IJJ, July 27th 2008: TANTRA – Sex Is Not A Sin; BAJAN ANTI-INDIAN HATE & RACISM; SATYAJIT RAY; The Indianisation of cricket

International Jahajee Journal (IJJ), July 27th, 2008
Voice of the International Indian Diaspora

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Editor: Deosaran Bisnath
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I see God walking in every human form. When I meet different people,
I say to myself, “God in the form of the saint, God in the form of the sinner,
God in the form of the righteous, God in the form of the unrighteous.”
Sri Ramakrishna


by Satyajit Ray

Ray’s first film in a language other than Bengali – here English, Urdu and Hindi – is a gently
humorous, acutely observed satire of colonialism and self absorption. Using the powerful
symbolism of the chess games of two nobles to make an acute commentary on Anglo-Indian
relations in Victorian times, Ray notes that no matter who may win or lose, board and pieces
stay exactly the same.


Review by Andrew Robinson

“It’s a very, very complex mixed kind of thing, the entire British heritage in India”, Satyajit
Ray told me after a pregnant pause when I interviewed him at length for a biography in the
1980s. “I’m thankful for the fact that at least I’m familiar with both cultures and it gives me a
very much stronger footing as a film-maker, but I’m also aware of all the dirty things that were being done. I really don’t know how I feel about it.”

The opportunity to probe some of these deep equivocations in himself drew Ray to tackle a
film—The Chess Players (Shatranj ke Khilari)—that differs in certain important respects from
all his other 30 or more feature films, beginning with the Apu Trilogy of the 1950s. For a start,
The Chess Players was easily Ray’s most expensive film, employing stars of the Bombay
cinema (notably Amjad Khan, Shabana Azmi and Amitabh Bachchan as a narrator) and even
of western cinema (Richard Attenborough) , large Mughal-style sets and exotic location
shooting (Lucknow and Rajasthan). In addition, it was Ray’s first and only feature to venture
into a language—Urdu— other than Bengali. It was also his only film in which Islamic culture
played a major role. Most important of all, the film was a historical drama—set during the East India Company’s annexation of Oudh in 1856, the year before the outbreak of the Indian
Mutiny—which dealt directly with the Raj. Although the influence of the British is felt in most
of Ray’s films in subtle ways, and he made several films set in the 19th century, The Chess
Players is the only one where the Raj and its officials occupy centre stage.

Given its world premiere at the London Film Festival in 1977, The Chess Players was the first
adult film about the Raj. Today, after Gandhi, Heat and Dust, The Jewel in the Crown, A
Passage to India and many other Raj-related films, Ray’s film remains by far the most
sophisticated portrayal of this particular clash of cultures. As the Nobel laureate VS Naipaul
remarked of the film, “It is like a Shakespeare scene. Only 300 words are spoken but
goodness!—terrific things happen.”

Satyjit Ray’s films include the Apu Trilogy, The Music Room, Charulata, Days and Nights in the
, The Chess Players, and The Stranger. He also made comedies, musical fantasies,
detective films, and documentaries. He was an exceptionally versatile artist who won almost
every major prize in cinema, including a lifetime achievement Oscar in 1992.

GOPIO TRINIDAD & TOBAGO meets the President of the Republic
of Trinidad & Tobago, His Excellency, Professor George Maxwell Rochards

Left to right: Ms. Sacha Mahabal, Assistant Secretary; Mr. Oscar Ramoutar, Treasurer; Mr. Deosaran
Bisnath, President; Professor George Maxwell Richards, President of Trinidad and Tobago; Ms. Ena
Maraj, PRO; Ms. Shivanie Ramcharitar, Youth Officer; Dr. Vijay Ramlal Rai, Head of Culture
Committee… ….
SOUTH AFRICA sacks Indian-origin provincial premier
DURBAN: South Africa’s only Indian-origin provincial premier has been sacked by the ruling
ANC, apparently falling prey to the bitter power-struggle between President Thabo Mbeki and
party chief Jacob Zuma.

A close associate of Mbeki, Premier of the Western Cape province Ebrahim Rassool
announced his resignation at a meeting attended by the chairperson of the African National
Congress Baleka Mbete in Cape Town.  Appointed as the Premier in 2003 by President Thabo
Mbeki, Rassool, whose grand-parents came to South Africa from Gujarat, said that he had
served in his position honestly and effectively and was sad to step down.

Rassool has also resigned from the Cape provincial legislature. Mbete, also Speaker of
Parliament, told reporters that Rassool was asked to resign for “political reasons” and to
prepare for the general elections in 2009.

From Bengal to Bushlot to Belize –

by Karan Chand

Karan Chand is a Guyanese living and teaching for the past 19 years in Belize
City, Belize.
This book is on the list for Literature at two high schools in Belize
and others are now considering it to be included as an additional text.

From Bengal to Bushlot to Belize – THE INDENTURED IMMIGRANTS
is available from the author – E-mail kchand16@hotmail. com

INDIAN GOVT: Lord Rama destroyed the bridge

STAYED FOR NOW: The Sethusamundram project has
been stayed by SC following protests by Hindu groups.

New Delhi: The Central government on Wednesday informed the Supreme
Court that it is going ahead with the contentious Sethusamudram Project.
In an affidavit filed before the SC, the Centre said that it was not
destroying the Ram Sethu as no such bridge existed. Lord Ram himself had
destroyed the bridge with a magical bow, the Centre said in the affidavit,
quoting from the Tamil Kamban Ramayan .

BJP Spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad told CNN-IBN, “This is a deliberate attempt to play around with Hindu sentiments. They are now saying Lord Ram destroyed the Setu when earlier they had said that
Lord Ram did not even exist and that Tulsi Ramayana and Valmiki Ramayana had no historical evidence or scientific proof to corroborate their statements.”

Episodes of Indian Experience
by Professor Kenneth Ramchand
Professor Kenneth Ramchand is Professor Emeritus of West Indian Literature,
University of the West Indies (UWI), Professor Emeritus of English (Colgate University),
currently, Associate Provost, The Academy at the University of Trinidad and
Tobago for Arts,
Letters, Culture and Public Affairs.
http://deosaranbisn ath.blogspot. com/

The Indianisation of cricket

The concentration of power in the hands of the BCCI is not necessarily bad, but
India should understand that it is one thing to have earned the right to wield unipolar power, another to demonstrate deserving it

When the Cold War abruptly thawed almost 20 years
ago, political strategists launched the expression
“unipolar world” to describe global realpolitik in which the United States was the solitary superpower. In the
last five years cricket has realigned to reflect a similar world order. Where it was once ritually complained that
the ICC is weak, inconsistent, reactive, lacking in leadership, we now know exactly what that body will do on
every issue before it: what India wishes. Sometimes not exactly; sometimes not without qualification. But in
the main, no significant motion can advance without India’s patronage, and nothing to which India is resistant
has a hope in hell. On India’s nod, the ICC can even change the result of Test matches. Hell, why play Test
matches at all? Let’s just decide them by vote at the ICC!

In one sense at least, a unipolar ICC is long overdue. India has always been the most populous, and arguably
also the most passionate, of cricket nations. But its house has commonly been divided, and its stock abroad
poor. In Australia in the 1980s and 1990s, we saw little of Indian teams – frustratingly little, for they were a
purist’s delight to watch. While the West Indies seemed to tour every other summer, Australians were denied a Sachin Tendulkar Test innings for almost eight years. The reason? India were not perceived as sufficiently
bankable – and this is worth remembering lest it be imagined that the BCCI somehow introduced the evils of
money to a cricket world of prelapsarian innocence.

The reasons for India’s belated eminence are not far to seek either. Its democracy is stable, its economy vital,
its political and media elite rich beyond the dreams of avarice; they covet cultural clout due their wealth. I
suspect it is no longer correct to talk about the “globalisation” of cricket; rather is the game being “Indianised” , subordinated to Indian commercial agendas. That is to say, the emphasis has moved from taking the game to
new frontiers for its benefit and furtherance, but to spreading the sphere of the BCCI’s influence and providing
content for the consumption of its domestic market. And in a lot of ways this is actually no big deal. There are
worse cultural values to be pervaded by; and, well, most commercial agendas are alike, no matter where
they’re from, and India’s commercial sector is no more rapacious and vulgar than those of other countries. At
its best, in fact, the BCCI has shown an élan and imagination that other boards, and other sporting bodies,
must eye enviously. At its worst, however, it exhibits the characteristics of chip-on-the- shoulder superpower
and insatiable monopoly capitalist.. ..

http://content- wi.cricinfo. com/magazine/ content/current/ story/361499. html

Indian Indentured Immigration to Trinidad
by Deosaran Bisnath,
Editor, International Jahajee Journal
President, GOPIO Trinidad & Tobago.
Part 1 : Origin of The Coolie Slave Trade
http://deosaranbisn ath.blogspot.com/
Commentary: Bajans, Guyanese and the politics of hate
Published on Friday, July 25, 2008
By Dr Randy Persaud

It is finally happening. Guyanese immigrants in Barbados are now being murdered. The attack in which
Christopher Griffith was killed, and Seelochanie Samuels wounded, was not the work of bandits. It was an anti-
immigrant political killing.

For many Guyanese this might be a surprise, because, after all, we are all West Indians, and on top of that,
Barbados has this image as an Island Paradise. Political violence is not supposed to happen there. Barbados
is supposed to be the Singapore of the Caribbean – highly globalized, high per capita GDP, and outranked only by the OECD countries in the UNDP’s Human Development Index.

But something ominous and enormously complicated is occurring in Barbados. There is an unbelievable level of hatred against Guyanese in general and Indo-Guyanese in particular. The magnitude and depth of hatred
against the Guyanese is now bordering on neo-fascism.
In this short article I am arguing that the developments in Barbados have direct linkages to the campaign to
construct the Government of Guyana as racist. By ‘construct’ I mean that in contradistinction to objective
reality, a platoon of opposition elements have been using various media (TV, daily columns, letters to the
editor, blogs etc) to give the impression that the PPP government is deliberately victimizing the Afro-Guyanese
population.. . CONTINUED HERE:

Child of Dandelions

by Shenaaz Nanji
Publisher: Front Street (March 2008)
ISBN-10: 1932425934
ISBN-13: 978-1932425932

Child of Dandelions

A breathtaking account of one girl’s determination to triumph over a devastating historical event. In
Uganda in 1972, President Idi Amin, also known as the Last King of Scotland, announces that foreign Indians
must be “weeded” out of Uganda in ninety days. Fifteen-year- old Sabine’s life is changed forever. The
president’s message, broadcast on the radio every day, becomes Sabine’s “countdown monster,” and it follows her through days of terror. Sabine’s father is convinced that, as Ugandan citizens, their family will be
unaffected, but her mother insists it’s too dangerous to stay. When her beloved uncle disappears and her best
friend abandons her, Sabine begins to understand her mother’s fears. She becomes desperate to leave, but
Bapa, her grandfather, refuses to accompany her. How can she leave him, and where will her family go to
begin a new life?

Hear the author read excerpts in her own words:
Child of Dandelions.mp3

“Drawn in part from the veteran author’s own experiences, this deeply felt tale takes readers to 1972 Uganda
where, shortly after coming to power, Idi Amin gave all Indians and citizens of Indian descent just 90 days to
leave the country. … Readers will feel her inner conflict sharply, admire her resilience and quick thinking—and
come away shocked themselves by the brutality she encounters during this little-known historical episode.”
—Kirkus Reviews

GOPIO Trinidad & Tobago
a chapter of GOPIO International.
P.O. BOX 2286, Chaguanas. TRINIDAD.

The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) unequivocally and
categorically reiterates that there is only one authorized GOPIO Chapter in
Trinidad and Tobago, namely GOPIO Trinidad and Tobago, with its leadership
team that was installed on February 29, 2008
in Freeport, Trinidad.

The executives of GOPIO Trinidad and Tobago include Deosaran Bisnath (President);
Varsha Maharaj (Secretary); Oscar Ramoutar (Treasurer); Ena Maraj, PRO;
Directors (Niranjan Bhaggan, Jaganath Seeram-Maharaj) ; and
Youth Officers (Shivanie Ramcharitar, Sacha Mahabal and Avinash Sanu).

GOPIO International emphasizes that former GOPIO of Trinidad and Tobago chapter
president Devant Maharaj does not function in any capacity in GOPIO International,
any of its councils or chapters, and is not authorized to make any such representations
on behalf of GOPIO Int’l or GOPIO Trinidad and Tobago.

GOPIO is a secular, non-partisan, not-for-profit, international organization based in
USA with chapters in various parts of the globe, representing the interests and
aspirations of People of Indian Origin (PIOs), and promoting awareness and
understanding of issues of concern — social, cultural, educational, economic, or political,
to global NRI/PIO community.

GOPIO can be contacted:

Inder Singh (President, GOPIO Int’l) at gopio-intl@sbcgloba l.net or by
tel +1-818-708-3885, Ashook Ramsaran (Sec General, GOPIO Int’l) at
ramsaran@aol. com
or by tel +1-718-939-8194, Deosaran Bisnath
(President, GOPIO of Trinidad & Tobago) at
deobisnath@yahoo. com
by tel

Become a GOPIO member: write to –
GopioTT@gmail. com

GOPIO on the NET:
http://groups. yahoo.com/ group/GopioTT/
http://gopiott. blogspot. com/

http://www.gopio. net
http://gopio. com

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Religions are different roads converging on the same
point. What does it matter that we take different roads so
long as we reach the same goal? I believe that all
religions of the world are true more or less. I say “more or less” because I believe that everything the human hand
touches, by reason of the very fact that human beings are imperfect, becomes imperfect.
-Mahatma Gandhi

From him come all the seas and the mountains,
The rivers and the plants that support life.
As the innermost Self of all, he dwells
Within the cavern of the heart.
-Mundaka Upanishad

Self-important, obstinate, swept away by the pride of
wealth, they ostentatiously perform sacrifices without any
regard for their purpose. Egotistical, violent, arrogant,
lustful, angry, envious of everyone, they abuse my
presence within their own bodies and in the bodies of
-Bhagavad Gita 16:13–18

~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~

National Council of Indian Culture (NCIC), TRINIDAD
Hall of Fame, 2008

THE CHILDREN OF a nation are the ones who will pursue a positive path to success.

“Each parent, therefore, has the key for this progressive journey, which is more powerful than being
a politician,” according to Trinidad-born artist, Dr Ralph Baney.

At the time he was delivering the feature address at the National Council of Indian Culture’s (NCIC)
44th Anniversary Celebrations over the weekend, at its Fourth Induction Ceremony, at their
headquarters along the Narsaloo Ramaya Drive, Endeavour, Chaguanas.

Among the 2008 Inductees were Mahmoud P Alladin, Dr Ralph Baney, Vera Baney, Bisram Gopie,
Ram Kirpalani, Kewal Maraj, Surujpat Mathura, Kamaluddin Mohammed, Narsaloo Ramaya,
Ramdhanie Sharma, and Shri Brajamadhava Battacharya.

Altogether so far 40 persons have been inducted into the Hall of Fame. Dr Baney, who has received
numerous awards for his talent as an artist, has also received from UWI in 2004 the Doctor of Letters
Recognition and is further highlighted in the Who’s Who In American Art and American Artists of

He told the NCIC gathering:”Each ethnic group has its own historical leaders to emulate and together what a combination of resources we have to follow.” He felt that the “key to achieving this goal is
our children.

We may lament the failures of governments and its institutions in developing a successful society
but, we have the key to change in the children who are its future.”  He said that each sector of the
society in Trinidad and Tobago had the key to change and it is more powerful than what obtains in

He was of the view that “inequity in the country hindered nation-building progress and undermines
the commitment of citizens leading to self -preservation.”  “We tend to become predatory citizens,
who live in gated communities,” he added.

Deokienanan Sharma, president of the NCIC, said that they would continue to propagate the culture
of their forefathers which “was jealously retained by them.  They have succeeded in “creating a
community with vibrant cultural practices.”

http://www.newsday. co.tt/features/ 0,83083.html

TANTRA: The Method Of Kindling Dormant Energies



Tantra – a unique spiritual system capable of resolving the mystery of Being and its
relationship with the world without itself being mysterious, caught in the cobwebs of
misconceptions, misled beliefs, clergies’ disapprovals, moralists’ censure, ethical concerns, quakes’ and sorcerers’ misuses and abuses, opposition of the ‘authorised’ – theology,
philosophy …, and above all, the centuries long antipathy of Islamic and Christian rulers, has
been the subject of neglect, indifference and even aversion for quite some time now. The
term ‘Tantra’, often seen personified in the person practising it, the ‘tantrika’, brings to
mind’s eye the image of a man with a rugged, coarse, hoary-looking, bearded and wrinkled
face, eyes deeply pushed into their sockets, and locks of rough uncouth muddy long hair
hung around shoulders. Wearing a long loosely hung black cloak and strings of multi-
coloured, multi-shaped and multi-sized beads, stones and amulets, with a bundle of
peacock feathers in his hands, he is fantasized as seated against a smoky hearth in a dark
murky odorous cell in the suburb of a tribal or backward hamlet, engaged in practices
considered to relate to ghosts, evil spirits or other forms of witch-craft and black arts. To so-
conditioned a mind, Tantra is a system comprising incredible, primitive, unscientific beliefs,
which by inciting blind faith exploits undeveloped or under-developed masses.

Quite strangely, and unbelievably, Tantra, which emerges with such image in common man’s mind
now, is India’s earliest, or at the most, one of the two earliest spiritual systems, the other being
Vedanta. Being more simple and natural, seeking sublimation of what one is born with, not its
negation – the modus of the Vedanta, Tantra dominated India’s spiritual and ritual scene for
centuries with all principal theologies – Buddhism, Jainism, and even Vedanta’s offshoot
Brahmanism and its components Shaivism, Shaktism and Vaishnavism, practising it as a scientific,
technical and spiritual method leading to attainment of self-awareness, and thereby, ultimate
knowledge and liberation. Perhaps a pre-Vedic ritual cult practised by Harappan settlers and thus
one of the world’s earliest spiritual cultures, the Tantra occupied India’s intellectual domain ever
since. Significantly, the number of Tantra-related texts, which began pouring in from early centuries
of the Christian era and continued till late eighteenth century, is greater than that of the texts related to any other system of thought, though unfortunately most of them, usually manuscribed as secret
documents for individuals, survive now only as allusions occurring in other texts.
Not how the common mind takes, or mistakes it, Tantra has been on censor’s list almost always, or at least after the Vedic asceticism gained prominence, sometimes for psycho-metaphysical reasons and sometimes on grounds of morality. Human mind naturally inclines to obtain what it does not have,
seek knowledge of things ‘not known’. This mind disapproves Tantra for the Tantra takes off with the
real, instinctive, inborn, inherent in nature, that is, ‘what is’, or ‘that which is the best known’ – the
body, nature, desires or whatever. What to Tantra is its basic source to sublimate is to this reasoning
mind base and common not worth striving for. Apart, the common notion is that the key to
transcendence is in the negation of oneself. One has to negate, relinquish himself to become what
he is not; he has to give up what he has to obtain what he does not have. He venerates asceticism,
or whatever, because asceticism is above him. He believes that asceticism is close to the
‘achievable’. To reach the ‘achievable’, he is required to acquire first this ‘in-between’ asceticism
which is not in him. Asceticism condemns him as a gross common reality – a thing of flesh and
bundle of frailties, shows his littleness and commands him to disbelieve himself. Mesmerized he
accepts this
Indians head a dozen Fortune 500 firms
NEW YORK: Led by Vikram Pandit-run Citigroup, there are a dozen Fortune 500 companies across
the world with an Indian or a person of India-origin as chief, as per the latest list of world’s biggest
corporations released today. While there are seven Indian companies on this year’s Global Fortune
500 list, up from six last year, at least five other members of this league have been run by persons of
Indian-origin over the past year.

Among these companies, Citigroup, ranked 17th in the list prepared on the basis of the companies’
annual revenue, has Nagpur-born Pandit as its CEO since December last year. Citi is followed
ArcelorMittal, which has billionaire steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal as its CEO and main promoter, at
39th rank and Vodafone at 85th.  Other firms are beverages major PepsiCo (184) and financial
services entity Hartford Financial Services (311). PepsiCo is headed by Indra Nooyi while Hartford
Financial is led by Ramani Ayer.


Trials, difficulties, troubles and sufferings are necessary for your
purification and to strengthen your will and power of endurance. Face
them bravely and come out triumphantly. Press on. Strive on with all
your will; only then is the grace of God bestowed. God helps those
who help themselves. If bad thoughts enter your mind, simply ignore
them. Offer a prayer to the Lord and substitute divine thoughts by
studying the sacred books. The spiritual fire should be generated day
after day. Hold fast to the ideal. Keep the flame of aspiration ever
bright. Scorn mundane delights and strife. Dedicate your life to God.

God is one. God is peace. God is universal harmony. God is love and
law. As a lamp cannot burn without oil, so man cannot live without
God. Creation reveals that God is dharma (righteousness) . God is the
bestower of grace which is boundless and inexhaustible.
— SIVANANDA Readings
~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~
‘jahaj’ = ship; ‘desi’ = Indian
‘JahajeeDesi’ = The Indians who crossed the Kala Pani by ship,
the Indentured Indian Immigrants, and their descendants.
http://www.JahajeeD esi.com

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