Letters To The Editor

The editorial “The Right Stuff” (July 2005) welcoming Indians for embracing the full spectrum of Indian life has some notable omissions, like cab drivers and convenience store workers.
The “Looking In – Seeing Out” article on foreign films set in India makes little sense, because most of the films mentioned are by Indians. Other films made by Hollywood, such as City of Joy represent abject poverty, chaos, corruption, diseases, slums, beggars, pollution, snake charmers, stray animals, out of control population, lack of basic infrastructure and other misfortunes of the human race.

P. Bhind
Via email


Amlan Home Chowdhury’s article tracing the history of foreign films in India “Looking in, Seeing Out” (July 2005) has two glaring omissions. Harry Black and the Tiger (1958, Twentieth Century Fox, directed by Hugo Furgonese), starring Stewart Granger and I.S. Johar, was shot entirely in Karnataka and was an international hit. Bhowani Junction (1956, MGM, directed by George Cukor), starred Ava Gardner and Stewart Granger. Gardner played an Anglo Indian and was one of the first Hollywood screen sirens to wear a saree in a major motion picture. The movie was well received by critics and audiences, both in India and abroad.

G. Subba Rao
Streamwood, Ill.

The editorial “Money and Politics” (May 2005) is perhaps one of the most self-righteous, biased, and, quite frankly, unsubstantiated articles I have ever read.

Honestly, assuming I can excuse the harsh language of the editor who seems to think that he knows better than everyone else the current affairs of American politics or the fallacy of basing huge conclusions on one poll, I just have one question to ask: did you even read the poll?

Just in case you didn’t, here is some relevant information “AALDEF’s new 24-page publication, The Asian American Vote 2004: A Report on the Multilingual Exit Poll in the 2004 Presidential Election, provides a snapshot of the voter preferences of Asian Americans in 20 cities in 8 states: New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Michigan, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.”

One important word that was glossed over is “snapshot.” This poll is meant to simply offer a glimpse – not a conclusion. Furthermore, seven out of the eight states polled went to Kerry. How surveying seven blue states and one red state gives an idea of national voting trends is beyond me, since South Asians are spread throughout the entire nation.

Rishi J.
Via email

If you want to eat aloo parathas and rava idlis “Keeping Up With the Kapoors” (May 2005) then you better go to California, because people in the US are crazy about Indian food.

Avantika Godse
Via eMail

I agree with the spirit of the article, Keeping Up With the Kapoors (May 2005) but I’d like the author to consider one point – when you are abroad, you get to see the malls and experience the wide choice available in literally everything. True, one doesn’t really need a world in which beauticians make you feel like you flunked chemistry in school. I would certainly like it if that kind of choice did not exist anywhere. But it does – all over the world – and while you have chosen to live outside of India for reasons that at some level has something to do with material comfort, I doubt if you can say you go back to India for your Bru coffees and steaming idlis served in two minutes no options given, no further questions asked. Indians in India would also like to experience that abundance (whether good for them or not). Maybe someday the world over people will say, “We don’t need this.” I don’t see a heavy rush to that queue though.

Until then, we’ve got to face the fact that India is keeping up with the world and no one said globalization isn’t a double edged sword. Let the Indians have a taste of the world too.

Renu Joseph
Via Email

“Tributes to Mom” (May 2005) is a fabulous piece of writing. Every one has a distinct tale to share, but yes mom is mom. She is just like that to all of them, be you a celebrity or a commoner; you are the most cherished person of your mom. And she is the who has been beating inside us, who pumps blood and life in us. I know no amount of love for respect can be enough for her. Even if you will end your life adoring her, you won’t feel satisfied. That’s how moms are. Loving, caring, nurturing.

Noopur Shrivastav
Via Email

I read with interest the editorial by Achal Mehra “Left Out Hypocricy” (April 2005) on the denial of a U.S. visa to Narendra Modi, chief minister of Gujarat. It appears that the visa was refused on the basis of a report of the Human Rights Commission, which alleged that the chief minister was in grave violation of religious freedom. You rightly said, “If they weren’t so hypocritical, these Indian immigrant groups would have been out protesting the U.S. government’s action instead of abetting it in railroading Modi
I was gratified that some people oppose such outrageous acts by the U.S. government in refusing a visa to a duly elected head of a state government. It is a pity that some Indians rejoice at this action. Both Mehra and Vijay Prasad in “What’s Left to Say About Modi?” condemn the chief minister for his inaction in containing the riots in the aftermath of the burning alive of 60 Hindus in a railway carriage by Muslims in Godhra. Mehra and Prasad neglect to report how the bloodshed started and just condemn Modi.

You should view the events impartially and take all the circumstances under consideration.
It is a pity that Hindus have to live in fear of a minority and when Hindus retaliate they are blamed by politicians, so called human rights advocates and people like Prasad, who is blind to the facts on the other side. It has become fashionable these days to blame Modi to show oneself as righteous and humane.

Given the fact that some organizations have blamed President George Bush and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for atrocities at Abu Ghraib, would anyone condemn them without an inquiry or trial. Would any country dare prohibit them from entering their country? The denial of a visa to Modi is an insult to our country.

Manubhai L. Patel
Luling, La.

Your article “MRI tourists” (April 2005) was fantastic and an eye opener for NRIs who haven’t visited India for a long time. However, I tried the websites of many of the hospitals mentioned in the article and was disappointed that they did not provide cost comparisons and contact information for arranging appointments and surgeries.

Ramesh Hathiramani
Via email

Your articles are excellent. I have to give your magazine a lot of credit for writing articles relating to second generation Indians and NRIs. Having a magazine solely dedicated to Indians in this country is great. As a second generation Indian, I find Little India a resource for understanding and becoming more familiar with India. So far, I have devoured the two issues of your magazine I have so far received on the day of its arrival.

Ronak M Jani
Via email

You are doing a wonderful job keeping Indian Americans informed of everything going on at home and abroad.

Chaitanya K. Dahagam
Via Internet

Thank you for a very informative magazine. I want to especially thank Kavita Chhibber for her article on Poonam Dhillon “Off the Beaten Track” (June 2005). Dhillon has been one of favorite actresses ever since I saw her first few movies, Trishul, Noorie, etc., when I was in East Africa in the 1970s and only 8-10 years of age. Dhillon has a high degree of personal magnetism and physical attractiveness. Everything about her is adorable – her smile, her voice, and her inner beauty, which she portrays both on and off screen.

Razina Jamal
Via email

An important point on overseas citizenship of India “Fool’s Gold” (Dec 2004) is that it can be construed, in international law, as a “form of Indian nationality.”

Article 4 of the Hague Convention on Certain Questions Relating to the Conflict of Nationality Law provides that “a State may not afford diplomatic protection to one of its nationals against a state whose nationality such person also possesses.” Therefore, international law limits the ability of a country to provide consular protection to its citizens or nationals in their country of second nationality.

A person registered as an Overseas Citizen of India, who is also a citizen of another country will therefore lose his right to consular protection of his home country when in India.

This is an important point: if an Overseas Citizen of India suffers from arbitrary treatment from Indian authorities, your country of primary nationality will be unable to assist you. Check out www.indiacitizenship.com for a comprehensive summary of Indian citizenship law.

T. Ebrahim
Via Email

I enjoyed reading your recent article “Bar None” (July 2005) on Indian American attorneys. I think it was wonderful that you raised the profile of lawyers who are doing incredible work on behalf of their country and their communities. I also appreciate your listing me in your article. However, just for the record, I am an American of Pakistani descent.

Shaarik H. Zafar
Special Counsel for Post 9-11 National Origin Discrimination
Washington, D.C.

Little India welcomes letters to the editor. Letters may edited for length and clarity. Send your letters to Letters, Little India, 350 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1826, New York, NY 10118 or by email to info@littleindia.com. Feedback to articles may also be posted online on our website www.littleindia.com

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