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June - July 2007

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Dispatches & Reports

Women Interfaith Network

On 30th of April there was a lunch meeting of Asian ladies from North West London, hosted by Dr Kawal Chandok, with a specific purpose, at the famous Chinese restaurant in Moor Park, Northwood, London. Dr. Kawal Chandok with the support of some of her friends, launched a new Chapter of Women’ s Interfaith Network. It was attended by many ladies from posh Moor Park joined by ladies from other parts of London including Preety Chandra from the Indian High Commission, Mrs Kailash Puri, a noted writer, Mrs Sujata Jolly, a renowned bio- scientist, currently developing many skin products, Mrs Carol spiers, a stress guru for the media and runs public speaking courses, Mrs Jaswant Kaur Sahni, wife of president of Khukhrain Biradri. Another important lady was Mrs Harwinder Kaur Baxi who helped me to initiate the Moor Park Chapter.
The Lunch Meeting was presided by Lady Levy, chairman of the Women Interfaith Network.
It was an interesting and enlightening function for all the members. There was lot of enthusiasim shown by all the ladies present who showed keen desire to participate in future meetings of Interfaith Network.

The Patrick Stewart Scholarships for International Students

University of Huddersfield has announced the introduction of 37 unique student scholarships that are now being offered for international applicants.
The scholarships are endorsed by the University’s Chancellor, international actor Patrick Stewart, and available to international students applying for 2007/08 entry.
The scholarships are specifically designed to make education at the University of Huddersfield more affordable to international applicants and are available as follows:
No. of Scholarships Contribution to Fee
2 scholarships 100% contribution
5 scholarships 50% contribution
10 scholarships 25% contribution
20 scholarships 12.5% contribution
Recipients of the 2007/08 scholarships will be invited to a reception, hosted by the Chancellor, to be held on 25 November 2007.
“I am delighted and honoured that the University has created these International Scholarships in my name,” said Patrick, who originally came from the small town of Mirfield, near Huddersfield. “The scholarships are extremely generous and designed to assist those who need it most.
“My strong belief is that all students, from whatever background, should have the opportunity to benefit from Higher Education. In particular, I recognise how important it is for students from across the world to experience the excellence of UK Higher Education, and what the University of Huddersfield has to offer.”
Further information about the Patrick Stewart Scholarships for International Students can be found on the University’s web-site for international student applications ( Alternatively, potential applicants may e-mail

Lord Swraj Paul hails international student visa extensions

University of Westminster Chancellor Lord Swraj Paul has welcomed a government initiative that will allow international students studying in the UK – including those from India –  to stay for a year after graduating.
  From May 1, any overseas student graduating with a bachelor’s or postgraduate degree in the UK will be able to extend their visa for a year, regardless of grade or subject of study.
  The initiative will give the students valuable work experience, and will provide UK employers with highly skilled graduates – a point recognised by Indian-born businessman Lord Paul, who moved to England in 1966.
 He said: “This is an excellent initiative, and one that will benefit both India and the UK. International graduates bring a great deal to the British economy and cultural life, and they deserve the opportunity to test their skills in the country they are educated in.” 
  Announcing the scheme, Bill Rammell MP, Minister for Lifelong Learning, Further and Higher Education, noted Britain’s position as one of the world’s most attractive destinations for overseas students.
  He said: “Higher Education Institutions have told us that a staying on scheme which is available to all graduates irrespective of subject of study will enhance the UK’s attraction as a study destination in what has become an intensely competitive international student market.
  “The new scheme underlines the importance which the Government attaches to maintaining and enhancing the UK’s status as a leading exporter of higher education.”
  Westminster saw a 14 per cent rise in student enrolments from India last year, with 138 new students taking up places at the University.


LONDON –  A wide variety of foreign, arthouse and classic films have received Lottery funding from the UK Film Council’s P&A Fund. Its most recent round of awards to film distributors continues to help gain exposure for films which might otherwise only have a limited distribution, thereby increasing viewing choice for audiences.

Universal Pictures International received £300,000 for Yimou Zhang’s award-winning and Oscar-nominated The Curse of the Golden Flower, a period drama-tragedy set in the royal court of 10th century China. Shot in Mandarin with subtitles, the film was released on 13 April, with the award covering the cost of premieres, increasing a combination of 35mm and digital prints to 223, and enhancing the national media advertising on television and in print.


Optimum Releasing received two awards, of £150,000 for Patrice Leconte’s My Best Friend, and £90,000 for Shane Meadows’s critically acclaimed This Is England.

My Best Friend, a French film with subtitles, stars Daniel Auteuil as a Parisian art dealer in a comic genre piece offering a meditation on the nature of friendship. The award enabled the proposed release of the film on 11 April to spread from 15 to 50 screens, and the film was formatted for digital distribution through the Digital Screen Network. The media campaign was also increased through television and online advertising.

Meanwhile Shane Meadows’s This is England is a portrait of Britain in the 1980s, focusing on a depressed suburban Midlands and the emergence of the National Front. Nominated for seven British Independent Film Awards, the film has already made an impact at festivals and will be released on April 27.  The award will expand the film’s release from 20 to 70 screens; an additional 20 prints will be purchased and the formatting of the film for digital distribution will allow for up to 150 deliveries to DSN sites. The media campaign will also be increased and will include print, television and online advertising.

Park Circus has also received two awards, of £5,000 for Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s classic musical Guys and Dolls, and £5,000 for Stephen Frears’s controversial classic Prick up Your Ears. 

Guys and Dolls, the award-winning, Oscar-nominated Technicolor musical is set in the gambling world of 1950s New York, starring Marlon Brando and Frank Sinatra among others. The film is re-released on 13 July, and the award will be used for digital encoding encryption and distribution which will allow the wider exploitation of the film through the DSN.

Prick up Your Ears is Stephen Frears’s powerful, award-winning portrait of playwright Joe Orton, played by Gary Oldman, from his early years in Leicester to his murder in 1967 by his partner Kenneth Halliwell. It was re-released on 6 April and the award enabled the film to be released digitally as well as on 35mm.

Axiom Films International received £5,000 for Ryan Fleck’s award-winning and Oscar-nominated Half Nelson, about an inner-city teacher struggling with addiction who forms an unlikely bond with a student who catches him in a compromising position. An independent American film, Half Nelson will be released on 20 April, with the award used to create a digital master to enable a further 20 bookings.

Yume Pictures received £5,000 for Jorge Sánchez-Cabezudo’s award-winning debut The Night of the Sunflowers, to be released May 11.  A Spanish film with subtitles, it is told in six parts from the point of view of six different characters in rural Spain, in the middle of the mountains and dying rural villages of Castilla-León. The award will be applied to creating 15 bookings through digitisation and 35mm prints.

Verve Pictures received £4,937 for Stephen Kijak’s Scott Walker – 30 Century Man. A documentary about the enigmatic and influential singer which is released on 27 April, the award will be applied to broaden the release using digital distribution and 35mm prints.

Punk Cinema received £4,920 for Richard Bracewell’s The Gigolos, which tells the story of a gigolo and his valet, and their search for love and friendship in the twilight world of the London male escort. The film was released on March 23, and the award was used to enable greater digital and 35mm exploitation of the film, meaning the distributor could offer the film on short bookings to DSN cinemas across the country.

Artificial Eye received £1,280 for Abderrahmane Sissako’s Bamako, which was released on February 23. A foreign language film with subtitles depicting a drama set in Mali, the funding enabled the distributor to supply a number of additional short run bookings on the film through digital.

P&A Fund awards

The Curse of the Golden Flower(£300,000)

My Best Friend (£150,000)

This Is England (£90,000)

Guys and Dolls(£5,000)

Prick Up Your Ears (£5,000)           

Half Nelson( £5,000)

The Night of the Sunflowers( £5,000)

Scott Walker – 30 Century Man (£4,937)

The Gigolos (4,920)

Bamako (£1,280)

The UK is one of the most expensive countries in the world in which to release films and often cinema-goers only have a limited choice.  While blockbusters such as Harry Potter are often released in the UK with more than 1,000 film prints, the average number of prints for a foreign language specialist film is under ten.

The UK Film Council has created a single fund, the UK Film Council’s Print and Advertising Support Fund, also known as the P&A Fund, with an annual budget of £2 million. Whilst still concentrating on supporting ‘specialised’ film, this new fund will also offer support to more commercially focused ‘British’ films that nevertheless remain difficult to market.

This fund is not intended to substitute pre-existing investment but rather is seeking to add value to the investment already being made by distributors in each film.

The fund aims to benefit audiences by:

* widening access in terms of the range of films available;

* widening opportunities to view such films across the UK; and

* widening audience awareness of the range of films potentially available.

2. The Audience Development Scheme

The Audience Development Scheme (ADS) part of the UK Film Council’s long-term strategy to further viewing choice for UK audiences. As part of this strategy, in 2007 the Distribution and Exhibition Fund has made an award of £3 million over 3 years to Sledge, the marketing agency responsible for a major new film website.


London: An independent publishing house dealing exclusively with issues of caste inequalities and identity politics has beaten off fierce competition to scoop the British Council’s prestigious International Publisher of the Year Award 2007 this week.

The 33 year old publisher of Chennai-based publishing house Navayana, Anand, stepped up to receive the coveted prize at a packed out industry-wide International Publisher of the Year (IYPY) awards ceremony at the London Book Fair (LBF) on Wednesday 18 April, 2007.

Selected by a five-member panel of judges from a shortlist of finalists representing small-to-medium sized publishers from Argentina, Egypt, Hungary, India, Malta, Romania, Sovenia, South Africa and Syria, Anand was awarded £7,500 prize money and a free stand at London Book Fair 2008. He will also have the opportunity to spend six weeks in Kolkata, India, next year to work with Seagull Publishing, to help strengthen networks in the rapidly expanding Indian publishing industry.

After the presentation of the award, Anand said: `This is not merely recognition of me as an individual but is an endorsement of a larger social movement in India which challenges caste-based discrimination. I look forward to returning to the UK for next year’s London Book Fair which will offer an important platform to internationalise the issue of caste discrimination and help form a coalition with like-minded players in the UK publishing industry. This award is an important step change for us and gives a small publisher the opportunity to think big.

Founded in 2003, Navayana has sought to fill a serious gap in the Indian publishing market. Inspired by the Buddhist ideals of radical political thinker B. R. Ambedkar - an icon of the anti-caste movement in India - Anand has committed himself to sell books that critically engage with the issue of caste despite distribution and retail bias. In 2005, along with seven other publishers, Anand also established the Independent Publishers Distribution Alternatives - an independent publishers association, demonstrating that in a deeply conservative market, publishing for social change can also be profitable.

British Council Director of Creative Economy, Andrew Senior, said: “Again this year the judges faced a tough decision in selecting the overall winner of the International Young Publisher of the Year Award 2007. At the Book Pitch, where each finalist gets the opportunity to present a piece of work currently unpublished in the UK, the audience vote went heavily towards the Romanian and Syrian pieces. But Anand’s articulation of his long-term vision clearly won favour with the judges in the end.”

Summing up, Editor and Founder of MacLehose Press, Christopher MacLehose, commended the winner by saying: “Anand is an enthusiastic and engaging young man; a champion for greater engagement with India’s marginalised and underprivileged. He provided the judges with a compelling view of the need for a publishing house like his own. He has a clear social agenda but, importantly, he also has a real understanding of the economics of publishing and presented a fascinating model for building the non-English speaking market in India. The judges want to commend Anand for his clear, long term vision.”

Book Revew: The Dragon and the Elephant: China, India and the New World Order

‘This book combines readability with sharp analysis, making you want to turn every page to find out more. It stimulates and nourishes the mind whilst adding to the wake-up call that the Dragon and the Elephant present to the developed world.'  Sir Digby Jones

 When the Shanghai stock market fell sharply in March 2007, the repercussions were felt around the world. The impact of the fall, soon reversed, was testimony to China's global reach. All eyes these days are on the People's Republic and its economy. We are used to the world's branded manufactures brands being made in China, including now Burberry and Rover. What we are less accustomed to is China exercising her economic power: Lenovo's acquisition of IBM's personal computer division; China's buying up of energy and commodities from Africa and Latin America; the $22 billlion stock market float of the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China. Picked at random, these facts show how the Chinese economic dragon is roaring.

But what of India?  Amid the noise about China, India has largely been ignored. But the statistics are also impressive.  For instance, the Indian industrial giant Tata has just bought Corus for $12 billion.  By 2010 India's IT industry's annual exports will be $50 billion. It is the world's second biggest market for mobile phones.

David Smith's new book, The Dragon and the Elephant: China, India and the New World Order (published on 3 May), is the first to analyse both countries. 

India and China both represent markets of well over a billion people.  In recent years, both have seen astonishing growth rates: between 9% and 10% (China) and, from 2003-6, 8% in India.  By 2050 they will be, along with the US, the world's biggest economies. Their joint emergence is the biggest thing to hit the global economy.

For many companies this represents a hugely exciting opportunity. But many westerners are pessimistic.  How can our firms compete when labour there is so cheap?  What of the geopolitical implications?  India now has the bomb, and with an army of 2.25 million how aggressive a superpower might China become? What about the huge increase in demand for energy - will this send global commodities markets soaring and devastate the environment?  Should we all start praying, or learning Mandarin? (And who will win - the dragon or the elephant?)

David Smith, one of the UK's most respected commentators, distinguishes the hype from the reality.  His hugely readable account examines the opportunities China and India face, but also their disadvantages. For instance, demographics (might India soon have too many young people and China too few?), infrastructure (Bangalore won't rival Silicon Valley unless it can put a stop to the power cuts).  And what of the millions who still live in desperate poverty? India's GDP per head still matches that of Sierra Leone.

China and India will change the world.  But, as The Dragon and the Elephant shows, not necessarily in the way that we think.

David Smith, one of the UK's most highly-regarded business journalists, is Economics Editor of the Sunday Times, author of Free Lunch (Profile), and regularly commentates on economics on the radio and TV.

International Indian Film Academy announces nominations for Idea IIFA Awards 2007

The nominations for the Idea IIFA Awards, Yorkshire were announced and released worldwide, in Mumbai by IIFA Brand Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It was also announced that the voting for the Idea IIFA Awards would be open to audiences of Indian Cinema all across the world. The Idea IIFA Awards would be held at the Hallam FM Arena, Sheffield as a climax of the IIFA Weekend.

Amitabh Bachchan with the High Commissioner for India, Mr Kamlesh Sharma and Ken Livingstone, the mayor of London

The Voting by fans and supporters of Indian Cinema is now open on and that begins from April 3rd 2007 and continues till the end of May, 2007. The results of the online voting would determine the winners of the IDEA IIFA awards.

Yorkshire will play host to the biggest stars of Indian Cinema, government office bearers, corporate heads and several Indian Film fans from all across the world. David Andrews, CEO, Yorkshire Tourist Board said, “We look forward to hosting the stalwarts of Indian Cinema in Yorkshire this June. The IIFA Weekend events in totality are expected to boost tourism in the host Yorkshire region by more than £9.5m and attract 28,000 visitors from all across the world.”

The press conference in Mumbai also reiterated the announcement of the IIFA Bond for Global Cool that was launched at the Madame Tussauds in London last week. Mr. Bachchan signed the bond along with actress Sienna Miller. The IIFA Bond for Global Cool addresses the issue of climate change across the world and this issue will be addressed and advocated through the IIFA global campaign this year and especially during the IIFA Weekend Yorkshire and the IDEA IIFA Awards.

The IIFA campaign on Global warming will be the first effort from India to highlight the issue and educate people about what they can do. Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Amitabh Bachchan said, “Global Cool and IIFA are using a credible global platform to address the issue of Global Warming and taking this endeavor to make people aware that climate change is a reality and we have the power to preserve our planet. It’s not just about an awards function. It’s about India and its high profile and hugely popular film industry focusing the world and India’s attention on climate change, because it’s a serious issue and affects us all. ”

The IIFA Bond for Global Cool allows IIFA fans and supporters across the world to join the movement that brings together “The People versus Global Warming”. People visiting the websites of and will have the opportunity to pledge to take the simple actions that will make their lifestyles more eco-efficient. They will be given a “My CO2 score card” and when their commitment reaches a saving of one tonne of CO2, will be given the “IIFA Bond for Global Cool” which enjoins them with the celebrities who are campaigning for Global Cool and gives access to Global Cool’s online community of film, music and other entertainment.

The IIFA Weekend will be from June 7th to June 10th in Yorkshire. The IIFA Weekend includes the high-profile FICCI IIFA global business forum, a celebrity charity cricket match, world premieres of Indian films, a film festival and the spectacular Idea IIFA Awards which are broadcast by Star Television network reaching out to a global audience in excess of 500 million viewers.

Nominees in Popular Category:

Best Picture: Dhoom 2, Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, Krrish, Lage Raho Munnabhai, Rang De Basanti and Vivaah.  

Direction: Karan Johar - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, Rakesh Roshan - Krrish,             

Rajkumar Hirani - Lage Raho Munnabhai,             

Vishal Bharadwaj - Omkara and Rakesh Omprakash Mehra - Rang De Basanti.

Performance in a Leading Role (Male):

Shah Rukh Khan - Don, Hrithik Roshan - Krrish, Sanjay Dutt - Lage Raho Munnabhai, Ajay Devgan - Omkara and Aamir Khan - Rang De Basanti

Performance in a Leading Role (Female):

Aishwarya Rai - Dhoom 2, Kajol - Fanaa             

Kangana Ranaut - Gangster, Rani Mukherji - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna,             

Vidya Balan - Lage Raho Munnabhai and             

Kareena Kapoor - Omkara.   

Performance in a Supporting Role (Male):

Amitabh Bachchan - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, Abhishek Bachchan - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, Arshad Warsi - Lage Raho Munnabhai, Kunal Kapoor - Rang De Basanti and I Kulkarni - Rang De Basanti. 

Performance in a Supporting Role (Female): Bipasha Basu - Dhoom 2, Rekha - Krrish, Konkona Sensharma - Omkara,   Kirron kher - Rang De Basanti and Soha Ali Khan - Rang De Basanti.

Performance in a Comic Role: Chunkey Pandey - Apna Sapna Money Money, Uday Chopra - Dhoom 2, Tusshar Kapoor - Golmaal - Fun Unlimited, Paresh Rawal - Phir Hera Pheri and Sharman Joshi - Rang De Basanti.   

Performance in a Negative Role: Hrithik Roshan - Dhoom 2, Emraan Hashmi - ter

  Boman Irani - Lage Raho Munnabhai             

  Saif Ali Khan - Omkara

  John Abraham - Zinda   

Music Direction

  Pritam - Dhoom 2 - Crazy Kiya Re

  Shankar Ehsaan Loy - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna 

  Rajesh Roshan - Krrish - Dhoop Nikalti hai Jahan Se

  Vishal Bharadwaj - Omkara - Beedi  

  A.R. Rehman - Rang De Basanti - Ru Baroo 


Best Story

  Aditya Chopra - Dhoom 2

  Rakesh Roshan - Krrish

  Rajkumar Hirani - Lage Raho Munnabhai

  Vishal Bharadwaj - Omkara

  Kamlesh Pandey - Rang De Basanti



  Sameer - Dhoom 2 - Crazy Kiya Re

  Prasoon Joshi - Fanaa - Chand Sifarish 

  Javed Akhtar - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna 

  Gulzar - Omkara - Beedi 

  Prasoon Joshi - Rang De Basanti - Ru Baroo


Playback Singer (Male)

  Shaan - Fanaa - Chand Sifarish 

  K K - Gangster - Tu Hi Meri shab

  Zubeen - Gangster - Ya Ali

  Sonu Nigam - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna

  A.R. Rehman & Naresh Iyer - Rang De Basanti - Ru Baroo


Playback Singer (Female)

  Sunidhi Chauhan - Dhoom 2 - Crazy Kiya Re 

  Alka Yagnik - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna - Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna

  Shreya Ghosal - Lage Raho Munnabhai - Pal Pal

  Sunidhi Chauhan - Omkara - Beedi jalaile 

  Lata Mangeshkar - Rang De Basanti - Luka Chhupi 



  Girish Dhamija - Gangster

  Sanjay Masoom - Krrish

  Rajkumar Hirani, Abhijat Joshi - Lage Raho Munnabhai

  Vishal Bharadwaj - Omkara

  Prasoon Joshi & Rensil Dsilva - Rang De Basanti



  Vijay Krishna Acharya - Dhoom 2

  Anurag Basu - Gangster

  Rajkumar Hirani, Abhijat Joshi, Vidhu Vinod Chopra - Lage Raho Munnabhai 

  Vishal Bharadwaj, Robin Bhatt, Abhishek Chaubey - Omkara

  Rensil Dsilva & Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra - Rang De Basanti

Doordarshan - India’s national broadcaster goes live in the UK

Rayat TV went live for the first time in the UK when its two channels started broadcasting highlights from the launch event held on Sunday 15 April. At 1200 both channels started their broadcasts which will continue 24 hours a day.

To mark the occasion Rayat TV threw a gala celebration party for 800 guests at the Grosvenor House on Park lane in London. The star-studded evening was filmed and the highlights formed the inaugural programme, which was be televised not only in the UK but across the worldwide Doordarshan network to over a billion viewers.

Both channels are ’free-to-air’ on the Digital Satellite Platform with DD News on channel 832 and DD India on 833.

Actress and writer Nina Wadia hosted the entertainment at the launch party which included a number of acts to showcase the essence of India, with the highlight as a performance by India’s top percussionist Sivamani, the all-in-one-drummer.

Film and television actor Saeed Jaffrey was also at the launch to wish Doordarshan and Rayat TV luck. Saeed pioneered some of the first programmes for Doordarshan when India’s state broadcaster was launched in 1959.

“India’s national broadcaster Doordarshan has chosen the Rayat Group as its UK partner and as proud as we are, we are humbled in the task of setting new standards in ethnic broadcasting which is second to none,“ said Nirmal Singh Rayat, Chairman of the Rayat Group.

Doordarshan, which has over 1.4 billion viewers worldwide, will be using the UK launch as a starting point for further expansion into Europe.

“Doordarshan’s launch in the UK will connect with British-Asians as well as connecting them to their roots,” said Khalid Mahmood, CEO of The Rayat Group.

DD India is Doordarshan’s bold and exciting global channel, which offers the very best gems from the vast Indian network. The programme mix includes a range of content not accessible in the UK before, including music, children’s programmes, sports, travel through to documentaries, current affairs, politics and commerce, making it a truly diverse channel.

DD News, India’s award-winning news channel balances breaking news with robust reporting built upon quality and accuracy. The bi-lingual channel (English and Hindi) will broadcast live and breaking news 24 hours a day. The schedule will include bulletins, live coverage of breaking news events, current affairs, business, health, culture, interviews and sports updates.

The NuSound Radio Team

92 fm
the voice of our local community

The campaign for a radio station catering for the local community in Newham was started in 1989 by NuSound Radio, formerly known as Star Sound Radio. A meeting was called which included local councillors, local businessmen, leaders from local communities and members of the general public, the aim of which was to explore ways of improving communications between the various communities making up the segregated ethnic populations of Newham.

At the meeting, all parties involved agreed that radio would be the best medium to serve the local community. It would provide a means for local businesses to advertise within the community and increase their revenues; at the same time, community leaders would be able to ensure that their messages for the community would be heard by a wider audience. Radio would also ensure that serious issues facing the community ranging from rape, domestic violence, drug abuse, sexual orientation, to subjects such as unemployment, careers advice and schooling could be aired and considered within the community. Radio is a medium that is easily accessible, and does not require any extra costs. It was also felt that mainstream media ignored local people and their needs.

During the campaign, over 50,000 letters of support and petition signatures from the local community have already been delivered to Ofcom (formerly Radio Authority and IBA) over the last decade. Such letters included support from all religious and ethnic quarters within Newham.

Under the name of “Star Sound Radio”, the group obtained its first RSL (Restricted Service Licence) in July 1991. The two years of groundwork put in by the team made the RSL an exceptional success. The success of the group meant that the group was chosen to team up with Newham Council to promote the 1991 Newham Mela, which attracted over 20,000 people, four times greater than the previous year when no radio broadcasts existed at all for the local community.

The group received very positive responses from members of the public, community leaders, local MPs and local councils. The group became a member of the Community Radio Association (CRA - now the Community Media Association) in 1991, and also sponsored several conferences for the CRA. The group built its radio expertise by broadcasting on Millennium 106.8 FM (previously known as RTM 103.8 FM) for eight years from 1991 until 1998. Further RSLs have been carried out at every opportunity provided by the Radio Authority in January 1992, February 1995, December 1998, December 1999, April 2002 and April 2005. The group has been involved in the promotion of numerous festivals and initiatives organised by local councils. Examples of these are listed below:

Newham Mela 1991 This was the first ever Mela to be promoted on local radio. Newham Council thanked Starmela’s support by stating that “without the support that you gave to the Mela, we would not have attracted as many people as we did ... people were talking about it for days, and the event is now definitely an annual festival which both Newham’s Asian and non-Asian communities look forward to...” The Newham Mela has since become an essential annual festival.

Racial Equality Awareness Festival 1995 This was organised by Greenwich Council.

Inauguration of the Sikh Festival 1999 This event was carried out by Greenwich Council in Plumstead.

Mayor’s New Year’s Parade 1998 & 1999 Starmela was extremely honoured in being invited to join the Mayor’s New Year’s Parade in central London by the Mayor of Redbridge, John Lovell. Starmela was then further flattered when the group’s contribution resulted in Redbridge Council’s entry winning first prize in 1999.

Plumstead (Greenwich) Mela 2000

Bexleyheath Tamil Sports Day Event 2000 This was the largest ever gathering for sports within the Tamil community in the UK.

Tamil Mela 2000 This festival occurred in Southhall, Middlesex.

Mauritian Mela 2000 This festival took place in Redbridge “Hamara Ghar” (Our Home) Association.

1991 onwards Starmela has regularly provided music and entertainment for the physically challenged and elderly as part of this London-wide initiative to improve the daily lives of such people.

Various Local Charity Events Starmela has supported several such events each year since 1991.

Over the years, the group has provided the opportunity for prominent dignitaries and local groups to reach the community. Such groups and individuals include Tony Banks MP, Stephen Timms MP, Sir Neil Thorne MP, Alcoholics Anonymous, the Chief Inspector of Forest Gate Police Station (Metropolitan Police), the local Fire Brigade and Domestic Violence Units from Thamesmead and Brixton.

In addition to working within Newham, NuSound Radio has experience in dealing with over 17 different radio groups across the country providing advisory services to them. This has been invaluable to the development of the group, and greatly assisted the group’s understanding of the radio and broadcast industries. NuSound Radio has strengthened its links with the diverse communities across London and beyond, formed strong relations with the business community, as well as improving operational strategies in marketing, finance, audience research and the overall running of a radio station.

Tari Sian, Managing Director of NuSound Radio said, “My heartfelt thanks go out to all the staff, presenters, advertisers, community organisations and listeners for supporting us over the past 16 years.”

NuSound Radio is on air 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 92 FM throughout East London. For further information about advertising, sponsorship or participating in the broadcasts, please call 020 8472 9292 or email your enquiry to: or

Mayor of London announces launch of London's ‘India Now’ season

London will host ‘India Now’, a three-month season centering on London's interaction with India's rapidly growing economy and exploring India's culture. It will take in events, activities and festivals across the capital dedicated to Indian art, film, food, theatre, music and fashion. The Mayor of London Ken Livingstone announced more details of the season as part of his programme for extending business and cultural links between the capital and India in 2007.

The Mayor said: "India is not only one of the world's most important and rapidly growing economies, an emerging economic superpower, but it also has one of the world's most important cultures. In 2007, we are aiming to strengthen London's relations with India, building on the significant contribution that the Indian community - the largest minority national group in London - already makes to the economic, cultural and social success of the capital. With the arrival of more Indian companies, India's cultural impact on London is going to increase further. India Now will be an opportunity to experience the richness of Indian culture and will underline the relationship London has with India. “

The season will be launched in the week commencing 16th July by the Mayor and an Indian and London artist for a spectacular event designed to portray the theme of the 2007 programme "India and London - partners in globalisation".

‘India Now’ will feature several key events, one of which will be a three-week Indian-themed Trafalgar Square Festival commencing on the Thursday 2 August. The famous square in the centre of London will see spectacular Indian and Indian-related outdoor events. Then on Sunday 2 September – Regent Street – one of London’s premiere shopping streets will be transformed into an Indian streetscape complete with music, spectacular sculptures, food and artisans.

A cornerstone of ‘India Now’ will be a fashion show on Friday 7 September at the Victoria and Albert Museum called ‘Fashion in Motion.’ The event will showcase the new autumn collection of one of India’s most famous designers.

Over 150 of London's cultural organisations and attractions will participate in the 'India Now' season which will showcase India's contribution to world culture, its rich tradition and most importantly raise awareness and celebrate new Indian trends across art, film, theatre, food, music and fashion. Both invited Indian artists and London-based artists will be involved in the events.

Many Indian associations are contributing to the 'India Now' season, as are a wide range of London's organisations and attractions across the capital, including the National Film Theatre, Victoria and Albert Museum, the South Bank and Barbican centres, Watermans, Thames Festival, the Institute of Contemporary Arts and Akademi.


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