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21st century belongs to India, says Modi

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

San Jose: PM Narendra Modi said 21st century belongs to India and the world has begun to accept the truth, as he addressed an 18,000-strong cheering crowd of Indian community members at the SAP Center here.

Modi, in an hour-long address to the crowd, also said that terrorism and climate change are the main challenges facing the world and urged all nations to unite in facing the twin threats.

In a rock star reception like the one he had received at Madison Square Garden last year, Modi also asked the crowd for a “certificate” of his performance in the 16 months he has been in power.

He said the world now acknowledges that the 21st century belongs to India, to loud cheers.

“Sometime ago India was striving to join the world, but today the times have changed and the world is thirsting to join India,” he said.

He also said he will give his every moment and every particle of his body to work for India’s betterment.

Asking the crowd for a certificate of his 16-month in power, Modi asked the rapturous crowd: “Did I live up to my promises, working day and night, and the responsibility that I have undertaken…Have I lived up to that?” to loud cheers and chants of “Modi”.

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Modi, who said he was visiting the West Coast after 25 years, said he was seeing a “vibrant picture” of India in the large Indian tech community that lives and works here.

Modi praised the “nimble fingers” of the Indian tech experts who “have made the world acknowledge India” with their competence and innovations.

He said he did not see the large numbers of Indians working in the US and other foreign countries as a brain drain, but as a “brain deposit”.

Modi called terrorism and global warming as world’s main challenges and asked all nations to unite to fight this scourge as there was no such thing as good or bad terrorism.

“The world has to realise that terrorism can hit anyone at any place, and it is the world’s responsibility to recognize it and unite against terrorism,” he said.

Hoping that in its 70th anniversary year, the United Nations would be able to define terrorism, Modi said: “We cannot safeguard humanity if we do not come to an agreement on what constitutes terrorism.”

“Terrorism is terrorism, there can be no differentiation between good and bad terror,” he said.

Modi said he has written to the countries that the UN should decide on what constitutes terrorism, and who are the outfits perpetrating terror, and which are the countries supporting terror and those who are for humanity.

Mod also said he was trying to include space technology in the work of the government, and that after his persuasion 170 government departments are using space technology for connectivity and for providing easier governance.

He also outlined his government’s JAM initiative – J for Jan Dhan financial inclusion programme, A for Aadhar unique identity card and M for Mobile governance. He said the linking of the three would help eradicate corruption in the system.

He criticized the previous governments for not having opened up the banking sector to the poor despite nationalizing the banks around 40 years ago. “I am sad to say that despite the nationalization half the people of the country had never seen the doors of a bank,” he said, adding that without financial inclusion a country cannot progress.

In a dig at the previous Congress-led governments, he said that after coming to power he directed his officials to take the banks to the poorest sections of the people. “I said that we have made merry for 40 years, now it is time to work.”

He said the Jan Dhan Yojana had resulted in Rs.32,000 crore being put in the banks by the poor and rural populace.

He said linking the Aadhar card, with its biometric identification, with the Jan Dhan account in the case of gas cylinder subsidy had helped eliminate corruption in the scheme.

“The JAM yojana will help to root out corruption,” he said.

He also touched on skill development, Beti Bacho, Beti Padhao, and the soil health card, and neem coating for urea to help farmers.

Modi announced a thrice weekly Air India flight from New Delhi to San Francisco from December 2.

Modi also paid tribute to freedom fighter Bhagat Singh on his birth anniversary and asked the crowd to join in.

(With inputs from IANS)

 

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Why U.S. Women’s Soccer Dominates on World Stage while Men’s Game Continues to Falter

The U.S. men haven’t come close to the women’s success

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Mexico's Rodolfo Pizarro, right, controls the ball against U.S. forward Paul Arriola during the Gold Cup final in Chicago, July 7, 2019. Mexico won 1-0. VOA

In the 28 years since winning the very first Women’s World Cup, the U.S. women’s soccer team has dominated the game on the global stage, taking home four Women’s World Cups in all, including the 2019 title captured this month in a 2-0 victory over The Netherlands.

The U.S. men haven’t come close to the women’s success. Not only have the men never won a World Cup, they even failed to qualify for the most recent men’s World Cup in 2018.

To deduce why U.S. women’s soccer dominates on the world stage while the men’s game continues to falter, you might just have to go back to the beginning, to the time when future world-class players — female and male — first start showing athletic promise.

“Soccer was never really been part of the national lexicon. It’s always been kind of this underground, kind of foreign game,” says Eileen Narcotta-Welp, an assistant professor of sport management at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. “Not only has it been a foreign game, but it’s been seen as a less masculine state. So if a child has to choose, or their parents have to choose, which sport a child is going to go into, ultimately it’s going to be basketball, baseball, [or] football.”

US, Women, Soccer
U.S. player Megan Rapinoe celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the World Cup final match against The Netherlands outside Lyon, France, July 7, 2019. VOA

The world in general views soccer — or “football” as it is called practically everywhere in the world except the United States — as an extremely male-oriented, overtly masculine game. However, in the United States, more traditional U.S. sports like baseball, basketball, and American football are more likely to be viewed as “macho” activities.

So while little American boys were pursuing other sports, a combination of events laid the foundation for the popularity of girls’ soccer in the U.S.

One of them was the 1972 passage of the federal law known as Title IX, which prohibits federally funded educational institutions from discriminating on the basis of sex. The law applies to high school and college athletics.

Many schools quickly embraced soccer for women because they could field up to 35 players per team, a sizable number that helped close the gender gap in their athletic programs.

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Additionally, the success of the U.S. women’s soccer team has captured the imagination of young female athletes-in-the-making. Over time, they’ve watched and admired soccer icons of yester-year, like Brandi Chastain, and current superstars like Meghan Rapinoe, and are inspired to emulate them and their success.

Aside from cultural and societal expectations, there are practical financial considerations that help explain why America’s best female athletes might choose to pursue soccer while top male athletes look to basketball, baseball or football.

“Those are also three sports that you can make a living off of,” Narcotta-Welp points out. “If you are a kid that is extremely talented, extremely athletic, and you are a boy…you know that professionally, if you want to play professional sports and succeed, that they’re pretty much three areas in which you’re gonna be able to succeed.”

US, Women, Soccer
In the 28 years since winning the very first Women’s World Cup, the U.S. women’s soccer team has dominated the game on the global stage, taking home four Women’s World Cups. Pixabay

The most talented female athletes have even less choice. Their opportunities to play professionally and make a living out of it basically come down to soccer or basketball.

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“They’re not getting huge exorbitant salaries, but it is kind of the one pathway for young women to play professionally,” Narcotta-Welp says. “For men, you have so many other options that are much more lucrative and probably more culturally acceptable in terms of the idea of masculinity that it would make sense for them to be steered in one of those three directions versus soccer.” (VOA)