Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Bihar News, Latest News from Bihar, News of Bihar, Biharprabha News

Bihar News, Latest News from Bihar, News of Bihar, Biharprabha News

Ram Charan and Upasana to tie knots on Thursday June 14

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 11:32 AM PDT

Ram Charan Upasana Wedding PicsSouth Indian Star Ram Charan Teja who is debuting in Bollywood with Remake of Amitabh’s Zanzeer,   is set to marry his childhood sweetheart, Upasana Kamineni upcoming Thursday.  The  couple will wear Tarun Tahiliani-designed traditional outfits.

Upasana, granddaughter of Prathap C. Reddy, founder-chairman of Apollo Hospitals, and Ram Charan got engaged in December last year.

Interestingly he will have two weddings – one for the family and friends, and the other for his fans. He  is expecting 4,000 guests at each function and that Bollywood’s names – Amitabh Bachchan and Salman Khan – will attend his wedding.

Excerpts from the interview:

We: So big day is around the corner?

Ram: Yup, I can’t tell you what it is like. Upaasna is already my wife in my mind and heart and we are partying and attending poojas every night and catching up on some sleep during the day. On Sunday my father is hosting pre-wedding dinner and Salman Khan is landing here (Hyderabad) for it.

We: When and where is the wedding?

Ram: Well, the first wedding is on June 14 morning at Upaasna’s farmhouse (in Hyderabad), which we’ve converted into a banquet hall. And the second wedding is the next morning at the same venue.

We: Please explain?

Ram: The wedding on June 14 is for family and friends. That’s expected to be attended by around 4,000 people. Then the same evening we’re hosting a reception for around 7,000 guests. The next morning we’ll go through another wedding followed by lunch for my fans. We expect 4,000 people. But I suspect there will be a lot more people. And wait. It doesn’t end there. On June 15 evening we’re hosting a reception for the staff and family of the Apollo group of hospitals.

Ram Charan and Upasana

We: A wedding specially for the fans?

Ram: There’s just no question of not inviting my fans. They are a part of my father’s and my extended family. And since we can’t have so many people at one wedding we just extended the wedding into a double event.

We: And the honeymoon?

Ram: Just a four-day break. We’re yet to decide where we’re going. But it will be somewhere quiet with no traffic or shopping. It has to be in India since I’ve to return in four days and resume shooting.

We: Has your Hindi improved.

Ram: “Agar Hindi mein film karna hai toh Hindi bolni hogi.” My first look for “Zanjeer” is out. I can’t wait to know what Amitabh Bachchan saab thinks of it. He is coming here on June 14 for my wedding.

We: Who else is coming from Mumbai?

Ram: Salman landed on Sunday with his friends who are also my friends… Salman wanted to spend some time with my dad. They go back a long way. Hope to workout with him. We’ve worked out together in Mumbai. Believe me, it was the toughest workout I’ve had. Salman made sure I didn’t feel lonely in Mumbai.

We: What about your friends from the Telugu film industry?

Ram: They’ve all taken time off to help with the preparations. Suriya, Shruti Haasan, Tamannah, Kajal Aggarwal, everyone. I left it to my fellow-actors to invite all my friends from the industry. Everybody has left their shooting to be part of the wedding preparations. It’s like a family wedding for them. And considering this is the last wedding in my family, my two sisters are married, there is a lot of excitement.

We: How do you feel about being a married actor?

Ram: I feel a man, when married, becomes more balanced. All the extra-curricular activities are done away with. The focus is on work and family. I am getting married young. I’ve known Upaasna for seven years. She was my best friend. Then we started dating two years back. So I am marrying my best friend. I can’t ask for more. I sometimes ask her to switch off the wifely side and listen to me as a friend. She knows which buttons to press.

We: How does she get along with your family?

Ram: You know, when I told her I am building a separate home for us at the Golf Course area for us to live in after marriage, she put her foot down. She insists we stay with my parents.

We: That’s so considerate

Ram: Well, she has a selfish motive. She says she can’t handle me alone. She needs my parents’ help. That was below the belt.

We: So are you a spoilt brat at home?

Ram: I was pampered by all my father’s directors and producers during childhood. But at home my father made sure I led a normal life.

Common Entrance Test for IIT would benefit students says Sibal

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 11:20 AM PDT

Union HRD Minister Kapil Sibal says that the newly proposed  IIT Entrance System would benefit students more. The New System has received tremendous friction from several IITs, IIT Alumni and Professors.

Even several Educationists like Anand Kumar of Super 30 has criticized the proposed system.

Sibal, who is in Washington to attend the India-US Education Dialogue, told reporters that it was clear that autonomy of IITs needed to be maintained but questioned how their autonomy was being affected by the decision.

“Academic autonomy of IIT system has to be maintained, and must be maintained that is quite clear. But if someone says look autonomy of IITs is being jeopardised, I would respectfully beg to differ. If I am enlightened further how it is being jeopardised, I am always open to make them more empowered,” he said.

The minister’s comments come after the senate of IIT Kanpur came out against the common test amd announced a separate entrance test from 2013.

Senates of several other IITs have followed suit, with many saying they did not agree to this new format with merged entrance of IITs with that for the National Institutes of Technology (NITs) and Indian Institutes of Information Technology (IIITs). The new format also includes a fixed weightage from school board marks to the entrance test score.

The IIT Faculty Federation, and alumni associations have called the decision an attack on the autonomy of the institutions. They have said the senates were overruled while taking this decision, even as several IIT directors spoke in favour of the new format.

Sibal, however, said the decision of the common entrance test was not his, but of the IIT council.

“Quite frankly this is not the minister’s decisions. This is the unanimous decision of the IIT Council, consisting of all the IIT directors and chairmen. Then we have the IIIT Council representatives there, we have NIIT Council representatives there. All of them decided unanimously for a particular course of action,” he said.

“In terms of the IIT Act, there is an IIT Council. In terms of that Act, the Council is entitled to take certain decisions by virtue of a statue. The Council has endorsed those decisions. I do not know what the exact objections to it is? I will go back and find out the exact nature of these objections and will surely address it,” he said.

The IIT Faculty Federation and IIT Delhi Alumni Association have also decided to meet the prime minister over the issue.

List of IIFA Awards 2012 Winners

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 10:50 AM PDT

IIFA Awards WinnersInternational Indian Film Academy Awards Concluded at Singapore. The most successful Film was Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara which bagged a total of 9 Awards followed by The Dirty Picture and Ra.One each bagging 4 awards each. While The Dirty Picture got all 4 awards in Popular Category of Awards, Ra.One won 4 of Technical Awards

Below is the comprehensive list of IIFA Awards 2012 Winners

Popular Awards

Best Film - Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara – Ritesh Sidhwani & Farhan Akhtar

Best Direction - Zoya Akhtar – Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Performance In A Leading Role  Male Ranbir Kapoor – Rockstar

Performance In A Leading Role  Female Vidya Balan – The Dirty Picture

Performance In A Supporting Role  Male Farhan Akhtar – Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Performance In A Supporting Role – Female Parineeti Chopra – Ladies Vs Ricky Bahl

Performance In A Comic Role Riteish Deshmukh – Double Dhamaal

Performance In A Negative Role Prakash Raj – Singham

Best Story Reema Kagti & Zoya Akhtar – Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Best Music Direction A.R. Rahman – Nadaan Parinde – Rockstar

Lyrics Irshad Kamil – Nadaan Parinde – Rockstar

Playback Singer – Male Mohit Chauhan – Nadaan Parinde – Rockstar

Playback Singer – Female Shreya Ghoshal – Teri Meri – Bodyguard

Outstanding Achievement in Indian Cinema Rekha

Outstanding Contribution to Indian Cinema Ramesh Sippy

Outstanding Contribution to International Cinema Liv Ullman

Best Debut – Male Vidyut Jamwal

Best Debut – Female Parineeti Chopra

Outstanding Contribution to a Greener Environment Diya Mirza

Star Plus Hottest Pair Ranbir Kapoor & Nargis Fakri

Technical Awards

Cinematographer  Carlos Catalan -Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Editing Anand Subaya -Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Screenplay Reema Kagti & Zoya Akhtar -Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Dialogues Rajat Aroraa -The Dirty Picture

Production Designer Sabu Cyril -Ra.One

Choreography Bosco-Caesar Senorita -Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Action Jai Singh Nijjar -Singham

Sound Recording Resul Pookutty & Amrit Pritam Dutta -Ra.One

Song Recording Vijay Dayal -Chammak Challo -Ra.One

Sound Mixing Anuj Mathur & baylon Fonseca -Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Special Effects Red Chillies VFX -Ra. One

Background Score A.R. Rahman -Rockstar

Costume Designing Niharika Khan -The Dirty Picture

Make-up Vikram Gaikwad -The Dirty Picture

India and United States sign up 8 Educational Partnerships

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 10:30 AM PDT

India and United States have jointly agreed for Eight Education Institutional Partnership aiming at strengthening the level of Higher Education in Either Country.  Considered as one of the path-breaking partnership between India and US, it would include Faculty Exchanges and   Joint research on topics like food security, climate change, sustainable energy, and public health.

Each project will receive an award of approximately $250,000 under  Obama-Singh 21st Century Knowledge Initiative awards  that can be utilised over the three-year grant period to encourage mutual understanding, educational reform, and economic growth, as well as the development of junior faculty.

Indian-led Partnerships:

Mahatma Gandhi University: An Interdisciplinary and Community Oriented Approach toward Sustainable Development in partnership with Brown University, Duke University and Plymouth State University.

Banaras Hindu University: Paradigm Shift in Energy Scenario for the 21st Century toward Renewable Energy Sources required for both India and the US in partnership with University of Pittsburgh.

Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur: International Programme for Sustainable Infrastructure Development in partnership with Virginia Tech University.

Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi: Resource Building for Ecosystem and Human Health Risk Assessment with Special reference to Microbial Contamination in partnership with Drexel University.

US-led partnerships: 

Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey: Capitalising on the Demographic Dividend: Enhancing Talent Development Capacity for India and the US in the 21st Century in partnership with Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai.

University of Montana: Impacts of Climate Change and Changes in Socio-Economic Structure on Traditional Agriculture and the Development of Sustainable Communities among Indigenous Populations in partnership with Bangalore University.

Cornell University: Implementing Reformed Curriculum in Emerging areas of Agriculture and Food Security in Two State Agricultural Universities of India in partnership with University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad and Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel University of Agriculture and Technology, Meerut.

University of Michigan: The Joint Development of a Master’s Degree in Education for Health Professions Faculty in the United States and India in partnership with Maharashtra University of the Health Sciences.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Barack Obama announced the Obama-Singh Initiative in November 2009 as an affirmation of their commitment to building an enhanced India-U.S. partnership in education. Each government pledged $5 million for this endeavor, for a total of $10 million.

To implement this initiative, the Governments of India and the United States established a bi-national Obama-Singh Initiative joint working group (JWG). The JWG provides the final approval for all grants awarded through the Obama-Singh Initiative. The JWG will allocate the $10 million over the course of a five year period awarding 8 to 10 university partnership grants annually.

The next request for proposals for grants from the Obama-Singh Initiative announced by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Barack Obama in November 2009 will be announced in July 2012.

Meanwhile India and US have begun  their annual higher education dialogue  focused on advanced research and innovation and the role of community colleges in workforce development.

Indian Minister for Human Resource Development Kapil Sibal and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are co-chairing the dialogue aimed at promoting and encouraging the vibrancy and depth of the cooperation between the education sectors of the two countries.

The dialogue will identify key areas of educational cooperation, shared goals, and best practices, and will help frame the two countries’ higher education priorities for the year ahead. Several outside experts have joined the government delegations to offer their perspectives.

The education dialogue is one of several dialogues being held on the margins of the third edition of the India-US strategic dialogue here Wednesday.

South Korea to partner India’s War against Somali pirates

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 09:58 AM PDT

India has got another partner in its War against Pirates at Gulf of Aden of Somalia.  After China and Japan, it is South Korea which would join the joint mission against Pirates.

South Korea has indicated its interest in join the tri-nation effort that was launched in February this year,” a senior Indian Navy officer said at New Delhi.

The proposal from Seoul is likely to be approved by the three nations and the Korean warships may join the coordinated patrol from July,” he said.

India, Japan and China agreed on the mechanism for optimum utilisation of their warships’ patrolling of the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor (IRTC) so that the movement of cargo vessels in convoys could be coordinated to ward off pirate attacks.

Till February, the three nations were operating independently in Gulf of Aden to provide safe passage to merchant ships. The trilateral agreement was arrived at after a meeting of the Shared Awareness and De-confliction (SHADE) initiative held earlier this year. South Korea too was operating independently in the pirate-infested waters.

India Pakistan mutually resolve to end Siachen Issue

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 09:45 AM PDT

India and Pakistan has resolved to put an end to Siachen controversy  very soon. Recently held Defense Secretary level talks between the two countries concluded over seeking  an amicable resolution to the dispute. The two nations would continue the dialogues with favorable outcomes.

The Indian delegation was headed by Defense Secretary Shashikant Sharma while Pakistan was represented by its Defence Secretary Nargis Sethi.

“The talks were held in a cordial and friendly atmosphere,” an Indian defence ministry statement issued in New Delhi said.

The two nations also agreed that the next round of talks on Siachen will be held in New Delhi on mutually convenient dates, to be fixed through diplomatic channels.

Both sides acknowledged that the ceasefire was holding since 2003.

Sharma also called on Pakistan Defence Minister Syed Naveed Qamar during his stay in Pakistan.

The Siachen glacier dispute was highlighted after a massive avalanche struck a Pakistan Army camp and killed 139 soldiers and civilians in early April.

There have been calls to find out solution to the long-standing dispute where harsh weather has killed more soldiers than actual fighting.

Both countries have held a series of talks on the issue but have failed to reach any agreement. They last held a meeting on the issue in the Indian capital of New Delhi in mid-2011 without making any progress.

Pakistani Army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, who visited Siachen in the wake of the avalanche April 18, called for a negotiated end to the confrontation and said the glacier should be demilitarised.

“Peaceful coexistence between the two neighbours is very important so that everybody can concentrate on the well-being of the people,” he said.

“Both countries should sit together to resolve all the issues, including Siachen,” Kayani added.

Pakistan, however, promptly did an about turn a day later when Islamabad insisted there was no change in its stance on the disputed glacier.

Indian Defence Minister A.K. Antony has said that New Delhi would insist on proper authentication by Pakistan of the troop positions in Siachen before any disengagement is undertaken.

India and Pakistan are deadlocked over differences on the location of the 110-km Actual Ground Position Line (AGPL) which passes through the Saltoro Ridge and Siachen Glacier.

India wants Pakistan to authenticate the AGPL, both on the maps and on the ground, as it occupies most of the dominating posts on the Saltoro Ridge.

Pakistan, in turn, has been insisting on maintaining the pre-1972 troop positions as agreed in the Simla Agreement.

Oldest Migrant to Trinidad from Bihar honored to mark 167th Arrival Day

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 07:27 AM PDT

The 167 the Anniversary of  Arrival of Migrants from Bihar to Trinidad and Tobago was marked in a rather Special way by honoring  the eldest living Immigrant Samoodarie Doon.

Samoodarie Doon arrived Trinidad from Patna some 100 years back while she was only 10 days old. Infact she was born on the deck of the Ship while her parents were migrating to Trinidad.

Samoondari Doon was felicitated and presented a memento by Trinidad Education Minister Dr. Time Goopeesingh at a ceremony hosted by the Ministry of Arts and Multiculturism at the National Archives in Port of Spain earlier this month.

An independent minded lady, Samoondarie expressed a wish to visit India after the felicitation ceremony was over. According to her grandson, Michael Salazar, she has never travelled outside Trinidad but a desire to see the country from where her mother had begun her journey to Trinidad still moves her.

“Nanny (nani – maternal grandmother) is in good health for her age. She can grow anything – she is an excellent gardener and loves to cook. She likes to meet new people and talk about the old times. She has seen a great deal of history,” Salazar told IANS in an email.

Samoondarie Doon was a 10-day old babe in her mother, Makhani’s arms, when she arrived in Trinidad. Samoondarie was born on the high seas on board the ship, SS Mutlah which was carrying a group of Indian indentured workers to Trinidad to work on the sugarcane plantations. The new born child was named after the ocean (samoondar). The SS Mutlah reached Nelson Island in Trinidad on Oct 14, 1912.

Samoondarie’s father, Baal Mohotam was a cook on the ship. He died during the voyage and was buried at sea. Makhani and Samoondarie had no one to take care of them when they reached Trinidad.

Colonial officials planned to send Makhani and her infant daughter back to India but Makhani decided to marry one of the Indian migrants who had travelled on the same boat. Makhani, her new husband and Samoondarie went to live at the Petit Morne Estate where the two adults completed their 5-year indenture contract.

Samoodarie recalls that her mother came from Patna and was from the kurmi caste. She remembers her mother telling her that the voyage was a difficult one as the sea was rough.

Samoondarie grew up at the Petit Morne Estate and studied at the Jordan Hill Presbyterian Primary School. She was 12 years of age when she was married to Doon and went to live in Broomage.

Samoondarie has two daughters and a son who died young. Samoondarie’s two daughters – Phyllis Doon-Drupatee and Monica Joseph-Bisson are both in their 70s. Samoondarie was 36 years of age when Doon passed away but she decided not to marry again. She has 10 grandchildren and 19 great grandchildren.

She continued to work at the sugar factory and later moved back to St Charles and started a market garden. She planted her garden patch and sold the vegetables at the nearby San Fernando market till the ripe old age of 80 when she broke her hip.

Micheal Salazar, son of Samoondarie’s daughter, Phyllis said that life was tough in the islands for a widow left with two young daughters. Samoondarie recalled that she was working at the sugar factory when Trinidad got its independence in 1962 and she started a vegetable garden to supplement her income.

Salazar has researched his grandmother’s life history and discovered several interesting facts. It was just recently that the family found that Samoondarie’s birthday falls on Oct 4. “We plan to have a grand celebration for Nanny,” Salazar said.

Indian Ambassador uses Youtube to reach out masses in Indonesia

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 06:42 AM PDT

youtubeYoutube may be the video  and Song hub for youngsters but for an Indian Foreign Service Officer, it is a means to reach common people. This is what Indian Envoy to Indonesia Gurjit Singh had in mind.

In his YouTube message that is little over six minutes long  Gurjit Singh said India and Indonesia together will contribute to development of a new international order which is “inclusive and provide adequate space to the views of the developing countries”.

“Economic cooperation between India and Indonesia has taken enormous strides with growing complementarities emerging. Indonesia is now India’s largest trading partner in ASEAN and we have set a bilateral trade target of $25 billion by 2015, which we hope to meet well before that date,” he said.

There are around 100,000 Indonesians of Indian origin in Indonesia. They are mainly engaged in trade dealing in textiles and sports goods. There are around 9,000 Indians living in Indonesia, including engineers, consultants, chartered accountants, bankers and other professionals.

The ambassador said: “We would like to expand our cultural linkages and public diplomacy events to emphasise the depth and diversity of our cultures.

“This is the centenary year of the birth of Indian cinema, which has great resonance in Indonesia. The epics the Ramayana and the Mahabharata are immortalised in Indonesia and thus I can see in many areas where we can engage in the public domain.”

He said capacity building is another area where India has proven expertise.

“The Indian success story has been primarily built on its human resources capability. As the world economy gets increasingly globalised, it is the strength of human resources which will lead the economy. We have a very active programme in Indonesia where we offer training programme and scholarships…and educational scholarships for under and post graduate courses. We offer a 125 scholarships for various kinds of study in India.”

On his employing YouTube to reach out, Gurjit Singh told IANS: “Indonesia has a large youth population and they are heavily into social media. Our Facebook page is becoming more popular than our website and in my interaction with students I saw the potential. Did it as an experiment… seems to have worked”

Mulayam Singh pledges support to Baba Ramdev in Anti Black Money Campaign

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 05:42 AM PDT

Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev

All is not well between Team Anna and Baba Ramdev

In a rather surprising move, Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Mulayam Singh Yadav pledged his support to the Anti-Black Money Campaign pioneered by Baba Ramdev.

He further extended 360 degree support to the movement to bring the black money  back to India. ”We are with baba in his fight against black money,” Mulayam was quoted saying.

Ramdev, who has been lobbying for support for his campaign and has met a series of political leaders, Tuesday called on Mulayam Singh at his residence.

Over the last few days, Ramdev has met Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N. Chandrababu Naidu, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Nitin Gadkari, Nationalist Congress Party’s Sharad Pawar and Rashtriya Lok Dal’s Ajit Singh.

“I am meeting Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik tomorrow (Wednesday). I will also be meeting West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa and Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati in the coming weeks,” said Ramdev, who is planning an agitation against black money and corruption on Aug 9.

Vowing to meet village council representatives to build consensus on the issue, Ramdev said he had also sought a meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress chief Sonia Gandhi.

Attacking the union government, Ramdev said that in the last one year he had received over 60 notices on income tax and service tax and from the enforcement directorate.

“The government is trying to tarnish our image by coming up with false allegations against us every other day. I have written to the prime minister some 10 months ago that if there is any doubt about my organisation, then he can order a special investigation but there has been no response,” he said.

Sahaja Yoga confers good health, busts stress says Australia

Posted: 12 Jun 2012 04:39 AM PDT

Sahaja Yoga founded by Mata Nirmala Devi, that is gaining greater acceptance worldwide for calming the mind and busting stress, contributes to promoting mental and physical health, according to a new study conducted in Australia.

The essence of Sahaja Yoga, described as mental silence, is much more than mere tranquillity, having several dimensions, including medically beneficial ones, Ramesh Manocha, senior lecturer of psychiatry at the University of Sydney Medical School, told IANS from Australia.

“We found that the health and well-being profile of people who had meditated for at least two years was significantly higher in the majority of health and well-being categories when compared to the (general) population,” says Manocha.

Manocha was referring to his latest study on Sahaja Yoga, which focussed on meditation as mental silence, involving more than 348 people, conducted with colleagues Deborah Black and Leigh Wilson at the Sydney Medical School.

Fifty-two percent of the volunteers experienced mental silence “several times per day or more” while 32 percent were experiencing it “once or twice per day”, according to Manocha, who is at the forefront of research into meditative disciplines.

“Our survey also demonstrated that practitioners had not only better mental and physical health but also a consistent relationship between health, especially mental health, and self-reported experience of mental silence,” says Manocha.

Elaborating on mental silence, Manocha says: “As one learns to slow down the thoughts, the practitioner will start to perceive a small gap between each thought. With practice and by applying specific techniques, the meditator can widen the gap so that he experiences a thought or two and then a space of silence and then another thought or two.”

“In this way, the gap between thoughts can be widened until there are long moments of no thoughts. Ultimately, the thoughts stop completely and the meditator remains fully alert and aware, but experiencing no thinking activity. This is ‘mind emptiness’ or mental silence of Sahaja Yoga,” he said.

The outcome is a quietly joyful state rather than an extreme of manic happiness. Mental peace and emotional equilibrium in turn reduce levels of adrenaline and cortisol in the blood stream, decreasing blood pressure and lowering brain activity and slowing down the thinking processes, says Manocha.

“The first ever quality-of-life survey of long-term meditators we conducted involved almost every Sahaja Yoga practitioner in Australia, which points to the findings being more concrete than individual stories,” informs Manocha.

Manocha’s stressful life as a medical student turned his attention towards meditation and Sahaja Yoga. “I found the experience of mental silence distinctly powerful. The traditional western ways of dealing with stress, such as alcohol and tobacco consumption, were damaging my health,” he recalls.

Since western scientists had overlooked this phenomenon, Manocha decided that he would subject it to scientific evaluation to determine whether it could help people in the west facing common mental and physical problems.

“We have actually done considerable research on the impact of Sahaja Yoga on work stress, bronchial asthma, menopause and mental health, involving hundreds of participants in many different contexts, all of which indicate its effectiveness,” Manocha told IANS.

Two separate observational studies of participants suffering from menopausal symptoms and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder demonstrated promising outcomes. These were followed by a small but well-designed randomized controlled trial (RCT) of meditation for asthma, then a much larger RCT of meditation for occupational stress, said Manocha.

Their outcomes provided strong evidence that mental silence is associated with a specific, therapeutic effect. An RCT is one of the simplest but most powerful research tools to test the efficacy of a new drug, procedure or treatment on human health.

“There is credible evidence to support the idea that Sahaja Yoga meditation, and hence the mental silence experience that typifies it, is associated with unique effects,” concludes Manocha.

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