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Indo – Pak Restaurants in USA – Away From the Tensions of Home turfs

A new restaurant "Cowboys and Indians" opened up in Houston that serves a fusion of Indian and Texan food

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Houston, USA: November 20, 2016:

Indo-Pakistani restaurants are not exactly new to USA!

The tension between India and Pakistan is getting worse, but some South Asian immigrants to the United States find themselves far removed from all the conflicts in their native countries. Recently, In Houston, an Indian and a Pakistani opened up a new restaurant “Cowboys and Indians”. They borrowed the name from an old children’s game. The restaurant is situated in one of the trendiest neighborhoods of the city. The food is appealing to the Texas natives.

The tension between India and Pakistan is getting worse, but some South Asian immigrants to the United States find themselves far removed from all the conflicts in their native countries. Recently, In Houston, an Indian and a Pakistani opened up a new restaurant “Cowboys and Indians”. They borrowed the name from an old children’s game. The restaurant is situated in one of the trendiest neighborhoods of the city. The food is appealing to the Texas natives.

Before opening their restaurant, owners Imran Khan and Hasnanin Wazir ,  hosted some free tasting events for local residents to get their feedback.

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A customer appreciated the food saying, “I would eat that food every day. I really would. It is perfect.” Another customer said, “Food is delicious and I think it is a great concept. Indian and Texan fusion is something that hasn’t been done in Houston before at least.”

The menu combination reflects the culinary tastes of the owners.

Hasnanin Wazir, co-owner of the restaurant, said, “Imran came up to me about a year ago and said let’s open a restaurant together and we started looking into different areas, different locations and we loved this place.”

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The place was a gas station in 1931 and it retains some of that look. It’s in the popular Montrose area near downtown Houston where people look for a variety and distinction in cuisines.

Imran Khan, co-owner, said, “We are Americans. We are Texan. At the same time we have an Indian background and we want to share it with everybody else in the community.”

The two Texans have been friends for years and see themselves far removed from discord back in their birth lands.

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Wazir says, “We know there is a problem going over there but here it is a little different. “

They share culture and cuisine as well as a vision for the restaurant that includes building a patio on the roof with its partial view of Houston’s skyline so that people can come and hang out and have a great skyline view of downtown.

Opening any business involves risks but they are confident in their plans.

Prepared by Diksha Arya of NewsGram. Twitter: @diksha_arya53

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Here are 5 Indian Dishes that are Popular Across the Globe!

The five Indian dishes that even foreigners swear by

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Indian dishes and their unique spices
Indian spices and flavors. Wikimedia

New Delhi, July 25th, 2017: Reflecting the divergence of cultures; a perfect blend of zillion spices, creating in one’s taste bud, a blast of various flavors; leaving you wanting for more, that’s Indian cuisine for you!

With a country as diverse as ours, it is very much expected of India to maintain this diversity, when it comes to food as well. India doesn’t disappoint, as it contributes to the world, some of the best of food. Indian dishes have had, not just Indians, but the people around the world craving. According to a survey conducted by CNN Travel, recently, India has secured a place among the top 50 cuisines of the world. Here are five Indian dishes that are enjoying the global reputation.

Here are five Indian dishes that are enjoying the global reputation-

BIRYANI

Biryani enjoys global reputation
Biryani. Pixabay

Once you taste the Hyderabadi Biryani, there’s no going back. It is a dish made of rice, meat and is loved by people, India and abroad.

SAMOSA

Indian cuisine enjoying global reputation
Samosa. Pixabay

No one says no to Samosas, EVER! This is a fried snack stuffed with potatoes, and tastes best in combination with pudina (mint) chutney and chai! 

DHOKLA

Indian dishes enjoying global reputation
Dhokla. Pixabay

This soft and spongy snack is a delicious dish coming from the Indian state, Gujarat. It is made of fermented rice and chickpea batter and is perfect to begin your day with if you’re someone who likes their breakfast light yet tasty.

CHOLE BHATURE

Indian dishes enjoying global reputation
Chole bhature. Wikimedia

Chole bhature or the most popular dish in north India includes fried flour bread and curried chickpea. It can be eaten and enjoyed anytime of the day, as breakfast, lunch or dinner. Chole bhature when it rains, is hands down, the best idea.

DOSA

Indian food enjoys global reputation
Dosa. Wikimedia Commons

Because who doesn’t love Dosa? This is a dish that South Indians, North Indians, Non- Indians, everybody swears by. It is a South Indian dish made of rice batter and served with Sambhar and Coconut Chutney. 

These are the five Indian dishes that not only Indians but foreigners drool over as well.

-prepared by Samiksha Goel of NewsGram. Twitter @goel_samiksha

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Can Flourishing Islamic State (ISIS) be Stopped in Afghanistan?

The truth about IS and Afghanistan is definitely no picnic

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Taliban fighters react to a speech by their senior leader in the Shindand district of Herat province, Afghanistan, May 27, 2016.
Taliban fighters react to a speech by their senior leader in the Shindand district of Herat province, Afghanistan, May 27, 2016. The rise of IS in Afghanistan has become such a priority that U.S. and Afghan forces sometimes support the Taliban while battling IS, VOA
  • Depending on the location, the proliferation of IS has drawn varied resistance from the Afghan military, U.S. air support and ground troops, local militias, Taliban forces and other militant groups
  • Afghan army planes on Wednesday night accidentally air dropped vital supplies of food and water to IS militants in the Darzab district of northern Jouzjan province instead of to their own besieged troops
  • In the Tora Bora area, where IS has made a strong stand in recent days, local villagers and militias joined with Taliban to rout IS

June 25, 2017: The Islamic State group is rapidly expanding in parts of Afghanistan, advancing militarily into areas where it once had a weak presence and strengthening its forces in core regions, according to Afghan and U.S. officials.

Depending on the location, the proliferation of IS has drawn varied resistance from the Afghan military, U.S. air support and ground troops, local militias, Taliban forces and other militant groups.

Attacking IS has become such a priority in the country, that disparate forces sometimes join together in the ad-hoc fight, with Afghan and U.S. forces finding themselves inadvertently supporting the enemy Taliban in battling IS.

Confusion leads to mistakes

All too often, officials say, mistakes are made due to confusion on the ground.

Afghan army planes on Wednesday night accidentally air dropped vital supplies of food and water to IS militants in the Darzab district of northern Jouzjan province instead of to their own besieged troops, provincial police chief, Rahmatullah Turkistani told VOA. The supplies were meant to help Afghan forces that are countering twin attacks by IS and Taliban militants but were used instead by IS.

“It’s not getting better in Afghanistan in terms of IS,” U.S. Chief Pentagon Spokeswoman Dana White told VOA this week. “We have a problem, and we have to defeat them and we have to be focused on that problem.”

Reinforcements for the IS cause reportedly are streaming into isolated areas of the country from far and wide. There are reports of fighters from varied nationalities joining the ranks, including militants from Pakistan, India, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Russia and Central Asian neighbors.

Confusing scenarios

Still, the Islamic State-Khorasan (ISK) as IS is known in Afghanistan remains a fragmented group composed of differing regional forces with different agendas in different parts of the country.

“IS-K is still conducting low-level recruiting and distribution of propaganda in various provinces across Afghanistan, but it does not have the ability or authority to conduct multiple operations across the country,” a recent Pentagon report said. But where it operates, IS is inflicting chaos and casualties and causing confusing scenarios for disparate opponents.

In the Tora Bora area, where IS has made a strong stand in recent days, local villagers and militias joined with Taliban to rout IS. IS regained ground after a few days, leading to U.S. military air attacks on IS positions in conjunction with Afghan intelligence instructions and army operations.

IS fighters reportedly have fled from mountain caves of Tora Bora, where al-Qaida’s leader Osama bin Laden hid from U.S. attack in 2001.

Families displaced

IS fighters were also reportedly advancing in neighboring Khogyani district, displacing hundreds of families, according to district officials. It is one of several areas in Nangarhar province, near the Pakistani border, where IS has been active for over two years.

Fierce clashes in the Chaparhar district of Nangarhar last month left 21 Taliban fighters and seven IS militants dead, according to a provincial spokesman. At least three civilians who were caught in the crossfire were killed and five others wounded.

“IS has overpowered Taliban in some parts of Nangarhar because the Taliban dispatched its elite commando force called Sara Qeta (Red Brigade) to other parts of the country, including some northern provinces to contain the growing influence of IS there,” Wahid Muzhda, a Taliban expert in Kabul, told VOA.

ALSO READ: Flashback to Terror: 1993 Mumbai Blasts Judgement to Hail on June 27 After 24 Years

Recruiting unemployed youths

IS has also expanded in neighboring Kunar province, where, according to provincial police chief, it has a presence in at least eight districts and runs a training base, where foreign members of IS, train new recruits.

Hundreds of miles from Nangarhar, IS is attempting to establish a persistent presence in several northern provinces where it has found a fertile ground for attracting militants and recruiting unemployed youths, mostly between the age of 13 and 20.

IS has been able to draw its members from the Pakistani Taliban fighters, former Afghan Taliban, and other militants who “believe that associating with or pledging allegiance” to IS will further their interests, according to the Pentagon report.

Hundreds of militants have joined IS ranks in northern Jouzjan and Sar-e-Pul province where local militant commanders lead IS-affiliate groups in several districts.

Darzab district

Qari Hekmat, an ethnic Uzbek and former Taliban militant who joined IS a year ago, claims to have up to 500 members, including around 50 Uzbek nationals who are affiliated with the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) — previously associated with al-Qaida and Taliban in Afghanistan.

IS and Taliban are reportedly fighting over the control of Darzab district in Jouzjan which they stormed this week from two different directions and besieged scores of government forces. The Taliban has reportedly captured the center of the district while IS militants control the city outskirts.

Afghanistan faces a continuing threat from as many as 20 insurgent and terrorist networks present or operating in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region, including IS, the Pentagon said.

“In areas where the government has limited influence and control, IS attempts to emerge and expand there,” Ateequllah Amarkhail, an analysts and former Army general in Kabul told VOA.

Hit-and-hide strategy

IS has also claimed responsibility for several recent attacks in urban areas, however, with a hit-and-hide strategy that is proving effective. And it is engaging too in more skirmishes with U.S. forces that initially were sent to the country to help Afghan forces halt the spread of Taliban.

Three American service members based in eastern Afghanistan were killed in April during operations targeting IS militants, according to the Pentagon.

“ISIS-K remains a threat to Afghan and regional security, a threat to U.S. and coalition forces, and it retains the ability to conduct high-profile attacks in urban centers,” the Pentagon said. (VOA)

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India’s Textile and Fashion Heritage now part of Google project

Google's project 'We Wear Culture' is collaborating with 183 renowned cultural institutions from all around the world including India and its objective is to let people explore history of clothes dating as early as 3,000 years ago

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we wear culture
Google's new art project 'We wear Culture' digitizes fashion, Wikimedia
  • Google’s project ‘We Wear Culture’ is collaborating with 183 renowned cultural institutions from all around the world including India
  • It intends to trace the story and importance of Indian textiles from ancient sculptures
  • Its objective is to let people explore history of clothes dating as early as 3,000 years ago

June 15, 2017: To a certain extent, a culture is defined by what is worn by its people. In a country as diverse as India, vast and varied spectrum of cultures and clothes is one of the specialties. Google’s latest virtual exhibition project now provides us the opportunity to explore and know more about it.

Google’s project ‘We Wear Culture’ is collaborating with 183 renowned cultural institutions from all around the world including India and its objective is to let people explore history of clothes dating as early as 3,000 years ago, from the ancient Silk Road to the unmatched elegance of the Indian Saree,  from the courtly fashion of Versailles, to the Victorian ballgowns with intricate thread work.

According to Amit Sood, director of Google Arts and Culture,”We invite everyone to browse the exhibition on their phones or laptops and learn about the stories behind what you wear. You might be surprised to find out that your Saree, jeans or the black dress in your wardrobe have a centuries-old story. What you wear is true culture and more often than not a piece of art.”

Culture is defined by what is worn by its people. Click To Tweet

The company also mentioned that noteworthy collections from Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (CSMVS) and varied weaves from across India, from Gharchola to Patola to Temple to Ikat sarees will be included in the online project, as it intends to trace the story and importance of Indian textiles from ancient sculptures.

ALSO READ: New Google Project Digitizes World’s Top Fashion Archives.

According to PTI reports, the world fashion exhibit also includes designs from north-eastern India including the weaves of tribes such as the Nagas, Meitis. it will showcase the traditional attire from Meghalaya called ‘Dhara’ or ‘Nara’ worn by the Khasi women as well.

As a part of the exhibit, Sewa Hansiba Museum has brought the unique colorful and rich embroidery arts, applique and mirror work from different communities such as the Ahir, Rabari, Chaudhury Patel and many others from the western part of India online.

The exhibition conducted by Salar Jung Museum brings to light the Sherwani and its journey of becoming the royal fashion statement of the Nizams from 19th century Hyderabad. Fashion and textiles enthusiasts can revisit Colonial Indian attires with Dr Bhau Daji Lad Mumbai City Museum. Over 400 online exhibitions and stories sharing a total of 50,000 photos, videos and other documents on world fashion are open to exploration as well.

The ‘We wear Culture’ initiative highlights significant events in the growth of the world fashion industry; the icons, the movements, the game changers and the trendsetters like Alexander McQueen, Christian Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Gianni Versace, Audrey Hepburn and many more.

– prepared by Durba Mandal of NewsGram. Twitter: @dubumerang