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Ahimsa Times - July 2002 Issue - www.jainsamaj.org

Vol. No. 25

July, 2002

 

SPECIAL PROGRAMME ON MAHAVIR JAYANTI AT U. N. O. HQ.
A special programme to celebrate Mahavir Jayanti was organised at the United Nations Organisation Head Quarters jointly by the Temple of Understanding, Long Island, Multi Faith Forum, Jain Association of North America and Jain Centre of New York and New Jersey. Acharya Shri Maha Prsagya's disciple, Samani Pratibha Pragya said on the occasion that relativity, synthesis and co-existence were the ideas which provided the basis for the philosophy of Anekant. The truth had many facets. Nothing was exclusive. She said the only way out from the chaotic conditioned prevailing today was the training in non-violence and an attitude that others could also hold valid points of view. Shri Chitrabhanu Ji spoke on the non-violent life style. Others present were Dr. N.P. Jain, Dr. Kumarpal Desai, Congress man Donald Bakeman, Senator Mark, Mayor Vinay Rich and Shri Jai Ram, Director of Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan.

SINGAPORE JAIN SAMAJ TAKES LEAD IN RELIGIOUS EDUCATION OF CHILDREN
The newly elected Executive Committee of Singapore Jain Religious Society, continues to conduct educational programmes for children from Jain families. The classes are held regularly on Sundays. Lectures, Seminars and Satsang are also arranged inviting eminent speakers on Jainism. A grand building, has been recently upgraded with the cooperation of all the members. There is no distinction about the sects and members of all the sects are equally involved in the activities and programmes. Shri Nagin Bhai Doshi, the Former President, Trustee and head of the Council of Advisers of the Singapore Jain Religious Society and a prominent business-man is the real support and back-bone behind all the activities.

Shri P.L. Jain and Shri A.K. Jain from Ahimsa Foundation, promoters of www.jainsamaj.org, on their good-will visit to Singapore met Shri Nagin Bhai, Shri Atul Shah (President), Shri Ashwin Desai (Vice-President), Shri Mayur Gelani, (Secretary) of the Society and other members of the Executive committee, who apprised them about the programmes being organised by them from time to time for the benefit of entire Jain community of Singapore. The efforts being put in by them are highly appreciated.

2600TH MAHAVIR BIRTH YEAR FESTIVITIES CONCLUDED & 2601 BIRTHDAY CELEBRATED
The 2601st birth anniversary of Jain religious preacher-revivalist, Vardhaman Mahavir Swami, was celebrated across the world with speakers at various functions calling for establishment of a social order based on human values. This day was also celebrated as the 2600th Birth-year conclusion. From the detailed reports received from many places worldwide, the main highlights of events not covered in earlier issue are given here.

New Delhi : President K. R. Narayanan, Vice President Krishankant and Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee greeted the Jain community. Hon. Narayanan said in a message, "may the noble teachings of Lord Mahavir inspire us to work for peace and non-violence and harmony among our people". PM Vajpayee said, "May the cardinal principles of ahimsa (non-violence), satya (truth), asteya (non-stealing) and aparigraha (non-possession) as preached by the great Tirthankar continue to guide us towards leading a virtuous life based on right conduct".

Exhibitions were also organised depicting various beliefs and tenets of Jainism highlighting principles of non-violence. The Prime Minister released the commemorative coin of Rupees five denomination, bearing the image of Mahavirswami on one side.

Delhi : International Ahimsa Academy was launched at Teen Murti on 24th April 2002 . In the opening ceremony function Shri Jagmohan, the Minister of Culture said that serving the cause of Ahimsa for the world peace, communal harmony and religious tolerance would be the real tribute to Lord Mahavir. Dr. L. M. Singhvi, eminent Jurist and Member of Rajya Sabha (Upper House of the Parliament) reiterated that we could ensure conservation of rare species and protection of animals, only through Ahimsa (non-violence). Dr. Karan Singh, Rajya Sabha Member in an emotional tone commented that Gujarat incidents are black spot on spiritual and cultural heritage of our country. Ms. Nirmala Deshpandey, an eminent Gandhian, spoke that Gandhiji had been biggest practitioner of Ahimsa after Lord Mahavir. He had not only practiced Ahimsa, but also trained leaders for the cause of Ahimsa.

Mumbai : Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh inaugurated the new Sion Fly-over Bridge named as Bhagavan Mahavir Fly-over" in Mumbai. A five day exhibition was organised at August Kranti Maidan in South Mumbai on the life and philosophy of Bhagavan Mahavir. The large numbers of tableaux displayed at the exhibition were highly impressive and unique in its design creativity and craftsmanship. One of the tabloids showed a 50-feet tall Meru mountain (as described in Jain cosmology) on which the devotees could climb and carry out 'abhishek.' The Samosaran of 30-feet was built and adjoining to it was a 200-feet long cave, which contained the images of 24 Tirthankars. A beautiful rangoli depicting various events in the life of Mahavir was made at the exhibition. All the five Kalyanaks life-events were presented through sound and light shows. Fifty Jain institutions had joined together to organise the programme. Seven lakhs people attended the program and the exhibition.

Chennai : The National Seminar on the Power of Ahimsa in the 21st century was held on 7-8 March 2002. The seminar involved essay competition open to the students nationwide. They had to present their arguments and respond to questions on the ideas presented before a panel of judges. Seminar consisted of four sessions. 85 students participated and the best few were offered prizes. About a thousand students attended the Seminar. Shri Chitrabhanuji, who inaugurated the function, praised the seminar plan that involved reading, writing, thinking and speaking about the ideas of peace. This concentrated activity was like a yogic exercise. Another notable feature was the participation of representatives of all major religions as well as senior members of the Defence Services and the Police. The Department of Jainology at the University of Madras also invited Chitrabhanuji to lecture on Relevance of Ahimsa in Modern Times.

Patna : A two-day National Seminar, held on 2 - 3 March 2002 on "Bhagavan Mahavir in Art, Archaeology & Literature" had as many as twenty scholarly papers read before the equally academically-qualified audience. Lively and fruitful Q. & A. discussion followed the lectures. The Seminar was a milestone in advancement of our knowledge on the subject and in the history of Bihar, the birth place of 22 Tirthankars. Other outcome of the meeting was that of the twenty crore Rupees proposal for the development of Vaishali, Pawapuri & Lachhuar in Bihar as tourist sites. An exhibition on Jain Manuscripts, Paintings & other religious artefacts of the Patna Museum was organised. Philatelist Naresh Jain displayed his award winning collection of stamps and other philatelic items. Special postal cover depicting the Jain torso and special stamp cancellation showing a Jain Dharma Chakra were provided by the Indian Dept. of Posts. The cover showed the 3rd Century BC- Mauryan period Jain torso discovered from Lohanipur, Patna is the earliest known Jain image so far found throughout the world. The cancellation had the Chakra with sixteen spokes of a bronze artefact found from Chausa in the Buxar district dated to 2nd century BC.

Chandigarh : Prime Minister Shri A. B. Vajpai released gold and silver medallions, specially imported from Switzerland by Punjab Small Industries Corporation. The 24-carat gold medals are of 25-mm. diameter weighing 10 grams and silver medals are of 47 mm 50 grams. The gold medal costs Rs. 5,800 and silver medal costs Rs. 700. A Certificate of Purity of 99.9% from Minerals & Metal Trading Corporation accompanies these limited edition collector's items and it comes in a special tamper proof packaging with details of the Medallions.

Ajmer : The Department of Posts released a special postal cover and a special cancellation. The cover bears Ajmer 's famous Jain Golden temple "Soniji Kee Suwarna Nasian" and the cancellation bears the design related to the dignity of Guru.

Hyderabad : The Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu greeted the Jain community of Hyderabad with "Bhagavan Mahavir preached non-violence, religious tranquility and tolerance"

Samet Sikharji : The installation ceremony, Pran-Pratishtha Samaroh of the foot prints of 3rd Tirthankar Sambhavnathji was conducted at the Sammet Shikharji mountain jointly by the two Swetambar and Digambar sect communities. The place, where these footprints, Pada chinha, were located was totally damaged due to heavy rains and lightening in the sky in the past. Both the communities carried out jointly the entire work of rebuilding as well as the worship ceremony. The presence Acharya Shri Nityanand Vijay Surishwarji, who was on his way from Calcutta to Madras for his next chaturmas, added further to grace of the occasion.

Indore : A two-day national seminar on the life and philosophy of Bhagavan Mahavir was jointly organised by several organisations. The Conference was divided into four sessions and about 40 papers were presented. Some presenters and participants were from abroad.

Bangalore : Home Minister M. Kharge, said Jainism is the most scientific religion which believed in Karma and not in the existence of God. ``In these times when people are beginning to believe that they are born for religion and not that religion has been created to help them, a scientific religion is indeed rare.'' Kharge said, a street in the city would shortly be name after Bhagavan Mahavir. He also promised to provide a grant of Rs 2.5 lakh for translation of the Jain works from Kannada into English.

Shravanbelgola : The Neminath Bhagavan Kalyanak Mahotsav, Bal-leela Mahotsav, an annual Rath chariot festival and devotional music competition was organised at the temple town of Shravanabelagola in Hassan district. Thousands of devotees along with tableaux from various districts participated in the procession and later the "abhishek'' of Bhagavan Mahavir took place. Bhattarakha Charukeertiji called upon the people to protect the culture."It's high time culture is included as a subject in basic education. Culture is part of human life and it is the wealth of the nation," he said.

Hubli, Maharashtra : Tricycles were distributed to the physically challenged persons. Social service activities were done in addition to performing of religious ceremonies.

Kathmandu : Nepal Government issued the Bhagavan Mahavir silver coin of Rs. 250 value on 13th April 2002.

Washington D.C. : The Indian Ambassador, H. E. Lalit Mansingh invited the interfaith leaders and Jain community to celebrate the memorable event. TV Asia telecasted a program on "Life & Teachings of Lord Mahavir"

New Jersey : A milestone event for the Jain community took place at the Royal Albert's Palace in Fords, on 13 - 14, April 2002. The event was organised by Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan and ten other Jain organisations of New York and New Jersey States and was cosponsored by several Jain organisations like JAINA, YJA, Institute of Jainology , UK , World Jain Confederation, India and Bhagavan Mahavir Foundation, India . Dr. L. M. Singhvi, Indian Parliament Member and legal luminary was the keynote speaker. Sadhus, Sadhvijis and other scholars made presentations on various Jain topics relating to life and teachings of Mahavir swami. This celebration was to be inaugurated last year by Prime Minister Shri Vajpayee but was postponed due to September 11th tragic event.

Essay Contest Winner presented speech on "What Ahimsa Means to me." Two publications: 1. Souvenir Book on Jainism, 2. Pictorial Glimpses of Jain Temples and Tirthankars were released. Dance Drama "Kasturi Mrug", Recitation and Rendition of Navkar Maha-mantra, Devotional Music Concert, Video presentation on Ahimsa, "Who wants to be Mahavir" Game Show were other highlights of the two-day event.

"Jain Pilgrimage: A Picturesque Experience", a unique photographic exhibition by Mahendra Visariya of best selected 150 out of collection of 8,500 pictures on Jain temples were displayed. Palitana and Girnar are well known for its architectural art and sculpture. Pictures of world famous Delwada, Ranakpur and Taranga Jain temples were included in the exhibition. The natural light and shade effect gave many of these pictures a 3D effect. Later it was arranged in Los Angeles on 20 - 21 April 2002 and in San Francisco on 27 - 28 April 2002.

RS. 48 CR. GRANT DISBURSEMENT FOR VARIOUS PROJECTS BY THE GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
Out of the Rs. 100 crore proposed grant by Hon. Prime Minister on the occasion of 2600th Janm Kalyanak Mahotsav of Bhagwan Mahavir a sum of Rs. 47.87 crore has been allocated and disbursed by the Ministry of Tourism & Culture , Government of India for (1)Animal Protection- Rs. 10 crores, (2) Mahavir Vanasthali New Delhi - Rs. 5 crores, (3) Jain Vishwa Bharati Ladnun- Rs. 1.97 cores, (4) 30 Jain Monuments to be developed by the CPWD - Rs. 19.31 crores, (5) 54 Jain Monuments to be developed by the Archeological Survey of India - Rs. 10.97 crores, (6) T.V. Serial by Tempest Films-Rs. 0.62 crore. The various other projects submitted to the Ministry of Tourism & Culture are still being considered. For any further details on the above mentioned 84 Jain Monuments, please contact Mr. L. L. Achha, General Secretary, Bhagwan Mahavir 2600th Janm Kalyanak Mahotsav Mahasamiti, Bh. Mahavir Kendra, E-Mail: mahavirkendra@mantraonline.com

KING OF NEPAL SACRIFICED ANIMALS AT GUAHATI TEMPLE AGAINST THE LAW
Naresh Gyanendra, the king of Nepal, much against the wishes of local people, strongly believing in compassion, non-violence and animal protection unlawfully sacrificed five animals in the famous Kamakhya Devi temple at Guvahati. The slaughtering of five animals, a buffalo, a sheep, a goat, a duck and a pigeon was got done secretively so as to get away from Indian Animal Protection Act. The king of Nepal had arrived along-with his wife, Rani Komal Rajya Lakshmi for the purpose worship. His kul-guru, Shri Raghunath Acharya was also accompanying him. On arrival, he had to face the anger of animal-loving people. He then assured that no animal killing will be done and he had come only for worship. However, he could manage to sacrifice the poor animals with the connivance of temple pundits. On coming to know about the killings, people became furious and collected at the Police Station, demanding immediate action. People all over the country, who believe in animal protection have criticized the act of the king of Nepal. It is understood that earlier also, the king of Nepal had sacrificed a goat at Maha Kali temple at Calcutta.

PUBLIC RECEPTION FOR TERAPANTH ACHARYA MAHAPRAGYA AT GANDHI NAGAR
Acharya Mahapragya Ji, the prophet of peace in Gujarat on his famous Ahimsa Yatra along-with his entourage reached Gandhi Nagar in Gujarat on the 25th June, 2002, where he was accorded a huge public reception on behalf of the citizens of the State. Sri Amar Singh Chaudhury, former Chief Minister of the State presided over the function. Many Ministers and M.L.A.'s were present on the occasion along-with the leaders of the Jain community.

VARSITY IN GUJARAT NAMED AFTER SAINT M. S. HEMCHANDRACHARYA JI
The State Government of Gujarat at its cabinet meeting held on Wednesday, the 26th June, 2002 approved the re-naming of North Gujarat University at Patan after a prominent Jain saint and spiritual leader, Shri Hemchandracharya Ji and gave its acceptance to amend the NGU Act, 1986. Shri Hemchandracharya Ji had devoted most of his time for the cause of education, research, culture and scholarship in the districts of Mehsana, Sabarkantha, Banaskantha and Patan in the 12th century. His contribution to Jain literature has been immense. Born in 1092 A.D. on Kartik Poornima Day, he became Acharya only at the age of 17 years and Patan was his seat of activity. The then king of Patan was a true follower and disciple of the Acharya and greatly influenced by his religious teachings.

HISTORIC PANCH KALYANAK PERFORMED AT JHADOL (UDAIPUR)
The Panch Kalyanak Mahotsava, which had its own historic importance was celebrated at village Jhadol, near Sarada in Udaipur district of Rajasthan by the Digambar Jain samaj from 18th to 23rd May, 2002 in the holy presence of Acharya Ratna Shri Vardhman Sagar Ji Maharaj, Yuva Muni Shri Sukumal Nandi Ji Maharaj, Swastik Shri Bhattarak Lakshmi Sen Ji from Jain Math, Kolhapur. Thousands of devotees had gathered at the place for witnessing the celebrations. The procession taken out on the occasion consisted of various bands, elephant chariots, elephants, horse chariots and large number of followers. A huge pandal was built to accommodate the functions. Many decisions of historic importance were taken such as.

ONLY VEGAN FOOD AT JAINA CONVENTION IN NEW JERSEY
The Young Jains of America have decided to serve only Jain Vegan food (vegetarian food without dairy product and root vegetables) for their convention to be held in New Jersey for four days during 4th of July holidays. The YJA convention is a large gathering of 800 Jain youths and about 40 guest speakers. The executive committee members of YJA have recognized the extreme cruelty inflicted to cows during their milk producing years and hence decided not to consume milk and other dairy products such as yogurt, cheese, butter, Ghee, ice cream, butter milk etc. during their convention. The extreme cruelty to cows include: Forcing continual pregnancy of cows, Slaughtering or killing 70% to 80% of their baby calves within six months by veal industry or within five years by beef industry, Slaughtering the mother cows after five years of their milk producing life (life expectancy is 15 years). YJA also recognized the environmental benefits of changing from a vegetarian (with dairy products) to a Vegan diet. The raising of dairy cows, like the raising of cows for meat, consumes a lot of natural resources and produces a lot of waste. For further details, contact: Jain Study Center of North Carolina (Raleigh), 509 Carriage Wood Circle Raleigh, NC 27607-3969.

JAIN PERSONALITY CONTEST STOPPED
Mumbai : Acharya Chandrasekhar Vijayaji stopped Jain Social Group's (JSG) Jain Personality Contest, as it is neither Jain nor traditional cultural activity. He felt that this is going too far and is leading to the degradation of the Jain faith as well as the moral standards. He asked JSG to remove the word 'Jain', if they do not observe at least the basic Jain code of conduct. JSG, Andheri had announced of "Jain Prince" and "Jain Princess" competition for youth. JSG is a Jain organisation with chapters all over India and abroad, with the objectives of social entertainment activities for couples. Initially it started with friendly social gatherings but later western-style Valentine Day, Xmas & New Year Eve Dinner, Rain Dance parties, Moonlight Cruise, Drama, etc have become regular activities and the celebrations of Jain Parvas is losing interest. Few Jains felt that this is going in the wrong direction and setting bad example for younger generation. They approached Acharya Chandrasekhar Vijayaji for his advice. Aacharyaji called the organisers and asked them to stop the event. After protest and pressures, finally JSG cancelled the program.

WEBSITE CD RELEASED
The website CD of www.atmadharma.com was released by Shree Narendra Modi(CM of Gujarat) & Shree Dhirubhai Shah(Speaker of Gujarat) on 25th of April 2002 at Rajkot on the auspicious occassion of 2600th Birth Anniversary of Bhagavan Mahavir. The website contains Jain Books & Jain Temple information. In the picture of occasion (Left Mr.Devang P. Varia-Team member www.AtmaDharma.com) Middle (Shree Dhirubhai Shah(Speaker Shree) Right (Shree Narendrabhai Modi) Full details were covered by www.rediff.com

COLLEGE EDUCATION LOAN FOR US RESIDENT JAIN STUDENTS
International Alumni Association of Shri Mahavir Jain Vidyalaya, a non-profit organization with the support of Jain Community in USA offers loans of $4,000 ($1,000 per year) to young deserving Jain students pursuing undergraduate studies in USA. The loan is repayable 6 months after recipient enters workforce on a fulltime basis. This program was introduced in year 1999 in response to the requests from a youth to the leaders of Jain Community. This is a nationwide program open to all Jains and is established as a loan fund to allow the reuse of the funds in perpetuity. During the first two years of program a sum of US$ 32,000 is committed and awarded. For further details please visit www.iaamjv.org

SUPREME COURT HEARING ON JAIN COMMUNITY'S MINORITY STATUS
New Delhi : The Supreme Court of India, consisting of an eleven-judge bench, headed by Justice B.N. Kripal started hearing over 200 petitions filed by various institutions and organisations from 2nd April 2002 . The Bench will go into all the aspects of the crucial question of Jain religion being a minority religion or not. It will consider various inter-linked issues, such as interpretation of the word, 'religion' in the Constitution, which religions can be accorded minority status, meaning of the words, 'minority' and 'minority institutions', whether Jain constitute a minority community from a religion point of view, whether the control of Jain trusts over the temples and educational institutions will be limited or total, what perquisites should be enjoyed as a minority community and such other issues. The Court will give its verdict, deciding the true interpretation of Sec. 29 and 30 of the Constitution.

COMMEMORATIVE COINS ON BHAGWAN MAHAVIR 2600TH JANM KALYANAK
The Government of India has minted one crore coins of Rs 5/-, which was released by the Hon'ble Prime Minister on 25th April, 2002 on the auspicious occasion of Bhagwan Mahavir 2600th Janm Kalyanak. These coins are being dispatched to all the branches of the Reserve Bank of India for further distribution. The Government will also shortly start booking of Rs. 100 commemorative coin, which was also released by the Hon'ble Prime Minister. The Government would release an advertisement in 31 Indian news papers, Which will contain all the details about these coins and booking procedure. Two album sets of these coins would be issued. One set is of very special quality and would be booked for Rs 852/- and second set would be booked for Rs 420/-. The booking of these coin album sets would remain open for one month after the date of advertisement. News Courtesy: Mr. L. L. Achha, General Secretary, Bhagwan Mahavir 2600th Janm Kalyanak Mahotsav Mahasamiti, Bh. Mahavir Kendra, E-Mail: mahavirkendra@mantraonline.com


PROFESSIONAL JAINS FORUM

A group of professionals including Civil Services officers, Advocates, Doctors, CA's, Industrialists are keen to organise a forum for regular interaction. Chapters in all state capitals are proposed to be orgainsed. Please write with your professional details, age, address, phone , fax, email etc. and suggestions for agenda items to be included in such a forum. For further details and correspondence contact: Mr. Rajeev Jain, Deputy Secretary, Department of Heavy Industries, Govt. Of India, WZ-101 , Meenakshi Garden, Shivaji Marg, New Delhi-110018, Fax-5147266, E-Mail: rjain@hub.nic.in

YOUTH CAMP ON JAINISM AT CANADA
International Mahavir Jain Mission, Canada is holding a Jain Youth Camp for those aged 12-17 years. The camp is in Niagara Falls, Ontario and runs through July 25-28, 2002. It carries the theme "Jainism: Then and Now".

Cost is being subsidized by fundraising, and is only $99 total (Canadian dollars). This includes accommodation, meals, activities, T-shirt, and handbook. High quality programming has been planned and will be led by counselors (who are volunteer young professionals with an express interest in Jainism), invited guests, and Shri Amrendra Muniji. Youth will learn, enjoy, and meet other youth from all over North America. Space is limited. Please register early to avoid disappointment. Registration will be accepted on a first-come first-serve basis. Visit our website for complete details: www.imjm.ca. Young professionals or university students interested in volunteering as counsellors (minimum age 21) may please visit the website www.imjm.ca for full details. E-Mail: jaincamp@hotmail.com

SARDAR PATEL AWARD PROGRAM FOR Ph.D. IN INDIAN SUBJECT
Indian Americans and Friends of India will be happy to know about the Sardar Patel award program at UCLA (University of California Los Angeles) instituted in 1999. Every year $10,000 is awarded to a PHD student whose thesis on any Indian subject is rated as the best. There were 13 applicants in the year 2000 and only 4 last year. This year the sponsors have not received any so far. If you know of a deserving PHD student working on a thesis relating to India, please telephone Shri Navin Doshi collect at 310 641 7348.

PREKSHA DHYAN CAMP AT KOBA-AHMEDABAD
A Preksha Dhyan Shivir is going to be organised between 21st Oct. to 30th October, 2002 at Preksha Vishva Bharti, Koba-Gandhinagar Highway near Ahmedabad. Acharya Mahapragya Ji along-with Yuvacharya Shree Mahasaman Ji & other learned Sadhus/Sadhvis will regularly conduct Shivir for some time & hold meditation classes. Shivir will be benefitted by thoughtful Pravachan & Dhyan by Acharya Shree Ji besides other prominent sadhus and Sadhvis. Approx 100 people will be enrolled for the said Shivir. If we come to know in next one month number of NRI Participants then we shall reserve space for them and might increase the total participants strength. Hopefully it will be organised professionally and care will be taken to ensure proper accommodation, reading material. Boarding & Lodging will be twin sharing in a room with A.C. and all required facilities & amenities. Cost: Tentatively Rs. 2,100/- will be the enrollment fee to the participant. Pre reading material will be mailed well in advance to all participants so as to have background of the proposed shivir. An Introductory Book is being published & entire daily schedule is being chalked out & will be mailed to you in due course. Persons having minimum qualification of graduation will be enrolled. Address for contact: "Siddharaj Bhandari, India" E-Mail: sr_bhandari@indiatimes.com

MUMBAI UNIVERSITY OFFERS ONE YEAR PART-TIME COURSE IN JAINOLOGY
Candidate must have cleared 12th or equivalent. Admission started today (17th June, 02). Only 180 seats are available and admissions are made strictly on first come first serve basis. Total charge for the course is Rs. 595/-. For admission, contact the Dept. of Philosophy, Kalina University, Santa Cruz. Brief Syllabus content: Paper I: Jainism, history, scripture, sects, cosmology, info. about major world religion, five types of knowledge, six dravya, karma, Jain ethics, anekantavada Paper II: panch parmesthi, four-fold Jain community, vegetarianism, sallekhana, women in Jainism, workshop, Jains attitude towards Caste system, Jain Mythology, literature, pilgrimage.

PREKSHA DHYAN CAMP IN CALIFORNIA
A Preksha Dhyan Camp was organised at California in cooperation with the Centre of North California. It was held on eight consequent Sundays in the morning for two hours every time. Samani Charitra Pragya Ji told participants of the Camp how Preksha Dhyan changed an individual's life. She said that Preksha Dhyan was a great contribution made by Acharya Maha Pragya. It led us from darkness to light. Life's basic aim was to proceed towards light. For that, yogic exercises (asans), Pranayama and Preksha Dhyan had to be practiced daily on a regular basis.

PUBLICATION OF JAIN GAMES FOR CHILDREN BY JAINA
After establishing JAINA Library and JAINA Education System, under JAINA publication Committee JAINA is planning to publish Jain Games for children age 2 and up. This way Jain Sanskar will start very early in life and will stay with them for the rest of their life. JPC is also working on the project with Shri Ashutosh Gokani and Shri Harish Bhimani to prepare Jain stories in Animation form, Audio story telling and in other forms. JPC plans to come out with first 20 minutes animation story on Kshamapana (Story of King Udayan) within next three months. JPC is also working with www.jainworld.com to publish web based learning of Jainism where any individual from any corner of the world can learn Jainism at the click of mouse from home. This web site will also have Jain Library. The website will also have self testing to see how much one knows and will have suggestive charts to keep track on how much has been achieved in personal life. For details, contact Shri Prem Chand Gada, E-Mail : gadaprem@hotmail.com

SHOCKING ATTACK ON BHUVANAKEERTHI BHATTRAKHAJI
Mudbidri, Karnataka: Bhuvanakeerthi Bhattrahaji of Kanakagiri, a Jain pilgrimage near Mysore , was attacked by a group of dacoits while he was returning by car after attending a religious function to Kanakagiri from Mudabidri. A group of around 6 to 8 dacoits attacked his car with clubs. The Maharaj told the driver to speed up and go to the nearest Kikkere police station. Later a complaint was lodged against the miscreants. The police acted immediately and arrested four of them. The Maharaj, the driver and two other passengers were not hurt but the car was severely damaged. The bravery of the driver saved all and was appreciated.

PRESENCE OF HARMFUL CONSTITUENTS IN CHOCOLATES
The American Environmental Safety Institute, California is reported to have filed a legal suit in the Los Angeles County Superior Court against various companies, like Nestle, Craft Foods, Rocky Montan, C Candy etc., the manufacturers of chocolates for using harmful constituents like lead and cadmium in excess of the allowable limits in their products. The Institute is said to have strong reasons to believe that these companies in their commercial interest do not divulge all the constituents of their products and the harmful constituents contained therein seriously affect mental development and social behaviour of children. The Californian laws provide for heavy penalties to the tune of thousands of dollars and imposition of restrictions in case of such defaults.

U. P. MINORITIES COMMISSION RECOMMENDS MINORITIES STATUS TO JAINS
The Minorities Commission of Uttar Pradesh has sent a proposal to the Government for according minorities status to the Jain community of the State in line with that done in the State of Chhatisgarh. Dr. Ashish Massey, Chairman of the Commission giving this information to the Press that several constitutional benefits will accrue once the status is obtained , such as, security to Jain saints by the Government during their movement, appropriate reservation of seats in the technical and medical institutions to the needy and financially weak students and many others.

APPEAL TO SUPREME COURT FOR BANNING GUTKA PRODUCTION IN THE COUNTRY
Society for Cancer in Oral Cavity Prevention through Education (SCOPE), a leading institution in Uttar Pradesh working for the prevention and cure of Cancer has appealed to the Supreme Court for imposing a total ban on the production of Gutka in the country. The spokesman of the Society, Sri S. Ram Chandra Rao and its Managing Trustee, Dr. Chandra Kant said that according to W.H.O. reports, 58 lakh people in India alone suffer from Cancer of the mouth, out of which 6.25% meet their death. Many of those who die are of young age. He divulged that production cost of one packet of Gutka comes to hardly 30 paisa, which is sold in the market at 800 to 1000% profit margin, the total turn-over being of the order of Rs. 2800 crores. Further, the packet, which used to cost earlier Rs. 5 is now sold at Rs. 12. The State Government and many other States have imposed ban on its sale but it is not adequate as its production continues un-abated.

MOHAN BHAI HONOURED WITH MANAV SEVA AWARD
The National Selection Committee for the Rajiv Gandhi Manav Seva Award has selected Shri Mohan Bhai, a dedicated Gandhian and committed Anuvrati for the year 2001. The award carries a cash prize of Rs. 1 lakh and a citation. Born in 1919 at Churu in Rajasthan, he joined Mahatma Gandhi's freedom struggle at the age of 19 years. After independence, he offered his services for the uplift of the down-trodden, especially the children of the vulnerable sections of the society. He actively joined the Anuvrat movement of Acharya Tulsi in 1972 and made Rajsamand in Rajasthan his field of social services at the age of 63 years. He established Anuvrat Vishwa Bharati there, which has later become an International Institute for child development having obtained the recognition by United Nations Organisation.

JEEVAN VIGYAN FOR RAJASTHAN'S SCHOOLS
The Chief Minister of Rajasthan, Shri Ashok Gehlot, has declared that Jeevan Vigyan (Science of Life) would be taught in all the schools and colleges of the State. He pointed out that training in Jeevan vigyan would be ensure not only mental, physical and intellectual development, it would be of great help in maintaining emotional balance as well. The function was organised in the presence of Muni Shri Lok Prakash Lokesh and Dharmesh Kumar. Muni Lok Praksh said that Jeevan Vigyan included self-discipline, self-confidence, concentration and a sense of duty among the students.

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MS. INDU JAIN OF CALCUTTA AWARDED RASHTRA GAURAV
On the occasion of 2600th Birth centenary celebrations of Bhagwan Mahavir, Miss Indu Jain was honoured with title of "Rashtra Gaurav" (Pride of nation) at the Science City in Calcutta. She is the daughter of Dr. Phool Chand 'Premi', Head of the Department of Jain philosophy at Sampoornanand Sanskrit University, Varanasi. She has made special contribution in the fields of stage-acting, singing, music and dancing. The programme was organised by Digambar Jain Pratibha Samman Samaroh Samiti, Calcutta.

DIKSHA PROGRAMMES

  • Ms. Kavita Lookad daughter of Shri Mohan Lal Ji Lookad was accepted to Sthanakwasi sect of Jaina order and given Bhagwati Diksha by Sadhwi Shri Satya Prabha Ji at Mysore. A large procession was taken out to mark the occasion.

  • Eleven ladies took Diksha at Sagar in the holy presence of Digambar saint, 108 Sri Virag Sagar Ji Maharaj on the 21st June, 2002.

  • Ku. Archana, daughter of Sri Jairaj Bhai Dhanresha took diksha under Pujya Acharya Shri Niranjan Sagar Surishwar Ji Maharaj and sadhwi Ratna Charuvrata Ji in Bombay. A week-long celebrations and religious functions were organised on the occasion.

  • Smt. Sire Kunwar Dangi was accorded Jain Bhagwati Diksha by Pravartak Shri Kundan Rishi Ji and Shri Pravin Rishi Ji of Sthanakwasi sect at Indore.

RELIGIOUS BOOKS EXEMPTED FROM TAXES
New Delhi : The Supreme Court of India has resolved a dispute over the issue whether books brought out by religious institutions are not taxable. This judgement will benefit a large number of religious trusts and organisations engaged in spreading the teachings of different sects and beliefs through priced publications. The Bench rejected the Maharashtra Sales Tax Commissioner's appeal, which had sought to levy sales tax on the publication of the Sai Publication Fund, a venture set up by some devotees of Sai Baba. The Commissioner said the Trust was a "dealer" and its turnover should be taxable. The Bench, however explained that the sale proceeds of the books, pamphlets, photos, stickers and similar literature become part of the trust which can only be utilised for advancement of the religious cause. Commissioner's counsel argued, the profit motive was irrelevant in this case". He said that the activity of the trust in publishing and selling books and other material was "regular, continuous and of significant amount. Hence, the trust is liable to pay sales tax on the amount realised by the sale of such publications". The Trust's counsel, countered his arguments saying that the issue had been settled by the court where it was held that every person is a not a dealer but only those "who carry on the business by buying or selling goods are regarded as dealers". ''A dealer can levy the tax on the sales or purchases of taxable goods and not by every person," he said, adding that the activity of the trust does not amount to a business. The publication of books is an ancillary to the main activity of spreading the message of Sai Baba and not to any business as such without profit.

CONSTITUTIONAL PANEL RECOMMENDS CHANGE IN DEFINITION OF HINDUISM
New Delhi :
The Constitution Review Commission has recommended that Sikhism, Buddhism and Jainism should be treated as religions distinct from Hinduism. Presently, the Constitution groups them together. The existing Explanation II of the Article 25 of the Constitution (Freedom of Conscience and Free Profession, Practice and Propagation of Religion) includes a Hindu as a person professing Hindu, Sikh, Jain or Buddhist religion, and the reference to Hindu religious institution shall be construed accordingly. The Commission recommended that the "Explanation II to Article 25 should be omitted. The Commission submitted its report to the government on 3 April 2002 . This change would allow Sikhs, Buddhists and Jains to claim a minority religion status in India. Currently Christians and Muslims are granted the privileges to operate their institutions without government interference and teach their religion in their schools operated with government funds. The Commission has also suggested rewording of the Sub-clause (A), which states, nothing in Article 25 shall affect the operation of any existing law or prevent the state from making any law... "Providing for social welfare and reform or the throwing open of Hindu religious institutions of a public character to all classes and sections of Hindus". The Commission also suggested Sub-clause (B) of Clause (2) of Article 25 should be reworded to read..."Providing for social welfare and reform or the throwing open of Hindu, Sikh, Jain or Buddhist religious institutions of a public character to all classes and sections of these religions".

CALL TO RETAIN MAHAVIR JAYANTI AS HOLIDAY IN KARNATAKA
Bangalore :
The Jain community has urged the Karnataka government to reconsider its decision to cancel the holiday for Mahavir Jayanti every year. Following the government's announcement that the holiday for Mahavir Jayanti has been cancelled under the Negotiable Instruments Act, the displeased and hurt Jain community, appealed to the Government to restore the holiday of Mahavir Jayanti. `The Mahavir Jayanti is the only Jain holiday declared by the Central government in the list of national holidays.

KARUNA CLUBS: AND EDUCATIONAL MOVEMENT FOR CHILDREN
Chennai : Mr. Dulichand Jain, President of the Karuna Clubs International said that Karuna Clubs, initiated in schools of Chennai, have grown and expanded beyond expectations in different parts of the country. Karuna Clubs inculcate respect, kindness and compassion towards all living beings and an appreciation of human values in children. The activities of these Clubs have created an astonishing response, especially in South India . The Clubs have full co-operation of schools and teachers. He elaborated that presently, Karuna Clubs are actively run in 133 schools in Tamilnadu, 127 schools in Andhra Pradesh, 22 schools in Rajasthan and 27 schools in Delhi . The activities of Karuna Clubs are being initiated at various other locations. At the annual function a rolling trophy and cash prizes are awarded to promising schools and children.

NEW UNIQUE TEMPLE AT PALITANA
Palitana : In May 2002, one more temple is added to 2,700-temple pilgrimage hill of Shatrunjaya. But, this is a unique first of its kind for more than one reason. It is built by Mr. T. A. Majide, 60 years old Muslim, a mining engineer of Ernakulam in Kerala, who has donated more than Rupees sixty lakhs. It is a first original Egyptian Pyramid style temple of 25' long by 25' broad and 22' high, without using iron and steel or RCC structure. There are 17 such Pyramid style temples in India but none of Jain religion. The foundation stone was laid by Mr. Majide, which was very much welcomed by the Jain community. The family of Majide under the guidance of Abhayasen Vijayji Maharaj performed the Anjanshalaka Pratistha idol installation ceremony. The 63 inches black marble murti idol of Bhagavan Parshwanath seated on snake with 1,261 mantras engraved was installed. The mantra is part of the 4,400 mantras hand-written in gold some 650 years ago by Jivanprabha Surishawarji Maharaj in praise of the 23rd Tirthankar Parshwanathji. This manuscript was lost long back but found four years ago by Abhaysen Maharajji from an antique dealer. Majide has contributed for many churches, mosques and temples but has never allowed to put his name.

25 KG UNIQUE IDOL INSTALLED
Malpura , Rajasthan : On 10 February 2002 Saintshri Maniprabhasagarji installed the gold idol, weighing 25 kgs. and measuring 17 inches by 11 inches, of the Gurudevdada Jinkushal Surishwarji at Jain Dadawadi at Malpura.

REHABILITATION CENTRE IN PUNE SPONSORED BY AMERICAN JAIN COUPLE
Pune : On 9 February, 2002 , a Rehabilitation Centre, which is the first of its kind, attached to the new Dinanath Mangeshkar Hospital , has been added with the contribution of Devendra & Dr. Meeta Peer, M. D. Dr. Peer practices Rehabilitation Medicine in Philadelphia , PA , USA. This Centre has been built in memory of her father Dr. Prahlad M. Bhanagay, who practiced medicine for 65 years in India . He believed in the values of physical fitness and discipline. This Centre will cater for the patients of strokes, spinal cord injuries, head trauma, joint replacements, muscular-skeletal disorders, and will also provide physical, occupational and speech therapies. Shri Chitrabhanuji inaugurated and Dr. N. P. Jain, the former Indian Ambassador to the U. N. was the chief guest.

Dignitaries present in the picture sent: From left to right they are: 1 Dr. Gangwal, Prominent Physician of Pune. 2 Mrs. Kalpana (Jain) Sharma, whose father, was honoured with an Indian Postage stamp. 3 Devendra T. Peer, 4 Mr. N. P. Jain, Former ambassador of India to U. N. 5 Dhananjay Kelkar, Hospital's Medical Director 6 Chitrabhanuji 7 Pramodaben Chitrabhanu 8 Dr. Meeta Peer, Director of Rehabilitation Center. The picture was taken in Dr. Peer's office in Dinanath Mangeshkar Hospital , Pune.

GERMANY ENSHRINES RIGHTS OF ANIMALS
Berlin , Germany : Germany has become the first European Union country to guarantee animal rights in the constitution - a move that could curtail animal experimentation by the cosmetics and pharmaceuticals industries. After debating the issue for a decade, lawmakers voted 543-19 (fifteen abstained) to add the phrase "and animals" to a clause obliging the state to respect and protect the dignity of humans.

In 1992, Switzerland passed a similar amendment recognising animals as 'beings' and not 'things'. Animal rights activists want to use the new protections against what they consider unduly long transport routes for animals. New Zealand 's 1999 Animal Welfare Act contains a clause making non-human great apes, the first animals in the world with individual, fundamental rights designed to stand up in a court of law: the right to life, the right not to suffer cruel or degrading treatment and the right not to take part in all but the most benign experiments. The idea is to set a precedent that other countries can follow.

In Istanbul, pet dogs, cats, turtles, horses, donkeys, birds and rabbits joined about 1,500 humans in first-ever rally for animal rights. Turkey is critiqued for its lack of an animal-rights policy. A law aimed at protecting animals has been pending before parliament since July 1999. The national government has moved to curb the slaughter of millions of sheep, goats and cows during the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, when animals are sacrificed in a gesture of faith and charity. Local authorities sometimes poison stray cats and dogs in cleanup campaigns.

HUMANE SOCIETY FIGHTS FOR RIGHTS OF ANIMALS
Toronto :The sentencing of two men convicted of animal cruelty after admitting they skinned a live cat for the sake of art has generated a public demand for harsher punishments. The country's animal cruelty laws were immediately thrust into the spotlight after sentencing of two persons of age 22 and 25, who videotaped a cat being skinned, decapitated and disembowelled. One person was given 90 days in jail to be served on weekends and the other was granted time served after being held in custody since his arrest in May. The Toronto Humane Society (THS) ended a petition with more than two thousand signatures demanding changes to the laws, which date back to 1892 and carry a maximum sentence of C$2,000 and six months imprisonment. It was presented before the House of Commons. The THS has urged the federal government to support Bill C-15, which would impose a lifetime ban on animal's ownership and a maximum prison sentence of five years. The proposed bill would change the way the Criminal Code regards animals, moving them out of the property crime section and considering them 'beings' instead of 'property'. Late news is that the Bill on animal cruelty with stiffer penalties for abusers was passed and has become a law.

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U. S. STAMPS HIGHLIGHT PET POPULATION
New York : A stray puppy and kitten will be featured on millions of American postage stamps bearing the message "neuter or spay." U. S. Postal Service (USPS) will issue on 20 September 2002 , the first two postage stamps to call attention to the pressing issue of pet overpopulation. It is the culmination of a grassroots campaign by thousands of citizens, community leaders, animal health and welfare organisations, veterinarians and celebrities. An estimated 70,000 cats and dogs are born each day in the U.S. Animal shelters and veterinarians throughout the country urge the pet owners to neuter or spay their pets in order to combat the problem of animal overpopulation. The message conveyed by the stamps is to "too many animals, too few homes, save lives, neuter or spay." The message is that sterilisation is good for your pet. It helps cats and dogs live longer, healthier lives. For one thing, spaying and neutering eliminates or reduces the possibility of several types of animal cancers and diseases. Every year in the U. S. , 8 to 10 million cats and dogs are given up to animal shelters and others are abandoned. And every year, 4 to 5 million cats and dogs are euthanized in shelters due to lack of homes for them. In the white space alongside the sheets of the new stamps will be a toll-free phone number and Web site address for Americans to obtain additional neuter and spay information and to find pets to adopt. The USPS continues to use its stamps to raise public awareness of important social problems. Visit
www.usps.com

ANIMAL WELFARE STANDARDS TO BE IMPLEMENTED GLOBALLY
Houston , Texas :The shareholders of McDonald's Corporation proposed a motion at the general body meeting on 23 May 2002 , to implement its animal-welfare standards globally. The resolution called on the hamburger giant to extend animal-treatment guidelines in place in the United States and Britain to all the 121 countries where it operates business. However, the resolution did not go through the vote as the management holding majority proxies did not support it.

FLYING VEGGIE RATIONS
Afghanistan :Tens of thousands of food packets were dropped over Afghanistan during a war-time relief effort initiated by the United States shortly after the terrorist attacks on the twin towers of New York . These "Humanitarian Daily Rations" were unique because they were completely vegetarian. Going veggie was the only way that a team of cultural and nutritional experts could figure to accommodate the varied food restrictions of all the world's religions. Requiring quite a bit of dietary flexibility for some recipients, each packet provides about 2,200 calories of a day's ration of red beans, rice, fruit, peanut butter and strawberry jam. The US had some two million of these power packets stockpiled.

SAVE RELIGION AND STOP MIXING IT WITH POLITICS, SAYS ASHOK GEHLOT
Bhilwara : The Chief Minister of Rajasthan, Mr. Ashok Gehlot, while laying the foundation stone of Yash Vihar, said that religion cannot and should not be mixed with politics. It will not be in the interest of national unity and integrity to mix these together, and if done so, the religion will be destroyed. Yash Vihar is a large religious and social complex, aimed at spreading education among women, practising ahimsa and meditation. It was announced by Mr. Himmat Gang, the Chairman of Yash Kunwar Charitable Trust, that during the first phase of the Project, a sum of Rs. 2.5 crores will be spent on the construction and development of the entire complex which is coming up on Suvana Road near Bhilwara. Sadhwi Yashkunwarji inspired the project. Himmatji compared Sadhwi Yashkunwarjii to Mother Teresa for her unstilted efforts to spread education amongst the poor women and children in the area.

RELIGIOUS LEADERS LAUNCH EFFORTS TO END WORLD CONFLICTS
Bangkok : Religious leaders from all major faiths assembled in the Thai capital to shape a program of community initiatives aimed at solving some of the world's pressing problems. More than 100 religious leaders launched a world peace council on June 13, 2002 , pledging to work toward reducing sectarian conflicts, especially in Asia and the Middle East . The council was established at the start of a three-day meeting in Bangkok of Christian, Buddhist, Jewish, Jain, Muslim and Hindu clerics with the support of the United Nations. The World Council of Religious Leaders, which aims to actively intervene in conflict areas, is the outcome of the recommendations of the Millennium World Peace Summit held at the United Nations in August 2000. "There is a sense of urgency among the leaders to work for peace", said Bawa Jain, secretary general of the Millennium World Peace Summit. "The use of religion to promote divisiveness and violence must be countered by religious leaders from all traditions willing to become actively engaged in peace building," he said. Addressing the conference, Israeli Chief Rabbi Israel Meir Lau said religion has caused many gulfs between peoples "but religion can also be a bridge. Let's build the bridges and work together to freedom, to love, to peace for the entire world," he said.

A VEGETARIAN DIET ENSURES HEALTHIER HEART
Washington : With the benefits of a vegetarian diet you are less likely to have heart disease. In fact, according to a research article published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 1999 found that, "Folks who eat fish but no other animal flesh and those who eat eggs and dairy products but no meat or fish had a 34% lower risk of heart disease." Eva Obarzanek, research nutritionist at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute says, "We've known for a long time that people who ate vegetarian diets had lower risk factors as well as a lower rate of heart disease. It's hard to pinpoint why, although their body weight is lower and their blood pressure is lower." As a result, U.S. Dietary Guidelines recommend a diet rich in plant foods as does the American Heart Association, the American Institute for Cancer Research and the American Diabetes Association.

FESTIVALS, CELEBRATIONS & FORTHCOMING EVENTS
July 4 to 7, 2002 :The 5th biennial Young Jains of America Convention is to help Jain youths explore Jain ideas, values, beliefs, and culture through numerous workshops, panel discussions, seminars, and lectures. This year's convention will be held in Mahwah , New Jersey . This year's theme, Walking the Path of Jainism, focuses on showing Jain youth the importance of Jainism in their daily lives. The participants over the age of 21 may participate in the Jain Networking Forum (JNF), a social experience dedicated to helping young adults to meet their future partner for life and build business contacts. Register online at
www.yja.org or E-Mail: chintan.shah@yja.org ronak.shah@yja.org.

September 4: Swetambar sect's Paryushan-parva begins.
September 10: Samavatsari Day of Forgiveness, Paryushan ends and Digambar sect's Daslakshana starts.
September 19: Ananta-chaturdasi
September 20: Kshamavani, Day of Forgiveness, Daslakshana ends.
October 21 to 30: Preksha Dhyan Shibir at Preksha Vishva Bharti, Koba,

Gandhinagar Highway, near Ahmedabad, Gujarat . Acharya Mahapragyaji after an interval of almost two decades will conduct Shibir and meditation classes. Pravachans & Dhyan by Dhyanvid like Dharmanandji, Yuvacharya Mahasamanji and other Sadhus-Sadhvis. Contact Mr. S. R. Bhandari, E-Mail :  sr_bhandari@indiatimes.com

ACHIEVERS
Mr. Rahul Jain and Ms. Sita Kacker : food science students of University of Guelph , Canada , were among dozen student's teams that recently presented a healthy alternative food related product at an exhibition. Under applied nutrition program, they produced a line of fresh pasta, combining soybean with flour, high in energy, providing protein and low calorie-rich carbohydrates. They had to draw up a business plan, research the market, learn the tricks of the trade, regulatory approval, manufacture the product and put together a marketing scheme. They believe they have a ready market for healthy food alternatives for 2 million Canadian diabetics and 5 million who are obese.

Pandit Shivacharanlal Jain Maipuri , famous Jain scholar, was presented with Ganini Gyanmati Award of one lakh rupees cash, during Vishwashanti Mahavir Vidhan at New Delhi last year by Digambar Jain Trilok Shodh Sansthan, Jamboodweep, Hastinapur.

Mr. Kamal Jain , 32 years, is a Libertarian Party candidate for State Auditor. Kamal Jain is the Vice-Chairman of the Libertarian Party of Massachusetts. He currently lives in Littleton with his wife Irina and works in Boxborough as Director of Information Technology. He spent a number of years involved in volunteer and professional Emergency Services, including working for 2 years as an Emergency Medical Technician.

Mrs. Usha Jain, was presented with the 2002 Distinguished Teaching Award for teaching excellence. The award is the highest honour for instruction given by UC Berkeley. She received a certificate and $10,000 from as well as a gift from the California Alumni Association. Ms. Usha Jain is a senior lecturer of Hindi language and literature since 1971 at University of California ,Berkeley. Over the decades, Ms. Usha Jain has continued to experiment with new classroom tools and materials, writing and developing textbooks and a CD-ROM - items widely used in the United States and Europe . In the classroom, she uses slides, films and discussion of contemporary issues to provide cultural context to the language.

Mr. Deepak Asoka Chougle , a 13-year-old Jain athlete of Belgaum , Mysore participated in the World Junior Cricket Tournament held in January 2002 in New Zealand . Earlier, he had attended 3-month cricket training camp through National Cricket Academy of India in Australia . Deepak has represented India at the tournaments held in Sri Lanka , Singapore and Bangladesh.

Mr. Suketu Mehta ,is the author of a non-fiction book, coming out soon, on Bombay 's underworld and its prolific movie industry, among many other things. He is currently working on Alphabet, a novel. He is one of the three panelists on the Next Weave of Indian American Authors meeting at New York soon.

Mr. Indra Shah , of Cleveland Ohio was presented Freedom Award for his contribution in the fields of Title Insurance, Real Estate and Bar Association by American Nationalists Movement. Mr. Shah is active in politics, closely associated with several organizations and is a well-known Gujarati poet.

Dr. H. S. Madankesri's ,"Jain Culture and Literature" was released recently by Dr. Vapranabh, Prof. Emeritus, Plant Genetics at the Bangalore 's Agricultural University . Dr. Madankesri is a Jain scholar of Bangalore and has contributed on historical, literary studies and ritual themes.

Dr. Hampana , Prof. Emeritus, Bangalore University , India , delivered a lecture on "Indra in Jain Architecture" at Ahmedabad, in January 2002. Hampana has authored many scholarly publications on Jain rulers and Jain architectural studies.

Prof. B. K. Kadabadi , Prof. Emeritus, Karnataka University and Jain scholar was presented with Siddhantakirti Award by Humcha Jain Math on 29 November 2001.

Mr. Dharamvir Jain ,of Lucknow , Uttar Pradesh won the Ahimsa Trophy and a certificate given by the Beauty Without Cruelty. Dharamvir was awarded the trophy for his animal welfare activities and enrolling a huge number of life members.

OBITUARY
Mr. Scintilla Raichand Daftary , 90 years, died at Rajkot , Gujarat , India on 22 December 2001 . Shanitlal, a scholar, an orator and a social worker was closely associated with Jain organisations of Rajkot , Koba and Songadh.

Dr. U. K. Pungaliya , M.A., LL.B., Ph.D., 80 years, passed away at Pune, Maharashtra , India . Pungaliyaji was a great Jain-Prakrit scholar, an advocate and a prominent social worker. He was a freedom fighter and was jailed during the Quit India movement in 1942. In 1995, at the age of 68, he was awarded the doctorate for his, now published, thesis, "Philosophy and Spirituality of Shrimad Rajchandra".

Mr. Arvindbhai Pannalal Sheth , 84 years, grandson of Shri Hathisinh Kesrisinh and Smt. Harkuvarba died on 28 January 2002 at Ahmedabad , India . Hathisinh family had built the famous Jain temple in Ahmedabad known by their name of Hathisinh Derasar. Arvindbhai contributed for the restoration of more than 150 ancient Jain temples and pilgrimage places globally, including Ahmedabad's Sankheshwar Mandir. He also supported many shelters and animal welfare activities.

Dr. Nemichand Jain , the indefatigable crusader of vegetarianism, breathed his last on 8 August 2001 at Indore , India . He was very religious workaholic and lived for a mission of spreading vegetarianism. He had crusaded for the cause through his monthly Shaakahaar Kranti (Revolutionary Vegetarianism) and publications like "Slaughterhouses: 100 Facts". Mr. Dineshbhai Bhansali passed away on 2 February 2002 . The head of the family charitable The Bhansali Trust, Dineshbhai contributed financially as well as physically for the community. This trust spends crores of rupees doing tremendous good work by giving sustained relief aid to humans and animals; especially in times of disaster- be it the drought, flood or earthquake of Gujarat.

READERS VIEW

Sir,
I am shocked at learning that Jains in Chhattisgarh is labelled as minority! This is disgusting! This is how we are divided in to small fractions and this is how Muslims are getting united to ruthlessly rule us. I strongly condemn this and see a very bleak picture of our next generation's future. Prepare, now, to get converted in to Muslims and eat HALAAL non-veg. A simple fact of "united we stand, divided we fall" is not understood by our so called gurus and maharajs. We just condemn the himsa of Gujarat (only Ahmedabad) but easily forget the messacre of Godhra, because this is the favourite tune of the time! everyone sings it, especially the so called secularists, be it the Times, or the Express. This is WRONG!!! We are paying heavily for this and we are going to pay more and more in future. Don't let us be so selfish and resort to short term gains. But alas! nobody thinks of India as OUR country. All are there to extract as much gain as possible. Nobody wants to give the country anything, just think of getting from it. The Muslims are just Muslims-first and foremost. Even if they are in Pakistan, they are first brothers of Indian (if I may say so) Muslims. Non Muslim Indians are not their brothers. and this is a reality for all. And here we are celebrating our minority status!! Shame on us! This is utterly selfish.- Kamal Shah. E-Mail:
kamalmshah@yahoo.com

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