Thursday, July 26, 2012

Before the annual Iftar dinner at the Pentagon

Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta speaks with Pentagon Army Chaplains (Lt. Cols.) Thomas Waynick and Kenneth Williams before the annual Iftar dinner at the Pentagon, July 25, 2012. Iftar refers to the evening meal when Muslims break their fast during the month of Ramadan, the Islamic faith's holiest time.

CMC surgeon does the region proud

Dr. Navneet Kumar Chaudhry has been elected as President 
Dr. Navneet Kumar Chaudhry, Professor & Head of Surgery at Christian Medical College Hospital Ludhiana has been elected as the President of Association of Minimal Access Surgeons of India (AMASI), North Zone for the term 2012 -2014. Professor Chaudhry was elected to this position during recently held 7th International Congress of Association of Minimal Access Surgeons of India, at Coimbatore, Tamilnadu, from July 19-22, 2012. With more than 4500 members, AMASI is the largest section of Association of Surgeons of India (ASI).
The international congress was attended by more than 2500 delegates from all over India and surgeons from Australia, UK, Korea, Germany and US. During the congress, Dr. Chaudhry delivered a guest lecture and chaired 3 sessions on live advanced laparoscopic surgery.
According to Prof. Chaudhry, the main aim of the AMASI is to bring safe and affordable minimal access surgery to the masses, with a special focus on training young surgeons in this highly technical and patient friendly surgical technique.. Dr. Chaudhry is the first surgeon from the state of Punjab to be elected as President of AMASI north zone.
CMC Hospital, Ludhiana pioneered minimally access surgery in early nineties and has played a key role in making this technique popular in North India. ----Shalu Arora and Rector Kathuria

CMC surgeon does the region proud

Sunday, July 22, 2012


U.S., Japan Both 'Thinking Big' on Strategy

By Karen Parrish
American Forces Press Service

TOKYO, July 21, 2012 - Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter told reporters here today that as the United States rebalances its defense strategy toward the Asia-Pacific, "our central and anchoring" ally, Japan, is also beginning a strategic shift.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
U.S. Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter meets with Japanese Defense Minister Satoshi Morimoto in Tokyo, July 20, 2012. Japan is the third stop for Carter during a 10-day Asia-Pacific tour meeting with leaders in Hawaii, Guam, Thailand, India and South Korea. DOD photo by U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Chad J. McNeeley

The deputy secretary, who arrived here July 20 as part of a 10-day Asia-Pacific tour, has met with Japanese government leaders including Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba, Defense Minister Satoshi Morimoto and Parliamentary Senior Vice-Minister of Defense Shu Watanabe. Carter said those meetings left him feeling Japan's government leaders are expanding their strategic thinking "both functionally and geographically." The deputy secretary spoke here during a press briefing with a number of regional media representatives. He said U.S. leaders welcome Japan's growing strategic interests, and will "work with the government of Japan and the Japanese Self-Defense Forces to realize that vision."
"We're both, in a sense, thinking big and thinking strategically at the same time," he added. "That has great potential."
Carter noted his visit to Asia-Pacific nations, which will also include stops in Thailand, India and South Korea, follows similar trips by President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta.
Those visits, Carter noted, focused on articulating the new strategy, which the president announced in January. His own presence here, he added, is aimed at getting the gears turning.
"They sent me here because my job as the chief management officer of the Department of Defense is to implement that vision," the deputy secretary said. "I came to this region to meet with our friends and partners and allies -- [and] to meet with and assess our own forces throughout the region -- with an eye to carrying out that turning of the strategic corner."
Carter said while growth is slowing in the United States' defense budget, the necessary resources are available to fund the new Asia-Pacific focus.
"All of the capacity that has been tied up in Iraq and Afghanistan for the last 10 years is capacity that we can focus now on the Asia-Pacific region, and that's a tremendous amount of capability," he said.
Within the existing defense budget, Carter added, "We are shifting the weight of our innovation and investment from counterinsurgency-type warfare to the kinds of capabilities that are most relevant to the Asia-Pacific theater."
He noted putting the strategy in place is "just a matter of making it happen, and deciding which specific things to do."
Defense leaders are determined to make those decisions in consultation with U.S. friends and allies, the deputy secretary said.
Carter said Japan is America's central regional ally and has been for many decades.
"Naturally I come here first, to Tokyo," he said.
The U.S. and Japan, he added, have "tremendous momentum in many, many areas: joint planning, technology sharing, [and] joint exercises and training."
Carter traveled to Japan from Guam. He noted that Guam, an island U.S. territory, offers important training opportunities for both U.S. and Japanese forces.
"In both of our countries, it becomes more and more difficult to do the kind of training that requires access to wide areas of territory," he said. "And that is possible in Guam, so that's a great opportunity for both of us."
Carter added that Guam is also important to both nations as a consequence of the "2+2" agreement U.S. and Japanese defense and diplomatic leaders signed in April.
Under that agreement, nearly 5,000 U.S. Marines currently stationed on the Japanese island of Okinawa will transfer to Guam, while the United States will return to Japan much of the land in Okinawa those forces now use.
"The 2+2 agreement with respect to the movement of Marines to Guam was a great milestone," Carter said. "From my point of view I'm very optimistic that there's momentum on both sides to implement the agreement. I think that's the way forward."
The U.S. and Japan have long debated how to relocate many of the Marines on Guam, Carter said, noting the issue was settled "by the 2+2 agreement and I think that is a very good thing."
Carter added that Guam represents more than just a new site for the rotational deployment of Marines.
"There's a large Air Force base, there's a large Navy base; Japanese forces have been to each and exercised from each, and those are important capabilities irrespective of the Marine Corps issue," he said.
Carter has also taken part on discussions with the new commander of U.S. Forces Japan, Air Force Lt. Gen. Salvatore A. Angelella, who took command July 20. The deputy secretary told reporters the general "will be a great partner for the government of Japan."
In every way, the deputy secretary said, there is a lot of forward progress in the U.S.-Japanese alliance.
"It's a great time to be here, [and a] great time of new purpose and new horizons," Carter said.
Ashton B. Carter
Related Sites:
Special Report: Travels With Carter
Related Articles:
Carter: U.S. to Work with Japan on Osprey Analysis
Carter Addresses Joint Strike Fighter Program

Defense CIO:

Wireless Spectrum a Critical Enabler
By Claudette Roulo
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 20, 2012 - "Spectrum is the critical enabler that ensures information is dependably available to train our forces and ensure our mission accomplishment," Teresa M. Takai, the chief information officer for the Department of Defense, said today.

Takai was speaking at the announcement of the release of a report, "Realizing the Full Potential of Government-Held Spectrum to Spur Economic Growth," from the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, or PCAST.

The report was released following President Barack Obama's June 2010 memo asking federal agencies to free up 500 megahertz of space in the radio spectrum for the ongoing growth of wireless services and to help further economic growth.

"We are dependent on industry for innovative products that can be used for national security," Takai said. "In that regard, we remain fully committed in support of the national economic and security goals of the president's 500 MHz initiative."

"Military spectrum requirements are diverse and complex," she added. "We must ... recognize the growing spectrum demands resulting from [DOD's] increasing reliance on spectrum-dependent technologies."

As an example, Takai cited the increased use of unmanned aerial systems, or UASs, to process critical intelligence and reconnaissance data. The number of UASs accessing the government-held spectrum increased from 167 in 2002 to more than 7,500 in 2010, resulting in a dramatic increase in UAS use and training requirements, she said.

To cope with the increasing demand, the U.S. will need to adopt an "all of the above strategy," said Jason Furman, the principal deputy director of the National Economic Council. Such a strategy, he said, will entail not just traditional reallocation of frequencies, but infrastructure development, incentive auctions and new technologies.

"If the nation expands its options for managing federal spectrum, we could transform the availability of this national resource from scarcity to abundance," said Mark Gorenberg, the chair of the PCAST working group responsible for the report.

The PCAST report recommended employing new technologies to more efficiently utilize the existing spectrum. For example, the report suggested, rather than reserving a frequency for use by a single agency or private company, new technologies can allow a frequency to be shared by a many users.

This approach could lead to a "shared-use superhighway," according to the report, moving away from the idea of single band ownership in favor of larger groups of shared frequencies. This superhighway would be a tiered system that establishes a hierarchy on frequencies shared by multiple entities while routing traffic to open spaces on those frequencies.

Pointing to a 95 MHz-wide section of the spectrum that is currently shared by more than 20 agencies holding more than 3,000 frequency assignments, many of them defense related, Lawrence Strickling, the administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, Department of Commerce, said: "It will take at least ten years and about $18 billion to clear this band of the federal uses and then make it available to commercial uses."

"It's going to cost too much and take too long to reallocate this spectrum the old-fashioned way. The solution, as PCAST recommends, is for federal agencies and commercial users to share the spectrum," said Strickling, who also serves as the assistant secretary of commerce for communications and information.

"The implementation of more effective and efficient use of this finite radio frequency spectrum and the development of solutions to meet these goals is essential to national security and economic goals," Takai said.

"The move from an exclusive-right spectrum management regime to one focused on large-scale spectrum sharing between federal and commercial systems represents a major shift in the way spectrum is managed," Takai added. "While this shift represents many challenges, we will continue to work with our industry partners and our government partners to develop equitable spectrum sharing solutions."

Teresa M. Takai
Related Sites:
PCAST Documents/Reports

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Saturday, July 21, 2012

USS Blue Ridge remarks

U.S. Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter addresses officers and crew members of the USS Blue Ridge in Yokosuka, Japan, July 21, 2012. Japan is Carter's third stop during a 10-day Asia Pacific trip to meet with partners in Hawaii, Guam, Thailand, India and South Korea.


U.S. Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter, right, walks with U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Salvatore A. "Sam" Angelella, commader, U.S. Forces Japan, at Yokota Air Base, Japan, July 21, 2012

Monday, July 16, 2012

A new success by Dr. H S Bedi at CMC Ludhiana

Rare major open heart surgery saves  a new life
Ludhiana, 16th July, 2012 (Shalu Arora and Rector Kathuria)
Mr Vikas Masih – a   35 year old teacher – was in a very serious condition. He had developed a large blood clot in his lungs – a condition called massive pulmonary embolism – due to which he was not able to breathe. He was referred to Dr Harinder Singh Bedi – Head of Cardio Vascular Endovascular & Thoracic Surgery at the Christian Medical College & Hospital, Ludhiana. On examination and investigation Dr Bedi realized that Mr Vikas was in imminent danger of death as his oxygen levels were dangerously low. This was damaging his brain and kidneys.
He had already been put on maximal medical therapy including the latest blood thinners at another hospital – but they did not work. The only option to save his life now was a major and rare open heart surgery called pulmonary thrombo-endarterectomy. Dr Bedi said that the surgery is done on a heart lung machine but additionally for a short period of time the circulation even through the heart lung machine has to be stopped. This is called circulatory arrest and is like totally stopping the heart and the lungs - both the natural and artificial ones.
Dr Bedi explained that this is because otherwise the blockage in the lungs cannot be seen clearly. During the tense 10 minutes while the patient was ‘clinically dead’ - on no circulation at all – his lungs were totally cleared of all the deadly clot. Dr Bedi is a pioneer in this field and in fact has trained in this rare surgery at the St Vincents Hospital in Sydney. However this was a very challenging case as Vikas is very young and this extent of disease was unexpected.
The other members of the Heart team are Dr A Joseph, Dr Sheetal Garg, Dr Melchi, Dr Paul, Dr Reenus ,  Dr Dinesh, Dr Pratap, Dr William, Dr Pearl,  Dr Savan, Dr Meenu, DR Nina and Dr Ashwin  . The heart lung machine was manned by Mr Jairus and Mr William – who are the senior most perfusionists of Punjab – along with Mr Mathew.
Dr Abraham G Thomas – Director of CMC & H – said that the CMC was committed to bringing the latest technology to Punjab so that the people of this area were given the best possible therapy.

Locklear Arrives in Manila for Security Talks

By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

MANILA, Philippines, July 15, 2012 - The senior U.S. commander in the Pacific region arrived here today to reaffirm the strength of the U.S.-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty and to explore how the United States can support efforts to boost Philippine military capacity.

Navy Adm. Samuel J. Locklear III, paying his first visit here since taking command at U.S. Pacific Command in March, is slated to meet with President Benigno S. Aquino III, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and Armed Forces of the Philippines chief, Gen. Jessie Dellosa, for talks to center on maritime and regional security issues.

Locklear told American Forces Press Service during the flight here that he looks forward to building on the historic U.S.-Philippine bilateral defense relationship that marked its 60th anniversary last year.

The admiral recalled his days as a young Navy officer when the United States had a large presence at Subic Bay and U.S. military members worked closely with their Filipino counterparts. Although the U.S. footprint in the Philippines has changed significantly over the years, he said, the trust and collaboration established between the two nations hasn't.

That foundation will be important, he said, as the United States helps the Filipino military transition from an army-centric, internally focused organization into one able to draw on more joint capabilities to address regional challenges.

"Now, as the security environment changes, many countries recognize that there has got to be more maritime domain awareness [and] more understanding of what is happening around them rather than [just] what is happening internally," he said. "So what we are looking for is to try to provide [the Philippines] assistance that builds the interoperability of our defense forces over time."

The United States isn't alone in this endeavor, the admiral said, noting that other regional allies and partners are invested as well, recognizing that the broad challenges across the Asia-Pacific region demand strong multilateral cooperation.

Among those challenges are tense maritime disputes in the South China Sea. The Philippines, China, Malaysia, Brunei and Vietnam all claim portions of the contested waterways. The Philippines and China are currently locked in a naval standoff, with both claiming ownership of the contentious Scarborough Shoal. That dispute reached a new level just before Locklear's arrival as a Chinese naval frigate ran aground about 70 miles off the Philippines' western coast. The incident was resolved peacefully as the Chinese freed the stranded vessel earlier today.

Locklear, speaking with reporters in Australia before that latest development, said the United States doesn't take sides in territorial disputes and encourages peaceful resolution through international legal processes. He warned, however, of excessive maritime claims that cause friction among neighbors, and if not resolved, could lead to "miscalculation" that threatens stability.

During his meetings with Filipino military and political leaders, Locklear said he'll seek ways to expand the U.S.-Philippine military-to-military relationship in ways that promote regional stability and security.

"On the military side, a productive alliance requires us to be able to work together, to have connectivity with each other, to be able to share information, and to be able to bring our military systems together in a meaningful way across all aspects of military power -- whether it's humanitarian assistance and disaster relief or a contingency or otherwise," he said.

"I'm looking forward to giving the message to the Filipino military and to the leaders there that the United States is a very reliable ally," he said. "We want the Filipinos to be a reliable ally to us as well."

Locklear said he will reinforce the message of U.S. commitment that Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, made during his visit here in June. Dempsey and Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta had delivered the same message days before that visit when they met with Gazmin and Dellosa at the annual Shangri-La regional security summit in Singapore.

That discussion followed U.S.-Philippine "Two Plus Two" talks in Washington in April. Panetta, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Gazmin and Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario met for what Panetta called "very successful" sessions about expanding the alliance.

Locklear said he looks forward on building on this momentum in ways that deepen engagement between the two countries and identify ways they can work together to support common security goals.

"This is a reaffirmation that the Mutual Defense Treaty is still in place and still strong," the admiral said of his visit here. "And it is an opportunity for us to find places and missions were we can partner and exercise together in a way that will increase our overall security cooperation and increase security in this critical part of the Asia-Pacific."

Navy Adm. Samuel J. Locklear III

Related Sites:
U.S. Pacific Command
Related Articles:
Pacom Chief Calls Australia Key Player in Regional Security

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Enter in Diversity Video Competition

Accepting Entries For The 2012 Diversity Video Competition

Are you interested in filmmaking?

Are you tired of being looked at suspiciously because you are Sikh?

 Enter in the Sikh Coalition’s Diversity Video Competition to make a difference, and have your voice heard.
The Sikh Coalition invites you to create a video for this year’s Diversity Video Competition! The first place winner will receive a $1,500 cash prize and have his/her film premiered at the Sikh Arts and Film Festival in New York City in November! The deadline for entry is September 30, 2012.
Once entries are submitted, the public will be given an opportunity to view the top films, and vote for their favorites. Then, a panel of expert judges will select the 1st and 2nd place winners.
Competition Topic
My Crown - My Faith
How does it feel to be a Sikh? Why don’t you try! Walk a mile in our shoes!
Film-makers are encouraged to create a 5 minute video (or less) which depicts a non-Sikh adorning/wearing a Sikh turban for a day, and presenting himself/herself as a Sikh. The turban is a Sikh article of faith, and should always be treated with respect. The film should capture the reactions of passersby, friends, and family members. Pre and post interviews with main characters are encouraged.
The application, rules, and submission instructions are available by clicking here.
  • Contestants of all ages may submit to the competition.
  • Prior film experience is not necessary.
  • All entries will be considered without regard to race, sex, national or ethnic origin, citizenship, religious affiliation, or disability
Submission Deadline
All entries must be submitted online no later than September 30, 2012. To download an instruction and application form, please click here. All information, details, and contact information for inquires may be found at  

Monday, July 09, 2012

CMC organized another event for patient

A Free Medical & Dental Health Check-up Camp
Ludhiana, 8th July, 2012: (Shalu Arora and Rector Kathuria)
A  Comprehensive Free Medical Health Check-up Camp was organized at Sirish Hospital/CMC City Center,(B-XX 1140, Krishna Nagar, Ghumar Mandi), Ludhiana on Sunday, 08th July.  
Specialist Doctors from Christian Medical College and Hospital examined medical and surgical patients; for Skin, Pediatrics (Child Specialist), Ob/Gyn (Problems of ladies), Ophthalmologist (Eye Specialist), Dentist (Problems of Teeth), Ear, Nose and Throat, Orthopedics (Bones and Joints),etc.
The team of doctors, nurses and paramedical staff examined about 300 patients in the camp. This is the first time CMC Hospital has organized a free camp at Sirish Hospital.
Mr Gurprit Bassi (Gogi), Municipal Councilor, Chief Guest for the occasion, inaugurated the camp by cutting the ribbon. He lauded the efforts of CMC and Sirish Hospital for extending free medical check-up service to the community. He wished success for the camp and opined that such medical camps should be held more frequently. The camp was dedicated with a prayer by Rev Rogers.

Dr Sirish Chandra and Dr Baljinder Kaur expressed their gratitude to CMC Doctors for conducting this camp and for providing expert consultation for the patients.

Dr.A.G.Thomas, Director CMC, mentioned this camp is part of the commitment of CMC to serve the community by providing expert health care.

Also present on the occasion were: Dr Kim Mammen, Dr S C Khosla, Dr Vijay Obed, Mr Ashley Isaih.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

An urgent appeal

 Woman Needs Help to Survive
Ludhiana, 7th July, 2012 (Shalu Arora and Rector Kathuria) Mrs. Sosan Daniel from Ludhiana is in a difficult situation. Sosan Daniel (Hospital Unit No. C-7171827) is a 60 years old lady.  She has been hospitalized since 2-6-2012 with a diagnosis of Diabetes mellitus type 2, Diabetic nephropathy, CKD- stage V, systemic hypertension and obstructive sleep apnoea. She requires respiratory support for her OSA and has been advised dialysis which has been deferred due to financial constraints.
The patient is poor, her outstanding bill is nearly Rs. 1 lakh and her daily expenses is approximately Rs. 5000/-per day. The cost of initiating hemodialysis is Rs. 10000/- for three consecutive sessions and maintenance hemodialysis for a period of 1 month is approximately 25000/-. She requires prolonged hospital stay and her family is desperately in need of financial support for continuation of treatment.For further details Please Contact Dr.Navjot Singh- 9815543708

India’s Informal Economy and Foreign Investment

In India, growth in informal sector is much higher
Amanpreet Singh Chhina                                                                            06 July 2012 
Oxford: Depreciating value of Indian rupee has raised enthusiasm among foreign investors/NRIs to invest in India; however, without seriously analysing the fact that 80 percent businesses in India are based in informal economy and huge amount of black money is involved in the real estate and private sector. Generally, the purchase of any property in India involves 60 to 70 percent of black money and therefore the seller faces many obstacles to bring that investment back to the foreign country. “Many foreign investors are facing money laundering inquires by the investigating officers in foreign countries” said Makhan Singh (NRI), Solicitor Advocate of England and Wales.
In India, growth in informal sector is much higher than formal sector and even the Prime Minister of India is not sure about the actual GDP of the country. It is estimated that illegal transactions in the property sector alone generate about Rs. 2,000 crores of black money in a year in India, assuming that there are about fifty lakh transactions in urban property every year. Necessary steps should be taken by the Government of India to match government value of the property with fair market value to clamp down black money and money laundering in the country. It must be remembered that a simple ‘Welcome Back’ slogan by the Prime Minister of India will not attract back Indian professionals and investors unless a corruption free infrastructure and business environment (single-window clearance) is provided. GOI should develop policies to combat money laundering and black money issues so that foreign investor or NRI’s can invest in India.

A S Chhina on FDI
 India’s Informal Economy and Foreign Investment