanced simulation technology.

The Indian Government (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) recently introduced comprehensive “Provider Course for Training Doctors in Trauma and Non-trauma” viz. mandatory “National Emergency Life Support” Courses for graduating Medical Students, Residents (Physicians) and Nurses. This is a commendable initiative for Indian Medical Educational System as the course curriculum, tailored to India, was developed by the experienced Indian Experts.

Community, Paramedic, High School and Police CPR trainings have peaked in recent years, thanks to the efforts of Indian Institutions such as EMRI (Emergency Management and Research Institute), Indian Resuscitation Council (IRC) and many other Indian Organizations. IRC became an official member of the ILCOR (International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation) recently. Medical Institutional affiliations such as the AIIMS -American Heart Association (“Nation of Lifesavers in India” Project) are making rapid progress. Odisha is the first Indian State to officially launch a statewide CPR training project (community, police and high school/college students) which was inaugurated by the Hon’ble Chief Minister Mr. Naveen Patnaik in Bhubaneswar on February 2,2023.

Indian Medical Institutions and Hospitals are focusing more and more on “Prevention of Cardiac Disease” in addition to improving cardiac care quality services. “Emergency Cardiac Care-Enhancing Outcomes” projects exemplified by “HeartRescue India (HRI) ” (collaboration of the University of Illinois Health, Chicago, USA, M.S. Ramaiah Medical College and Hospital, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India, and Medtronic Inc.) are making good progress.

Q. Why Indians or Indian diaspora are more prone to Heart Disease?

A great question! Several evidence-based studies, past and recent, from India, USA and other countries point to various contributing factors such as high BP, tobacco abuse in any form, diet high in carbohydrates, fats, and salt, obesity, high cholesterol, diabetes, lack of adequate exercise, stress and lifestyle, and genetic predisposition. They all contribute to the acceleration of plaques or “blocks” in the Heart’s blood vessels. Research also suggests that Indians have smaller sized heart blood vessels with narrow lumina that are also prone to high calcium deposits. In addition, genetic variations or abnormalities also play a significant role in about 6% of the Indians and their diaspora. One recent Indo-US collaborative study (Warangal Area Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest Registry, WACAR) gave some insight into the epidemiology of Cardiac Arrests in India.

Q. As an advocate of “Healthy Hearts”, what preventive strategies do you recommend?

A. Awareness, early detection, and timely interventions are the keys to enhancing cardiac health and quality of life. The basics are stopping tobacco use, regular physical activity, healthy diet, maintaining an average weight, controlling blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood glucose, adequate sleep, and stress control through meditation/yoga. They should be tailored to individual needs as advised by their Physicians.

Meditation has several benefits. It’s scientifically proven that Meditation/Yoga pacifies parts of the brain related to stress. Recent research showed that eight weeks of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) training programs increase the thickness of Hippocampus (gray matter concentration), the part of the brain responsible for memory and regulating emotions.

Q. What are your concluding comments?

Raising community awareness of Heart Disease, implementing Preventive “Healthy Heart” programs with health screenings and promoting Community CPR programs by the Government and Non-Governmental Organizations are the initial steps to start combating Cardiovascular Disease, improve outcomes in “Heart Emergencies” and enhance overall “Heart Heath”!

Thank You!

(Disclaimer: The information provided in the article is meant for educational purpose only to raise awareness of Heart Disease and Sudden Cardiac Arrests. It does not endorse any specific organization and is not a professional advice. The readers need to seek professional medical advice before following any suggestion).

AAPI Condemns Seattle Police Officer’s Offensive Remarks Regarding Tragic Death Of Indian Student

 “AAPI wants to express our deep concerns and anguish about the Seattle Police Officer’s offensive remarks regarding the tragic death of Jaahnavi Kandula, a 23-year-old graduate student studying at Northeastern University’s Seattle campus,” Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of American Association of Physicians of India Origin (AAPI) said here today.

In a statement issued here, Dr. Samadder condemned the tragic incident stating, “Jaahnavi’s death was a horrible tragedy. Per reports, she was killed by a police car traveling at 74 miles per hour in a 25-mile-per-hour zone. Adding fuel to the fire, the recording of a Seattle Police officer making light of her death and questioning the value of her life is very disturbing and is totally unacceptable.

“We at AAPI, the largest ethnic medical organization in the nation, serving 30% of US population, urge the federal, state, and local Governments to make all the efforts possible to prevent such behavior against innocent people around the nation who continue to suffer due to violence, harassment, and discrimination,” Dr. Samadder said.

Quoting the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Dr. Lokesh Edara, Chair of AAPI BOT, said, “AAPI recognizes that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights and that everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set out therein, without distinction of any kind, in particular as to race, color or national origin. All human beings are equal before the law and are entitled to equal protection of the law against any discrimination and against any incitement to discrimination.”

Picture : TheUNN

Dr. Satheesh Kathula, President-Elect  of AAPI stressed the need for education. He said, “Dr. Satheesh Kathula, President-Elect  of AAPI stressed the importance of awareness and legislation. He said, “We commit to educating ourselves and others about racism that manifests in our own community in various forms. We will work to address racism and health disparities through policy and by working with affected communities, legislators and the healthcare providers who serve them. I reached out to some of the Indian American legislators on this issue and asked them to talk to other legislators. Our fate is linked to the fate of our fellow citizens, and our work must include lifting up and supporting all the communities so we all can thrive.”.

“Like many members of AAPI, Jaahnavi came to the United States to earn a graduate degree. We know well the experience of arriving onto an American college campus, full of possibility and hope for the future,” Dr. Amitr Chakrabarty, Vice President of AAPI. “This past January, Jaahnavi’s future was taken away from her by the reckless actions of a member of the SPD. Earlier this month, the pain of Jaahnavi’s death was made horribly worse after footage was released of SPD Officer Auderer saying Jaahnavi’s life “had limited value. We believe that every life has value. We believe that Jaahnavi’s life had tremendous value, and join South Asians everywhere in calling for justice and accountability.”

“We stand in solidarity with those across the nation condemning the incident and raising funds to support the family of  and harassment against some minority groups,” Dr. Sumula raval, Secretary of AAPI said. “As immigrants to the U.S., our families may not always understand this history, but we join in solidarity with the minority communities and call for justice and peace.”

“While recognizing the pain and sufferings of the family and friends of Jaahnavi Kandula impacted by the cruel and unfortunate death of their dear one, AAPI is urging the Seattle Police Department and the state Government to pursue its investigation and bring to justice, who are responsible for this tragedy and the inhumane statement by the Police Officer,” said Dr. Sreeni Gangasani, Treasurer of AAPI.

The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) is an umbrella organization which has over 110 local chapters, specialty societies and alumni organizations, with over 41 years of history of dedicated services to their motherland and the adopted land. For more information on AAPI, please visit: www.aapiusa.org

AAPI’s 17th Annual Global Healthcare Summit 2023 In New Delhi & Manipal

Chicago, IL, September 11, 2023: “The registration for AAPI’s 17th annual Global Healthcare Summit 2024 at the prestigious Taj Palace Hotel from January 1-3rd and at the Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, Mahe in Karnataka from January 4th to 6th, 2023
is filling up fast,” Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) announced here today.

While elaborating on the themes and areas that are going to be covered during the Summit, Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Chair of GHS 2024 said, “Future of Healthcare and Artificial Intelligence” will be the theme for the GHS 2024, which is organized by AAPI in collaboration with Kasturba Medical College in Manipal, the Indian Medical Association, and the Government of the State of Karnataka.”

Several prominent physicians and academicians have been invited and have been accepted to be the keynote speakers and chairs of various academic sessions planned and organized during the summit. Latest Advances, CME, ELS, Discussions on Research Methodology, and Scientific Writing by Academic Experts will be part of the summit.
Dr. Lokesh Edara, Chair of AAPI BOT said, “AAPI’s GHS is yet another way of continuing with our constant commitment towards making quality healthcare affordable and accessible to all the people of India. In addition, GHS 2024 will also focus on promoting Healthcare Technology including Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare.”
The focus this year will be on Mental Health, Infant and Maternal Mortality as well as Medical Jeopardy and Research Poster presentations by medical students. In addition, there will be panel discussions by International Medical Education experts and National Medical Council Board officials and mentoring of Young Professionals.
Advocacy to dismantle the stigma of mental illness and Suicide Prevention will be the highlight of the program. Chronic Disease Reversal and Prevention, Rural Health Initiatives will continue to be promoted and other Global Health Issues including Climate Change and its impact on health will be discussed.

The CEO forum will focus on Equity, Ethics, and Physician Burnout issues. The Women’s Forum will deliberate on Gender Bias and Leadership. Dr. Manoj Jain, Chair of CETI – Collaboration to Eliminate TB in India supported by CDC and USAID will discuss their ongoing long-term TB Elimination Projects in India. Comprehensive details and outcomes of TB Elimination Projects in India will be presented to the GHS delegates.

Other activities will include CPR Training for Police personnel; a Walkathon on combating mental health stigma and prevention of Childhood Obesity and several other initiatives will be announced, including treatment modalities for non-communicable medical diseases.

Dr. Anupam Seibel, GHS Chair – New Delhi says, “With hundreds of physicians from the United States, the Summit is expected to be attended by nearly 400 delegates from around the world. AAPI Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) will have many new initiatives and also will be carrying the torch of ongoing projects undertaken by AAPI’s past leaders.”

Lt. Gen. Dr. M.D. Venkatesh, Co-Chair of GHS – India says, “Many of the physicians who will attend this convention have excelled in different specialties and subspecialties and occupy high positions as faculty members of medical schools, heads of departments, and executives of hospitals and pharma companies.

“AAPI GHS offers an opportunity to meet directly with these physicians who are leaders in their fields and play an integral part in the decision-making process regarding new products and services,” Dr. Satheesh Kathula, President-Elect of AAPI said.

According to GHS Convenor – USA, Dr. Subramanya Bhatt, “The preliminary program is in place, the major attractions include cutting-edge CMEs with renowned speakers, CEO Forum, Innovation Forum, an Entrepreneur Forum, Women’s Forum, and Product Theaters to highlight the newest advances in patient care and medical technology.”
“Alumni meetings for networking, an AAPI-India Strategic Engagement Forum to showcase the AAPI initiatives in India, TB Eradication in India, and recognition of AAPI Award winners will make this Summit unique,” added Dr. Rohit Singh, GHS Convenor – India.

According to CME Chair – USA Dr. Banbwal Suresh Balinga and CME Chair -India, Dr. Dr. Padmaraj Hegde, while the focus of GHS 2024 will be on Mental health, Infant and Maternal Mortality, Medical Jeopardy, and Research Poster presentations by medical students with panel discussions by International Medical Education experts and National Medical Council Board officials will help mentoring of young professionals.
GHS Scientific Chair Dr. Rajendran Alappan said, “In our efforts to realize the core mission of AAPI, which is to share the best from leading experts from around the world, to collaborate on clinical challenges, the GHS in Delhi and Manipal will have clinical tracks that are of vital to healthcare in India.”
Dr. Amit Chakrabarty, Vice President of AAPI, says, “It is these learning opportunities and collaborative relationships that have now enabled AAPI and participating organizations to plan and prepare for an outstanding event that is expected to have over 300 prominent and experienced physicians and surgeons of Indian origin from around the world, who are very passionate about serving their homeland, Mother India.”

Dr. Sumul Raval, Secretary of AAPI says, “GHS 2024 is aimed at exploring possibilities for greater collaboration and cooperation between the physicians and health care providers in India with those of Indian origin and major health-care providers abroad.”

Dr. Sreeni Gangasani, Treasurer of AAPI, “Harnessing the power of Indian Doctors worldwide, the AAPI Global Healthcare Summit platform has evolved with the support of prominent global and Indian medical associations . AAPI’s mission is to make a positive and meaningful impact on the healthcare delivery system both in the US and in India.”
Healthcare in India is one of the largest sectors, in terms of revenue and employment. India is making significant improvements in its healthcare infrastructure and is building modern medical facilities throughout India. Doctors of Indian origin have made tremendous progress in the 21st century and India is now being touted as a medical tourism hub. With hundreds of physicians joining from the United States, the summit is expected to be attended by three hundred delegates from around the world. AAPI Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) will have many new initiatives and will be carrying the torch of ongoing projects undertaken by AAPI’s past leaders.

Dr. Sampath Shivangi said, “We are collaborating with senior leaders from leading healthcare organizations including pharmaceuticals, device and medical equipment manufacturers and major medical teaching institutions, hospitals and the Ministries of Health, External/Overseas Affairs and regulatory bodies to attend and coordinate with AAPI with an ultimate goal to providing accessible and affordable high-quality healthcare to all people of India.”

The Global Healthcare Summit has come a long way from the first Indo-US Healthcare Summit launched by AAPI USA in 2007. Since then, AAPI has organized 16 Indo – US/Global Healthcare Summits and developed strategic alliances with various organizations.
Dr. Samadder said, AAPI is hopeful that several international healthcare industry partners are looking for opportunities to participate at this event for greater collaboration on Research & Development and philanthropic engagements.
Dr. Samadder expressed gratitude to all the Chairs and members of various Committees who are working hard to put together a great Summit and to enable members to return home with memories that will last a lifetime.
“Physicians and healthcare professionals from across the country and internationally will meet and participate in the scholarly exchange of medical advances, to develop health policy agendas, and to encourage legislative priorities in the coming year. We look forward to seeing you in New Delhi and Manipal!” said Dr. Samadder. For more details, please visit: www.aapiusa.org/ To register for the Global Healthcare Summit 2023, please visit: https://summit.aapiusa.org

A Highly Powerful Line-Up of Speakers To Address The 2,000+ Strong Delegates During ITServe’s Synergy 2023 In Atlantic City

“An esteemed panel of keynote speakers, industry experts, thought leaders, and lawmakers will share their insights and best practices on a diverse range of topics relevant to Itserve members, during ITServe’s flagship Synergy 2023 in Atlantic City this Fall.” Venu Sangani, Director of Synergy 2023 announced here today.

Over 2,000+ strong delegates from across the United States will gather to be part of the 9th Annual Synergy Conference, planned to be held at the popular Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City,  New Jersey from October 26-27, 2023, Sangani added.

Vinay K. Mahajan, National President of ITServe Alliance says, “ITServe Alliance’s Synergy is the only one-of-a-kind conference delivering innovative strategies, unique insights, and proven tactics for success, exclusively for IT service companies and individuals. Synergy 2023 will focus on developing strategic relationships with our partner organizations, sponsors, and supporters to work for a better technology environment by building greater understanding.”

Describing the background to the launching of the first-ever Synergy Conference in 2015, Vinod Babu Uppu, Governing Board Chair of ITServe said, “Synergy is ITServe Alliance’s flagship Annual Conference, which began in 2015 with the objective of providing business owners, entrepreneurs, and executives with strategies and solutions that address the unique needs of the IT Solution & Services Industry.”

Synergy continues to add prominent speakers, and valuable sponsorships, and help grow a community network of industry professionals across the country,” said Amar Varada, Chair of Synergy 2023. “Participants at Synergy 2023 will have a platform for IT company heads to come together to hear industry leaders speak, engage in discussions with lawmakers, participate in interactive breakout sessions, deliberate on the latest trends, challenges, and opportunities in the world of IT Staffing and Technology.

Anil Atyam, Chair of Speakers for Synergy 2023, and Radha Alla, Synergy Advisor emphasized the curated lineup of speakers and panels. “We are thrilled to have a diverse and esteemed set of speakers for this year’s conference. From policymakers, and technology leaders to industry innovators, our speakers are pivotal in shaping the discussions and providing invaluable insights that can be immediately applied in various sectors of the IT industry. The selection process has been meticulous, ensuring that each session offers a blend of expertise, vision, and actionable advice for our members. The goal is to create a transformative experience for our attendees.”

Secretary of State Hillary R. Clinton will be a distinguished guest and will address the participants during the Banquet Night during the Synergy 2023.  Ms. Clinton, the 67th Secretary of State of the United States has dedicated over four decades in public service as an advocate, attorney, First Lady, and Senator.

Steve Forbes, an American publishing executive, who had sought the Republican Party’s presidential nomination twice and a member of the board of trustees of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, and Chairman of the Forbes Media will the Inaugural Keynote Speaker during Synergy 2023.

Kevin O’Leary, a Canadian entrepreneur, financier, and television personality who was perhaps best known as a panelist on the reality series Dragons’ Den and Shark Tank will be another phenomenal speaker, who will share his insights with the ITServe dellegates at the Conference.

Phaneesh Murthy, who has established himself as an industry leader over his 25 year career in business, having successfully structured and managed large outsourcing deals for Fortune 500 companies, will share his expertise on consulting in the areas of IT spending, business strategies, and restructuring.

Another remarkable speaker at the Synergy 2023 will Zack Kass, who is the current Head of GTM and had served as the VP of Sales and Customer Success at Terminus, Mixpanel, and Figure Eight. Kass at OpenAI has extensive work experience spanning over a decade in leadership positions in various companies.

Sheila Bair, who has had a long and distinguished career in government, academia, and finance will share with the delegates her insights on effectively working with Government agencies. Twice named by Forbes Magazine as the second most powerful woman in the world, she is perhaps best known as Chair of (FDIC) for steering the agency through the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

Prominent among those who were at the previous Synergy conferences include: former Presidents of the United States, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, and Nikki Haley, a Republican Presidential candidate.

According to Sangani, “Designed to cater to the specific needs of ITServe members, primarily tech entrepreneurs, Synergy 2023 will host a plethora of crucial panel discussions. Topics will span from Immigration to CIO/CTO issues, Mergers and Acquisitions, Financial Planning, and Political Action Committees, among others. Barbara Bruno will lead an educational session on “Mastering Effective Recruiting in Staffing,” and other sessions will focus on Contracts, Legal Compliance, and Federal Contracting.”

Under the banner “Come, Learn, and Grow,” a dedicated team spearheaded by Venu Sangani is fervently working to elevate Synergy 2023’s brand and position it as the leading IT Staffing Conference in America. Beyond being an arena for networking and knowledge sharing, Synergy 2023 aims to be a veritable marketplace for ideas and innovations. The event is curated to provide actionable insights and strategies that companies can directly implement, serving as a catalyst for taking your business to the next level.

Summarizing the mission of ITServe Alliance and Synergy 2023, Jagadeesh Mosali, President-Elect of ITServe said, “We believe in developing strategic relationships with our partner organizations to work for a better technology environment by building greater understanding. Come and join us on our journey. Let us be your voice when it comes to Information Technology.”

According to Anju Vallbhaneni, Secretary of ITServe, “Synergy offers a unique opportunity for IT companies and individuals in the industry to hear from renowned guest speakers and thought leaders from across the country. participants will have the opportunity to break out into start-up cubes with business leaders and investors to pitch their offerings and ideas for the chance to turn dreams into a reality.”

“Since 2015, Synergy has grown from a one-day conference and banquet event to two full days of speakers, panels, and breakout sessions. What began in Dallas, TX, has now travelled to Atlantic City and Chicago, continuing to grow,” said Mahesh Sake, Treasurer of ITServe.

“In just two days, our attendees will grow their peer network, partake in important industry discussions, and gain valuable knowledge to take their business to the next level. Come and experience for yourself the impact we are making when we come together and explore more about Synergy. We can’t wait to see you in Atlantic City,” said Ashok Dandamudi, Media Director of ITServe Alliance.

Vamsi Tamanna, Synergy PR & Media Chair said, “ITServe has built a strong member-focused community within the IT industry, where professionals and experts alike can collaborate, present new business ventures, and work together to find new ways to overcome industry obstacles.”

Sangani said, “We have been working hard to streamline the Synergy conference process, increase the brand value of our Synergy, and promote diversity to establish it as a recognized America’s biggest IT Staffing conference by mainstream media. Come and be part of our journey to be the powerful voice that represents all IT businesses across the United States.”

Founded in 2010, ITServe Alliance is the largest association of Information Technology Services organizations functioning across the United States. Established to be the voice of all prestigious Information Technology companies functioning with similar interests across the United States, ITServe Alliance has evolved as a resourceful and respected platform to collaborate and initiate measures in the direction of protecting common interests and ensuring collective success. ITServe Alliance now has 21 Chapters in several states across the United States, bringing the Synergy Conference to every part of this innovation country. For more information, please visit: www.itserve.org

A Highly Powerful Line-Up of Speakers To Address The 2,000+ Strong Delegates During ITServe’s Synergy 2023 In Atlantic City

(September 12th, 2023 – Atlantic City, NJ) “An esteemed panel of keynote speakers, industry experts, thought leaders, and lawmakers will share their insights and best practices on a diverse range of topics relevant to Itserve members, during ITServe’s flagship Synergy 2023 in Atlantic City this Fall.” Venu Sangani, Director of Synergy 2023 announced here today.

Over 2,000+ strong delegates from across the United States will gather to be part of the 9th Annual Synergy Conference, planned to be held at the popular Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City,  New Jersey from October 26-27, 2023, Sangani added.

Vinay K. Mahajan, National President of ITServe Alliance says, “ITServe Alliance’s Synergy is the only one-of-a-kind conference delivering innovative strategies, unique insights, and proven tactics for success, exclusively for IT service companies and individuals. Synergy 2023 will focus on developing strategic relationships with our partner organizations, sponsors, and supporters to work for a better technology environment by building greater understanding.”

Describing the background to the launching of the first-ever Synergy Conference in 2015, Vinod Babu Uppu, Governing Board Chair of ITServe said, “Synergy is ITServe Alliance’s flagship Annual Conference, which began in 2015 with the objective of providing business owners, entrepreneurs, and executives with strategies and solutions that address the unique needs of the IT Solution & Services Industry.”

Synergy continues to add prominent speakers, and valuable sponsorships, and help grow a community network of industry professionals across the country,” said Amar Varada, Chair of Synergy 2023. “Participants at Synergy 2023 will have a platform for IT company heads to come together to hear industry leaders speak, engage in discussions with lawmakers, participate in interactive breakout sessions, deliberate on the latest trends, challenges, and opportunities in the world of IT Staffing and Technology.

Picture : TheUNN

Anil Atyam, Chair of Speakers for Synergy 2023, and Radha Alla, Synergy Advisor emphasized the curated lineup of speakers and panels. “We are thrilled to have a diverse and esteemed set of speakers for this year’s conference. From policymakers, and technology leaders to industry innovators, our speakers are pivotal in shaping the discussions and providing invaluable insights that can be immediately applied in various sectors of the IT industry. The selection process has been meticulous, ensuring that each session offers a blend of expertise, vision, and actionable advice for our members. The goal is to create a transformative experience for our attendees.”

Secretary of State Hillary R. Clinton will be a distinguished guest and will address the participants during the Banquet Night during the Synergy 2023.  Ms. Clinton, the 67th Secretary of State of the United States has dedicated over four decades in public service as an advocate, attorney, First Lady, and Senator.

Steve Forbes, an American publishing executive, who had sought the Republican Party’s presidential nomination twice and a member of the board of trustees of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, and Chairman of the Forbes Media will the Inaugural Keynote Speaker during Synergy 2023.

Kevin O’Leary, a Canadian entrepreneur, financier, and television personality who was perhaps best known as a panelist on the reality series Dragons’ Den and Shark Tank will be another phenomenal speaker, who will share his insights with the ITServe dellegates at the Conference.

Phaneesh Murthy, who has established himself as an industry leader over his 25 year career in business, having successfully structured and managed large outsourcing deals for Fortune 500 companies, will share his expertise on consulting in the areas of IT spending, business strategies, and restructuring.

Another remarkable speaker at the Synergy 2023 will Zack Kass, who is the current Head of GTM and had served as the VP of Sales and Customer Success at Terminus, Mixpanel, and Figure Eight. Kass at OpenAI has extensive work experience spanning over a decade in leadership positions in various companies,

Sheila Bair, who has had a long and distinguished career in government, academia, and finance will share with the delegates her insights on effectively working with Government agencies. Twice named by Forbes Magazine as the second most powerful woman in the world, she is perhaps best known as Chair of (FDIC) for steering the agency through the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

Prominent among those who were at the previous Synergy conferences include: former Presidents of the United States, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, and Nikki Haley, a Republican Presidential candidate.

According to Sangani, “Designed to cater to the specific needs of ITServe members, primarily tech entrepreneurs, Synergy 2023 will host a plethora of crucial panel discussions. Topics will span from Immigration to CIO/CTO issues, Mergers and Acquisitions, Financial Planning, and Political Action Committees, among others. Barbara Bruno will lead an educational session on “Mastering Effective Recruiting in Staffing,” and other sessions will focus on Contracts, Legal Compliance, and Federal Contracting.”

Under the banner “Come, Learn, and Grow,” a dedicated team spearheaded by Venu Sangani is fervently working to elevate Synergy 2023’s brand and position it as the leading IT Staffing Conference in America. Beyond being an arena for networking and knowledge sharing, Synergy 2023 aims to be a veritable marketplace for ideas and innovations. The event is curated to provide actionable insights and strategies that companies can directly implement, serving as a catalyst for taking your business to the next level.

Summarizing the mission of ITServe Alliance and Synergy 2023, Jagadeesh Mosali, President-Elect of ITServe said, “We believe in developing strategic relationships with our partner organizations to work for a better technology environment by building greater understanding. Come and join us on our journey. Let us be your voice when it comes to Information Technology.”

According to Anju Vallbhaneni, Secretary of ITServe, “Synergy offers a unique opportunity for IT companies and individuals in the industry to hear from renowned guest speakers and thought leaders from across the country. participants will have the opportunity to break out into start-up cubes with business leaders and investors to pitch their offerings and ideas for the chance to turn dreams into a reality.”

“Since 2015, Synergy has grown from a one-day conference and banquet event to two full days of speakers, panels, and breakout sessions. What began in Dallas, TX, has now travelled to Atlantic City and Chicago, continuing to grow,” said Mahesh Sake, Treasurer of ITServe.

“In just two days, our attendees will grow their peer network, partake in important industry discussions, and gain valuable knowledge to take their business to the next level. Come and experience for yourself the impact we are making when we come together and explore more about Synergy. We can’t wait to see you in Atlantic City,” said Ashok Dandamudi, Media Director of ITServe Alliance.

Vamsi Tamanna, Synergy PR & Media Chair said, “ITServe has built a strong member-focused community within the IT industry, where professionals and experts alike can collaborate, present new business ventures, and work together to find new ways to overcome industry obstacles.”

Sangani said, “We have been working hard to streamline the Synergy conference process, increase the brand value of our Synergy, and promote diversity to establish it as a recognized America’s biggest IT Staffing conference by mainstream media. Come and be part of our journey to be the powerful voice that represents all IT businesses across the United States.”

Founded in 2010, ITServe Alliance is the largest association of Information Technology Services organizations functioning across the United States. Established to be the voice of all prestigious Information Technology companies functioning with similar interests across the United States, ITServe Alliance has evolved as a resourceful and respected platform to collaborate and initiate measures in the direction of protecting common interests and ensuring collective success. ITServe Alliance now has 21 Chapters in several states across the United States, bringing the Synergy Conference to every part of this innovation country. For more information, please visit: www.itserve.org

Dr. Joseph M. Chalil Chosen To Accompany Canada Trade Mission To India

Novo Integrated Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: NVOS) (the “Company” or “Novo”), has announced that Dr. Joseph Chalil, MD, MBA, FACHE, Novo’s Chief Medical Officer, will represent Novo and Acenzia as a member of the Team Canada Trade Mission to India slated for October 2023, led by the Honorable Mary Ng, Canada’s Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development. 

Dr. Chalil, the Publisher of The Universal News network (www.theunn.com) will repersent Acenzia, a nutraceutical manufacturer and a Canadian subsidiary of Novo, at the Trade Mission to India. 

For Acenzia, being selected to be a member of this Canada-India Trade Mission is an honor and validates Acenzia’s dedication to introducing its high-quality evidenced-based dietary, nutraceutical, and food products to a rapidly growing consumer base. 

The Canada-India Trade Mission, scheduled to visit Mumbai, Bangalore, and Hyderabad, India from October 8-14, 2023, is an important component of Canada’s Indo-Pacific strategy to deepen bilateral trade and to further expand the economic partnership between Canada and India, while also recognizing the critical importance of the Indo-Pacific region for Canada’s prosperity. 

The Indo-Pacific region encompasses 40 economies, over 4 billion people, and $47.19 trillion in economic activity, and it represents over one-third of all global economic activity. As India and the Indo-Pacific burgeoning middle class expands, so does the demand for access to high-quality healthcare related services, devices, information, and products.

Robert Mattacchione, Novo’s CEO and Chairman of the Board, stated, “It is both an honor and significant opportunity for our company to have been selected to participate as an invited member of the Team Canada Trade Mission to India. We are excited to showcase the potential of our company and begin the process of nurturing the opportunities and the relationships this initiative will bring to light.”

Acenzia’s 36,000 square foot facility is located in Windsor Ontario Canada and includes Class 100 pharmaceutical grade cleanrooms and certified laboratories from which Acenzia creates and manufactures evidenced-based dietary, nutraceutical, and food products that can be validated through personalized diagnostics. Acenzia is dedicated to the creation of innovative therapeutics and diagnostics that enables individualized health optimization.

Dr. Chalil is an author and the Chief Strategy Officer of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin. He is also the Chief Medical Officer of Novo Integrated Sciences, a Nasdaq-listed company that runs hundreds of clinics in North America. He is also the President of Clinical Consultants International. He serves as the chairman of the health system advisory board, a professor at the college of business, and a member of the NSU MD executive leadership council at Nova Southeastern University in Florida.

His book, “Beyond the Covid-19 pandemic: Envisioning a Better World by Transforming the Future of Healthcare, was an Amazon Best Seller. In addition, he is the author of several scientific and research papers in international publications and the publisher of “The Universal News Network.”

Acenzia, founded in 2015, is licensed by multiple international government agencies including Health Canada, the U.S. FDA, and the European Union for Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) for over-the-counter and dietary supplement manufacturing. In addition, Acenzia maintains multiple third-party licenses including from the National Sanitation Foundation International (NSF) for meeting the required public health standards for manufacturing food, nutrition, and supplements. For more information, please visit www.acenzia.com

Novo Integrated Sciences, Inc. is pioneering a holistic approach to patient-first health and wellness through a multidisciplinary healthcare ecosystem of services and product innovation. Novo offers an essential and differentiated solution to deliver, or intend to deliver, these services and products through the integration of medical technology, advanced therapeutics, and rehabilitative science.

The Company’s decentralized healthcare business model is centered on three primary pillars to best support the transformation of non-catastrophic healthcare delivery to patients and consumers:

  • First Pillar: Service Networks. Deliver multidisciplinary primary care services through (i) an affiliate network of clinic facilities, (ii) small and micro footprint sized clinic facilities primarily located within the footprint of box-store commercial enterprises, (iii) clinic facilities operated through a franchise relationship with the Company, and (iv) corporate operated clinic facilities.
  • Second Pillar: Technology. Develop, deploy, and integrate sophisticated interconnected technology, interfacing the patient to the healthcare practitioner thus expanding the reach and availability of the Company’s services, beyond the traditional clinic location, to geographic areas not readily providing advanced, peripheral based healthcare services, including the patient’s home.
  • Third Pillar: Products. Develop and distribute effective, personalized health and wellness product solutions allowing for the customization of patient preventative care remedies and ultimately a healthier population. The Company’s science-first approach to product innovation further emphasizes our mandate to create and provide over-the-counter preventative and maintenance care solutions.

Innovation through science combined with the integration of sophisticated, secure technology assures Novo Integrated Sciences of continued cutting-edge advancement in patient-first platforms. 

For more information concerning Novo Integrated Sciences, please visit www.novointegrated.com.

AAPI’s Leadership Training Focusses On “Leading From The Inside Out”

(New York, NY: August 22nd, 2023)  Physician burnout is an epidemic in the U.S. health care system, with nearly 63% of physicians reporting signs of burnout such as emotional exhaustion and depersonalization at least once per week. The American Association of Physicians of Indian origin (AAPI) in its efforts to provide education and helping the reduce burnout and offer insights into effective leadership strategies, organized a Leadership Conference for AAPI leaders at the Indian Consulate in New York on Saturday, August 19th, 2023.

“Leading From The Inside Out” was the theme for the Leadership Conference organized by AAPI, which was attended by dozens of AAPI members form across the nation. Experts from Brahma Kumaris and Point of Life Foundation presented insightful workshops for the members of AAPI. The workshop is intended to provide healthcare workers with practical self-care tools for health and wellness and help build a simple daily meditation practice.”

In her welcome address, Dr. Anjana Samadder said, “Welcome to the first ever Leadership Conference by AAPI after the Covid pandemic that impacted our  lives in so many ways. This Conference led by Brahma Kumaris and Point of Life Foundation has been designed to help AAPI leaders develop deeper clarity about the nature, scope, and the need for and ways to care for us, who are deeply impacted by the pandemic and the daily stressors of caring for our patients. The workshops today encompasses a wide range of skills that not only reflect one’s ability to process emotions, but even more importantly, their ability to communicate with, manage, and be true leaders in the modern world.”

In his brief remarks, Consul General of India, Shri Randhir Jaiswal praised the achievements and contributions of Indian American physicians. He highlighted the recent visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Washington, DC and thanked AAPI members for coming out in large numbers to be part of the event. Calling the Indian American Physicians as the “real heroes” Ambassador Jaiswal said “You are the real heroes who have risked your lives and have been out to assist others. What is unique about AAPI is that you bring a global perspective to defeat the virus and serve the people. We are proud of your achievements, serving the people all across the United States.”

Shri Randhir Jaiswal thanked AAPI members for their response to the Covid pandemic and beyond, serving selflessly millions of people around the nation,  and  their actions have become a benchmark for the rest of the Diaspora community. He lauded AAPI and the tireless work of its members. “You have put a benchmark for all other diaspora organizations,” he said.

Dr. Anupama Tiwari, a Professor of Pulmonary Critical Care at the Albany Medical School and a Raja Yoga advocate for holistic healing led the presentation along with along with Judy Rodgers, a consultant and media specialist, who is also the co-founder of the Center for Business as Agent of World at Case Western. Judy, the co-author of “Something Beyond Greatness,” spok about the three critical areas of Doing Leadership: Adaptability, Mindful Communication, and Self Mastery. She said, “Listening is an act of love and respect.”

Dr. Neha Bungla presented her insightful thoughts On Being A Leader. Dr. Neha is a primary care physician in outpatient and inpatient, as well as a dance teacher. A Raj Yoga practitioner, her mission has been advocating for a healthy mind. According to Neha, “Values matter the most to you as a leader” and she spoke about values such as: Integrity, Honesty at the core, and Dedication. Her insightful talk was focused on “How do we maintain stability in the midst of low frequency energy.” She said, “What you think, affects how you act and feel. Great leaders don’t tell what you need to do but show you the way.”

Satyan Shah, an Investors turned Board Certified Health Coach, having an MBA, is now turned to meditation, whose passion is promoting holistic lifestyle for the past 14 year. He shared with the audience how his successful job at the highly competitive Finance World took a turn for the better, by practicing Yoga and mindfulness.

Self Care and Meditation wer the topics presented by Dr. Anjali Grover, an Endocrinologist,

and a wellness chief and trustee. She’s a Raj Yoga meditation enthusiast, using it to influencing patient care, teaching and life.  Elaborating on self-care strategies, Anjali said, “Time is trying to tell us something. When I take care of myself I can give my best to others. The foundation of self-care is awareness of who I am. We have the dual Self Beauty and Beast. Beast is the acquired self, and we forget our true natural self, which is Beauty,” she said. “Start with one moment, one thought. Embrace the role entrusted to you. Embrace change. Embrace challenges. Nurture the seed of inner strength by spending few moments daily on meditation. Accept and appreciate each one plays in your role. Be there in the present moment.”

Dr. Kala Iyengar is a pediatrician turned spiritual teacher, who advocates meditation’s role in health. She directs Peace Village Learning and Retreat Center, BK, US. Sr. Kala provided education on Raj Yoga Meditation and creating the right mindset for mediation. “Yoga is the connection to the spiritual self,” she said. “Mind is like a horse that is driven by the external world. Knowing what is controlling my mind is essential. Then, there is a need to reverse the trend,” she said. She led the participants to a 20 minutes long meditation, using techniques from Raja Yoga.

Dr. Satheesh Kathula, President-Elect said: “The leadership conference was a well organized event by Dr. Kusum Punjabi. The speakers were outstanding and there was so much to learn from them as leaders. Thanks Consulate General of India, New York for hosting this event.

It was an awesome experience participating in India’s Independence Day celebrations in New York City. Thanks to FIA for organizing it and proud of AAPI for representing American physicians of Indian origin!”

In his remarks, Dr. Sumul Rawal, Secretary of AAPI, who coordinated the conference. said, “Our physician members have worked very hard during the covid 19 pandemic and this is a perfect time to heal the healers with a special focus on wellness and leadership through Yoga and Meditation practices.”

Dr. Avinash Gupta, Executive Vice President of the Federation of Indian American Associations (FIA) and an organizer of the AAPI Float at the annual India Day parade urged AAPI members to join in the 41st annual India  Day Parade by FIA on Madison Avenue at the heart of New York City.

Dr. Kusum Punjabi, a key organizer of the event, while introducing the need for the timely conference said, “This is an afternoon of informative and enlightening presentations by leaders from the Brahmakumari’s World Spiritual Organization and Point of Life Foundation is geared to provide RP members and healthcare professionals with them. effective management and relationship assertive communication strategies, practical self-care tools for health and wholeness and step to build a simple daily meditation practice.”

The AAPI Leadership Conference was sponsored by MOCAAPI, Suresh Nachani, Real Assets, Dr. Nand Panwani, Polina Tours, ABC Billing, Dr. Lokesh Edara, and, Dr. Anajana Samadder.  For more details on AAPI, please visit: http://www.aapiusa.org

AAPI Honors India At India Independence Day Parade 2023 in New York

(New York, NY: August 24th, 2023)  In their efforts to spread the message of health and wellness for all and saluting India on the occasion of India’s 77th Independence Day anniversary, leaders of the American Association of Physicians of Indian origin (AAPI) marched at the India Day Parade in New York City on Sunday, August 20th, 2022. Applause from the crowds reached a crescendo as the colorfully decorated Float bearing AAPI’s name, symbol, and message of health and wellness to all rolled on in New York City on a bright Sunday afternoon.

Dr. Anjana Samadder, President of AAPI along with several Regional Directors, past presidents, members of BOT from different parts of the country joined the over a hundred thousand fellow Indian Americans to be part of the largest India Day Parade around the world, organized by the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA).

A host of AAPI leaders, including Dr. Anjana Samadder, Dr. Satheesh Kathula, President-Elect of AAPI; Dr. Sumul Rawal, Secretary of AAPI; Dr. Kavita Gupta, member of BOT; Dr. Gautam Samadder, past President of AAPI; Dr. Durgesh Mankikar, past AAPI BOT Chair; Dr. Udaya Shivangi, Chair of Women’s Forum; Dr. Krishan Kumar, past Treasurer of AAPI; Dr. Kusum Punjabi, BOT member; Dr. Malati Mehta, BOT member; Dr. Bhavani Srinivasan, past BOT Member; Dr. Joseph Chalil, Strategic Advisor of AAPI; Dr. Avinash Gupta, FIA Executive Secretary; and, Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

While AAPI’s energetic leaders from across the nation marched on the Street carrying the Banner saluting India and leading the AAPI float, dozens of physicians on the float were dancing and singing to the tune of beautiful Bollywood melodies, proclaiming the remarkable growth of India on the glorious occasion of India’s 77th anniversary of Independence Day.

“AAPI is only about 41 years old, and we have achieved a lot in this young age,” Dr. Anjana Sammader said.  “This year, India celebrates its 77th Independence Day remembering the sacrifices made by the freedom fighters, political leaders and citizens in order to free the motherland from colonial rule. After all, isn’t service of mankind the best way to celebrate India’s Independence?”

Dr. Satheesh Kathula reminded AAPI members that through organizing such events, “We are continuing to make AAPI a more dynamic and vibrant organization playing a meaningful and relevant part in advocating health policies and practices that best serve the interests of all patients and promoting the physician’s role as the leaders of the team-based health care delivery.”

Dr. Sumul Rawal, Secretary of AAPI, “This is another example of our ongoing efforts to make AAPI a mainstream organization and work on issues affecting physicians spreading the message of health and wellbeing for all, while leveraging the strength of 100,000 Indian American physicians.”

Spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravisanker, Bollywood Actors Samantha Ruth Prabhu and Jacqueline Fernandez led the world’s largest annual ‘India Day Parade’ in New York, commemorating the completion of 76 years of Indian Independence, the celebration of eternal freedom.

A record number of people thronged the sidewalks, filling Madison Avenue from 38th to 24th Streets at the heart of New York City, cheering jubilantly as the floats portraying the rich heritage of India and the rise of India as a world power, meandered through the Big Apple. The gods seemed to smile as the clouds lifted and the bright sun shone forth. The crowds acknowledged the contributions and achievements of the Indian Diaspora and their motherland, India.

Organized by the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA-NY/NJ/CT), the annual parade, the colorful celebrations at the heart of New York City was a way of honoring Mother India by the Indian American community the achievements of the 4 million Indians in the United States. For more details on AAPI, please visit: http://www.aapiusa.org

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Actors Samantha Ruth and Jacqueline Lead India Day Parade

Embracing the theme, ‘Mission of Life,’ symbolizing the values and aspirations that guide our path as a nation and as individuals, the 41st annual India Day Parade organized by the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and New England was led by the renowned spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar on August 20th, 2023 in Manhattan. Popular Bollywood stars Jacqueline Fernandez was the Guest of Honor and Samantha Ruth Prabhu was the Chief Marshal at the parade which is considered India Day Parade in the world.

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The heart of New York City was transformed into a tapestry of colors as the 41st India Day Parade marched through Madison Avenue. It was a jubilant celebration of Indian culture and heritage. The Parade, which commenced from the corner of Madison & East 38th was led by the Consul General of India Randhir Jaiswal, New York City Mayor Eric Adams, as well as several other celebrities and leaders of the community. Jacqueline Fernandez was seen waving the tricolor flag along her way along with the other celebrities. On the parade route, members of the Indian diaspora tried to capture her moments.

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Consul General Jaiswal said the Parade was an occasion to celebrate America and India together and their shared spirit of democracy. Samantha Ruth Prabhu said the Parade made her realize how rich her culture and heritage is, and that the memories of the Parade would last her a lifetime.

Mayor Adams extolled the invaluable contributions of Indian Americans to the fabric of the United States, lauding their dedication to nation-building, and recognizing their pivotal role in shaping the nation.

The parade comprised of lively dance and musical performances and theatrical acts “reflecting the essence of India’s rich cultural heritage, businesses and community organizations of the Indian American diaspora, as well as representing different states of India.

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It also showcased a diverse array of authentic cuisines and traditional delicacies from different parts of India as well as handicrafts, textiles, and art. Representational floats of Indian states including Jammu and Kashmir, and Manipur, went down Madison Avenue, as did the Siddhivinayak Temple of USA, and the Indian American Muslims of North America.

Dancers from the Rudra Dance Academy and Hollywood, Bollywood stars like Aric Diamani and Doug Wilson, and groups of other dancers, and marching bands, people dressed in vibrant traditional apparel, cultural performances, booth fairs were part of the Parade.

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Among the highlights of this year’s parade was a special pavilion on Millets, dedicated to promoting the super grains for a healthy and sustainable lifestyle. “This is a grand celebration of India’s rich culture, diversity, and the wholesome goodness of millets,” FIA said.

As part of the Independence Day celebrations, FIA also hosted a ‘Gala on the Hudson’, a special cruise that featured singers, celebrities and cultural performances to mark the occasion. Since its inception in 1970, this annual event has grown into an iconic extravaganza, and this year’s parade proved to be a resounding success, drawing an estimated crowd of more than 100,000 people, according to numbers provided by FIA.

With many holding the Indian tricolor and dressed in celebratory attire, and performers dancing and playing drums, the parade served as a vibrant convergence of cultures, patriotism, and shared values that unite India and America.

Dr. V. K. Raju And  HIs Eye Foundation Prevents and Treats Blindness

Dr. Vadrevu K. Raju, a world-renowned ophthalmologist, who has lived abroad (in England and the USA) longer than in India, has visited India more than 200 times since 1977. Each visit was a working vacation to combat avoidable blindness among Indians, especially children.  He founded “Eye Foundation of America” in 1979, which is active in India and 30 other developing countries across the globe.

Dr. Raju who was recently appointed to the Faculty of Department of Ophthalmology, Johns Hopkins University, is a man with a vision: creating a world without avoidable blindness. Dr. Raju earned his medical degree from Andhra University and completed an ophthalmology residency and fellowship at the Royal Eye Group of Hospitals in London.

Dr. V.K. Raju, who was born in Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh, India is a Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology at West Virginia University, Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons, Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, Director of the International Ocular Surface Society, Director of the Ocular Surface Research and Education Foundation, Chairman of Goutami Eye Institute in Rajahmundry and is the President and Founder of the Eye Foundation of America, a non-profit organization dedicated to realizing a world without childhood blindness.

In 1977, Dr. Raju began traveling home to India to offer his services as an ophthalmologist to those who could not afford, or access, desperately needed eye care. Since 1979, the Eye Foundation of America has expanded its reach to over 25 countries, screened millions of patients, and provided hundreds of thousands of surgeries. As Dr. Raju points out, prevention is more beneficial than disease management, and lifestyle changes can be preventive. His organization’s programs, which aim at prevention through education and lifestyle modifications, include the 100,000 Lives (diabetes prevention) campaign in India and the WV Kids Farmer’s Market Program in West Virginia.

These preventive services and medical and surgical interventions were delivered in the form of eye camps in the early days, and the EFA was initially founded to allow for easier transfer of state-of-the-art equipment and medicine from the United States to India. As the Foundation matured, it became so much more. The EFA is now a global organization responsible for treating millions of patients, performing hundreds of thousands of surgeries, and training hundreds of eye care professionals to join in the global fight against preventable blindness.

One focus of current outreach efforts is in the prevention of diabetes and its health consequences. Diabetes-related complications typically strike during the prime of life and include the development of cataracts at an earlier age than normal, a two-fold increased risk of glaucoma, and small blood vessel damage (i.e., diabetic retinopathy). Retinopathy can cause blindness; however, early detection and treatment can prevent blindness in up to 90% of cases. The International Diabetes Foundation estimates that 20% of the diabetic world population resides in India, approximately 61.3 million diabetics.

The Eye Foundation of America is entering a new phase in its mission of ending avoidable blindness by collaborating with the Rotary International, GAPIO (Global Association of Physicians of Indian Origin), and AAPI (American Association of Physicians of India Origin). In collaboration with these 3 organizations, preventive services and medical and surgical interventions were delivered in the form of eye camps in the early days, and the EFA was initially founded to allow for easier transfer of state-of-the-art equipment and medicine from the United States to India. As the Foundation matured, it became so much more.

Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) in premature infants can cause blindness; however, early detection and treatment can prevent blindness in up to 90% cases. The EFA is now a global organization responsible for treating millions of patients, performing hundreds of thousands of surgeries, and training hundreds of eye care professionals to join in the global fight against preventable blindness.

Dr. Raju has received numerous awards, including the AMA Foundation Nathan Davis Excellence in Medicine International Award, Four Time Awardee by The American Academy of Ophthalmology, Martin Luther King Jr Achievement Award from WVU, Distinguished Community Service Award from AAPI (American Association of Physicians from India), Pride of the Pride Award from Lions International District 29, Vaidya Ratna (conferred by Shankaracharya of Kanchi), Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Association of Ophthalmologists of Indian Origin, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the WV State Medical Association. Dr. VK Raju was among the class of 2017 inductees into the University of Toledo Global Medical Missions Hall of Fame, the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award from President Barack Obama, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the North America Telegu Society. Dr. Raju was awarded with the Excellence in Medicine Award by GOPIO – Virginia in 2021.

Dr. Raju has published several books, seventeen chapters, and over 100 publications in scientific journals. Through his recently released book, “The Tragedy of Childhood Blindness in India,”  Dr. Raju while expressing his gratefulness to Mother India for giving him the best medical education almost for free, attempts to discuss in the voluminous historical and philosophical material in the book, and connects the readers with present-day India.

 The most recent EFA publication is a short self-help book inspired by the voices of many great leaders. “How to Live Like Gandhi” can be purchased at eyefoundationofamerica.org. All proceeds go to combatting avoidable blindness.

For the past four decades, Dr. Raju and the EFA have been actively and tirelessly on a crusade to eliminate avoidable blindness in areas plagued by poverty and poor access to medical care. The EFA’s mission is to eliminate avoidable blindness under the guiding principles of service, teaching, and research.

 This is accomplished through eye camps and brick-and-mortar hospitals in developing countries, training of medical personnel to serve the needy, and educating the population at large on preventative eye care and healthy lifestyle choices. With adequate education, patients are empowered to take charge of their lives and their own health and prevent further deleterious consequences of their poor lifestyle choices, while sharing this knowledge with their friends and families.

 The public is educated on eye care and injury prevention, and local teachers are taught how to screen for early eye problems in children. Patients, their families, and the greater community benefit from preventative medical care, free procedures, and access to education.

 When education and preventative measures are insufficient, medical and surgical interventions are performed. With the aim of permanently providing world-class state-of-the art services to populations with poor access to health care, the EFA helped to build 2 hospitals in rural India: the Srikiran Eye Institute and the Goutami Eye Institute.

 With all of Dr. Raju’s momentous achievements, he has also ensured that his life’s work and vision are self-sustaining. Dr. Raju has passed on his knowledge, plans, and vision to the future leaders of this movement: Dr. Leela Raju, Dr. Raju’s daughter and fellow ophthalmologist, is the EFA’s Secretary and Coordinator for Education and actively participates in its mission. Her father’s humanity and passion stimulates whatever she undertakes, Leela says. “This is not a job for him; it has never been a job,” she says. “He does his work with passion and he enjoys it. His enthusiasm and passion are infectious.”

 The Goutami Eye Institute has a wing dedicated exclusively to children, and the EFA has future plans to build another service and research eye hospital in India where no child will be denied treatment and children from around the world can come to receive services. Dr. Raju and the EFA are also committed to finding new cures for age-old eye disease in children.

The EFA has served approximately 2.5 million patients and performed 340,000+ vision-saving surgeries, with 30,000+ surgeries performed on children alone.

 Over 40 years of noble work bringing vision to millions in India started unexpectedly for Dr. Raju. While living in London, Dr. V.K. Raju traveled home to India on vacation, where a farmer asked him to examine his eyes. Dr. Raju complied, but without any instruments. In 1977, Dr. Raju returned to rural India with personnel and equipment, and offered his first eye camp near his hometown in 1977. This was the inception of the foundation’s work, beginning with the West Virginia Ophthalmology Foundation. The West Virginia Ophthalmology Foundation subsequently became the EFA in 1992.

  “I feel so incredibly thankful for my personal and professional gifts, and I make great efforts to share those gifts with those in need of my services,” says Dr. Raju, and he generously gives freely of his own time, money, and medical expertise to help the less fortunate for the past several decades. Never too tired to give his best for preventing, caring, and sustaining the vision for the visually impaired, Dr. Raju says, “Our work is only just beginning.”

AAPI’s Women’s Leadership Forum Focuses on “Celebrating Women of Excellence.”

Women are leading the world by being the proponents of economic empowerment, strengthening educational organizations, and being a powerful voice in politics. They have overcome obstacles and have shown the world what a woman can achieve and contribute to the betterment of the world as never before in human history.

The presence of a dozen extraordinarily successful Women Leaders representing a diversity of professions, involving public, private, and government organizations at the much-anticipated Women’s Leadership Forum during the recently concluded 41st Annual Convention organized by the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) in Philadelphia, PA from July 6th to 9th, 2023 was a way of celebrating the success stories of women who are trailblazers and have inspired and led others with their exceptional achievements, personifying grace, and setting the standard for success.

Setting the tone for this celebration, Dr. Udaya Shivangi, Chair of AAPI’s Women’s Committee, in her opening remarks, provided an overview of the Forum and the many initiatives by the Forum both in India and the United States.  “Women’s Forum has been an integral part of AAPI, always at the forefront, coming up with innovative ideas to make each event a unique and transformative experience. Each year the Forum aims to spotlight women leaders who are changing the world and working towards the betterment of the community.”

The theme chosen for the Forum today, “Celebrating Women of Excellence ” holds immense importance as it recognizes and pays tribute to the remarkable achievements and contributions of women in various spheres of life, Dr. Shivangi, who was honored with AAPI’s Distinguished Service Award during the Convention here, said.

“Throughout history, women have overcome numerous obstacles and have shattered glass ceilings, leaving an indelible mark on society. They have become pioneers, breaking stereotypes and proving that gender should never limit one’s aspirations or potential. By recognizing and honoring their excellence, we uplift the achievements of women everywhere and pave the way for future generations to strive for greatness,” Dr. Shivangi added.

In her keynote address, Her Holiness Jagadguru Sai Maa, a world-renowned spiritual master, healer, and humanitarian, with a unique fusion of Eastern spiritual wisdom, Western therapeutic knowledge, and energetic mastery, fondly called Sai Maa shared with the audience on ways to uplift and empower others to master their lives. Sai Maa, who is the first-ever female to be awarded the prestigious title Jagadguru in India’s 2,700 years of the Vishnuswami lineage, one of the highest designations in the Hindu tradition, is being recognized as embodying the power and influence to transform the entire planet.

“Each of us comes from Mother. We are now in transition, shifting from an old era to a new era. An era of consciousness, higher consciousness, an era where our heart and light merge together. We have entered a phase on this planet called longevity. You look at the cosmos and you look at a fetus. There’s a similarity. Every human is born as an enlightened child. So every single human is born with like the Satya Yuga, the next step for humanity. Every child is connected and every adult no matter how a is connected to the Atma.

Sai Maa, who has developed a signature program, HealthSpan by Design, that introduces a new health paradigm where you align with your innate life force to retain vibrant health as you age,  spoke about how to program your cells for maximum health, youthfulness, and longevity. With great passion, Sai Maa shared her inner knowledge and offered effective strategies that work for everyone.

Dr. Asha Pillai, Chair of Hematology, Hematologic Malignancies, and Transplantation in the Scientific Council at Regeneron received her medical degree and fellowship training in Pediatric and Adult Hematology from Stanford University. Over the past 15 years, Dr. Pillai and her research group have established important new immune theories in mismatched donor bone marrow and organ transplantation as well as cellular immunotherapy for cancer treatment. This has formed the basis for her ongoing global impact work.

Dr. Pillai spoke about the newer advances in immunotherapy, most specifically as it relates to cancer research and about the advances in stem cell research gone. In addition, her address focused on the challenges she had faced in her leadership journey, and how she overcomes them.

“The biggest obstacles we face are threefold. First, regardless of what our dream is and what we think we can achieve, the realities of politics, power plays, economy, and the gross aspects of the world. For me, meditation and having some foundation in my life is extremely important and actually helped me to do most of what I’ve done. I would say, the biggest lessons I’ve learned are to have a balance of life, which is an ongoing learning process, a balance of drive, humility, and vision. And keeping those three going is literally a full-time effort.” She lauded “the great work by AAPI members for promoting health globally, particularly in India and the United States. Let me know if there are opportunities to serve in and support AAPI in the future, as I’m certainly interested to help mentor the next generation!

Dr. Rachana Kulkarni, the president of Medicor Cardiology and serves as the regional director of cardiovascular services for RWJ Health System. The American Heart Association recently awarded her Physician of the Year and Woman of Distinction for making exceptional contributions to women, health, and society. Dr. Kulkarni, while referring to more and more physicians obtaining master’s degrees in public health, business, and healthcare administration, shared with the audience her own experiences as an entrepreneurial physician, the advantages of acquiring a secondary degree, while dedicating many years of one’s life learning the art and craft of medicine.

A versatile actress, producer, trained classical dancer, author a loving mother, and a big hearted socialite, With an illustrious career spanning many decades, and a winner of many awards including the national award, multiple film fare, Rituparna Sen Gupta was another speaker who shared her insights about a key principle or attitude she follows that has helped her balance and keep her grounded and about the roles that she had played in Movies has inspired her personal life. .

Dr. Himabindu Gadipatti, a renowned oncologist, geneticist, and entrepreneur from San Diego CA, has dedicated the past decade of her career to creating a unique holistic approach to implementing novel cancer solutions in developing countries via her three companies that facilitate extensive research worldwide. In her address, she spoke about cancer has typically been thought of as a disease of the Western world, and how cancer research in developing countries is progressing and helping actross the globe.

Dr. S. Pulluru, a family medicine physician and a Clinical Executive in Walmart Health, who plays an important role as a leader of Walmart Health that has multiple centers in various states.  Dr. Pulluru spoke insightfully about how in the present era of computerized medicine, the role of Artificial Intelligence in public health. She also shared with the audience about the challenges she faced while working with a large number of over 750 physicians.

Dr. Smita Joshi, Director of Smit Medical and Heart Hospital, North Gujrat, with a special interest in Diabetes and Juvenile Diabetes, was another panelist who spoke about how she got interested in Diabetes and shared her contributions to address the pandemic of Diabetes in India, where there are said to be over 77 million people with diabetes, 25 million prediabetic and almost one million with juvenile diabetes.

Earlier, in his introductory Remarks, Dr. Sampat Shivangi, AAPI’s Legislative Committee Chair, lauded the efforts of the Women’s Forum and highlighted the achievements of women in a highly competitive world. He pointed to the “role models” who are the speakers at the Forum today for their accomplishments and contributions to the larger humanity.

Dr. Manju Sachdev, a Board Certified Pediatrician, currently serves as a faculty member and clinical assistant professor at Texas A&M School of Medicine. Dr. Sachdev has been actively involved in her local television media along with being a long-established part of TV ASIA as their medical host for a number of national programs – most notably, AAPI AND YOUR HEALTH. She has served in the AAPI organization in numerous capacities – as a former Women’s Chair, member of AAPI Board of Trustees, and Treasurer.

Dr. Gita Mehta, a practicing OB/GYN physician at the Cleveland Clinic, who has been an essential part of AAPI for the past 30 years and has been a vital part of the Women’s Forum and was Chair of the committee in 2004 eloquently moderated the interactive session with the highly accomplished women leaders along with Dr. Manju Sachdev, co-chair of the Women’s Forum.

While congratulating the members of AAPI’s Women’s Forum and lauding them for some of the major initiatives of the Women’s Forum, Dr. Anajana Samadder, President of AAPI in a message said, “From birth to death, all of us need women in our lives. They sacrifice their lives for the rest of the family, society, and the world at large. AAPI’s Women Forum salutes the great contributions of the women panelists here today and all the women who are present here today and everywhere.” For more information about AAPI, please visit: www.aapiusa.org

AAPI’s New Leadership with Dr. Anajana Samadder as President is Committed to Advancing AAPI’s Mission for a Brighter Future

“We are committed to your well-being and committed to advancing AAPI’s mission for a brighter future,” Dr. Anjana Samadder, the new President of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) told AAPI delegates during her Inaugural Presidential Address on July 8th, 2023 in Philadelphia, PA.

Dr. Anjana Samadder, the only 5th woman president of AAPI in its 41 years long history, will have a dynamic and diverse team comprising of Dr. Satheesh Kathula as the President-Elect; Dr. Amit Chakrabarty as the Vice President; Dr. Sumul Raval as the Secretary; Dr. Sreeni Ganagasani as the Treasurer; Dr. Lokesh Edara, as the Chair, Board of Trustees; and, Dr. Ravi Kolli will continue to guide AAPI as the Immediate Past President of AAPI.

“I’m very honored and consider myself fortunate to be bestowed with the responsibility of leading the over four-decades-old strong organization with the cooperation and collaboration of an excellent team of dedicated, hardworking, and loyal officers and executive committee members who are with me to take AAPI to newer heights,” Dr. Anjana Samadder, a Gastroenterology Specialist in Columbus, OH,  affiliated with Mount Carmel West and Mount Carmel East and a winner of the Gastrointestinal Surgery Excellence Award, said.

As the President, Dr. Samadder wants “to foster improved access to healthcare, promote diversity and inclusion, and amplify the collective voice of our community.” Her vision for AAPI is “to help build an ethically strong, morally straight, and fiscally responsible organization. It is also vitally important to bring much-needed diversity to keep AAPI thriving.”

Over the years, Dr. Samadder has shown great leadership qualities, which she proved during her tenure as the local chapter President (Central Ohio), Regional Director (Ohio and Michigan), and as the AAPI National Treasurer and Vice President. She has also served diligently in different capacities within AAPI including being the National Coordinator for AAPI Annual Convention, 2018 in Columbus.

Dr. Samadder promised that she is committed to “carry on the existing good work that has been started by our prior AAPI leaders. In addition, I would like to address healthcare practice issues facing our members both in private practice and in academia. I want to get AAPI represented in US National Health Care Committee by organizing strong lobbying efforts. I will be open to suggestions from members in order to make our organization one of the strongest ethnic organizations in the US.”

Dr. Lokesh Edara – Chair BOT

Dr. Lokesh Edara, Chair of the AAPI Board of Trustees for the year, 2023-24, says, “As the BOT Chair, I will continue to work towards strengthening the goals and mission of AAPI and to help make AAPI a healthcare leader in the US and globally and work in the best interests of our Physicians and our community here in the US and serve our motherland, India. We will work together to promote our values of professionalism, collegiality, and excellence in patient care and enhance AAPI’s reputation as a premier professional organization offering educational programs and advocacy.”

 

Dr. Satheesh Kathula – President Elect

Dr. Satheesh Kathula, President-Elect of AAPI and a board-certified hematologist and oncologist from Dayton, Ohio, practicing Medicine for nearly two decades assures that, “I will sincerely work for the betterment of our beloved organization, AAPI.” Dr. Kathula, who graduated from Siddhartha Medical College, Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, India in 1992, is a clinical professor of medicine at Wright State University-Boonshoft School of Medicine, Dayton, Ohio. Dr. Kathula is a Diplomate of American Board of Lifestyle Medicine. Dr. Kathula plans to pursue Global Healthcare Leaders Program at Harvard University. He has authored several papers and articles in journals and is in the process of writing a book.

Dr. Kathula has been serving AAPI for the past 14 years in various capacities. He has served AAPI as the Regional Director, Board of Trustees, Treasurer, Secretary, and Vice President of AAPI. He has served as the President and founding member of the Association of Indian Physicians from Ohio; President, the Miami Valley Association of Physicians of Indian Origin; President, ATMGUSA; and has worked with the Ohio State Medical Association on various issues. He has been actively involved in community service locally, nationally, and internationally for the last two decades. He was awarded the “Man of the Year-2018, The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

As the President-Elect, who is an integral part of the AAPI executive committee, board of trustees, and the governing body, Dr. Kathula says, he “will attend as many meetings as possible for the betterment of our beloved organization.” The President-Elect is also the chair of the Bylaws committee. Bylaws are extremely important for the proper functioning of any organization. “We plan to make some changes to the AAPI Bylaws this year, which are meaningful and necessary to improve AAPI. Also, I would like to work on election reforms. We want to make sure that members are not bombarded during election time with multiple messages, phone calls, etc.”

As the leader of AAPI, who will take charge of AAPI next year in July, Dr. Kathula says, “My goals for AAPI have been very clear. I want to focus on education, communication, and legislation, involving the younger generation. Increasing the membership, creating benefits for members, and making AAPI financially stronger is also one of my objectives. I will work hand in hand with Dr. Anjana Samadder, president of AAPI, the entire executive committee, and board of trustees, to make AAPI stronger and more viable.”

A recipient of several Community Service/Awards, Dr. Kathula wants to “Make AAPI a mainstream organization and work on issues affecting physicians including physician shortage, burnout, and credentialing, while leveraging the strength of 100,000 doctors at legislative level.” Another area, he wants to work is to “Encourage and engage next generation/young physicians in AAPI activities. While working closely with other physician organizations such as AMA.”

Dr. Amit Chakrabarty – Vice President

“Since my membership to AAPI In 1997, for more than two decades I have been a dedicated foot soldier for the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin,” says Dr. Amit Chakrabarty the current Vice President and a Consultant Urologist, Poplar Bluff Urology, Past Chairman of Urologic Clinics of North Alabama P.C., and the Director of Center for Continence and Female Pelvic Health.

Dr. Amit Chakrabarty has been a dedicated foot soldier for AAPI, working tirelessly for AAPI consistently without any partisanship or regionalism, regardless of any AAPI aspirations. Dr. Chakrabarty has been the President of two AAPI subchapters, namely Alabama Association of Physicians of Indian Origin 2012-2014 and Indian Medical Council of St Louis 2018-2020 reviving them from obscurity and inactivity to make them one the most vibrant chapters of AAPI.  Under his leadership, Alabama AAPI produced 13 out of the last 15 Regional directors and the St Louis Chapter hosted the most productive and successful AAPI governing body within 3 years of its revival from 10 years of inactivity. He also serves as the Chairman, Board of Trustees, of Huntsville India Association and was the President, the Indian Cultural Association of Birmingham, and led an Indian Delegation to Japan at the International Youth Year in 1985. He has been an active committee member of the AAPI Charitable Foundation from 2008 to 2011 that helps to run free clinics in India and USA.

Dr. Amit Chakrabarty, who was honored with the National AAPI Distinguished Service Award 2018 and the President’s Award for Services in 2019 by the Indian American Urological Society, says, “I consider myself to be a leader and shine in the fact that I can get people motivated.  I lead by example which motivates people.  I am fun-loving and have always striven to brush off any obstacles that come in the way.”

Dr. Chakrabarty heads a personal international philanthropic organization “ApShiNi,”  which launched the “Help India Breathe” that provided thousands of co- ventilators and facilitated home transfer of more than 1500 much-needed oxygen concentrators to the suffering public in India during the Covid epidemic. On the lighter side Dr Chakrabarty is a singer and performer and used his own nationally known Geetanjali music group to perform pro bono for fundraising events.  He is the Founder and organizer of the most popular events at AAPI Convention – “AAPI’s Got Talent” & “Mehfil.

As the Vice President, the multi-talented professional says, “I understand that AAPI needs experienced leadership from someone who has been in AAPI leadership for over two decades.  I know what works and what does not.  This is a major contribution that I can make this year in guiding the leadership to progress in the right direction efficiently and effectively.  Experience ….the difference.”

Dr. Chakrabarty says, he will continue his efforts collaboratively with the AAPI leadership in addressing Physician burnout and Green Card Backlog; Forming a strong and well-funded AAPI-Political Action Committee for lobbying and getting political clout; Partnering in world-wide healthcare education; Being a part of the decision making process of WHO and UN healthcare policies, especially those dealing with issues affecting South East Asia; and, Invest heavily in Medical Student/Residents and Young Physician (MSR/YPS) section of AAPI and give them leadership roles in mainstream AAPI to attract more interest in our young members towards their parent organization. Without them there will be no AAPI in 20 years.”

Dr. Chakrabarty believes in accountability and transparency. “We need to streamline the membership database especially because we are moving towards an online voting system.  We need to provide the membership with the desire to belong.  We need to encourage the young physicians to participate and lead AAPI.”

Dr. Sumul Raval — Sectretary

Dr. Sumul N. Raval, Secretary of AAPI is a board-certified neurologist and world authority on brain tumors and is among the very few neuro-oncologists in private practice in the US. The founder and director of the David S. Zocchi Brain Tumor Center at Monmouth Medical Center – New Jersey’s first and most comprehensive facility specializing in brain tumors, Dr. Raval completed his neuro-oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York.

In addition, Dr. Raval is a humanitarian. “I believe quality of life is just as important as battling the disease,” he says. He listens to patients with compassion and inspires them to think positively. Dr. Raval was presented with the GBM Heroes Award (Glioblastoma Multiforme) during the 21st Annual Scientific Meeting of the Society for Neuro-Oncology, recognizing him for dedicating his life to helping patients with GBM and their families. “This is an amazing, once-in-a-lifetime honor,” says Dr. Raval, noting that global recognition is especially rare for a doctor at a community hospital.

Dr. Raval “is one of the few neuro-oncologists who brings world-class care to families in their own backyard,” notes CURE, a renowned cancer magazine with nearly 1 million readers.

In addition, Dr. Raval is a staff Neuro-Oncologist at Jersey Shore University Medical Center since 2003 where he introduced the Neuro-Oncology field to Meridian Health. He also practices at Community Medical Center, where he serves as Secretory of the Medical Staff and Vice Chairman of the Department of Neurology.

A diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, he is president of Garden State Neurology & Neuro-Oncology, with offices located in West Long Branch and Toms River. He is immediate past president of Monmouth and Ocean Medical Society, Chapter of Medical Society of New Jersey. He was chosen by peers in new jersey for 10 years in row as Jersey Choice Top Doctors from 2013 to 2022. He also appeared on Cover page of New Jersey Monthly magazine in 2015. In 2008 he was awarded as 10th Annual Francis Black Humanitarian of the Year Award in Healthcare. He received numerous more awards over the years.

“I am committed to building upon their achievements and leading AAPI with integrity, transparency, and innovation,” says Dr. Raval. “As a physician of Indian origin, I am immensely proud of the rich heritage and legacy that we bring to the field of medicine in the United States. Our community has made remarkable contributions to the healthcare landscape, and AAPI has played a pivotal role in fostering professional growth, cultural exchange, and philanthropic endeavors. Together, we have made a positive impact on patient care and healthcare policy in America, and I am honored to continue this legacy as Secretary.”

During his term as Secretary, Dr. Raval pledges “to work tirelessly to advance the mission and vision of AAPI. I will focus on promoting diversity and inclusion in healthcare, advocating for the needs of our members, and fostering collaboration. I will also prioritize mentorship and professional development opportunities for our members, and strive to enhance our outreach to underserved communities.”

Dr. Sreeni R. Gangasani — Treausrer

Dr. Sreeni R. Gangasani, who has assumed charge as the Treasurer of AAPI is a Cardiologist in Lawrenceville, Georgia with board certifications in Cardiovascular disease, Echocardiography, Nuclear Cardiology, Heart failure, and transplantation.  He graduated with Gold Medals from Kurnool Medical College of University of Health Sciences.

A past president of the Georgia Association of Physicians of Indian Heritage (GAPI) and a past board of trustee member and the Vice Chair of AAPI BOT, Dr. Gangasani is a founding partner of Cardiovascular Group based in metro Atlanta. He was a past chair of the Department of Internal Medicine at Northside Gwinnett Hospital and is the current Director of GAPI Volunteer Clinic, AAPI CME Chair, and BOT of GAPI. He served as the Chair of AAPI Conventions in Atlanta in 2019 and 2021, and Chair of AAPI Global Health Summit, 2019-20 in Hyderabad, India.  He has been a member of the Georgia Composite Medical Board and has been elected as the Vice Chair for the year 2023-24.

As the Treasurer of AAPI, Dr. Gangasani says, “I bring a strong financial acumen, expertise in budgeting and financial planning, and a commitment to transparency and accountability. With my strategic mindset and collaborative approach, I will effectively manage finances, maximize resources, and contribute to the organization’s overall success.” Dr. Gangasani says, he will implement efficient financial systems and processes that streamline expense tracking and reporting. By striving to increase revenue through strategic initiatives and sponsorships, he promises to “ensure a robust financial foundation for the organization’s programs and initiatives. Additionally, I will focus on maximizing cost savings and investments to support the association’s mission and enhance member benefits.”

As the Treasurer, Dr. Gangasani assures that “I will ensure sound financial management, budgeting, and transparency. I aim to support the organization’s goals, promote financial stability, and maximize resources to empower the Indian physician community and enhance healthcare for all.” In addition, Dr. Gangasani wanst to work collaboratively “to increase membership engagement through targeted outreach and networking events, diversify revenue streams through corporate partnerships and new initiatives, enhance financial transparency and reporting through streamlined processes, and expand mentorship programs through strategic collaborations. By working together, we will empower our members and advance healthcare for all.”

About AAPI

The growing influence of physicians of Indian heritage is evident, as increasingly physicians of Indian origin hold critical positions in healthcare, academic, research, and administrative positions across the nation. We the physicians of Indian origin are proud of our great achievements and contributions to our motherland, India, our adopted land, the US, and in a very significant way to the transformation of Indo-US relations.

Serving 1 in every 7 patients in the US, AAPI members care for millions of patients every day, while several of them have risen to hold high-flying jobs, shaping the policies and programs, and inventions that shape the landscape of healthcare in the US and around the world.

“Since its inception in 1982, AAPI has been at the forefront, representing a conglomeration of more than 125,000 practicing physicians in the United States, seeking to be the united voice for the physicians of Indian origin,” Dr. Anjana Samadder said. “We will continue the noble mission and strengthen our efforts to make AAPI reach greater heights. “ For more details about AAPI, please visit: www.appiusa,org

180 Key Democrat and Republican Lawmakers Participate In ITServe Capitol Hill Day

“The first ever in-person Capitol Hill Day organized by ITServe Alliance in Washington, DC on July 19th, 2023, was highly successful,” said Siva Moopanar, Director of ITServe Alliance Policy Advocacy Committee (PAC). “We had overwhelming support from the nearly 180 key US Representatives and Senators, including influential committee chairs and members from both the Democrat and Republican Parties for the causes put forth by ITServe.”

The day-long event on Capitol Hill organized by the ITServe Alliance Policy Advocacy Committee (PAC) was attended by over 240 ITServe members from across the nation. A Congressional Reception was held on July 18th and the Capitol Hill Day event on July 19th featured Capitol Hill meetings and interactive sessions with key Members of Congress.

Stressing the importance of ITServe and the Legislative Day, Vinay Mahajan, President of ITServe said, “ITServe Alliance’s Capitol Hill Day has effectively served as a powerful platform in educating policymakers on the issues that are important to our members and the business community, ensuring that our needs and views are reflected in policy debates and outcomes on Capitol Hill.”

“The U.S. needs to maintain its leadership in technology and innovation,” Vinay Mahajan, ITServe Alliance President said. “The startup Eco System needs to be supercharged. One critical component of both is high-skilled workers. The U.S. has a large skills gap – availability of workers vs the openings for talent in IT. We need the brightest minds from all over the world to keep our wide lead in technology and innovation.”

ITServe Alliance expressed its overwhelming support and urged the lawmakers, among other initiatives, to support H.R. 4647, the “High-Skilled Immigration Reform for Employment (HIRE) Act,” introduced by US Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Illinois on July 14th, 2023. The Bill would strengthen U.S. competitiveness by helping to close the skills gap – the space between the skills required for jobs that employers need to fill, and the skills possessed by current prospective employees. As introduced, the bill would raise the current H-1B limit from 65,000 to 130,000, remove the H-1B cap for those with a Master’s Degree or PhD and create a STEM grant program.

“ITServe Alliance has been consistently working to protect the needs of its members,” said Sateesh R. Nagilla, Connected PAC Board Chair. “To that end, ITServe Alliance has been lobbying with the Lawmakers on behalf of its members on Capitol Hill and with the US Administration.  Capitol Day was the perfect way for ITServe Alliance to use its collective voice to communicate with policymakers on the issues that are important to our members.”

“H-1B visa holders play a crucial role in bolstering the U.S. economy, fostering innovation, and enriching the fabric of American society through their skills, contributions, and diverse backgrounds,” said Sarit Kommineni, Co-Chair – PAC. “They bring diverse perspectives and knowledge to American workplaces, facilitating knowledge transfer and skills development by engaging in research and development activities, particularly in STEM fields, which contributes to scientific advancements and technological progress.”

“ITServe Alliance is consistently working to protect its members’ needs. To that end, ITServe Alliance, through its PAC teams advocates on Capitol Hill and with the US Administration.  The Capitol Hill Day served as a perfect platform to communicate our collective voice with key policymakers on important issues to our members,” added Hima Kolanagireddy, Co-Chair PAC.

According to Jagadeesh Mosali, President-Elect of ITServe, “A major objective of the Capitol Hill Day was to showcase to the lawmakers some of the significant contributions of the ITServe members to the country’s economy through Technology & Innovation, local employment, and STEM education. The event also addressed key concerns faced by small businesses, including the need for high-skilled immigration reforms.”

Vinod Babu Uppu, ITServe Governing Board Chair said, “I want to express our sincere gratitude and appreciation to the hundreds of ITServe members who were part of this important event. Advocating for ITServe and making our voices heard in the corridors of power. Through our collective voice and through their continued active participation and collaboration, we will be able to accomplish our goals through grassroots and advocacy.”

Founded in 2010, ITServe’s vision has been to empower local communities by creating, retaining, and fostering employment opportunities within the United States. ITServe has an active membership of 2,100 + members, 20 Chapters established across 23 states, who are small & medium-sized companies that fulfill the growing demand for highly skilled professionals in America. Together, the ITServe members have 175,000+ IT professionals employed throughout the U.S and generate over $12 billion in revenue annually.

ITServe and its member community are committed to corporate social responsibility (CSR) and actively contributing to local communities nationwide, particularly in the realm of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education.  For information on ITServe and its many noble initiatives, please visit: www.itserve.org

Indian Americans Hold Prayer Vigil at United Nations in Support of People in Manipur

Hundreds of Indian Americans from across the United States gathered in front of the United Nations at a prayer vigil on Saturday, August 5th, 2023 organized in solidarity with the suffering people in the Northeastern state of Manipur in India.

Violence and destruction of life, property and religious institutions has plunged the Indian state of Manipur into what many have dubbed a state of civil war as the two largest groups, the majority Meitei and minority Kuki, battle over land and influence.

The hilly north-east Indian state sits east of Bangladesh and borders Myanmar. It is home to an estimated 3.3 million people. More than half are Meiteis, while around 43% are Kukis and Nagas, the predominant minority tribes.

At least 130 people have been killed and 400 wounded in violence that began in May. More than 60,000 have been forced from their homes as the army, paramilitary forces and police struggle to quell violence.

The state and the federal government’s lack of adequate measures to contain the ongoing violence and the silence by the leader of the nation, Shri Narendra Modi have come under sharp criticism by the media, political establishment, civic groups, the Supreme Court of India,  and peace loving Indians as well as the global community.

Led by the Indian American community in the Tri-state area, the prayer vigil in front of the United Nations, praying for the perpetrators to come to their senses and for the authorities to reign in the continuing attacks on the tribal people, mostly Christians, was attended by more than 700 people.

Carrying placards, condemning the violence, praying for peace and urging the government to effectively intervene to stop the deadly violence, participants at the rally expressed solidarity with all the grieving people of Manipur. Prayers by the Clergy reflected the deep pain felt across the Indian American Community in the U.S. for the great calamity that has impacted the people of Manipur with immense loss of human lives and destruction of homes and churches.

The Prayer rally was initiated by a handful of concerned citizens that was instrumental in bringing together the Indian American community in several buses form the New York tri-state region. As per the organizers, “People from all denominations and regions in cooperation with FIACONA (Federation of Indian American Christians of North America) united for the cause of the Manipuri Christians who have taken the brunt of the suffering in the last 90 days.

President of FIACONA, Dr. Koshy George stated the purpose of the vigil at the beginning. “This is not a protest rally. We aim not to examine why the riots happened, who is responsible, or politics. We are here today to pray for the rule of law in Manipur, and obviously, there are limits as to what we can do to help. However, Prayer does not have any limitation.” He further clarified that “We aim not to condemn or oppose anyone politically.”

Dr. Anna George, a lead organiser of this event, pointed out that “when our brothers are in pain, it hurts us too. It is a reflection of this that so many people gathered here on the day off, putting aside all other programs,” she said. “People are being killed and become refugees. Women are sexually molested, gang-raped, and marched naked. People are without food, water, or shelter. Their anguish and pain are beyond our imagination,” she added.

“We have lived in India in harmony with various religious sects for years. But what has happened now? A genocide or massacre is taking place right before our eyes. One hundred forty-five people died. Sixty thousand people were left homeless. Over three hundred churches were destroyed, and One hundred seventy villages were burnt. It is continuing. Undoubtedly,  Christians are being targeted. These are massive human rights violations,” she said.

“We cannot be silent when we see the tears and lamentation of our brothers and sisters. So far, neither the State Government nor the Central Government has intervened adequately. It must end. This vigil also demands that the American media and government speak for us on this issue. It is a shame that this country is silent on women being abused and run naked,” Dr. George added.

In a remarkable speech, American activist and journalist Peter Friedrich pointed out that Manipur is a repeat of what was done in Odisha’s Kandhamal. “The police and the government need to do more. The central government is not moving. The U.S. government, on the other hand, pretends to have seen nothing. America is strengthening trade ties with Delhi while Christians are bleeding in Manipur. He also criticized the reticent American churches. As free people, we have a duty to fight for freedom. We are one in Christ. Let us unite and pray for Manipur from our knees. Let us act against the forces trying to suffocate the Christian people,” he said.

New York State Senator Kevin Thomas attended in solidarity with the victims. The only elected legislator to attend, Mr. Thomas clarified that “justice and peace should prevail and that the lives of all human beings are equal. There is no difference between Hindu, Christian, Sikh or Jain.” He called to work for a world where people live as one.

Bishop Johncy Itty of the Episcopal Church said,” the wonderful thing about humanity is that we reveal ourselves in times of distress and how we come together in times of anxiety and frustrations because we care about justice, freedom, and peace. He urged the gathering to be resolute in fighting for justice and praying for those who are persecuted”.

Pastor Robinson Frank, a Catholic priest of the American Church, said that the governments should wake up and work to develop the legal system in Manipur. He said that the persecution of Christians in India also saddens us.

Wumang, a woman from Manipur, while sharing the experiences of violence in her homestate pointed out that their houses were burnt down in Imphal. They have a family of 28 members. They escaped by seeking shelter in an army camp. Later, they were transferred to Delhi. They are now living in rented houses. Mark Mang from Manipur described how his relatives were killed. His cousins, who were protecting the village, were shot dead by security forces.

FOMAA president Jacob Thomas said that India is a country with a secular constitution. He demanded that the government should act according to the Constitution. FOKANA leader Leela Maret appreciated those who took the initiative to hold such a prayer vigil. She said, “The sorrow of Manipur is our sorrow too, and there should be justice and peace.

Pastor Jacob George gave the opening prayer. Evangeline Jacob sand the American National Anthem, and Fr. Francis Nambiaparambil sang the Indian National Anthem. Pastor Babu Thomas, Dr. Sam Samuel, Pastor Itty Abraham, Rev. Dr. Taylor, Rev. Jess M. George, Rev. Dr. Hemalatha Parmar, Pastor Percy McEwan, Rev. Jatinder Gill, were prominent among those who had participated in speeches, prayers, and scripture readings. Mr. Mathew George expressed vote of thanks.

Special buses were arranged from various places. Organizers also submitted a petition to the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights asking to protect human rights in Manipur, considering today’s gross violations. The petition pointed out that the United Nations has an obligation to intervene to protect human rights, life, and property in this situation.

The organizing committee was led by Anna George, Koshy George, George Abraham, Raju Abraham, Mathew George, Jimmy Christian, Mary Philip, Paul Panakal, Leela Maret, Pastor Jatinder Gill, Shaju Sam, V. J. Macwan, and several other community leaders from across the US.

Odisha State Launches “Lifesaver CPR” Program To Enhance Outcomes In Sudden Cardiac Arrests

History was remade in Odisha State, India, on August 1, 2023, when the Honorable Governor Professor Ganeshi Lal inaugurated the Second Mass Community Bystander Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) training event at the Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology Convention Center in Bhubaneswar.

The statewide life-saving project was the vision of the Hon’ble Chief Minister, Mr. Naveen Patnaik, who inaugurated the project in February 2023 at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. The program is guided by the Indo-US Resuscitation Expert from Chicago, Dr. Vemuri S Murthy, Honorary Advisor (CPR), Government of Odisha (Health & Family Welfare) and Adjunct Faculty, Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois, USA.

About 1100 participants, mostly students from Kalinga Institute, were trained in Hands-only CPR and Automated External Defibrillator (AED) in 8 hours of intense training by Indian Resuscitation Trainers, led by Dr. Maheswar Parvat, Coordinator of Gandhi Alumni American Heart Association Training Center, Hyderabad, Telangana, helped by the volunteers of the Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organizations, Odisha and AIIMS (Bhubaneswar).

Dr. Vemuri Murthy, in an exclusive post-training event interview, outlined the importance of preventive strategies to combat the number one global killer viz, Heart Disease, more prevalent among South Asians, including Indians and the Indian diaspora. He stressed the need to raise community awareness about preventive strategies such as a healthy diet with less fats and carbohydrates, exercise, control of diabetes and high blood pressure, weight reduction, and reducing stress with holistic approaches such as Yoga and Mindfulness Meditation.

In his team meeting with the Honorable President of India, Mrs. Draupadi Murmu, led by Mr. Krishna Kishore Jasthi at the Odisha Raj Bhavan (Bhubaneswar) on July 27, 2023, Dr. Murthy highlighted the importance of Community CPR programs to improve survivals in Sudden Cardiac Arrests. The Honorable President extended her full support to the CPR programs. She also pointed out the high prevalence of Tuberculosis among Odisha Tribals and the importance of Tuberculosis eradication programs.

Dr. Vemuri S Murthy, an Indo-US resuscitation expert, faculty member at the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois, has been appointed by the Government of Odisha as the State “Advisor on Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation” Projects. He is the first ever to be appointed by the Odisha State Government as the Health Advisor from the United States and will be involved with comprehensive Resuscitation- involved State projects.

Heart disease is a major Global Public Health problem. People of Indian Origin are at a four-times greater risk of heart disease than their Western counterparts and have a greater chance of having a heart attack before 50 years of age.

Dr. Murthy hopes the Life Saver Initiative of the Odisha State will also be implemented soon in the rest of the States in India.

Dr. Sudhakar Jonnalagadda Honored with Excellence in Medicine Award By TANA

Dr. Sudhakar Jonnalagadda, a past President of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) has been conferred with Excellence in medicine Award by the Telugu Association of North America (TANA) during the 23rd annual conference held in Philadephia, PA on July 8th, 2023.

Dr. Jonnalagadda was chosen for the prestigious award by TANA for his contributions in the field of Medicine and for his great leadership of,AAPI, the largest ethnic medical organization in the US, especially during the Pandemic.

In response to receiving the award, Dr. Jonnalagadda, said, “ I want to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation to the Telugu Association of North America for selecting me for the prestigious award. In recognizing me, the TANA has recognized all the medical professionals who have been in the forefront fighting Covid, including those who have laid their lives at the services of treating patients infected with the deadly virus. This award will strengthen the medical fraternity to recommit our efforts, skills and talents for the greater good of humanity.”

Dr. Sudhakar Jonnalagadda had served as the 37th President of American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) and has worked hard to “make AAPI stronger, more vibrant, united, transparent, politically engaged, ensuring active participation of young physicians, increasing membership, and enabling that AAPI’s voice is heard in the corridors of power.”

AAPI is the largest Medical Organization in the United States, representing the interests of the over 120,000 physicians and Fellows of Indian origin in the United States, serving the interests of the Indian American physicians in the US and in many ways contributing to the shaping of the healthcare delivery in the US for the past 41 years. “AAPI must be responsive to its members, supportive of the leadership and a true advocate for our mission,” he said.

Dr. Jonnalagadda was born in a family of Physicians. His dad was a Professor at a Medical College in India and his mother was a Teacher. He and his siblings aspired to be physicians and dedicate their lives for the greater good of humanity. “I am committed to serving the community and help the needy. That gives me the greatest satisfaction in life,” he said modesty.  Ambitious and wanting to achieve greater things in life, Dr. Jonnalagadda has numerous achievements in life. He currently serves as the President of the Medical Staff at the Hospital. And now, “being elected as the President of AAPI is greatest achievement of my life,”

As the President of AAPI, the dynamic physician from the state of Andhra Pradesh, helped to “develop a committee to work with children of AAPI members who are interested in medical school, to educate on choosing a school and gaining acceptance; Develop a committee to work with medical residents who are potential AAPI members, to educate on contract negotiation, patient communication, and practice management; Develop a committee to work with AAPI medical students, and to provide proctorship to improve their selection of medical residencies.”

A Board-Certified Gastroenterologist/Transplant Hepatologist, working in Douglas, GA, Dr. Jonnalagadda is a former Assistant Professor at the Medical College of Georgia. He was the President of Coffee Regional Medical Staff 2018, and had served as the Director of Medical Association of Georgia Board from 2016 onwards. He had served as the President of Georgia Association of Physicians of Indian Heritage 2007-2008, and was the past Chair of Board of Trustees, GAPI. He was the Chairman of the Medical Association of Georgia, IMG Section, and was a Graduate, Georgia Physicians Leadership Academy (advocacy training).

In response to the pandemic, Dr. Sudhakar Jonnalgadda helped AAPI raise $5.4 million in three months to send 3,000 oxygen concentrators, 100 ventilators, and 100 pieces of high-flow oxygen equipment to India. AAPI connected with the American Heart Association, UNICEF and Intel for charity programs, and the NY Times rated AAPI as the second best charitable organization in the nation.

AAPI was able to provide tele-health platforms and a community outreach program through ZTV which educated millions of viewers. AAPI donated 5000 blankets during Thanksgiving and held luncheons for National Nurses Week in over 50 hospitals in the United States as well as, for the first time, locations in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, India, and the Caribbean. AAPI provided 30 credit hours of CME virtually and started the first ever purely scientific journal, JAPI. AAPI successfully initiated a clinical observer ship program to young physicians.

Under his leadership, AAPI raised funds to provide 1,000 Water Purification Plants in several towns and villages in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.  Also, it was during his Presidency, for the first time ever, AAPI held annual elections to national offices via electronic ballots.

Dr. Jonnalagadda and his team, under stressful Covid times, organized the annual Convention in a record three months’ time, both successful and profitable. As the president, he was interviewed by CNN, Voice of America, and the Washington Post, as well as Republic TV and NDTV in India. He was recognized by the Indo-American Press Club (IAPC) with the Excellence in Leadership Award 2020 and the government of India presented him with the Pravasi Bharatiya  Samman Award in 2021.

In 2022, he was conferred with a Gold Medal By the Indian Red Cross Society during the 5th annual General Meeting held in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh. Dr. Jonnnalgadda was conferred with the award for his contributions by Shree Biswabhusan Harichandan, the Honorable Governor of Andhra Pradesh.  In 2020, Dr. Jonnalagadda was given Lifetime Achievement Award by the Indo-American Press Club.

His vision for AAPI has been to increase the awareness of APPI globally and help its voice heard in the corridors of power.  “I would like to see us lobby the US Congress and create an AAPI PAC and advocate for an increase in the number of available Residency Positions and Green Cards to Indian American Physicians so as to help alleviate the shortage of Doctors in the United States.”

Violence and State Inaction in Manipur Condemned Across the World

The ongoing ethnic/religious violence in the northeastern Indian state of Manipur and the lack of adequate response from the state have been condemned by people and organizations around the world.

The violence erupted on May 3 after the Kuki-Zomi community protested against the Meitei demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status. The majority Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur’s population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley, while tribals, which include Nagas and Kukis, constitute 40 percent and reside mostly in the hill districts.

Reports of tribal Kuki attacks on ethnic Meiteis circulated immediately after the protest, which in turn plunged the Imphal Valley which accommodates 90% of Manipur’s population into an outburst of violence against Kuki tribal Christians. At the same time, ethnic Meitei settlements in the Kuki-dominated hills surrounding the valley also were the targets of violence.

While the official death count now totaling around 150, with the overwhelming majority of the victims being Kuki Christians, human rights observers estimate the figure to be underestimated.

Nearly 60,000 people, most of them Kuki Christians, now have fled their homes to the Kuki-dominated hills and to other states to escape the arson attacks, and more than 300 churches have been burned and destroyed.

According to multiple media reports, a clear anti-Christian political agenda is in play in the strife, with the Hindu nationalist BJP state government condoning the targeted violence by Meitei groups.

The unprecedented attacks on Christian targets in Manipur have galvanized Christians across the country to participate in the street protests, including at the parish level in the southern Christian heartland of Kerala, where Hindu nationalists led by Modi have been trying to woo Christians to support the BJP by assuring them of “security.”

The situation in Manipur has also provoked international concerns. On July 13, the European Union parliament passed a resolution urging India to “take all necessary measures and make the utmost effort to promptly halt the ongoing ethnic and religious violence, to protect all religious minorities, such as Manipur’s Christian community, and to pre-empt any further escalation.”

The US is “shocked and horrified” by the video of an extreme attack on two women in Manipur and supports the Indian Government’s efforts to seek justice for them, Vedant Patel, Deputy Spokesperson of the State Department. a senior Biden administration official said.

The video showing two women being paraded naked and molested by a group of men on May 4 in Kangpokpi district surfaced on July 19, attracting condemnation countrywide.

“We were shocked and horrified by the video of this extreme attack on two women in Manipur. We convey our profound sympathies to the survivors of this act of gender-based violence and support the Indian Government’s efforts to seek justice for them,” Vedant Patel, Deputy Spokesperson of the State Department, told reporters at his daily news conference on Tuesday, July 25th.

Picture : Prokerala

The Executive Committee of the Supreme Court Bar Association of India has expressed its deep concern and condemnation regarding the several incidents of violence in Manipur, including the recent incidents involving women being paraded naked by a group of armed men. “Such incidents in Manipur, which have been taking place, since have not only brought suffering among the people of Manipur, but also have led to the loss of several lives,” a statement issued by the SC Bar Association led by its President Dr. Adish C. Agarwala, Sr., stated. “The Executive Committee expresses its deep concern over the incidents which have tarnished the humanitarian ethics to its core. We categorically condemn the gender-based violence and humiliation as it has far-reaching consequences on the victims’ physical and psychological well-being.”

It is noteworthy to state that from its very inception, the Supreme Court Bar Association has been in the vanguard of the movement for upholding, maintaining and consolidation of the constitutional values of democracy, the rule of law and the independence of the Judiciary. In its meeting dated 4th May 1951, the Executive Committee of the Bar Association consisting of legal luminaries like M. C. Setalvad, C. K. Daphtary and K. M. Munshi spoke of their deep concern against the first amendment of the Indian Constitution.

The prestigious and top Bar Association in the nation also condemned “the inaction of the state police in bringing the culprits to book for a long period of two months and the inability to generally tackle the debilitating violence in the state of Manipur. We call upon the state government and the central government to immediately take action to punish the perpetrators and prevent other acts of violence in the state, which are still continuing,” the statement signed by Rohit Pandey, Honorary Secretary of the Supreme Court Bar Association.

Indian Americans and allies have held protests in the US states of California, New Jersey, and Massachusetts throughout the past weekend to condemn the ongoing ethnic violence in Manipur, which has left hundreds of people dead and thousands displaced. The protests were in part a response to a horrific video last week, showing two young tribal women being paraded naked while being molested by a group of men in the violence-hit state.

Other protest rallies and prayer vigils have been planned across several states including infront of the United Nations, condemning the government’s inaction and in solidarity with the suffering Manipuri people.

Pieter Friedrich, a well-known freelance journalist, has been on hunger strike since July 25 with a call on Representative Ro Khanna to speak about the Manipur issue in US Congress.  ‘One thing I know about Ro is that he’s passionate about human rights. It’s close to his heart and he has always been swift to speak about it, even on international issues, except when it comes to India. I want to stand in solidarity with Ro’s grandfather, Amarnath Vidyalankar, who struggled for the freedom of India. I hope that Ro chooses to follow his grandfather’s example by taking this one very small, easy step of speaking on the House floor against the anti-Christian violence which is still happening in Manipur,’ Friedrich told the media. “What is happening in Manipur is far more awful than my experience of not eating. I hope and pray Khanna speaks out,” he said.  Two other people have also joined the fast in solidarity as of the 25th, he said.

“The Prime Minister’s reaction has come too late. He should have spoken out when the bloodshed started but just kept quiet all through,” Archbishop Dominic Lumon of Imphal, who heads the Catholic Church in the strife-torn state, told the media. “Fear is pervasive even now [after 79 days] and peace remains a dream for us. Everyone is living in fear as violence keeps erupting in the [Imphal] Valley and its peripheries frequently,” added Archbishop Lumon, who heads the 100,000-member local Catholic Church in the tiny state in northeast India, which has a total population of less than four million people.

AAPI’s 41st Annual Convention in Philadelphia with Focus on “True and Total Health is the Wellbeing of Mind, Body, and Spirit” Concludes

The 41st annual American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) Convention and Scientific Sessions with the major theme “True and Total Health is the Wellbeing of Mind, Body, and Spirit” concluded at the iconic Marriott Downtown in Philadelphia, PA with the new leadership of AAPI assuming charge under the leadership of Dr. Anjana Samadder on July8th, 2023.

“I am committed to your well-being and dedicated to advancing AAPI’s mission for a brighter future,” Dr. Anjana Samadder, the new President of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) declared during her Presidential Inaugural address in Philadelphia, PA.

Along with Dr. Anjana Samadder, Dr. Satheesh Kathula assumed charge as the President-Elect; Dr. Amit Chakrabarthy as the Vice President; Dr. Sumul Raval as the Secretary; Dr. Sreeni Gangasani as the Treasurer; and Dr. Lokesh Edara as the Chair of the Board of Trustees.

A Gastroenterology Specialist in Columbus, OH, Dr. Anjana Samadder is the spouse of AAPI’s past President, Dr. Gautam Samadder. Dr. Anjana Samadder is affiliated with Mount Carmel West and Mount Carmel East and is a winner of the Gastrointestinal Surgery Excellence Award.

The Convention was officially inaugurated with the chanting of the Sanskrit Mantras, seeking blessings from above, Ribbon cutting and lighting of the traditional Lamp by AAPI leaders and distinguished guests on July 7th, 2023 in Philadelphia, the birthplace of US Independence.

Addressing the over 1,000 delegates from around the nation, Dr. Ravi Kolli, Immediate past President of AAPI spoke about the origins of AAOI 41 years ago and how the physicians of Indian origin have been sought after for their excellence in Medicine. “I applaud you and thank you for your support all through the year. And your presence here with your blessing and your goodwill and warm wishes for the successful 41st Ave annual convention here in our brother City of Brotherly Love Philadelphia,” Dr. Kolli said.

“AAPI has a long and illustrious history of 41 years of existence.  Started by a few physicians of Indian origin as they started their journey to this land of opportunities, today, they have succeeded beyond anybody’s expectations. And they have been contributing to our communities and our societies in every possible way. And they’re the most respected physicians of any group that we can call. So, we all should be proud of our heritage and our dedication to our patient care and our successful transition from one to another world and being a role model and almost model citizens in the United States,” Dr. Kolli added.

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In his farewell address, Dr. V. Ranga, immediate past Chair of the BOT, “AAPI is stronger and in safer hands. AAPI is an umbrella organization that has nearly 250 local chapters, specialty societies and alumni organizations. For over 40 years, Indian physicians have made significant contributions to health care in this country, not only practicing in inner cities, rural areas and peripheral communities but also at the top medical schools and other academic centers.”

In his keynote address, Shri Venkaiah Naidu, former Vice President of India stressed the importance of giving back to one’s Motherland, Janmabhoomi, one’s native place as way of returning the many blessings one has received.  He highlighted the importance of taking care one’s Mother, Janmabhoomi and Motherland. Praising the many initiatives of AAPI, Shri Naidu said, “AAPI’s programs are more centered around addressing the issues related to the stigma of mental illness and the importance of the practices such as meditation, and yoga, which is a connectivity between the body and the mind.”

The unique event served as a platform for the AAPI members to learn and practice the importance of meditation in resolving one’s pressing health concerns and how Ayurveda, Yoga, and Meditations, the ancient traditions of India offer solutions to the most pressing health problems of the world.

“The secret of meditation is in letting go,” Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar told the gathering, which included AAPI members and their families. “Stress arises when we have too much to do, and not enough energy or time to do it. We can neither change time nor the number of things we need to do. So, the only option is to increase energy levels. And this can be accomplished through yoga, breathing techniques and meditation,” Sri Sri told the delegates. “A happy mind lets you stay calm; make better decisions and improve the overall quality of life,” he told the Doctors, acknowledging that they lead a stressful life. “You live on average ten years less than the patients you treat, as a consequence of the stressful life you lead,” he told them.

In his address, Rep. Shri Thanedar, the 5th member to join the Samosa Caucus in the US House praised the great contributions of the physicians who worked so hard, especially during the Covid, saving millions of lives.” Congressman Thanedar, who has been instrumental in starting the Hindu Caucus in the US House with the intention of eradicating discrimination on the basis of religion or any other means, wowed to “fight for the transformation of the broken immigration system in the US.”

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Mr. Vivek Ramaswamy in his address passionately spoke about the reasons for his Presidential ambitions. Leaving his successful business, the young and talented Ramaswamy said, “I stepped down from my job as a biotech CEO to focus on a different kinds of cancer. Not a biological cancer, but a cultural cancer that threatened to kill that dream that Martin Luther King had 60 years ago, and that tried to kill the dream that allowed me to achieve everything I had in my life You do get ahead in this country, not on the color of your skin, but on the content of your character and your contributions. A dream that says that any child no matter who they are, where their parents came from, or how long their last name is that we still achieve what we want in this country through our own hard work, our own commitment, our own dedication, that’s the American dream.”

Dr. Willie Underwood, American Medical Association Chair-Elect praised the contributions of Indian American physicians. He said, “You have a lot to celebrate today, not just the past 41 years, but all the work that you do everyday to improve the health outcomes of all Americans. While we have differences and divisions throughout this country,  one thing we do share is our desire to be physicians that improve health and healthcare outcomes. I know that together, we can lead this nation forward since we have more in common than differences, with one mission and one goal and that is to improve the health and the health care of this nation.”

Dr. Prem Reddy was honored with the Special Presidential Appreciation and Achievement Award for his Leadership, Entrepreneurship, and Philanthropy. Dr. Ranga Reddy, past AAPI President was conferred with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Dr. Manmeet Ahluwalia was the recipient of the AAPI 2023 Most Distinguished Physician Award; AAPI’s 2023 Most Distinguished Service Award was bestowed on Dr. Udaya Shivangi; Dr. Soumya Reddy Neravetla was the recipient of the AAPI’s 2023 Most Distinguished YPS Award; and, AAPI’s 2023 Most Distinguished MSRF Award was given to Mehul Mehra; Mary Shaya, President of J & B Medical  was honored with the prestigious AAPI Presidential Humanitarian Award 2023; and, Stephen Shaya, M.D., Managing Director of Akkad Holdings and Executive Servant Leader at J & B Medical was bestowed with the prestigious AAPI Presidential Healthcare Leadership Award 2023.

The convention included CMEs with accredited courses as well as a variety of panel discussions, presentations and a research and poster competition. There were forums for AAPI Young Physicians Group (AAPI YPS) and for AAPI MSRF for medical students, residents and fellows. A nearly sold out Exhibitor Hall included medical and pharmaceutical products, devices and equipment, insurance and tourism, art, and medical and dental practice-related services.

Led by Dr. Sreeni Gangasani, AAPI CME Chair and Dr. Brahma Sharma, AAPI Convention CME Chair, the CME program provided the highest-level scientific sessions for AAPI delegates. In addition, there was the popular parallel track for Lifestyle Medicine, with focus on Mind- Body side, making it a wholesome CME session, giving everyone something that they loved.

The Women’s Forum led by Dr. Udaya Shivangi had an esteemed panel of successful women leaders. The CEO Forum was moderated by Dr. Achintya Moulick and had eminent leaders from the healthcare and technological industries, who shared their insights on saving healthcare cost, the usefulness and limitations in using AI in the healthcare sector and the need for leadership of Indian Americans in larger political world to address the major concerns of the larger population.

Dr. Raghu Lolabhattu, Chair and CEO of the Convention praised the wonderful team who have been planning for months and organizing the event to make the 2023 annual convention a memorable experience. “I’m glad to be serving as the convention chair. We have been working hard to put together an attractive program for our annual get together, educational activity and family enjoyment. We are fortunate to have a dedicated team of convention committee members helping us to make this event truly historic.”

During the convention held from July 6th to 9th, attendees from across the nation got to engage with an impressive lineup of notable speakers and cutting edge medical and scientific information blended within a rich cultural backdrop of authentic Indian cuisine, fashion, yoga and entertainment from top Indian performers. The event also included AAPI’s Got Talent, organized by the AAPI physicians, was an opportunity for the delegates at the convention to participate and compete in a talent show led by Dr. Amit Chakrabarty and Dr. Seema Arora.

The young and rising artists from the Arya School of Dance performed brilliantly showcasing the history of Bollywood films from the 1960s through the present. The grand finale was the performance by the internationally famed artist, Milka Singh. The long day’s events came to a close with Mehfil & Khaas.

One in seven patient encounters in the United States is with a physician of Indian origin. The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) is the largest ethnic medical organization in the United States, representing over 100,000 physicians of Indian Origin in the United States. “Welcome to you all to the  42nd Annual Mega Convention, the largest ever in the history of AAPI, to be held at the heart of New York City from July 18-22nd, 2023,” said Dr. Anjana Samader,  the new President of AAPI. For more information on AAPI and its many programs and activities, please visit: www.aapiconvention.org/ www.appiusa.org