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Monday, August 6, 2007

Spotlight: Tirupati mulls dress code for women

Moved by a complaint of a Lord Balaji devotee who was perturbed by women worshippers wearing what he considered immodest clothes, the Tirupati temple is contemplating guidelines to help women look adequately pious.

It may become mandatory for women to wear saris, or other traditional Indian attire, if the temple’s “advisory on dress code” comes into effect.

“We will take up the issue at the next board meeting this month,” said Ramapulla Reddy, spokesman of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD).

The decision was prompted by a call made earlier this month by an incensed devotee from Anantapur in Andhra Pradesh. He had protested against women entering the temple in “indecent” clothes.

The TTD’s executive officer G Balaramaiah promised to look into the issue. He was contacted during the temple’s interactive initiative, “dial your executive officer”.

TTD spokesman Reddy said: “It’s customary for women to wear saris and men to wear dhotis, but many wear whatever they like.” TTD’s male employees have to wear dhotis and white t-shirts, and women work in saris.

However, not all temple administrators endorse the introduction of a dress code. “People know what to wear when visiting a temple,” said Hanumant B Jagtap, chief executive officer of the Siddhivinayak temple.

“At the most, they can be advised not to wear Western clothes. But compelling them to wear Indian dresses is inviting trouble.”

But a few devotees seem in favour of sartorial curbs. “The Tirupati shrine is not a restaurant where you can wear anything you fancy,” said Naveen Hegde, a Bangalore resident and a staunch follower.

Some women, however, think the champions of dress code in temples are arguing with skimpy logic: “Ban men from entering some temples in Kerala without shirts before thinking of imposing a dress code at other temples,” said Madhu SM, a Bangalorean. “

Temples are places to offer prayers and to find peace of mind. Devotees should come to visit God and not look at women.”

Fact Sheet: Ponnala becomes owner's envy!

Major Irrigation Minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah, who managed to retain his portfolio during the last Cabinet reshuffle, has become an envy for the Congressmen.

In a way, Ponnala has become more or less isolated in his Warangal district, except for a few leaders who got benefitted from him. His detractors, who were expected a change in his portfolio, are envious of his fortune, as he allegedly made millions in Jalayagnam. So, the differences among the top leaders of the Congress party in the district came to the fore when he arranged a felicitation for his follower and Warangal Zilla Parishad chairperson L Dhanawanti on completion of her one year in office on Sunday.

It turned out to be a glaringly one-sided affair with only the staunch followers of Ponnala Lakshmaiah attending the meet and others chose to be away from it. Among those top guns who were absent from the meet included; Minister for tribal welfare D S Redya Naik, DCC President and MLC Gandra Venkata Ramana Reddy, city MLA Baswaraju Saraiah, Mulug MLA Podem Veeraiah, DCCB chief Konda Murali, and his wife Shyampet MLA Konda Surekha.

With the absence of top leaders, Ponnala alone had to carry the meet on his own and tried to make light of the absence of top leaders.

Chandrababu's New Deeksha- Mounavratham!

Babu's recent Breakfast-to-Dinner Deeksha invited ridicule from all quarters and did more harm than good. And the TDP chief Chandra Babu Naidu is a much-chastened man, at least for the time being.

He is now keeping a very low profile. He has now engaged himself with party activities like reorganizing the party's state and district committees.

What has not gone unnoticed is his unannounced new Deeksha – Mounvratam!

Babu was stung by the widespread criticism for some of his remarks after the Mudigonda incident. The biggest and by far the most damaging statement is his tirade against Prime minister Manmohan Singh. This time Babu went a bit too far, and a majority of the party leaders, including MLAs and MPS are openly admitting this.

The TDP Rajya Sabha MPs in particular, are aghast at what they call immature and uncalled for comments against the entry of Manmohan through Rajya Sabha.

The TDP MPs even mustered up enough courage and told Chandra Babu that his statement is likely to cause a lot of wholly uncalled for embarrassment.

They pointed out that his comments were not against one individual but the entire upper house, the Rajya Sabha.

And TDP Rajya Sabha members are worried a lot now and rightly too. If the Congress or other parties raise the issue of disrespect to the elders is raised in the house, the TDP will have no place to hide. The party stands no chance to defend itself.

Babu is a seasoned politician and he sure would know the consequences better than anybody else.

So, Babu now hopes that by keeping his mouth shut for some time, the issue will die down and he and his party would be spared potential embarrassment at the national level.

Congress pays Communists in their own coin

The Congress has finally flexed its muscles over the Mudigonda police firing. With Chief Minister YS Rajasekhar Reddy announcing a never before ex gratia to the kin of those killed in the police firing at Mudigonda village in Khammam district, the Congress Legislature Party has got emboldened and decided to take the Communists head on.

The ex gratia package is the best ever in the entire country. No State government has ever announced such a generous financial-cum-assets help to the victims of police firing.

The Congress Legislature Party on Sunday challenged the Communists to come out with a similar package for the victims of police firing in Nandigram village in West Bengal, if they are sincere and pro-poor.

The Congress knows that the Communists will never announce such a big package to the victims there. Since the Communists have already made it clear that there's no parallel between the two incidents.

As CPM State secretary BV Raghavulu has pointed out, while the people in Mudigonda were unarmed, those in Nandigram were armed with bombs and rifles.

Any way, the Congress in the State has finally come out of the Mudigonda trauma and is now able to stand up and speak daringly against the Reds.

Behind The Scene: YSR's pet gets extension!

At last, Chief Minister Dr Y S Rajasekhar Reddy managed to get extension for his special secretary M G V K Bhanu for one more year.

Bhanu has already completed a five-year deputation to the State from his native cadre of Assam. Because of this, initially the Centre did not favour his request to continue him in the State for two more years.

The Chief Minister, too, initially decided to send him back to his native post, because of lot of complaints from his MLAs and other ministers against him. However, Bhanu is the only channel for the Chief Minister to get information about his detractors both within the Congress and outside. And more over, Bhanu holds the key in irrigation sector and enjoys a strong support from YSR's friend K V P Ramachandra Rao. It is for this reason that YSR changed his mind and decided to get extension for him at least till 2009 general elections.

The Chief Minister lobbied with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to treat Bhanu's request as a special case and give approval. Chief secretary J. Harinarayana also wrote to the Centre seeking permission to utilise his services in the State. Bhanu's extension was almost confirmed during the Prime Minister's visit to city on July 31 when Dr Singh called the senior bureaucrat and greeted him in the presence of major industries minister J. Geetha Reddy. The orders to retain Mr Bhanu in the State have now been issued by the Union ministry of personal affairs.

Dr.Medasani Mohan Created History on American Soil

On the occasion of Silicon Andhra Sixth Anniversary, Silicon Andhra conducted the FIRST ever 'Sataka Padya Dhara Sammohanam' by 'Sahasravadhani' Dr. Medasani Mohan in the historic Palo Alto city, home of Stanford University. Sri Medasani was welcomed with a 'Poornakumbham' and he was taken to the auditorium in a procession where young people carrying flags and girls showering flower petals welcomed him in Telugu Traditional way. All the 63 'Pruchhakas', lined up the way as a mark of respect to the scholarship of Sri Medasani. At the entrance of the Auditorium, he was extended a warm civic welcome by Yoriko Ashimoto, the Mayor of Palo Alto. She was joined by the Silicon Andhra Executive Committee headed by the President Sripahani Vissamraju and others. Scores of people lined up the way to welcome Avadhani Medasani.

Sri Medasani was invited onto a grand stage that is fit to the king of Telugu literature. The stage was designed like the king's court and Medasani was taken onto the stage with 'Haarathulu'. The stage was already occupied by 63 Pruchhakulu.

Medasani garu created 'Pravasandhra Satakam' answering the questions posed by 63 'Pruchhakas' on the stage. In a six hour marathon session, Telugu Padyams flew freely all together 108 in number, creating the First impromptu satakam in a Sabha by an Avadhani. More than 800 people witnessed the history in making by Dr. Medasni Mohan. Some times he just took less than ten seconds to answer the response in ' Saardoolam' metered poetry. He has completed nine 'Parvamulu' depicting the lives of non resident Telugu people with single 'makutam' 'Silicon Andhra AkritI BharathI'.

At the end of the session, he was awarded the 'Silicon Andhra Avadhana Bharathi' title and felicitated in a grand traditional fashion. Dr. Medasani thanked Silicon Andhra for being the forum to create this record setting event. He said it was great literary feat that was done before in this fashion ever. At the end of the program, all the attendees were treated to a sumptuous dinner sponsored by DOSA PLACE (41043 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA 94538, Tel # 510-651-DOSA)

YSR sounds confident after Sonia's assurance

After getting a firm assurance from Madam Sonia Gandhi that there is no threat to his Chief Minister's post, notwithstanding the pressure from the Left parties, Chief Minister Dr Y S Rajasekhar Reddy is exuding supreme confidence in his actions and plans, caring a damn for the mounting criticism from the opposition parties.

So much so that he openly declared on Sunday that he would continue to be the Chief Minister for a second term as well. Apparently, YSR convinced Sonia that he should be in that post for another seven to eight years, if he has to complete all the irrigation projects under Jalayagnam. The Chief minister is also certain that his government will be able to ensure completion of 58 to 60 lakh houses under Indiramma scheme by the time they face elections.

Claiming that his government is the only one in the country with such magnanimous welfare programs, Rajasekhar Reddy invited the opposition parties to prove that he is wrong. "I am asking the opposition through the media to let me know if any other government in the country is involved in such ambitious programs for the people of their states" Chief Minister said.

Alladi, Umareddy, KEK out of TD politburo

Former chief minister and Telugu Desam president N Chandrababu Naidu had wielded axe on senior TD leaders Alladi Rajkumar, Umareddy Venkateswarlu, A Ramana, KE Krishnamurthy and Yusuf Ali.

These TD leaders have been dropped from the politburo of the Telugu Desam. The politburo is an important decision-making body and their removal from such an important body means that these leaders have been cut to size.

Chandrababu Naidu has ensured that the State committee of the party is a dummy organisation with "yes sir" people.

KAD lends a new dimension to Telugu Entertainment

Edison, New Jersey – Aug 4th 2007: Most Telugu entertainment events held abroad have been enthusiastic efforts by few individuals, yet lacking expertise or professionalism.

This was the scenario even in Movie and home video distribution earlier, however KAD lead the way by streamlining the segment of theatrical and DVD distribution of Telugu films and significantly contributed to the growth and quality in these areas.

Now, KAD Imagilight has ventured into another aspect of South Indian Entertainment – the staged entertainment by presenting Manisharma Live at NJ. The event which took place on the 27th of Jul’ 2007 at the prestigious Royal Albert’s palace in New Jersey was as reported earlier a memorable success.

Now KAD has contracted a couple of the most sought after stage performers in Telugu - Shiva Reddy the King of Comic skits and Vijayalakshmi the queen of Stage Singing. KAD will be presenting a series of entertainment and musical events with the participation of these two artists in the USA and then the rest of the world. This is a modest beginning to a more exciting shape of events to come.

The events that KAD will conceive and execute will be a cut above the rest. Extensively publicized, meticulously planned, diligently designed to entertain, and carefully executed events will be KAD’s motto.

As had been proven in Hollywood and Bollywood, the staged entertainment segment has huge potential and many takers, but unfortunately it lacked professionalism. But the possibilities such scenario presents are quite exciting. KAD will now strive to make a difference in this area.

We are delighted to exclusively bring this series of events with Shiva Reddy & Vijayalakshmi to the Non Resident Telugu audience world wide. Given their popularity and respective strengths they will prove to be valuable assets in KAD endeavors in the staged entertainment segment, representatives of KAD opined.

To start with these two artists, KAD will now be undertaking a two month US tour performing for a fun filled 3 hour entertainment with mimicry, comedy, singing and dancing. The first of the outings will be in Portland this weekend, followed by Dallas next week. Several corporate companies have evinced keen interest to associate with the events being conceived by KAD for the US Telugu audiences, including the upcoming tour of Shiva Reddy and Vijayalakshmi.

Shiva Reddy: A popular stage comedy artist Shiva Reddy has so far performed in 2000 shows across the world. He was recently felicitated by no less than the Mega Star Chiranjeevi himself and Movie Mogul Dr. D.Rama Naidu for his outstanding talent to evoke laughter and his cheeky imitation of celebrities. He earned the sobriquet Fun Star.

Vijayalakshmi: An extremely talented singer, Vijayalakshmi has entered the Limca Book of Records for singing non-stop for 24 hours. She can impeccably imitate the voices of 30 popular singers in Bollywood and South India including Asha Bhonsle and Shamshad Begum. She is known for her energetic singing and dos.

For More Details contact Sankar Bandi @ 507-358-1319, Vasu @ 917-449-1823 or visit http://www.SecondShows.com

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