CIF E-Newsletter

Facebook  Twitter  Instagram  Linkedin  Youtube  

Volume 18                Issue #06         June 2024

Chair's Message

Staying Positive in Times of Stress

Hello friends,

The month of June was a shocker for many of us. No, it is not the heat wave that I am referring to. But something equally incendiary. The honourable parliament of Canada observed a moment of silence on June 18, in honour of a slain ‘leader’ of a small section of Canadian population. Without going too deep into the merits or otherwise of the act, it was a political spectacle that speaks of the current state of our polity and the immoral compulsions that drive such events. Mind you, there was no Moment observed for those who perished in Israel or when the subsequent war has claimed thousands more on the other side. But the entire political machinery of Canada succumbed to an overblown incident where a man designated as a terrorist in another country gains access and power within Canada and he is subsequently allegedly killed by men, ironically fleeing from the law in that same foreign country, but conveniently slipped in and found refuge within Canada. Some might say that a real investigation into these events should start and end within the Canadian power brokers.

To rub salt over the wound, the parliament observed this moment of silence just a week away from the anniversary of the horrendous Air India bombing in which 329 innocents perished, an act carried out by the moral guardians of the slain ‘leader’.

Our political leaders are vested with the responsibility of keeping the peace and delivering justice with an even hand. The actions of many of them may seem to counter those lofty ideals. The good intentions of some of them might also be sacrificed in the face of intense pressure brought on by the demands of electoral rivalry. The old dictum of ‘divide and rule’ seems to hold sway in local politics. The implications are ominous. The level of violence that is on display in the name of freedom of speech can easily metastasize into an internal security issue. We don’t want another Kanishka tragedy ever again to mar the fair name of Canada. (Read more)

Every Right Comes with Responsibility

Ritesh Malik

Chair, Canada India Foundation


We are blessed to call Canada, one of the freest countries on the planet where every person is guaranteed freedom of thought, belief and expression, as our home. As Indo-Canadians, we are also deeply respectful of India, the land which has been the motherland of our ancestors for millennia, and also one that had nurtured us through our early years. Unfortunately, direct and potentially very fruitful relations between the two countries have been sidetracked by an issue, which hits at the core of the two countries’ security and sovereignty, but one that now also threatens to disturb Canada’s social harmony. Caught in the middle is the concept of free speech, more accurately freedom of expression, a victim of ideologies, misinformation and mistrust.  (Read More)

(Originally published in the CIF Gala Magazine, September 2023)

Upcoming Events

Register for CIF's 9th Annual Charity Golf Tournament 2024
The 9th annual charity golf tournament organized by the Canada India Foundation to support the families of Fallen Heroes in Canada and India is set to tee off on Wednesday, August 7, 2024, at the Lionhead Golf Club, located at 8525 Mississauga Rd., Brampton, ON.

CIF appreciates your unwavering support & cooperation to this prestigious event that has become a community standard in generosity and solidarity.

Thanks to you, we were able to achieve remarkable milestones, including the establishment of a permanent education fund exceeding $180,000.00. This fund will support the children of fallen soldiers wishing to pursue higher education and significantly contributes to the Toronto RCASC Associate Fund, supporting families of fallen soldiers across Canada.

Here's what's new and exciting this year:

Online Registration: Say goodbye to long lines! Our new website allows you to register online, pay online, purchase sponsorships, add your foursomes, and more – all at your convenience. Click HERE

Helicopter Ball Drop Raffle: Prepare for thrills as a helicopter releases 500 numbered golf balls over a designated hole. Purchase a ball for your chance to win big! The ball closest to the hole claims the prize. Visit our website for details.

With your support, we aim to tee off with 72 foursomes promptly at 10:00 am, embracing the beauty of a Canadian summer day. Together, we'll continue our tradition of supporting our brave soldiers and their families, both in Canada and India.

Whether through sponsorship, participation, or spreading the word, your contribution makes a world of difference. Join us for a day filled with exceptional golf, excitement, sumptuous dining, and the warmth of Indian hospitality. As always, please drink responsibly, and if needed, we're happy to arrange transportation for you.

To each of you, past, present, and future supporters, we extend our deepest gratitude for your commitment to this noble cause.

Let's tee off for a cause that truly matters!


CIF Marks 10th International Yoga Day

Toronto, June 4, 2024: The worldwide celebrations of the tenth International Yoga Day got an early start at the Queen’s Park on June 4, 2024. The Toronto edition of the International Day of Yoga was hosted by Canada India Foundation in partnership with a number of allied community organizations.

Ritesh Malik, Chair of the Canada India Foundation (CIF), welcomed guests and community partners, emphasizing the importance of broader adoption of yoga and similar preventive lifestyle practices for achieving optimal healthcare outcomes and reducing ever increasing pressures on health infrastructure. “As many of you know, CIF actively promotes integrating alternative healthcare practices such as Yoga, Meditation and Ayurveda into modern medicine. I urge key decision-makers and policy makers present today to help advocate these preventive practices within the communities and making Canadians healthier and happier,” Malik said. (Read more)

Former HC Bisaria’s Book on India Pakistan Relationship Is a Thriller

Toronto 17 June 2024: It was during the pandemic days and nights that Ajay Bisaria, then High Commissioner of India to Canada, that the first vague notions of a book on the India Pakistan relationship began to crystallize in his mind. And the much-reduced public assignments that in normal course, a top diplomat is required to attend, also must’ve helped. This was revealed by now author, citizen Ajay Bisaria, during a recent interaction with members of the Canada India Foundation and guests. Ritesh Malik, Chair, CIF, led the charge to extract maximum details from Bisaria on his best-selling book – Anger Management: The troubled relationship between India and Pakistan. Bisaria was the last High Commissioner posted to Islamabad who in 2019 was hurriedly summoned back to New Delhi a day before India bombed what was described as a terror training camp in Balakot inside Pakistan. The relationship has never recovered since then. (Read more)

City of Peterborough Issues Proclamation on International Yoga Day

In an official ceremony held at the City Hall in Peterborough on June 20, 2024, Mayor Jeff Leal proclaimed June 21 to be celebrated by the city as International Yoga Day every year. Speaking to a select group of people that attended the ceremony, Mayor Leal, thanked Canada India Foundation and said: “This day, recognized by the United Nations and across the world, is a reminder of the profound impact that yoga has on many of our lives. Yoga is inclusive; it is for everyone, regardless of age, gender, or physical ability. Whether you are a seasoned practitioner or a beginner, yoga offers benefits that can improve your health and life.  In a time where stress and anxiety are becoming increasingly common, yoga offers a path to resilience and inner peace. It helps relieve and manage our stress, find balance in our lives, and achieve a state of mental clarity and physical health. I would like to take a moment to express my gratitude to all the yoga instructors and practitioners in our community for their commitment to the practice of yoga.”


Satish Thakkar, whom Sunita Vyas, National Convener, CIF, described as the ‘ambassador for yoga in Canada’ explained the many benefits of yoga and how it builds resilience in people to live stress free and physically healthy. “At CIF, we aim to promote yoga and Ayurveda as a holistic system to improve human health. We are delighted with the City of Peterborough decision to proclaim June 21 as a day to celebrate yoga. This will become an opportunity to celebrate it every year for all the residents of this wonderful city.”


India’s national flag was hoisted outside the City Hall to mark the occasion. 

UHN’s Cardiac Prevention and Rehab Facility Marks International Yoga Day

The continued efforts by Canada India Foundation to promote the ancient Indian health systems like Ayurveda and yoga of late have received increasing levels of acceptance. International Yoga Day (June 21) got a major boost from the health professionals when UHN’s Cardiac Rehabilitation Centre in East York decided to celebrate the day officially on June 21 in the presence of patients, doctors, yoga enthusiasts and staff.

Dr. Paul Oh, Medical Director of the Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation Program at Toronto Rehab and a Senior Scientist at KITE and the man charged with developing new ideas in prevention and rehabilitation, noted: “We are grateful for this opportunity to collaborate with CIF for many years. They have been instrumental in supporting research within the hospital. The initiative was born four years ago at CIF. We had this idea that we can bring different systems of care closer together. The wisdom of thousands of years of Ayurveda medicine and yoga and to bring them together with modern medicine practice to develop integrative approaches to care was very exciting. You are part of history. This is the first time we are celebrating International Yoga Day at the Cardiac Care facility. And it is going to get much bigger in the future.”

Earlier Sunita Vyas, National Convener CIF & Satish Thakkar, Immediate Past Chair welcomed the gathering and thanked Dr. Oh and staff for helping host a momentous event to mark International Yoga Day. Satish said: “Yoga is one of the most important art and science of life. Anyone who practices it can feel the positive changes it brings - physically, mentally and spiritually. It brings complete transformative changes, to feel joy every moment of your life and also spread that feeling to all around you.”

India’s Consul General in Toronto, Siddhartha Nath, expressed his appreciation for the efforts to spread yoga. He noted that yoga has picked up worldwide popularity especially after the UN declaration. “There is growing recognition of the role yoga can play in physical health and spiritual well-being. In that regard, I am really happy to see all the efforts by CIF, the UHN and by the Ontario government to look at evidence-based research to find what yoga can do not only for cardiac prevention but rehabilitation.”

The event concluded with a practice session, ably conducted by Yoga Guru, Acharya Prem, during which the attendees were introduced to a few basic yoga asanas and breathing techniques. 

CIF Ayurveda Speaker Series

Season 3 Launched

Prevention of Coronary Artery Disease

The CIF Ayurveda Series, after having completed two full seasons launched its third edition on June 23, 2024, focusing on the theme of Prevention of Coronary Artery Disease. Fifty of the world’s finest practitioners and scientists in Ayurveda have already participated in the past, educating the world on Ayurveda approach to holistic wellness. The new season is expected to feature a similar group of Ayurveda experts in the coming months. The launch was graced by eminent scientists and supporters of Ayurveda.

Opening the session, Satish Thakkar, past chair of CIF and an avid proponent of Ayurveda said, “As you know ayurveda which is a science of life primarily focuses on individualized approach because every human body is unique in itself, and the treatment options should also be unique to individuals.” He mentioned the MoU signed between CIF and the UHN network to support integrative research into chronic diseases combining the findings from ancient Indian medicine systems with the latest discoveries in modern medicine. He welcomed the two chief proponents leading this initiative on to the platform - Dr. Tanuja Nesari, Director of All India Institute of Ayurveda, and Dr. Paul Oh, Medical Director of the Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation Program at Toronto Rehab and a Senior Scientist at KITE. (Read more)


Canada’s Population Crosses 41 Million Mark

Thanks to high levels of immigration Canada’s population passed the 41 million mark for the first time in the first quarter of 2024. About 131,810 of the newcomers were temporary residents — such as students, foreign workers and asylum seekers taking the total number of non-permanent residents living in Canada to 2.8 million as of April 1, 2024. (Read more.)

Traditional Knowledge Systems to Get Intellectual Property Protection

According to the Chief of the Global Economic Monitoring Branch, Economic Analysis and Policy Division, UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA), Hamid Rashid, Indian economy is expected to exceed earlier estimates in its GDP growth and reach an impressive 7% while most economies in the developed world are struggling with negative or close to negative growth. The India growth story is also attracting foreign investors by the droves as less and less of them head to China. (Read more.)

India Middle East Europe Corridor a G7 Priority

The India Middle East Europe economic corridor plans got a major boost at the recently concluded G7 meeting where Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was a special guest. The communique issued at the end of the summit referred to the need for developing infrastructure and logistics corridors as part of the G7 global partnership initiative for infrastructure investment. (Read more.)

IIT Madras Launches World’s First B Tech Program in AI

IIT Madras became the first educations institution in the world when it launched B-Tech program in Artificial Intelligence and Day Analytics. The course will be offered through the Wadhwani School of Data Science and AI, established with an endowment of Rs 110 crore by Sunil Wadhwani, an alumnus of IIT Madras and the co-founder of IGATE and Mastech Digital. (Read more.)

Indian Stock Market Sets New Record

India’s stocks have recovered from the roller coaster ride during the few days prior to general elections to reach even impressive heights. The market is said to be reacting to positive indicators for Indian economy as observed by international institutions. In the week following the elections, Sensex surged by over 1,600 points, reaching an all-time high of 76,795.31. (Read more.)

NASA to Train Indian Astronaut for International Space Station

NASA and ISRO are set to collaborate on a program to train an astronaut who will be chosen to work in the International Space Station. NASA administrator Bill Nelson emphasised joint efforts to advance human spaceflight and benefit humanity. India and the US aim to deepen interoperability in space, (Read more.)

Nadir Patel Appointed Chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University

Former High Commissioner of Canada in India, Nadir Patel, has been appointed as chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University. Patel has held a series of high-level government positions throughout a long career in Canada’s public service. He is the former Canadian High Commissioner to India, a post he served in from 2014 to 2021, overseeing Canada’s largest embassy abroad. (Read more.)

World’s First Rocket Launch Powered by 3D Printed Engine

India marked a milestone in its space ambitions when a privately owned start up successfully launched the world’s first rocket with a 3D printed engine powering it. The inaugural flight of Agnikul’s creatively named Agnibaan rocket builds on the success of Skyroot and signals the range of options that are opening up in India’s space market. (Read more.)

Agra’s Second Taj Mahal

Some writers have already dubbed it the second Taj Mahal of Agra, India. The newly built mausoleum of the founder of the Radhasoami sect in Soami Bagh, located about 12 km away from the Taj Mahal is indeed a stunning architectural wonder made out of pure while marble just like the original Taj. (Read more.)


Dr. Lakshmanan, OC, Conferred honorary Doctorate at University of Guelph

Guelph 17 June 2024: Dr. V. I. Lakshmanan, OC, Chairman of Process Research Ortech and Past Chair of CIF, has been conferred the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, by the University of Guelph. This esteemed recognition is in acknowledgment of his significant contributions to technology, entrepreneurship, public policy, philanthropy, and community welfare. As an engineer, Dr. Lakshmanan has actively promoted intellectual collaboration for community development, leaving a lasting impact on the lives of people both in Canada and around the world. His efforts have aimed at creating a more equitable, affordable, and sustainable world.

CIF Urges Community Members to Donate Blood

Canada India Foundation continued its efforts to help create awareness in the community to donate to the Canadian Blood Services. Blood is always a critical element in healthcare with the power to save lives. CIF is encouraging members of the Indo Canadian community to be proactive and help in this crucial program. 

Annual Sponsors
We sincerely appreciate any comments, feedback and suggestions from our readers and supporters. Please write to us at
Contact Us
Ritesh Malik
Sunita Vyas
National Convener
Chetan Handa
National Co-convener
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram  Linkedin  Youtube  
Canada India Foundation
2939 Portland Drive, Suite #300
Oakville ON L6H 5S4, Ph: 289-291-0277
Disclaimer: This monthly e-newsletter is produced by the Canada India Foundation (CIF), a registered not-for-profit organisation with an aim to provide meaningful communication between its own board of governors and with a larger audience of policy makers and industry leaders. Views expressed by writers are their own and the CIF does not necessarily agree with them. We do not claim to provide any advice on any subject. Similarly, we are not liable for any misrepresentation or misleading claims made by an advertiser. Content provided in this newsletter is for general information purposes only.