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A Monthly Publication of the Federation of India Community Associations

June 2018

1967 - 2018

Local Sikhs Organize Awareness Parade in Cleveland The Sikh community held a parade on May 12, 2018 to spread awareness about themselves and the Sikh religion. About 350 people participated in the parade which began at Public Square, proceeded down Euclid Avenue to East 9th to Superior, and back to Public Square. Hundreds of Sikhs offered free food (Langar) to the public at Public Square as part of Vaisakhi, the Sikh New Year Festival. The meal consisted of lentils, mixed vegetables, rice, spina, roti, pakoras, sweets, fruit and tea. The Langar or free community kitchen is usually held at gurdwaras (Sikh temples) and are designed to uphold the principle of equality between all people of the world regardless of religion, caste, color, creed, age, gender or social status. Children distributed flyers to the public giving information about who Sikhs are and about their religion. The parade is an effort by the local Sikh community to educate the non-Sikh community about their religion. The word ‘Sikh’ in Punjabi means ‘disciple’ and they are the disciples of God who follow the writings and teachings of the Ten Sikh Gurus. Sikhism, a religion that originated over 500 years ago in the Punjab region of present day India and Pakistan, is ranked as the world’s 5th largest religion with a following of 20 million worldwide.


terrorists. There have been incidents across the country where the turban clad Sikhs have been mistaken for terrorists and been shot and killed. According to the Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund (SALDEF), Sikh Americans have often been targets of discrimination, especially after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The most recent incident took place in Monroe, Ohio where Jaspreet Singh, a 32 year old truck driver was shot and died of injuries he sustained on May 12, 2018. He left behind a wife and four children; he had been living in the U.S. for eight years. Educating the larger public about the religion through outreach is the first step local Sikhs are taking towards changing the misconceptions about this community.

Local Sikhs participated in the parade Photo credit: Bindu Kala

About 700,000 Sikhs live in the U.S. They are actively trying to change misconceptions about Sikhs being v i e w e d a s re l i g i o u s e x t re m i s t s o r


Sikh Awareness Parade FICA Golf Outing.........1 Editor’s Note, Bharat Quiz, Endowments…..2 FICA Matters, Shiksha Daan ..............................3 Community Events & Aging-in-Place...........4/5 Stores & Restaurants & Religious Places...........6

Future Events................8

Lotus Team Editor

Cheryl D’Mello

Editorial Team

Bal Karamchandani Raghav Sharma Swati Desai Sujata Lakhe Barnard

Business Manager Ajay Chandra

Or Current Resident




Book of the Month.......7

Free Monthly Subscription - A Non-Profit & Tax Exempt Organization - Tax ID# 34-1215066

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Please email us your feedback and suggestions: [email protected]

2 Who We Are


Editor’s Note

FICA STAFF Administration

Board of Trustees Sudarshan Sathe ( Chaiman B.O.T.) [email protected] Mona Alag ( Vice Chair Person B.O.T.) [email protected] Rajan Gautam ( Secretary B.O.T.) [email protected] Executive Board Mrs. Ritu Mahna president.[email protected] Mr. Samir Gautam [email protected] Mr. Gaurav Kapur [email protected] Mr. Hemant Kanodia [email protected] Ms. Sujata Lakhe Barnard [email protected]

Summertime, and the living is easy...... Families are busy visiting families and friends across the country and the oceans. They take the long flight home to spend time with relatives, or venture on a cruise in the Mediterranean or to Iceland. The world is wide open. Cleveland abounds in activities – there are more music concerts, festivals, suburban home days and parades than I can attend, lots of parks to explore and trails to hike. Check out It’s also time to try something new, whether it is having a backyard vegetarian barbeque or checking out a new adventure like camping, canoeing or fishing. Children are kept busy too, attending camps – ethnic camps, religious camps, science and engineering camps, to learn and explore. Adults take the time to sit in their backyards and absorb the lush greenery while sipping iced tea. I always wondered why Americans loved the sun so much - until I experienced my first Cleveland winter. I found myself longing for a touch of the warmth that was an intrinsic part of my memories of India. We do hope you continue to send us your stories and events and support us with your advertising. Enjoy the sunshine! Cheryl D’Mello Editor, The Lotus, Email: [email protected]

For advertising in the Lotus, call Ajay Chandra at: 216-323-6671

Dr. Rajesh Sharma Mr. Yatish Desai Mr. Ameet Bathiya Mrs. Smita Samant Mrs. Shaifali Bathiya Mr. Utkarsh Hazarnis Dr. Vandana Singh Member At Large Dr. Priyanka Sharma Lotus Editor Cheryl D’Mello [email protected] Publisher FICA India Cultural Garden Raj Pillai - Chair [email protected] | 440/724-4398 Shiksha Daan Sanjay Garg - Chair [email protected] | 440/590-1261 Project Seva Harsha Rane, Chairperson 440/567-0972

The Association of Asian Indian Women of Ohio (AAIWO) offers free confidential professional counseling for women and children in the Asian Indian community. Please call their helpline: (440) 218-6959 FICA Sister Organizations Association of Asian Indian Women of NEO | Lynette Sequeira American Federation of Muslims of Indian Origin | Dr. Razia Ahmed Association of Indian Physicians of Northern Ohio (AIPNO) | Dr. Mona Gupta American Society of Engineers of Indian

New Education Endowments by Local Community Members The Aggarwal/Blackburn family recently made two endowments to support global perspectives in education and to encourage greater inter-cultural understanding. The first is an annual lecture/forum at the City Club of Cleveland on international perspectives on the education of impoverished girls and women. This annual forum is in honor of Nathu R. Aggarwal and Roy G. Blackburn. This year’s forum at the City Club was held on May 11, 2018 and was titled: After the Bell: The Power of After school and summer programs with Dr. Helen Janc Malone as the speaker. The second is an endowed International Visiting Scholars Program in the Read Center for Global and Intercultural education in Kent State University’s College of Education, Health, and Human Services. This visiting scholar program is in honor of Pushpa V. Aggarwal and Minta L. Blackburn. The fund will focus on supporting the visiting scholars’ work, scholarship and cross-cultural activities. During their KSU appointment, the supported visiting scholars will be designated and known as Aggarwal-Blackburn Scholars. The Aggarwal and Blackburn families hope that these two programs will support global perspectives on education and will further intercultural understanding. Further, they also hope that others will also make efforts to further global perspectives and intercultural understanding. Origin (ASEI) | 440-734-1830

Guru Nanak Foundation

Bengali Cultural Society | Soumitra Ghosh

India-Ohio Chamber of Commerce | Radhika Reddy

Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation Sreedhar Nair Gujarati Samaj of Grtr. Cleveland | Nilesh Patel Guru Gobind Singh Sikh Society www.

Indian Christian Association, Michael Sreshta

Bharat Ko Janiye Quiz (BKJQ) The Government of India will launch Bharat Ko Janiye Quiz (Know India Quiz) from July 19-21, 2018 to generate interest among youth, both Non-Resident Indians (NRI) as well as Persons of Indian Origin (PIO), to know and understand India. Registration on the portal https://www. is mandatory for the eligible contestant to participate in the Quiz. This Quiz will be held online for the two distinct categories of PIO & NRI aged 15 to 35 years and will be conducted in 04 rounds. In the first round, there will be 30 questions to be selected randomly by the computer to be answered in 25 minutes. There is no negative marking. The First round of the Quiz will be conducted online by the Consulate. The Second round of the Quiz will be conducted online by Ministry of External Affairs. The Third and Fourth rounds (Semi Final & Final round) will be conducted in New Delhi. Three finalists from each of the NRI and PIO/OCI category in the first round conducted will move to the subsequent rounds. All participants who make it to the Third and Fourth round will be invited to India. Besides the Quiz, they will participate in 15-day tour of India. Top three winners of the Fourth (final) round of BKJ Quiz 2019 from each category of NRI & PIO will receive Gold, Silver and Bronze medals and a Certificate at the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas (PBD) Convention, 2019. Please visit: to register and find more details.

Corrections in April-May 2018 issue:

In our April-May 2018 issue, in the article “Getting our Seniors Together” on page 7, we mistakenly said that it was Dr. Atul Shah who addressed the seniors. It was actually Dr. Atul C. Mehta.

There was a mixup of names in photo captions. We regret the errors. Aradhana Award 2018 winners - Sweta Balaji, Sita Vakkalanka, Guru Sujatha Srinivasan, and Nithya Kasibhatla Nithya Kasibhatla, Shriya Srinivasan and Sita Vakkalanka Photo Credits: Srini Ranganathan MeenaHumchad Kerala Association of Ohio | JayaKumar NEO Marathi Mandal (NEOMM) |Shekhar Ganore Marwari Association | Sushila Mohanka

Jain Society of Greater Cleveland | Jitu Shah

Orissa Society of America | Dr. Prasanta Raj

Kasturi Kannada Society |

Punjabi Cultural Society | Burjinder S Dhanoa

NEO Telugu Assn (NEOTA) [email protected] | Prasad Muvva NEO Tamil Sangam (NEOTS) | Jayabalan Sankarasubramnian South Asian Bar Association of Cleveland | Neelam Gill NEO Sri Lankan Association (NEOSLA) [email protected]


FICA Matters


Ritu Mahna’s Team Re-elected at FICA General Body Meeting Sudarshan R. Sathe

The Federation of India Community Associations (FICA) held its General Body Meeting on Saturday, May 5, 2018, at the old ICC building in Cleveland Heights. Sudarshan Sathe, Chairman, A b o u t 4 0 p e o p l e FICA Board of Trustees attended the meeting. Representatives from all of FICA’s various initiatives made presentations about their respective efforts. Asim Dutta spoke on behalf of the India Cultural Gardens. Dutta presented very encouraging numbers towards fundraising for the Sanchi Stupa Gate and steps to the water. He was asked from the floor to enhance the upkeep and beautification of the current garden as a way of motivating the community to come up with the balance funds for this project.

Harsha Rane spoke for Project Seva (Service) which has been a FICA initiative for close to 40 years. Project Seva is continuing to serve meals in four Cleveland area churches. In some locations, the frequency of the lunches has been increased. They are continuing the work with Ronald McDonald house, events such as Christmas-time pictures with Santa, etc. In addition, Project Seva has taken on the job of providing blankets and hygiene packets to homeless shelters as well as women’s shelters. Project Seva is one of the very few charitable efforts where there are no expenses incurred. All your donations go directly to the causes it serves. Volunteers even pay for the incidental expenses.

community support.Dr. Satish Mahna gave an update on the new ICC building project. He said that there is positive interest in the new building project from the community and he has received informal funding pledges.

Gita Gidwani talked about Shiksha Daan, the Gift of Education. Gita said that this latest FICA initiative has taken root under the guidance and leadership of Sanjay Garg. FICA is now opening a Shiksha Daan Center on the West Side, and like all ambitious and volunteer projects, this one is in need of strong

In my address, I commended the excellent work of the Executive Committee saying, “A 1200% increase does not happen by accident.” Full credit for this dramatic improvement goes to Ritu Mahna and her team. Mahna and her team were elected un-opposed for another year.

Hemant Kanodia, FICA Treasurer, presented the Annual Report. There was a 1240% improvement in FICA earnings year-over-year, not counting the India Cultural Garden pledge monies that have come in. Kanodia mentioned that “The Lotus” newspaper funding is in need of attention. Various ideas of cutting costs and improving advertising revenue were discussed with the floor.

Shiksha Daan Team Participates in the 2018 Cleveland Marathon Sanjay Garg

Members of the Shiksha Daan team participated in the recent Cleveland Marathon activities to increase awareness of and raise funds for Shiksha Daan. Shiksha Daan is an initiative of FICA to get the Indian community more involved with the education and development of under-privileged youth in the Greater Cleveland community. Rajshree and Ajay Bhandari, and Mala and I (Sanjay) walked the 5K (5 km – approx.3 miles) on Saturday, May 19. The 5k was held in downtown Cleveland with the start and finish being at the Public Square. The weather was very pleasant and all Shiksha Daan team members did an excellent job finishing the walk at different times. Our hope is that more members of the community will join in the walk next year.

I (Sanjay) also ran the half marathon (13.1 miles) on May 20 after a long hiatus due to a knee injury. The course went through the west side neighborhoods of Cleveland with a lot of people cheering all along. This year over 15,000 people participated in the various marathon races. Last year $3,000 was raised for Shiksha Daan through participation in the Cleveland Marathon activities. However, this year the donations have been a little slow coming in. We will really appreciate receiving funds from the community to help us continue the mission of Shiksha Daan. Our operating budget need for 2018 is about $7,000. So please consider contributing in support of the Team Shiksha Daan

participation in the Cleveland Marathon. You can send a check made out to “FICA - Shiksha Daan” with “Cleveland Marathon” in the memo line, and mail to Shiksha Daan, c/o Mr. Vinod Nagpal, 18195 Brickmill Run, Strongsville OH 44136, or donate via credit card or Paypal account at: https://www. button_id=29VLUYD4QKQAL Shikhsa Daan is an activity of FICA, so your contributions to Shiksha Daan are tax deductible. For information about the mission and activities of Shiksha Daan, please visit or contact us at [email protected]

Thank You Note from the Gupta family Dear friends & family, On behalf of our entire family, we’d like to thank you for your generosity in helping to establish an endowment at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) to honor the memory of our daughter, Dr. Seema Gupta, as well as to support her passion for leukemia research and education. This newly endowed fund will sponsor a Dr. Seema Gupta Endowed Visiting Professor and Lectureship every year at MSK. By serving as a special tribute to the remarkable qualities of our daughter, Seema, there is no doubt that the fund will extend her legacy as both a talented clinician and researcher. Created specifically as an endowment, it is intended to continue in perpetuity.

A visiting professor and lectureship in her name will underwrite the visit by a worldrenowned leukemia expert to MSK each year. In addition, current fellows on the Service will have the opportunity to present their own research activities, and faculty will confer an award to the most promising project. Again, thank you all for supporting this wonderful tribute to our beloved Seema. Sincerely, Satyendra & Manjula Gupta

ANAND MELA Let us celebrate India’s Independence Day together on August 19, 2018 @ Strongsville Recreation Center from 11 5 p.m. Please come and enjoy food from different restaurants, music & dance, shop jewelry, clothes, etc.

4 Community Events


Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Celebrated at City Hall In celebration of the month of May being Asian Pacific Heritage Month, the City of Cleveland Asian Liaison Chia-Min Chen from the Community Relations Board invited local Asian teachers/instructors/educators to the Cleveland City Hall Rotunda on May 30, 2018 to honor them. Over a dozen Asian countries were represented at the event. Asian American teachers were felicitated and treated to a Chinese dinner with senior staff from different departments of the City of Cleveland. This was followed by a Bollywood dance performance by a group of students who were originally from Nepal and are attending Joseph M. Gallagher Middle School in the Cleveland Municipal School District. Their teacher, Amit Ghose, has been teaching there for several years. A preK-8 school, it provides the children a multicultural learning environment as they come from different countries across the world. The 9th Annual Cleveland Asian Festival was held on May 19 & 20, 2018. The festival featured live performances with cultural and martial arts demonstrations on two outdoor stages, a world marketplace of 125+exhibitors, 25+local restaurants, caterers, and cultural associations. Students of Sujatha Srinivasan’s Shri Kalaa Mandir performed classical Indian dances.

Suder Natesan and Aparna Srikanth at the Cleveland Asian Festival 2018 Photo Credit: Sujata Raghavan

From left, Supriya Draviam (Tri-C ), Chia Min Chen, the City of Cleveland Asian Liaison from the Community Relations Board, Dr. Jaydip Das Gupta (Tri-C), Priyanka Banerji (Tri-C), Amit Ghose (Gallagher Middle School Teacher), along with students from Gallagher Middle School at the City Hall celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Dr. Nikita Habermehl, Pediatric Resident at UH Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital Oma Dahal, Grishma Dulal, Vinita Biswa and Ritu Limbu, students presented a talk at Cuyahoga Community at Joseph M. Gallagher Middle School in Cleveland perform a College Metro Campus on April 16, 2018 during Bollywood music number at the City Hall of Cleveland on May 31 on Earth Week on “Global Climate Change: How the occasion of Asian Heritage Day. They are of Nepali heritage. Does it Affect Your Health?”

Aditi Sanghavi, Sanjana Ghosh (hidden at the back), Pavithra Iyer, Shilpa Gopal and Jenia Patel at the Cleveland Asian Festival 2018

Students at Cleveland State University celebrated HOLI on May 3, 2018. Photo by Milan Patel and Mihir Vasoya

CWRU Concerto Competition Winner Kieran Aulak performed Brazilian composer Ney Rosauro’s Concerto for Marimba No. 1 at the Maltz Performing Arts Center on April 23, 2018

From left, Shiksha Daan Team members Ajay and Rajshree Bhandari and Sanjay and Mala Garg at the 2018 Cleveland Marathon



Dr. Atul C. Mehta inducted into Cleveland International Hall of Fame Atul C. Mehta M.D., F.A.C.P., F.C.C.P. was inducted into the Cleveland International Hall of Fame on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 at a dazzling dinner ceremony at the Grand Ballroom of the Marriott at Key Center in downtown Cleveland. The induction speech for Dr. Atul Mehta was given by Richard J. Buoncore, Managing Partner, MAI Capital Management.

Richard J. Buoncore inducts Dr. Atul C. Mehta into the Cleveland International Hall of Fame Photo Credit: Dan Hanson of

“I felt humbled by the award,” said Dr. Mehta. “I felt I was receiving the award for all the immigrants for their virtues of honesty and hard work and to return something back to the community.”

Raqi Creek Farm offers Goats for Sale New goat farm in NE Ohio offers all year availability of goats for farm direct meat sales, for milk, for cashmere and kid-skin, for pets, or for breeding stock. Various sizes and weights available, of both sexes (also withered males). Halal (or other) processing available for extra charge. Perfect for special occasions and events. Provide your own transport and/or processing and save money. Individuals, vendors, groceries, restaurants, caterers, etc. are welcome. Very tame and friendly goats for milkers and pets are raised in a wholesome way, halal from birth. Location: Between Canton & Youngstown, on US Rte 224. Call: (330)259-6043

A world-renowned pulmonary clinician and academic authority/ teacher, Dr. Mehta has had a 37 year career with the Cleveland Clinic in the U.S. and abroad. He came to Cleveland in 1981 and has been in the U.S. from 1976. He got interested in the pulmonary field as his role model was a lung specialist. Originally from Dahod, Gujarat, he was raised in Ahmedabad. He is married to his wife Shuva for 43 years and they have two daughters, Moushumi and Anjali and one son Aanand, who are all lawyers. He is the proud grandpa of four girls: Rania, Gia, Uma and Coco.

Dr. Mehta has a strong track record of hospital administrative and medical staff leadership. As a physician and as a teacher he has trained, guided and/or assisted over 200 international medical personnel to get established in their careers. In 2017 he was a w a rd e d t h e H e a l t h n e t w o r k Foundation Service Excellence Aw a r d . T h e A s i a n I n d i a n community in Cleveland congratulates Dr. Atul Mehta! More information at: http:// clevelandinternationalhalloffame. com/inductees-asia/atul-mehta/

Gerry Coutinho: The Piano Man and his Band Live Western & Bollywood Piano & Keyboard Music For Weddings, Sangeet, Mehndi & other parties Email: [email protected] Call: (570)328-0788



Stores & Restaurants

Indian Groceries Available at:

Indian Food Available at:

• Asian Plaza, Cleveland: (216)241-3553 • Asian Imports, N. Olmsted: (440)777-8101 • Everest Grocery Store, Lakewood: (216)226-3715 • India Grocers, Parma Heights: (440)885-0215 • Indian Grocery, Cuyahoga Falls: (330)928-7060 • Indo American Foods, North Randall: (216)662-0072 • Indo American Convenient, Mayfield Heights: (440)446-8200 • Laxmi Groceries & Spices, Parma Heights: (440)-842-2402 • Lakshmi Plaza, Mayfield Heights: (440)460-4601 • Park to Shop, E30th Cleveland: (216)781-3388 • Patel Brothers, Parma Heights: (440)885-4440 • Rimi’s Indian Bakers, Grocers & Gifts, Westlake: (440)777-0116 • Rumis Market & Deli, Carnegie Ave: (216)229-7864 • Sunny’s Asian Food & Spices, Solon: (440)248-0801

• Annapurna, Parma (440)390-1858 • Bombay Chaat, Euclid Av., Cleveland (216)331-4598 • Bamboo Garden N. Olmsted (440)734-0500 University Circle (216)505-5470 • Bombay Grill, Akron (330)664-0689 • Café Tandoor Cleveland Hts. (216)371-8500 Westlake (440)835-7999 & Aurora (330)562-5334 • Crown of India, Strongsville (440)638-4977 • Chapati at Chester Ave., Cleveland (216)303-9780 University Circle (216)505-5470 • Chennai Delicacy, Parma Hts. (440)481-3737 • Choolah, Orange Village (800)459-8860 • Cleveland Tiffin Punjabi Dhaba, N. Randall (216)220-7002 • Cuisine of India, Parma Hts.(440)842-5907 • Greedy Girl, Cleveland Hts.(216)465-9877 • Hot or Mild, Mayfield Hts.(440)446-8200

• Indian Delight, Cleveland(216)651-4007 • India Garden, Lakewood (216)221-0676 • Indies Indian Food, Col. Arcade, Cleveland (216)357-3266 • Indian Flame, University Circle (216)791-5555 • Jaipur Junction, N. Royalton (440)842-3555 Hudson (330)653-6640 • Namaste India Garden, Lakewood (216) 221-4800 • Ruchi Indian Cuisine , Aurora (330)562-6446 • Saffron Patch, Shaker Hts. (216) 295-0400 Akron (330)836-7777 • 6 Flavors , Parma (440)345-5599 • South India Cuisine, Mayfield Rd. (440)720-0393 • Taj India Palace, Richmond Hts. (440)461-3737 • Tandul, Tremont (216)465-2442 • Taste of Kerala, Woodmere(216)450-1711 • Taste of Kerala, Mayfield Hts. (440)461-9212 • Udupi Dosa Corner , Parma Heights (440)743-7154

Community Religious Centers • BAPS Swaminarayan Temple 2915 Laurel Rd., Brunswick (330)220-4020 • Guru Nanak Foundation (Gurdwara) 4220 Broadview Road, Richfield (330)659-3748 • Gurdwara Sahib Bedford 38 Tarbell Road, Bedford (440)232-1702

• Greater Cleveland Shiva Vishnu Temple 7733 Ridge Rd., Parma (440)888-9433 • Islamic Center of Cleveland 6055 W. 130th St., Parma (216)362-0786 • ISSO Swaminarayan Temple 13354 Pearl Road, Strongsville (440)238-2222

•Jain Temple & Center 3226 Boston Mills Rd., Richfield (330)659-0832 • Shri Venkataswara Temple 4406 Brecksville Road, Richfield (330)576-5626 • St. Gregorios Malankara Orthodox Church 1252 East Aurora Road, Macedonia Dr.T.Mathew (216)591-9632

• Swaminarayan Shubh Sanskar Sanstha Cleveland 4402 Wallings Rd., North Royalton (440)628-9270 • Syro Malabar Holy Qurbana Our Lady of Peace, Shaker Square (216)795-7161

DANLIN AUTO REPAIR (330) 467-7675 457 W. Aurora Rd., Sagamore Hills, OH 44067 Owner: Joe Hrovat , Technician: George Hamed


Stuffed Baby Eggplant

Swati Desai 8-10 small eggplants, washed and dried. the masala.

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Tempering 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds (jeera) 3-4 tbsp. cooking oil Pinch of hing














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Stuffing Masala: ½ cup fresh or desiccated coconut ½ cup chopped fresh coriander(cilantro) 1/2 medium sized onion 2-3 small green chilies (medium spicy) 1 tsp. red chili powder 1 1/2 tsp. coriander powder (dhaniya powder) 1 tsp. cumin powder ½ tsp. garam masala 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder Salt as per taste 2 tsp. lemon juice 1 tsp. sugar



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Slit the eggplant length wise from the base towards the stalk, dividing first into half and making another slit dividing each into quarters. Mix all of the ingredients under stuffing masala thoroughly. Stuff all the eggplants with

Heat oil in a pan, add the tempering spices. Once the cumin changes color, gently add the stuffed eggplant, and ½ cup water. Cover and cook on medium low heat. Stir gently after 10 minutes. Cook covered for 10 additional minutes on medium heat. Bharwan Baingan (stuffed egg plant) is ready to devoured.


Book Review



Why Asian-Americans Need to Read “The Hate U Give” If you haven’t read ‘The Hate U Give’ by Angie Thomas, do it. It’s relevant, moving, and unflinchingly honest. Plus, it’s incredibly well-written. Starr Carter lives in a poor black neighborhood, but she and her brothers attend a private school. She’s doesn’t feel like she fits in either place. The story starts at a party that goes awry. She leaves with childhood friend Khalil, whom she sees get shot and killed by a police officer. This story is familiar, and all too relevant. The plot traces the cop’s trial, but also much more. It doesn’t just discuss systemic racism -- the reasons behind seemingly poor choices (why boys join gangs, why women stay with abusive men) -- it puts a face to these decisions and forces you to recognize that things aren’t as straightforward as you’d like to think. Starr tries to escape Khalil’s death by hiding that she witnessed it. But she can’t ignore her best friend Hailey, who insists she isn’t racist while accusing those offended by her comments as being too sensitive. Maya, Starr ’s Korean best friend, also recognizes Hailey’s casual racism, and the two minority friends form an alliance. But while I do think the book went far too easy on Asians, I’m grateful that it showed

the compassion that Asians need to show, where we need to stand. Culturally, we’ve been trained to be deferential. We feel more allegiance toward “our own kind” and distance ourselves from the troubles of other groups. But if we fall victim to believing the myth of the model minority, we are just as guilty of racism as any other group.

to mess up, but their capacity for understanding and supporting one another is lovely.

Maya’s story is, appropriately, a minor subplot in the greater context of the story. Similarly, we Asians can do better. I’m not suggesting that Asians haven’t been the target of heinous hate crimes. I’m merely suggesting that we need to call out racism no matter where it comes from or who it’s targeting. Then there’s Chris, Starr’s boyfriend. They’re both kids, apt

Nivi Engineer is the author of ‘The Indian Girl’s Definitive Guide to Staying Single’, The Story of a Story, The Saviors of Scarborough, Impatient, Redrafted, and Picklemas.

Angie Thomas has assembled a delightful cast of complex characters with nuanced relationships and unique challenges. Their stories provide context for understanding complicated social issues, put a face to each concept, and help tear down barriers to understanding. A good novel is true, with writing that allows the truth to filter out in a much more palatable form than non-fiction often can. Perhaps it’s the fact that Khalil is a fictional victim, and that the players in this drama are not real, that allows the reader to invest more deeply in the outcome, or the fact that nothing is expected of you but to hear the story. The writing: The plotting, characterization, imagery, pacing, voice, all of it: brilliant. A phenomenal book. ‘The Hate U Give’ should be required reading.


The term “aging-in-place” may be relatively new, but it is becoming an increasingly important concept to millions of older adults. Aging-in-place simply means that a person continues to live in their residence of choice, usually their own home, for as long as possible. In fact many studies have shown that approximately nine of ten older adults would prefer to “age-in-place,” to stay in their own home as long as they are able rather than have to rely on institutional care. Today, support systems are developing to help adults meet that goal of staying home as they get older. One in particular is the foundation from which older adults can continue to enjoy living in their own homes. It is the adapting of the home, inside and out, to meet the changing physical needs of an older adult. These “accessibility modifications” can range from basic safety devices like grab bars to a complete renovation of bath and kitchen to make them fully accessible and newly useful, while adding to the décor of the home. For example, designer grab bars can help prevent costly falls and allow easy access to areas of the home which have become tricky or dangerous to navigate.

DICK RUSS Doors and hallways can be widened to accommodate walkers or a wheelchair, and doors can be equipped with automatic opening devices. A bathroom can be modified to become barrier free, offering confidence to both the older adult and peace of mind to his or her family. Ramps outside and even inside the home provide renewed access and easy in places which had previously been barriers. Stair lifts make a second floor bedroom or bath easily accessible again. Staying in one’s own home can have immediate and profound benefits in terms of quality of life. Home is where the heart is, and when properly adapted can offer many years of happy living, close to family, and in surroundings that are comfortable and familiar, and now safer. Families feel more secure having loved ones in a familiar environment. The economic benefits can also be substantial. In Ohio, the cost of a nursing home averages upwards of $80,000 per year, while the costs of adapting one’s own home are usually a one-time expense, at a fraction of the cost of institutional care. Adapting a home should be done a professional who has Certified Aging-in-Place credentials. The difference between such a trained and experienced

specialist and a general contractor or tradesman can be significant. A CAPS Certified professional can determine the precise needs of an older adult in his or her own home, design a plan with the family, and expertly make the adaptations, based on current needs and what will be needed in the future. In just about 10 years there will be more than 70 million Americans over the age of 65. Life spans are increasing, and older adults are expressing a desire to remain vibrant and active, and to stay in their own homes. These dreams can more easily be realized by exploring the home adaptations and modifications which can make “aging-in-place” more than just an idea! Dick Russ is President of Adaptive Home Services, a Solon, Ohio based, CAPS Certified company which designs and implements a full range of home modifications and adaptive devices for family members who wish to “age in place.” Adaptive Home Services provides free, no obligation home assessments. They can be reached at 1-844-STAHOME, or online at www.AdaptiveHomeServices. com

RE/MAX: The #1 name in Real Estate Buy or Sell Home in Cleveland Call me for your Real Estate needs

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8 Future Events


India Food Fair, Sat. July 14, 2018 For the first time ever, St. Gregorios Indian Orthodox Church is organizing an Outdoor non-profit community event – India Food Fair 2018 on July 14th, 2018 from 1p.m. to 8p.m. @ 1252 East Aurora Rd, Macedonia to engage with the local community. The event is open to public with free parking and free admission. This event is intended to showcase the Indian culture to the local community that includes food, entertainment and fine arts. Proceeds from the event will go to several local charity programs. A lineup of Food vendors, from Indian street food like chaats to delectable Dosas (Lentil crepes) and other ethnic Indian cuisine have been arranged along with boutiques of Indian clothing, jewelry and souvenirs along with Bollywood music, dance, Henna, face painting, on-site games, live raffle draws, etc. For more information visit Indian Christian Association invites you for their Annual Picnic, Sat. July 14, 2018 Noon until 4 p.m. at Hudson Springs Park, 7095 Stow Road, Hudson 44236 for fellowship, food, fun and games. Contact: Ravina & Cecil Desai 330-8561410, Flavia & Michael Sreshta 216-403-3012, Shashi & Anil Reuben 330-6120632. RSVP requested before 7/12/18.

ANAND MELA Let us celebrate India’s Independence Day together on August 19, 2018 @ Strongsville Recreation Center from 11 5 p.m. Please come and enjoy food from different restaurants, music & dance, shop jewelry, clothes, etc.

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