Category Archives: News & Events

Christian expat’s Ramadan gift for workers — a mosque – Gulf News

Indian businessman in Fujairah to name Dh1.3m mosque in worker accommodation as Mariam, Umm Eisa – Gulf News.

Fujairah: A Christian expat, who landed in the UAE with just a few hundreds of dirhams in 2003, is gifting a mosque to hundreds of workers this Ramadan.

Indian national Saji Cheriyan, 49, has built the mosque for Muslim workers living in a worker accommodation that he rented out to 53 companies in Fujairah.

The mosque, built at a cost of Dh1.3 million in the East Ville Real Estate complex in Al Hayl Industrial Area, can accommodate 250 worshipers at a time. Facilities for another 700 to pray in the interlocked courtyard of the mosque, which will be shaded by the time it opens, have also been arranged.

Hailing from Kayamkulam in the south Indian state of Kerala, Saji wishes to open the mosque for the workers from various Asian countries during Ramadan.

Speaking to Gulf News, the businessman, who has gone through ups and downs in the past 15 years, said he decided to build the mosque after he saw workers taking taxis to go to the nearest mosque.

“They have to spend at least Dh20 to go to Fujairah city or another industrial area to attend the Juma prayer in a mosque. So, I thought it will make them happy if I build a mosque here next to their accommodation.”

The construction work started more than a year ago. Now the mosque is all set to open with the full support of Awqaf in Fujairah.

Offer of support

“The Awqaf officials were surprised and happy when they got to know I am a Christian who wishes to build a mosque. They have offered me all the support and were ready to offer free electricity and water and other facilities,” said Saji.

However, all that he has accepted from Awqaf are the carpet and sound system for the mosque.

“When word spread about my mosque, many other people also offered cash donations, construction materials like sand and paint. But I have politely refused all those offers as I would like to pay from my pocket for this mosque.”

He said he has opted for the name Mariam, Umm Eisa (Mary, the Mother of Jesus) for the mosque, after an Abu Dhabi mosque was renamed so in 2017.

Plans are afoot to invite prominent personalities from different walks of life and offer iftar for the guests and all the workers on the inaugural day of the mosque.

Saji, an Orthodox Christian by birth, had previously built a church for his parish in Dibba and also keeps the doors of a multipurpose hall in the East Ville Complex for various other groups of Christian believers to pray.

But he doesn’t feel he has done something great.

“I have grown up seeing communities living together in utmost harmony. We celebrate all religions’ festivals and I don’t judge or treat people based on religion, caste, colour or nationality. The UAE is another example of communal harmony and tolerance.”

He recollected that there was only the foundation of a building present in the whole plot when he bought the 70,000sqm land in Al Hayl Industrial Area for a 20-year lease in 2013.

He said it was a big risk that he took after his previous business, which he had built with sheer grit and perseverance, went bust.

450 cheques bounced

“I was Dh16 million in debt. Some 450 cheques had bounced. But I did not run away. I fought back and worked harder.”

He then built a worker accommodation with 70 rooms by purchasing construction materials on instalment payment basis.

“Luckily on the day the construction got over, I got a client who offered one million dirhams rent. In three years, I managed to build 800 rooms in the complex. There is a super market, a laundry and a salon also.”

The businessman, who now has an estimated Dh68 million worth of assets, credits his wife Elsy who stood by him through thick and thin and assists him in business for the inspiration.

The couple have two sons, Sachin and Elvin.

Mr. Amit Chavda the president of Gujarat Congress paid visit to newly ordained Bishop Rethna Swamy of The Diocese of Ahmedabad.

ગુજરાત પ્રદેશ ગુજરાત કોંગ્રેસના પ્રમુખશ્રી અમિત ચાવડા એ ગઈકાલે સાંજે બિશપ હાઉસ, મીરઝાપુર, અમદાવાદ ખાતે અમદાવાદ ધર્મપ્રાંતના નવનિયુક્ત માનનીય બિશપ રત્નાસ્વામીની શુભેચ્છા મુલાકાત લીધી. આ નિમિત્તે બંને મહાનુભવોએ એકમેકને શુભેચ્છા આપી. શ્રી. અમિત ચાવડાએ જણાવ્યું કે કોંગ્રેસ પક્ષ હમેશા ખ્રિસ્તી સમાજની પડખે છે તથા માનનીય બિશપે શ્રી. અમિત ચાવડા તથા હાજર સહું આગેવાનો માટે પ્રાર્થના કરી આશિર્વચનો પાઠવ્યા.

આ મીટીંગને સફળ બનાવવા  આણંદ નગરપાલિકાના પૂર્વ કાઉન્સિલર   શ્રી. વિપુલ મેકવાને ભારે જહેમત ઉઠાવી હતી. આ પ્રસંગે શ્રી. વિપુલ મેકવાન ઉપરાંત શ્રી. રીના અને પ્રશાંત જોબ, શ્રી. એન્થની ફિડેલીસ તથા બીજા આગેવાનો હાજર હતા. શ્રી. વિપુલ મેકવા આ પ્રસંગે ડેલીગેશનમાં હાજર રહેલા આણંદ, વડોદરા અને અમદાવાદના સહુ આગેવાનોનો પ્રત્યે આભાર વ્યક્ત કર્યો હતો.


“The news is that monuments, including the Basilica of Bom Jesus, have been listed for adoption by private players”.

President of India Ram Nath Kovind on the occasion of World Tourism Day launched “Adopt a Heritage” Project on September 27, 2017. “With the efforts of the Tourism Ministry, Culture Ministry and Archaeological Survey of India, has great potential to make our rich and diverse heritage monuments, tourist-friendly”, said the President.

I am not saying if it is a good or bad idea. But it should not threaten the historical/religious value of the monuments or become an abject advertisement of one company.

An article from The Indian Express:

The Goa government has expressed its reservation over the Centre listing some of the state monuments for adoption without consulting the local authorities about it.

The state cabinet members, including Archives Minister Vijai Sardesai, Tourism Minister Manohar Ajgaonkar and Power Minister Pandurang Madkaikar, expressed apprehension over the Union culture ministry’s scheme under which, Sardesai claimed, six monuments in Goa, including the Basilica of Bom Jesus at Old Goa, have been listed for adoption.

“The news is that monuments, including the Basilica of Bom Jesus, have been listed for adoption by private players. The Goa government is completely in dark about it. It is a religious place of huge importance, the relics of St Francis Xavier are kept there,” Sardesai told reporters on Wednesday.

He said the Basilica, which is located about nine kms from Panaji, is not just a place of cultural importance but also has religious significance.

Sardesai said a meeting would be called next week where he, Ajgaonkar and Madkaikar, the MLA from North Goa’s Cumbharjua constituency where the Basilica of Bom Jesus is situated, will be present.

The ministers would discuss the matter with the parish priest of Se Cathedral (also located in Old Goa), rector of the Basilica of Bom Jesus, state chief secretary, the Archaeological Survey of India and the church representatives, he said.

“We should be clear about what exactly is the adoption scheme. The experience with Delhi (central government) has been that they come with a small thing and then they take over your whole asset,” Sardesai said.

The Old Goa churches are an asset of the state and the church has to be taken into confidence, he said, adding that “here in this case, we were not aware.”

“We, as a government, would like to be clear about the whole scheme and the adoption procedure, its transparency and whether the church was taken into confidence,” he said.

The Chapora and Cab de Rama forts have also been listed, he said, adding that “we will not allow anyone to take over the forts under the guise of providing some amenities.”

“We want the scheme to be well-defined. I want that the state government be taken into confidence along with the church. These are assets of the state,” Sardesai said.

On the occasion, Ajgaonkar said he was shocked to know about the listing of the state’s monuments for adoption.

“We are fully equipped to take care of our heritage structures. We don’t need any help from the corporates. Goans know what is best for them,” he said.

The minister claimed that his department, which promotes tourism, was completely kept in dark over the issue.

Madkaikar said the locals were also not taken into confidence before such a proposal was moved.

Notably, President Ram Nath Kovind had in September last year launched the ‘Adopt a Heritage’ project, to entrust heritage sites to the public sector and private sector companies and individuals for the development of tourist amenities.

Last month, the Ministry of Tourism signed an MoU with the Dalmia Bharat Group and the ASI to adopt the iconic Red Fort monument in New Delhi and Gandikota Fort in Kadapa district of Andhra Pradesh under the project.

101st anniversary of the 1st apparition of Our Lady of Fatima – Sunday, May 13, 2018

1st apparition of Our Lady – Sunday, May 13, 1917: Mother’s Day

‘Pray the rosary every day to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war.’

101st anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady – Sunday, May 13, 2018: Mother’s Day

The history of Mother’s day in USA: The modern holiday of Mother’s Day was first celebrated in 1908, when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother at St Andrew’s Methodist Church in Grafton, West Virginia. St Andrew’s Methodist Church now holds the International Mother’s Day Shrine. Her campaign to make Mother’s Day a recognized holiday in the United States began in 1905, the year her mother, Ann Reeves Jarvis, died. Ann Jarvis had been a peace activist who cared for wounded soldiers on both sides of the American Civil War, and created Mother’s Day Work Clubs to address public health issues. Anna Jarvis wanted to honor her mother by continuing the work she started and to set aside a day to honor all mothers because she believed a mother is “the person who has done more for you than anyone in the world”.

In 1908, the U.S. Congress rejected a proposal to make Mother’s Day an official holiday, joking that they would also have to proclaim a “Mother-in-law’s Day”. However, owing to the efforts of Anna Jarvis, by 1911 all U.S. states observed the holiday, with some of them officially recognizing Mother’s Day as a local holiday (the first being West Virginia, Jarvis’ home state, in 1910). In 1914, Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation designating Mother’s Day, held on the second Sunday in May, as a national holiday to honor mothers.

Coincidentally the 1st apparition happened on the Sunday, May 13, 1917 which was also a Mother’s day. And 101 years after again it’s a second Sunday of May and the date is May 13, 2018. Only 16 times the 13th May was on Sunday From 1917 to 2018. 

Day Day Month Year Holiday Anniversary of 1st Apparition
Sunday 13 May 1917 Mother’s Day 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1923 Mother’s Day 6th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1928 Mother’s Day 11th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1934 Mother’s Day 17th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1945 Mother’s Day 28th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1951 Mother’s Day 34th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1956 Mother’s Day 39th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1962 Mother’s Day 45th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1973 Mother’s Day 56th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1979 Mother’s Day 62nd Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1984 Mother’s Day 67th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 1990 Mother’s Day 73rd Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 2001 Mother’s Day 84th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 2007 Mother’s Day 90th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 2012 Mother’s Day 95th Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady
Sunday 13 May 2018 Mother’s Day 101st Anniversary of 1st apparition of Our Lady

So celebrate this day in a special a way to honor The Mother of God, your Mother, your spouse’s Mother, your children’s Mother and all Mothers of the world. And remember and follow what Our Lady of Fatima told the children on May 13, 1917 –  ‘Pray the rosary every day to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war.’

Successful corrective surgery for bilateral ankle deformity of Angel Macwan

Dr. M.M. Prabhakar and his team of Civil Hospital, Ahmedabad did a successful corrective surgery for bilateral ankle deformity of Angle Macwan.  

એન્જલ મેકવાનના ઘૂંટીથી 90 ડિગ્રી સુધી વળેલા પગને અમદાવાદ સિવિલમાં સર્જરીથી સીધા કરાયા-ડોક્ટર પ્રભાકર અને એમની ટીમની સફળતા.