Indian-origin student found dead in Notre Dame campus lake

21-year-old Indian-origin female student’s body was recently recovered from a lake on the campus of Notre Dame, a premier university in the US state of Indiana.

St. Joseph County Coroner Michael J. McGann made a positive identification at the scene, the university said. There were no apparent signs of trauma.

“We’re deeply saddened by the passing of Annrose,” said Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame. “We will keep her and her family and friends in our prayers.” At Notre Dame, she was a solo flutist for the university’s Folk Choir, which describes her as “irreplaceable.”

annaRose

“Our hearts are broken with the news of the loss of Annrose Jerry. The Folk Choir lost an important and irreplaceable member of our family,” the group said in a Facebook post. “Annrose was a sweet, intelligent, strong, passionate, kind-hearted friend and she will be so dearly missed. Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family and loved ones.

Jerry’s obituary describes her as an accomplished musician, having been the pianist for the Blaine High School jazz band and flutist in the school band, in addition to playing the flute for the Minnesota State Band.

Suhas Subramanyam, Virginia’s first Indian American, Hindu Delegate sworn in with Gita

A few days ago, an Indian American politician Suhas Subramanyam, tweeted

Subramanyam, who explains how his name is pronounced (‘Soo-braw-MAN-yum’) is a representative from District 87 in Virginia’s General Assembly. In a recent interview, he explains “Why was it important to tweet about being Hindu, Indian American

I thought it was important to embrace it. I also want others running for office here or in other areas to not feel that they have to downplay or hide it. My constituency has Hindus and people are exposed to the faith, but it is also a diverse, smart and open-minded community. It is very inclusive, especially in recent years. While campaigning, too, I went to temples and did namaskar, but I also went to churches and mosques. Hinduism is accepting of all faiths as we believe it is one god with many names.

Image
from Subramanyam’s tweet

Subramanyam is married to Miranda Peña Subramanyam, who works for a government contractor and volunteers in her free time at the Loudoun Abused Women’s Shelter. They were married in Sterling, Virginia, where they currently reside.


About Bhagavad Gita

The Bhagavad Gita (Sanskrit: भगवद् गीता, ) often referred to as the Gita, is a 700-verse Sanskrit scripture that is part of the Hindu epic Mahabharata.  Popular media in India including bollywood films have long depicted court scenes where witnesses take an oath using Bhagavad Gita (link).

Subramanyam’s swearing in with a Bhagavad Gita follows a trend. With the increasing diversity in the West, many politicians of Indian descent are taking to the Gita during their swearing in:

And the hawks are watching for those who aren’t following this new norm: UK MP under fire for not taking oath on GitaA British Punjabi Hindu MP has come under fire for not taking an oath of allegiance to the Crown on the Bhagavat Gita. 

Indian-American astronaut selected for NASA program for Moon, Mars

NASA recently announced that Indian-American Raja Chari passed out from the 2017 Astronaut Candidate Class. NASA profile of Colonel Chari’s profile includes:

The Iowa native graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1999 with bachelor’s degrees in Astronautical Engineering and Engineering Science. He continued on to earn a master’s degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and graduated from the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School.

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Source: NASA
In June 2017, Chari was selected for NASA Astronaut Group 22, and reported for duty in August to begin two years of training as an astronaut.

Chari was born on June 24, 1977 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Sreenivas V Chari and Peggy Egbert.  He was inspired to pursue higher education by his father Srinivas V. Chari, who migrated from Hyderabad to US at a young age to complete a degree in engineering.  Chari was quoted in a recent interview:

“My father came to the country with the goal of getting an education and realizing the importance of that and that directly translated to how I was brought up,” adding, “There was a focus throughout my childhood on education and that being the thing, you really needed to do well to succeed”.

It was not a matter of checking boxes of qualifications but of being experts in one’s field, being “really passionate about” it, he added.

Chari is married to Holly Schaffter Chari, also a Cedar Falls native, and the couple has three children. His mother, Peggy Chari, lives in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Raja Chari with his family. Left to right: Raja, his wife Holly, his son, his brother Krishna. And sitting on the sofa behind his mother Peggy and his father Sreenivas. Photograph: Kind courtesy Raja Chari via rediff.com

 

Other Indian American astronauts

The two Indian-American astronauts before him are both women, Kalpana Chawla and Sunita Williams.

Space scientist Chawla, who was born in Karnal, Haryana, and immigrated to the US, was killed on her second space mission when Space Shuttle Columbia broke up in 2003. She had participated in another mission on the same shuttle in 1987.

Williams, a navy officer, has served as the commander of a International Space Shuttle expedition in 2012. She had been on three other missions, in one of them as flight engineer.

Why are so many motels owned by Indians? This is even called the Patel Motel Cartel

As per some estimates, 70–80 percent of Motels across North America are owned or managed by Patels of Gujarati origin. When I lived in Colorado and North Carolina, I knew a few IT professionals of Gujarati origin who would continually muse and research ideas on getting into the business of running motels, franchises or gas station. Many eventually made the switch, thanks to the support from the strong network of community.

An interesting article in the New York Times from a decade ago chronicles the journey of Patels (re A Patel Motel Cartel?) “about 70 percent of all Indian motel owners — or a third of all motel owners in America — are called Patel, a surname that indicates they are members of a Gujarati Hindu subcaste.”

So, how do the Patels do this?

“Buying a motel, even one that’s in the red, usually requires a substantial down payment, one beyond the reach of most new immigrants. That, however, is one key to how this particular niche was captured. The down payment was seldom a problem for a prospective Indian purchaser, who was often able to turn to a network of relatives and friends to help him out. The story of Lata and P.J., for example, is not exactly the hardscrabble tale associated with some immigrant groups.”

Image result for patel motel"

Check out other articles in the media that chronicle the Patels in America

Sikh community raises over $263,775 for boy who lost entire family in head-on car crash

The Sikh community in Carteret, New Jersey, has rallied around an 11-year-old boy — raising more than $$263,775 for him and his future — after he lost his entire family in a head-on car crash last week.

11-year-old Yashveer, whose family lived in Carteret — a borough in Middlesex County — was traveling with them in Virginia when they got into the deadly crash last Thursday. His parents, Gurmeet Singh, 44, and Jasleen Kaur, 38, were both killed, as was his 6-year-old sister.

Friends of the family provided an update on Monday to NJ.com, saying Yashveer had been released from the hospital and was recovering at a relative’s home. Rosa Diaz, superintendent of Carteret schools, said the entire borough was torn up about what happened to him.

“As expected, this has been an extremely difficult time for our community,” Diaz explained. “Our district has lost a member of our school family and we are working to support [Yash] as he learns to adjust to a life without his loved ones.”

Image via GoFundMe

According to GoFundMe

Gurmeet Singh (of Milton Distributors) was a man of few words but many smiles. He met with a tragic auto accident in Virginia on August 15th. The extremely unfortunate accident took away the lives of Gurmeet Singh, Jasleen Kaur, and 6 year old Harjas Kaur.

11 year old Yash Singh, has survived, and is hospitalized with Pelvic Fracture and a few other injuries. In this immensely unfortunate moment, while we all get together to pray to almighty to rest their souls in peace, we are also praying for the speedy recovery of Yash. While nobody can ever fulfill the void in Yash’s life, as friends and family, the least we can do is to come together and contribute our share for the medical expenses of Yash, funeral expenses of the deceased, and more importantly, contribute towards the future of Yash.

No contribution is big or small – please do whatever you can to help Yash have some financial support for the future. Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh

Articles about the incident

 

Indo-American Fair – New Jersey 2019

The South Asian Fair ‘Indo American Fair’ is back in New Jersey again this year

IndoAmericanFair

The announcers said “It gives us immense pleasure to announce that we are organizing 14th Grand Indo-American Fair on September 2019 – the Biggest and the best festival at Mercer County Park, West Windsor, NJ.
Indo-American Fair is organized to spread and share the art, culture and heritage of India amongst our American friends and other local and regional communities in the State of New Jersey. Indo-American Fair provides an opportunity to all that wishes to participate and present their various talents in this vibrant country without any monetary consideration. In view of the many facets of the Fair and presentation of varied art and culture activities during the festival, the Fair has essentially prompted the responsiveness of the needs of local, regional, and other communities seeing the influx to the Fair from thousands of people every year. Hence Indo American Fair has established itself as the premier cultural event in NJ among the community over the years. ”

Check out their website for details http://www.indoamericanfair.com/index.htm

Hindu Temple opens in Chesapeake, Virginia, featuring a Silver Tula, Indian Bagpipers, and a Peace Parade

Hindu Temple opens in Chesapeake, Virginia, featuring a Silver Tula, Indian Bagpipers, and a Peace Parade

Shree Swaminarayan Mandir (Temple) – Chesapeake, Virginia, at 4210 Dock Landing Road, celebrated its grand opening with prayers, scripture recitals, cultural and devotional dance performances, and a peace procession through the streets of the City. Visitors from the entire county and indeed many from abroad gathered to witness the inauguration ceremony being performed by His Divine Holiness Acharya Shree Purushottampriyadasji Swamishree Maharaj, who is the spiritual leader of Maninagar Shree Swaminarayan Gadi Sansthan, a worldwide organization dedicated to the progression of spiritual, social and cultural values.With the opening of Chesapeake Temple, Acharya Swamishree Maharaj has established yet another chapter in the USA towards his mission to spread the message of peace, unity and tolerance towards all.

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Dignitaries attending to the opening ceremony included Dr. Richard W. West, Mayor of Chesapeake City Council. Expressing his delight on meeting Acharya Swamishree Maharaj, Mayor West said, “I can sense the aura of peace when coming to this place and meeting Acharya Swamishree Maharaj. I realize that he is a very special individual and I welcome him and you all to Chesapeake. I have attended many ribbon cutting  ceremonies, but nothing is as humbling as the event that I have the honor of seeing today.” A cheque towards the Mayor’s special charity appeal, and another to the Chesapeake Fire and Police Departments was presented by Acharya Swamishree Maharaj. The three day event also included a Peace Procession, through the
streets of Chesapeake, featuring the Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa Pipe Band, North America’s first and only Indian American bagpipe band.

A more detailed listing of Hindu temples can be found on GaramChai.com