“Alcohol and gasoline do not mix” – Traffic Chief

first_img…says speeding, drunk driving responsible for 75% of fatal accidentsOver 75 per cent of the fatal accidents that occurred during the first quarter of this year are as a result of the combination of speeding and driving under the influence of alcohol.Traffic Chief Linden IslesThis is according to Traffic Chief, Linden Isles, who told this newspaper on Monday that these tragedies could have been prevented if the parties involved had adhered to the traffic laws of Guyana.“From our end, we continue to do educational talks, programmes, enforcement exercises and we will continue. Sadly, the issue of speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol is something that is within a culture of persons who naturally want to consume alcohol and then drive. And we all know it is a very dangerous practice because alcohol and gasoline do not mix,” he stated.According to the Traffic Chief, no one person can stop or prevent all accidents from occurring but if the public along with traffic ranks work together then there can be minimised amounts of deaths on Guyana’s roadways yearly.“We continue to urge members of the public, drivers, if they have to attend functions or social events, if they have to drive, don’t consume alcohol, don’t imbibe. If they have to imbibe, get a designated driver so that we can have control of the situation,” the Traffic Chief said.Guyana Times was also told that there has been a drastic decrease in statistics with regard to children being involved in fatal accidents when compared to the previous year for the same period.“We continue to do our educational talks to schools throughout the country. If you notice that most times you find with our figures that children, I don’t know if it [is] because of our road talks and these things, but we had a reduction, a vast reduction in children being involved in road accidents. We continue to do our road safety talks in schools.”CCTV camerasMeanwhile, in relation to the Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras that have been installed around key intersections, it was explained that these cameras are still serving their purpose despite being installed about eight years ago.“Well, I would say the CCTV cameras in some areas are working, we still use them. We have been having successful prosecutions in various matters with the footage from these cameras. The Guyana Police Force monitors it 24/7 and the CCTV system is being monitored by our ranks,” the Traffic Chief added.CCTV camera usage has also boosted crime-fighting efforts by enabling law enforcement ranks to track and intercept criminals.Installed years ago and constantly upgraded, the closed-circuit camera system was initiated under the previous Administration.At least 130 cameras were installed initially. (Kristen Macklingam)last_img read more

Local residents invited to attend information session on Canada Games contingency plan

first_imgThe information session will be held on August 21 in the lobby of the Pomeroy Sport Centre. There are two sessions to attend with the first taking place from 6:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m., and the second from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.A number of topics will be covered including a need for volunteers should the speed skating be moved to Fort St. John according to Communications Manager Alyson Gourley-Cramer.“We’ll need a small team of people in Fort St. John to carry the event on if the contingency plan takes place. We’ll need volunteers to carry out the event and we are looking for some specific volunteers. At the planning session we’ll describe what those jobs are and who we need,” she explained.- Advertisement -A decision on whether or not Fort St. John will be needed to host long track speed skating would be made three days prior to the start of the games on February 10.last_img read more

Shy? Single? Throw a cuddle party

first_imgAs interesting as online models of interaction can be, they don’t do much for people who may live alone and crave a little hug once in a while. So people such as Andrea Bell, a single psychotherapist in Long Beach, are forking over $30 to spoon with perfect strangers at nonsexual, and highly monitored, cuddle parties. Cuddlers sit in a welcome circle with strangers, talk, joke and, eventually, cuddle. Cuddle lifeguards ensure that there’s no hanky-panky happening and that everyone feels safe. “By the time you leave, everybody is glowing, myself included,” said Bell. Andrew Schwartz, a cuddle-party facilitator in Los Angeles, said the practice mixes old and new forms of affection to help singles achieve intimacy without a relationship. “We’re taking the freedom we got from the free love movement and combining it with ideas of personal responsibility,” Schwartz said. “In this culture, if you are single, you’re not getting any touching at all. A study showed friends touched each other 200 times an hour in Puerto Rico. In the U.S. it was two times. People in warm countries don’t need cuddle parties.” Admittedly, Southern California is warm. But the culture apparently isn’t, according to Schwartz, a transplant from New York. “With the entertainment business being such a big part of the culture, that could cause people to be oriented on a more superficial level. I sometimes wonder if it has to do with the inability to form connections easily because we’re all spread out. We’re not as physically close together as people in other cities.” Bell says that for herself, the cuddle party is not a substitute for a relationship, but it is that for a lot of the single people who attend. “I’m not isolated and lonely, but I’ve spent a lot of effort creating a community. When I was in my 20s, I did feel isolated. … I think a lot of people go because they are single.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Libraries

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! What better place to tell stories about the diverse cultures within the San Fernando Valley than at the public libraries? • Canoga Park, 20939 Sherman Way; (818) 887-0320. • Chatsworth, 21052 Devonshire St.; (818) 341-4276. • Eagle Rock, 5027 Caspar Ave.; (323) 258-8078. • Encino-Tarzana, 18231 Ventura Blvd.; (818) 343-1983. • Granada Hills, 10640 Petit Ave.; (818) 368-5687. • Lake View Terrace, 12002 Osborne St.; (818) 890-7404. • Mid-Valley Regional, 16244 Nordhoff St., North Hills; (818) 895-3650. • North Hollywood Regional, 5211 Tujunga Ave.; (818) 766-7185. • Northridge, 9051 Darby Ave.; (818) 886-3640. • Pacoima, 13605 Van Nuys Blvd.; (818) 899-5203. • Panorama City, 14345 Roscoe Blvd.; (818) 894-4071. • Platt, 23600 Victory Blvd., Woodland Hills; (818) 340-9386. • Porter Ranch, 11371 Tampa Ave., (818) 260-5706. • Sherman Oaks, 14245 Moorpark St.; (818) 205-9716. • Studio City, 12511 Moorpark St.; (818) 755-7873. • Sun Valley, 7935 Vineland Ave.; (818) 764-1338. • Sunland-Tujunga, 7771 Foothill Blvd.; (818) 352-4481. • Sylmar, 14561 Polk St.; (818) 367-6102. • Valley Plaza, 12311 Vanowen St., North Hollywood; (818) 765-9251. • Van Nuys, 6250 Sylmar Ave.; (818) 756-8453. • West Valley Regional, 19036 Vanowen St., Reseda; (818) 345-9806. • Woodland Hills, 22200 Ventura Blvd.; (818) 226-0017.last_img read more

Jobs: General Workers and Supervisor required by award-winning Donegal company

first_imgJob Vacancies: A Donegal packaging company, a market leader in its industry – are seeking to recruit a Shift Supervisor and General Workers, including Packers and Machine Operators to join their professional, dynamic and hardworking team.RA Pacaistí, based in the Gweedore Business Park, in Derrybeg, is the market leader in Food To Go packaging.RA PacaistíJob Requirements: Successful candidates must be trustworthy, diligent, reliable and experienced.Be flexible with hours, and possess the ability to work as part of a team.Experienced in multi-shift operation and production.Professional, dependable and hardworking.Previous experience is required for the role of Machine OperatorsShift Supervisor Job Description:The Manufacturing Shift Supervisor is required to manage a safe, team orientated environment where the delivery of key metrics including Product quality, Production plan Volume and Waste reduction can be achieved on a consistent basis in a high volume manufacturing environment.If you’re interested in any of the above positions then please contact Kathleen.Kelly@rapire.com, stating which role you are applying for.Jobs: General Workers and Supervisor required by award-winning Donegal company was last modified: December 8th, 2017 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:GweedorejobsRA PacaistíVacancieslast_img read more

GUESS WHO IS COMING TO DONEGAL ON HOLIDAY THIS SUMMER?……CALL JOE!

first_imgHe is one of RTE’s biggest stars.He earns more than €400,000 a year and could holiday anywhere in the world.But now radio star Joe Duffy has revealed how he is planning on spending his summer holidays with his family in Donegal. Duffy says he wants to visit Russia but also revealed “I may go to Donegal this summer.” GUESS WHO IS COMING TO DONEGAL ON HOLIDAY THIS SUMMER?……CALL JOE! was last modified: January 14th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:donegalholidayJoe DuffyRTEsummerlast_img read more

LADIES GAELIC FOOTBALL: LYIT GET OFF TO CRACKING START WITH WIN OVER UU COLERAINE

first_imgThe LyIT GAA Ladies team pictured before Wednesday’s game against University of Ulster Coleraine in O’Donnell Park, where they were winners by a margin of 3-11 to 3-7.In O’Donnell Park on Wednesday the LyIT Ladies delivered on a promise to themselves of a good start to this year’s campaign.Wishing to impress new coach Eamon OBoyle, stalwarts like Aine Fagan and Sarah Faulkner were on top of their game in the face of a well-prepared University of Ulster Coleraine side. The locals got an early lead from the boot of Sarah Faulkner direct from the first 45 free kick of the day awarded by referee Joe O’Donnell, a point followed from Aine Higgins followed by another goal from the point scorer Higgins when she pounced on a defensive lapse by Coleraine.Sure footed Aoife O’Byrne in the full back position ensured that the Letterkenny girls took best advantage of the breeze at their backs in the first half and through some good defensive play and distribution LyIT had a substantial lead at the interval. The second half was a testing affair with the elements and the likes of Caela Farren, Brigetta Lynch and others, in the Coleraine team, finding a renewed vigour.A comeback, of sorts, seemed on but for the determination of Cathy DeWard, Charmaine McDermott, and the scoring of Aine Higgins, the local team maintained their shape in a demanding encounter to bring home the points with a final score of 3-11 to 3-7 in favour of LyIT. A spirited performance from LYIT GAA ladies team on Wednesday made sure of an important victory in the opening game of this season’s league, the Letterkenny girls won by 3-11 to 3-7. (photo by Paddy Gallagher).Aine Fagan in action for LyIT Ladies on Wednesday in o’Donnell park where the chalked up their first victory in the Division 4 clash with University of Ulster Coleraine, (photo by Paddy Gallagher).     LADIES GAELIC FOOTBALL: LYIT GET OFF TO CRACKING START WITH WIN OVER UU COLERAINE was last modified: October 10th, 2013 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:LYIT LADIES GAA TEAMUU COLERAinelast_img read more

Giants acquire Breyvic Valera

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO–For a Giants fan base accustomed to splashy offseason acquisitions, Farhan Zaidi has spent his first winter on the job wading into a small tide pool.Though the waters remain unseasonably calm, the Giants made another addition Saturday as they acquired utility player Breyvic Valera from the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for cash considerations.Saturday’s deal marks the third time in the last nine months that Valera has been involved in a trade under Zaidi’s watch, as he was …last_img

Dazzling Success

first_imgOnce small farmers in the villages of Gujarat, they now harvest diamonds. And what a bumper crop it is!Almost 80 percent of the world’s polished diamonds pass through the hands of Indian merchants, some of whom are among the biggest players in the multibillion-dollar diamond business. These merchants of dreams create the sparkling diamond rings, solitaire earrings and wedding bands that initiate couples into wedded bliss; they are the ones who craft the jeweled baubles that celebrate every joyous occasion.For Indian diamond merchants, many of whom are the descendents of farmers from Palanpur and Kathiawar in Gujarat, the whole world has become their beat. The diamond-paved city of Antwerp is a second home to them, as is the bustling diamond district of New York. Hong Kong, China, Vietnam, Russia, Sri Lanka and Canada are all extensions of their factories and workplaces and their glittering crafts are found in retail emporia around the world.Today, India’s total export of gem and jewelry to the United States alone stands at $6.2 billion, and Indian goods account for over two-thirds of the total volume of retail jewelry sold in the United States. In fact, the Indian company Rosy Blue is one of the largest customers for rough diamonds from the diamond giant De Beers, which controls 60 percent of the world’s supply. At least six Indian companies make up the top ten De Beers clients. Rajshekhar Parikh of Renaissance Gems: “When we came, we used to sell to Jewish wholesalers. Then we started selling to retailers and went into jewelry manufacturing.”Other major companies that have a presence on several continents apart from Rosy Blue, are Eurostar, Emby International, Vijay Diamonds, Disons Gems, Paras Diamonds, and Shivani Gems. The Lakhi Group, another major player in the industry, entered the media limelight when Dilip Kumar Lakhi became the highest individual taxpayer in India in 2003.The Lakhi family, probably the only Sindhi family among the big players, started out modestly in Jaipur as traders in precious stones and then moved into manufacturing. Today the five brothers have expanded the family business to several companies, and Prakash Lakhi heads Vishinda in New York. The Lakhi Group is one of the largest exporter of diamonds from India and has perhaps the world’s largest diamond polishing factory in Surat, with over 6,000 workers under one roof.Nor are Indian diamond merchants, a low profile crowd if ever there was one, blowing their own trumpet. The Wall Street Journal did it for them recently, noting that in Antwerp, the Indians’ share of the $26 billion-a-year diamond revenues had risen to roughly 65 percent from about 25 percent just 20 years ago. The Jewish share had fallen to 25 percent from 70 percent.Idex, the magazine of the International Diamond Exchange, published from Israel, also recently ran an article titled “India’s Dazzling Secrets.”While estimating that India produces 50 percent of the world’s polished diamond consumption by value and 80 percent by weight, the article notes that the Indian industry alone imported some 129.3 million carats of rough diamonds last year: “India has become financially probably the strongest manufacturing sector and its largest companies are among the fastest growing conglomerates in the world.” Basant Johari: “We grew up seeing diamonds and emeralds right from birth.”Indians, of course, have a very old connection with diamonds. In fact, the Museum of Natural History in New York showcased a landmark exhibition of diamonds recently, noting that the first diamonds were mined in India. The earliest known hreference to diamonds is in a Sanskrit manuscript, the Arthasastra by Kautiliya, a minister to Chandragupta of the Mauryan dynasty.Diamonds were discovered in India in the 4th century BC and except for a minor supply of diamonds in Borneo, India was the world’s only source until the 1730s. The diamond mines of Golconda were legendary, but gradually rich deposits were discovered in many other countries. Today the Majhgawan pipe near Panna is India’s only diamond producing source, and now the hot spots for mining have shifted to Australia, Sierra Leone, South Africa and Canada.Ever the innovators, Indians have taken on a new role: banking on skilled hands and eyes and enterprise, they have become the most prolific diamond polishers in the world!“The largest exporter of polished diamonds is India and Israel is second,” says Basant Johari, the president of Indian Diamond and Colorstone Association in New York. “India exports by value about 50 percent of the world’s production, and by quantity over 80 percent in carats. If you look at the number of stones, India produces ten stones out of every 11 stones.” Apart from the skill, Johari explains, there is a very big difference in the price structure of labor in India, as compared to Israel or the United States.In India, the rough diamonds come from either De Beers or traders who buy in the open market in Antwerp, and to a certain extent even from New York and other places in the world, including the Argyle Mines in Australia. So, not surprisingly, Indians have become entrenched in Antwerp, which is the hub of the diamond trade with four diamond exchanges. Prakash Lakhi of Vishinda in New York. The Lakhi group is one of the largest exporters of diamonds from India.Dilip Mehta, who is based in Antwerp, is one of the biggest players. He is the CEO of Rosy Blue, a global company that had net sales of $1.25 billion last year, with offices or factories in 14 locations employing15,000 people worldwide. It is the biggest exporter of polished diamonds from India, but its dealings have spread across continents.When this writer conducted a long interview with Mehta in Antwerp via his cell phone on a Sunday, he constantly and politely terminated other calls, but he did attend to one pressing matter. It was the demands of his little granddaughter, insisting he untie a balloon. The lines from Europe to America crackled, as things came to a halt while he patiently attended to this important task.And that somehow sums up one of the big hidden strengths of India’s diamond merchants: their strong family ties. Whether in manufacturing, buying or selling, Indian diamond merchants have a strong family support system and many willing hands.In fact, the majority of the businesses are family-owned, and certain names like Mehta, Shah, Jhaveri and Patel dominate in the diamond industry. Many of them hail from Palanpur, a small town in Gujarat, and Palanpuris initially controlled the diamond trade in India. In the late 70s and early 80s, they accounted for 85-90 percent of the Indian trade. Indians are a sizable presence on New York’s diamond district, which stretches between 5th and 6th Avenue on 47th Street.They are still the main component of the diamond industry, especially in buying and selling, but lately, Kathiawaris, hailing from Saurashtra in Gujarat, have become active in the actual cutting and polishing of diamonds, already accounting for about 30-40 percent of the Indian industry. “We grew up seeing diamonds and emeralds right from birth,” says Johari, who came to New York in the 1980s. “My father, grandfather, great grandfather were all in the same business. In India, people work also at home, so it’s like a 24-hour job.” Johari, who is a Vaishnav from Benares, recalls that his family used to do business with the royals, who sometimes bought, but mostly sold jewels, as their financial status dictated.Jivraj Bhai Surani, founder of JB Diamonds Group, is one of the prominent Kathiawari diamond dealers. The business started back in 1963, with the family actually doing the polishing. Surani, who is a past president of the Surat Diamond Association and co-convener of the Gujarat Gem and Jewelry Export Promotion, lives in Surat, but for him, as for most of the diamond merchants, New York is just a flight away.Surani’s brothers are in Antwerp and Hong Kong, and his son heads the New York office. The JB Diamond Group has factories in India, China, Thailand and Hong Kong. Says Surani, “I have three boys all in the business, but years ago my family were farmers in Bhavnagar.”As the families have spread out from India, Antwerp has become a major base: in the 70s there were just about 15 Indian families, today there are 300 families. Last year, international media attention was fixated on an Indian wedding in Antwerp. “Even by the standards of lavish Indian marriage ceremonies, the weekend double wedding of Vishal and Priya Shah, son and daughter of Vijay Shah, one of the biggest diamond dealers in the world, has set a new benchmark for opulence and innovation,” gushed The London Telegraph. “For a few days Antwerp, the world’s diamond trading center, has became a Bollywood fantasy at an estimated cost of £10 million ($18 million).”Weddings are, of course, a sacred cow in the Indian ethos where no expense is spared, but generally diamond merchants have kept a very low profile even as they’ve become a major force in the industry. Simple lifestyles, family togetherness and a vegetarian diet are their credo. Currently, Indian-origin companies control 55-60 percent of the Antwerp trade, but not all of the polishing is done in India. Indian merchants are diversifying their operations to far-flung places in South East Asia, Russia and Armenia, thus expanding their base, as the diamond industry seeks out low cost areas for manufacturing.“Indians had the flexibility and the ability, and because of their geographic situation and big families, they could put people all around the world. Their business grew much more as compared to the other communities,” says Mehta. How well do the Indians interact with the Jewish merchants in Antwerp? Says Mehta, “The diamond community is made up of all cultures; you have the Jewish community, the local Flemish people and quite a few Lebanese and the Armenians. Then you have the Chinese, Koreans and Japanese. The industry really is a melting pot of various cultures so it works very well. They all have common interests – to grow the business and prosper.”This commonality of business interests has motivated the two communities – who are both very strong on family values, hard work and religion – to learn to co-exist in the business. Jewish and Indian business organizations often honor each other’s community leaders or invite them to sit on their boards of directors. Indian merchants often donate to Jewish causes, and after the Gujarat quake took place, Jewish dealers also chipped in.According to the Wall Street Journal, the polishing costs in India are 80 percent lower than in Antwerp, and until recently the Jewish merchants polished and cut the diamonds locally. Indians also had another point in their favor, for as the Journal notes, they “also proved canny at polishing and cutting the lower-quality rough diamonds that Jewish traders typically overlooked, squeezing higher profit margins than thei Jewish competitors and pumping the profits back into their businesses.” The Journal noted: “While the Jews try to stem their decline, the Indians are demanding that their influence in the Antwerp diamond world mirror their economic might. They want better representation on Antwerp’s High Diamond Council, the powerful body that regulates the city’s diamond industry.”Amal Jhaveri, a past president of IDCA and president of sales and marketing at Sugem in New York, says: “We are competitors, but we are all working together in many different ways. We are all born businessmen, so we’re going to do business; but there is enough place in this business for everyone.”When the IDCA was formed 17 years ago, there were just 65 member companies, but today it has over 300 member companies that participate in shows in New York, Las Vegas, Tuscan (Arizona) and Orlando.As Indians have streamed into the diamond business, they have become a sizable presence on 47th street, the nerve center of New York’s bustling diamond district, stretching between 5th and 6th Avenues. In recent years, as more players have entered, the district has spilled into neighboring streets and avenues too. Amidst the hustle and bustle of retail jewelry shops on the street level and in the vaulted offices above them, are probably an ocean of diamonds.Security has been beefed up dramatically in these buildings, especially after 9/11, but tenants can remember bygone times, when there were muggings and break-ins. Traveling salesmen, laden with gems, still have the occasional hold-up in Atlanta or Puerto Rico, but the business has become fortified. Jewelers rarely carry the gems on their person, sending them ahead by special couriers who cater to the diamond trade. “There have been a lot of changes. The business has changed step by step, quite dramatically,” says Rajshekhar Parikh of Renaissance Gems, who came to the United States in 1975. “Each year it has continuously changed, the way things are done. When we came, we used to sell to the Jewish wholesalers. Then we started selling to retailers and went into jewelry manufacturing. There has been a shift and the dominance of the trade has become much larger.”Sometimes, outside factors help too. Parikh explains that since the U.S. Government eliminated duty on Indian jewelry, the industry has expanded. “It’s a combination of many things which are giving a push to this business.” Indian diamond merchants are trading in everything from large stones to colored stones, from semi-precious to smaller goods; they are even doing the actual setting and manufacturing here for clients, and have even branched out into gold for the U.S. consumer.Over time, Indians are becoming more market savvy and catering to the demands of the American consumer. Says Johari, who heads Dow Gems, which specializes in loose diamonds: “All the items are geared to the American market and if you go to major stores like JC Penneys, Macy’s, Sears or Walmarts, or retail jewelry chains like Zales, K Jewelers or Litmans, most of the jewelry you see is through India.”In fact, even if the merchandise is actually from China or Bangkok, most is being supplied through India and the diamonds are passing through Indian hands. Johari’s jewelry division, Kuber Inc., for instance, is manufacturing the bulk of its merchandise right here while some of it is done in Bangkok, China and India.It may sound intriguing to hear that jewelry manufacturing is actually being done in the United States, but as Johari explains, “Anything which is labor-intensive will go out, because labor is cheap overseas, but other items are finished here. Americans, Armenians, even Indians are running contracting factories with Chinese, Indian, and Spanish workmen who do the setting and finishing right here.”Of the entire American consumer market, the bridal business is the biggest and includes wedding bands, engagement rings as well as jewelry for anniversaries. Larger stones of a carat to three carat still come largely from Israel and Antwerp, and the proportion of Indians selling such stones, though growing, is still small.To the uninitiated eye, the grading of diamonds can be bewildering, but there is a fine science to it as the stones are calibrated for cut, clarity and color. If you have a diamond certified from the Gemological Institute of America, and take the stone back to them five years later for re-evaluation, chances are you will get the exact same report.Interestingly enough, India itself is becoming a lucrative market for the sale of big diamonds and diamond jewelry, earlier reserved just for the wealthy. Explains Johari, “In India the middleclass has been growing and there has been a shift away from gold jewelry so the market for diamonds has grown.”So what is the secret of the Indian success in the global marketplace? Says Amal Jhaveri: “They are business oriented from birth. It’s in their blood. The reason for their success is that they change according to the times. Where the wind is blowing, they blend. We are very low-profile people – in any community, anywhere we blend.” Rosy Blue is a blueprint for how a business can grow from modest beginnings. This family business started in the 1960s in India and branched out to Antwerp in the 1970s. The brothers then started expanding their manufacturing to Sri Lanka, with local partners. Today they have factories in China, Thailand, Vietnam, Russia, Armenia, Israel, and Sri Lanka.They have a manufacturing base of various products and distribution is well established with operations that are over 25 years old. Explains Mehta, “These are very mature operations focusing on local competition, rather than just worrying about being better than your fellow Indians. That policy has helped us very well so that one thinks global and acts local.”Rather than just relying on family, the company has encouraged outside talent. “We started making that change in the late 70s because one realizes that you cannot always produce capable children. We’ve been very lucky so far; sometimes it actually makes sense to have professionals as they bring new insights. Today all our operations are very competitive in their own areas and their own regions.”Many Indian companies have started doing the same to keep pace with a sophisticated market. Indians, ever the explorers, are also trying out many new possibilities, landing up in Russia, South Africa, Botswana and the Congo to set up factories. Entrepreneurs are setting up contacts with African governments. An Indian has even set up a factory in Yakutia in Siberia!Dilip Mehta believes there is a need for all this activity since the stockpiles of rough diamonds have diminished considerably with all the mining companies, including De Beers. “Everybody has working stocks and that’s created a lot of anxiety amongst the diamond people in the world, and all of them are trying to secure supplies from wherever they can. They are looking for all the opportunities of business.”Rosy Blue, for instance, has opened cutting factories in Canada in Yellowknife, which is also a source for rough diamonds. Says Mehta, “So it’s all about people moving to where there are business opportunities and if it ties into the supply situation then it works very well. This is what Indians have been able to do due to their flexibility and large families. They’ve been able to adapt and so naturally their business has been increasing.”Indians have also been moving on to new pastures, to bigger diamonds. Earlier they were mainly dealing with lower qualities, but are now producing predominately middle quality diamonds, sizes up to 2 carats. About five or six cutters in India are also producing larger, high quality diamonds. Indians in the industry are agile in adapting to the times. “People have moved on and the interesting thing is that we’re talking about people like us who had just a high school education and no formal training,” says Dilip Mehta.“And now how things have evolved! We trained ourselves over a period of time and now with the younger generation, more focused and more educated, coming in, it’s making a difference big time. Indians are doing just about everything and they are in the true sense business houses now.”   Related Itemslast_img read more

Raveena Tandon gets special recognition

first_imgRaveena TandonIt’s her first time at film festivals and Raveena Tandon, 37, has already brought home an award. She won a Special Recognition for Outstanding Performance at the Indian Film Festival of Houston for her role as a glamorous socialite and novelist in Sudipto Chattopadhyaya’s Shobhana 7 Nights. “It’s the,Raveena TandonIt’s her first time at film festivals and Raveena Tandon, 37, has already brought home an award. She won a Special Recognition for Outstanding Performance at the Indian Film Festival of Houston for her role as a glamorous socialite and novelist in Sudipto Chattopadhyaya’s Shobhana 7 Nights. “It’s the first time I’ve played a role that’s very contrary to the cliched Hindi film heroine. It’s bold in its character and has no justifications,” she says.last_img read more