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News that you need to know! Selected news stories from Qatar, India, Middle East and around the world, with focus on news that matters to Indians in Qatar.

TN Chief Minister Jayalalitha jailed for corruption

Jayalalitha, the chief minister of Tamil Nadu has been sentenced to jail for four years on corruption charges in a case that has lasted for 18 years. She was found guilty of amassing wealth of more than INR 66 crores which was unaccounted for. The three-time Chief Minister was sentenced to four years’ simple imprisonment and a Rs. 100-crore fine was imposed on her for offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act. Her co-accused — Sasikala Natarajan, V. Sudhakaran and J. Elavarasi — were sentenced to four years’ imprisonment with a fine of Rs. 10 crore each. Along with three others, Jayalalitha was sentenced to an immediate jail term, and was due to be sent to Parappana Agrahara prison in Bangalore. In consequence, Ms. Jayalalithaa stood disqualified as an MLA and lost her position as Chief Minister. She would now be barred from contesting elections for the period of conviction plus six…

DFI accepting applications for grants

Doha Film Institute (DFI) started accepting applications  for the next cycle of its annual Grants Programme for film-makers from Qatar and around the globe. DFI has announced through its website that it will continue receiving applications for the Programme until October 15. The Programme provides creative and financial assistance to film-makers from Qatar, and to first and second-time film-makers from around the world. Through the Programme, DFI seeks to identify new talent, find new cinematic voices and discover stories of global relevance and appeal. It aims to empower Qatari voices in film-making that have the potential to make significant contributions to the art of cinema. Citizen and expatriate film-makers who wish to apply for the Programme may send an email to More details are available at : Doha Film Institute Website Source : Peninsula

Indian Embassy Receives 2,792 Complaints

The Indian embassy in Doha has received 2,792 complaints so far this year, the monthly community house was informed yesterday. In the previous years, 3,385 (2012) and 3,558 (2013) complaints were received by the labour and community welfare section. At the community house yesterday, ambassador Sanjiv Arora and other senior officials assured the complainants of further follow-up with the local authorities and necessary action. According to the embassy, 85 Indian nationals are currently serving varied sentences in the Central Prison and another 143, who are awaiting repatriation, are housed at the Deportation Centre. The total number of deaths registered so far this year was 204.In 2012, the embassy registered 237 deaths while 241 deaths were reported last year. Source : Gulf Times

Special taxis for women, families soon

The Doha-based Profit Group, which launched its new yellow-roofed taxis yesterday, is planning to introduce special taxis for women and families – a first in the country. There will be a screen separating the passenger from the driver. Women will not see the driver, but they can move the screen, if they wish so because it will be under the passenger’s control. The women passenger is also not required to speak to the driver directly. Instead they can communicate through a mike installed in the back seat. At the end of the trip, the passenger can deposit the money in a tray in front of their seat, which will be transferred to the driver. The driver can return the balance amount, if any, and issue the ticket using the same system. Source : Peninsula

7 highlights of Modi’s visit to US

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to begin his first official visit to the United States of America, to boost bilateral trade and investments. Here are the 7 highlights of Modi’s trip: Mr. Modi  arrives in New York where he will address the UN General Assembly, before heading to Washington for his first meeting with President Barack Obama. The visit is expected to go a long way in mending the strained relations between India and US. Trade and business are expected to top the agenda of the visit which comes a day after Modi unveiled his new ‘Make in India’ campaign, aiming to turn the country into a global manufacturing hub. During his four-day visit, he is expected to meet top leaders of Fortune 500 companies, including Google, IBM, GE and Boeing. At his talks with President Obama, he is expected to discuss issues “to expand and deepen the US-India…

Around The Region
Meet the richest Indians in Middle East

Seven NRIs based in Middle East were included among the 100 Richest Indians List released by Forbes Magazine this week. Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani is No. 1 for the eighth year in a row, while Dilip Shanghvi, founder of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries, who got richer this year by $4.1 billion, is the new No. 2, displacing steel baron Lakshmi Mittal, who slips to fifth place. For the first time in history, the top 100 are all billionaires, with combined wealth of $346 billion, up more than a third from 11 months ago. The Middle East based Indians who found place in the elite list are : #17 – Micky Jagtiani – $ 5.1 Billion The Dubai- headquartered Landmark Group that Micky Jagtiani founded in 1973 with one store in Bahrain generates more than $5 billion revenues annually from 1,800 stores across the Middle East, Africa and India. it reportedly plans to open 50 more stores…

Modi unveils ‘Make in India’ campaign

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched an ambitious campaign titled ‘Make in India’ which aims to turn the country into a global manufacturing hub. The ‘Make in India’ campaign aims to turn the country into a global manufacturing hub. It includes plans to cut red tape, develop infrastructure and make it easier for companies to do business. Currently, manufacturing contributes only 15% to India’s gross domestic product. The new campaign aims to raise it to 25%. “Whenever I met business people for the last few years they would tell me – we want to shift out. It pained me that people of nation are forced to leave. We do not want any industrialist being forced to leave India. I can say that we have been able to bring about a change in last few months”, Mr. Modi said while unveiling the campaign in Delhi. “Make-in-India is a lion’s step”, said Modi, after launching…

Saudi Arabia announces Oct. 4 as Eid al-Adha

Saudi Arabia announced on Wednesday the Muslim Eid al-Adha would fall on Saturday, Oct. 4. In the lunar Islamic calendar, Eid al-Adha falls on the 10th day of the month of Dhul Hijjah, which Saudi authorities announced would begin on Thursday. Eid al-Adha marks the end of hajj, a religious pilgrimage undertaken by millions of Muslims each year to Makkah in Saudi Arabia. Saudi authorities also announced that the Day of Arafa, the most important day of hajj, would fall on Oct. 3. Source : Al Arabiya News

What is the price of iPhone 6 in Qatar?

The worldwide craze for the latest iPhone 6 has reached new heights with long queues in front of retail shops and up to triple prices in black market. Not surprisingly, in Qatar too the demand is peak high as hundreds of residents have bought the device at exorbitant prices. The official sale in Qatar will start only on 27th September and the pre-bookings by Ooredoo and Vodafone have met unprecedented demands. While the actual prices for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus range from QR 2,799 to QR 3,999 some have reportedly paid up to QR 9,500. Here are the prices as per Ooredoo’s website :

India’s Big Leap : Becomes first Asian nation to reach Mars orbit

India became the first Asian nation to reach the Red Planet when its indigenously made unmanned spacecraft entered the orbit of Mars on Wednesday (Sep 24) and the first nation in the world to successfully reach Mars on its first attempt. The spacecraft called “Mangalyaan,” or “Mar’s craft” in Hindi, which was launched last November, slowed down just enough to reach orbit early Wednesday, securing India a place in the elite global space club of Martian explorers. Images of beaming scientists clapping and hugging each other at the command center in the southern city of Bangalore were shown live in a nationally televised broadcast after a breathless, nail-biting countdown during the spacecraft’s final leg. Over an hour after reaching the orbit, the space agency received the first photographic data of the red planet’s terrain which were transmitted via an antenna located in Canberra, Australia. What is red, is a planet…