Minutes of the Monthly Meeting held on August 08, 2011 at Queen’s Park




Thomas S. Saras


Asha Rajak,


Bikram Lamba


Irene Keroglidis


Neel Nanda


Saad Alsafar


Mohammad Samimi


Jonathan Annobil


Sandeep Prabhakar


Rakhi Prabhakar


Suleyman Guven


Teshoma Woldeamanuel


Ali Mahboub  (ITC TV)


Ned Blair


Ahmed Hotaki


Gerald Paul


Aaron Berhane


Dumitru Pupescku


Shahidul Islam Mintu


Sultan Ali Shunbuli


Parry Long


C. Senthi


Marek J. Goldyn


Mulugeta  Zergaber


Isa Melo


Mohammed Tajdolati, Dr.


Sive Harouturian


Raffi Der- Boghossiah


Mohamed Busuri


Fardad Housh


Michelle Williams


Nishaniha Don


Ranjit Wicks


Susana Donan


Viara Dimitrova


Hai-Tien Lin


Moorthy Sellathurai


Perrii Muthuraman


Paulraj  Rajapandian


Mila Astroga-Garcia


Hermie Garcia


Bal Mukunda Nepal


Kevin Wang (MCT)


Bhaskar Sharma


Lankathas Pathmaranthan


Ernesto Donan


Indira Naidoo-Harris


Shabnam Janani


Mahesh Abeyewardene




Fereydoon Rahmani


Ned Blair


John Saraidaris




Luba Cherny






1.      Welcome Remarks by the chair.


2.      Minutes of the previous meeting.


3.      Presentation by Jim Karygiannis M.P. Scarborough-Agincourt, Liberal Multiculturalism critic.


4.      Presentation by Indira Naidoo Harris


5.      Presidents Report


6.      New Business


7.      Adjournment




Welcome Remarks by the Chair:



Dr. Lamba chaired the meeting and declared the meeting open.  Irene Keroglidis moved a motion to approve the agenda and Sandeep Prabhakar seconded it. The motion was carried




Minutes of the previous meeting:


Suleiman Guven moved a motion to approve the minutes of the previous monthly meeting held on July 11, 2011 Ahmad Shah Hotaki seconded it.  The motion was carried.



President’s Report/Discussions


·         Canadian National Exhibition (CNE). This year we have a for space on international pavilion where we can display exhibition of the ethnic press for 18 days. We are going to participate 18 days at CNE. The Prime Minister or Premier of Ontario may inaugurate the opening ceremony of the exhibition. The opening ceremony is most likely on August 21, 2011. Insurance is required for the event.  President urged members to volunteer for the event spanning to 18 days. Members who decide to volunteer will be given passes and also food tokens for the days they decide to participate and volunteer. Besides volunteers NEPMCC may employ students for this event. President suggested Asha Rajak and Neel Nanda to coordinate the activities with the volunteers during the event. President’s office received very few newspapers for CNE pavilion. President Thomas Saras hoped to have as many copies as possible before the CNE. President hoped to have at least 100 copies by the weekend of August 8, 2011. President Thomas Saras will notify members on exact timing of the opening  ceremonies which is most likely to take place on August 21 at the Direct Energy Building- Hall B of the International Pavilion. Thomas Saras asked members to be present during the opening and closing ceremonies. The last Sunday of the exhibition, (September 4, 2011), NEPMCC is celebrating Canadian multiculturalism by supporting and also sponsoring a number of multicultural shows at the great stage of the Hall B International Pavilion. During the day Asha will be delivering speeches emphasizing the critical role the ethnic publications are playing in our democratic society.


·        About one thousand CNE entrance passes along with parking passes were distributed to members who promised participation for the CNE exhibition.


·        The Canada Day celebration took place on Saturday July 2nd with a dinner and entertainment at the Whistler’s (McNeil Room) 995 Broadview Avenue. There were a lot of dignitaries and VIPs present to celebrate the event. The event was a huge success as there was huge turnout and participation from various cultural groups. President Thomas Saras thanked everyone who contributed and participated towards the event.


·        On September 25th, we participate at the Word On The Street, Exhibition in Toronto and Vancouver.


·        Hopefully the administration expects the participation and support of every member. Bro. Hotaki is the chairman of the organizing committee and also the responsible person for this event.


·        NEPMCC Awards. In October we will organize our Awards ceremony. Effective from January 1st until end of June 2011, members were asked to download nomination form from our website and submit names of members they propose from their community, media or organizations who they think are eligible for recognition or to receive the NEPMCC Awards.  Members were earlier asked to send the completed nomination form to either Dr. Tajdolati or to the office of the President. . President Thomas Saras mentioned that NEPMCC has received the nominations for the annual awards. Asha Rajak, Irene Keroglidis, and Dr. Tajdolati will decide on the nominations as members of the awards committee.


·        The office of the President has already sent the questionnaire of the economic survey via email to all the members of NEPMCC along with reminders. President urged members to cooperate and respond to the economic survey undertaken by NEPMCC as it was in their own interest to participate. Less than 300 members out of more than 600 members have participated in the survey so far. President Thomas Saras expressed disappointment at the rate of responses by the members. Students may be employed to call ethnic media outlets individually, if the responses continued to be poor. Employing students will also have an additional cost to the organization.  Seneca College will receive the responses of the survey and tabulate and present the findings of the survey in a report.  To make a conclusive report based on the findings, participation in large number is required. Based on this report of the economic survey, The National Ethnic Press and Media Council will prepare a three day convention and seminar for the members of the sector next year in 2012 and apply for Government funds accordingly. This national convention in turn will provide to all of the members the important information and education about the Canadian Laws on Journalism. The questionnaire which was prepared with the help of Seneca College was designed to make a decision about the nature of the educational material the Seneca College should prepare for the three day national convention. Besides this we are working with the government in order to get some benefits for the members of NEPMCC. In order to be successful we have to show to authorities that most of our members are professionals and they are contributing to Canadian economy. This will only be possible if the members participate in large numbers.


·        President Thomas Saras mentioned that the new Director of PAP, Heritage Canada was for some reason not able to make it to the monthly meeting. He went over some guidelines under which members can apply for funding under the program. He said only very few members applied under the program (PAP) for digital periodicals. Members can still apply for funding under some other federal programs. Many discussions took place regarding process of application for funding. The office of the President is working hard to help the members in their application under PAP but the members should also pay attention to the deadlines and other documentary requirements by Heritage Canada and other Government departments.


·        Word on the Street. Besides Toronto, this year we are going also to organize this exhibition in Vancouver on the same day with Toronto.


·        Annual Dinner: President Thomas Saras suggested moving this year’s annual dinner back to Cypriot Community Centre. Motion: Irene Keroglidis moved a motion to this effect and Dr. Tajdolati seconded the motion. The motion was carried.


 Presentation by Jim Karygiannis M.P. Scarborough-Agincourt, Liberal Multiculturalism Critic.




Dr. Lamba welcomed Jim Karygiannis to the meeting.


Some excerpts of Hon: Jim Karygiannis is as follows


“It is a pleasure to be here. I want to thank Thomas Saras and the board of NEPMCC.  I am the critic of multiculturalism of the Liberal Party. Bob Rae asked me to thank you for the Canada Day celebration which was hosted by NEPMCC in July. There is a movement in Europe to strike out the word Multiculturalism. We must not shut our doors. We have done mistakes in the past. We ignored you and mistakes were made. My door is always open to discuss and resolve issues people face in our society. My mother does not know English but turns to Greek Radio and Greek TV to be informed. We want to take the word tolerance and replace it with respect.  The word RACE stands for Respect Accept Celebrate and Embrace. I want to invite everyone to Ottawa on August 27 and August 28 (Saturday and Sunday) in the Liberal Caucus.


Multiculturalism is fundamental to our belief that all Canadian citizens, regardless of their racial, ethnic or religious background, have an equal voice and opportunity to participate fully in Canadian society.


As Canadians, we are proud of our citizenship and value our rights and freedoms.  Canada’s strength is its people.


The Liberal Party of Canada continues to reach out to all Canadians to develop lasting relationships with ethnic and religious communities in Canada.  As the Liberal Critic for Multiculturalism, I join my Party in encouraging all Canadians to participate fully in Canada’s present and future.


I believe in the power and potential of the human race. We must Respect our neighbours, Accept our differences, Celebrate our rich diversity and Embrace our heritage. We live harmoniously under one flag, the Canadian Flag.  We are different from one another, yet we are one – we are Canada.


Unless we listen to you we fail. I will stop here. Our policy is “everybody belongs”.




Hon: Jim Karygiannis then opened the floor for discussion through the chair of the meeting –Dr Lamba






Gerard Paul, Mareck J. Godyn, Suleiman Guven, Aaron Berhane and other members discussed a wide variety of issues such as immigration, trade, economy, healthcare amongst other issues.


Hon: Jim Karygiannis candidly answered all questions to the satisfaction of all present.








President Thomas Saras thanked Jim Karygiannis for his presentation.  Thomas Saras said that Jim Karygiannis is a highly capable leader and has worked very hard to be successful. He has known Jim for many years and always appreciated his hard work and dedication and commitment.  It is a special honour for this organization that Jim is with us. He praised the Liberal leader for his tireless work for the country. He would like to provide all possible help to the leader for the betterment of Canadian society.






Presentation by Indira Naidoo Harris – Provincial Liberal Candidate-Halton




Dr. Lamaba invited Indira to make her presentation.




 She began her address by saying“I am really happy and thrilled to be here and I thank you for inviting me”


Indira then gave her brief to the council as follows:


Indira Naidoo-Harris was born in Durban, South Africa. Her family immigrated to Canada, to pursue the dreams they could not achieve under the oppression of apartheid.


The Naidoos settled in central Alberta, where Indira grew up in a small, rural town. Fuelled by her family history in South Africa and her arrival in Canada during our Trudeaumania years, Indira has always been interested in current affairs and world events. That interest led her to the University of Lethbridge, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.


After graduate work at the University of Alberta, Indira moved to the United States for two years with her husband, Randy. She began her career in journalism there, working for NBC and PBS.


From those beginnings, Indira built a successful career as a writer, reporter, producer and anchor at the international, national and regional levels. Coming to Ontario in the 1990's to work for CBC’s The National, she has anchored for two of Canada’s national television networks (CBC Newsworld, CTV Newsnet), as well as for many local Ontario stations (CBC Toronto and CBC Ottawa, TVO and OMNI Television). Indira has also anchored for regional and national radio, including World Report, and The World at Six, and has hosted the popular current affairs shows, Cross Country Check-Up and The Current.


Throughout her career, Indira has earned admiration and respect as a fair-but-firm, honest, intelligent and credible journalist. She has interviewed Prime Ministers, Premiers, entertainers, authors and other important Canadian and international personalities, winning numerous awards for her work and volunteerism in national and international causes. A year ago Indira finally decided to pursue her interest in government and currently works with the Honorable Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Ontario as a Director of Communications. She has sat on the Board of Directors for the Reel World Film Festival and the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund of Canada.


 Her family spends its time visiting the many Halton Region conservation areas, shopping in the Milton and Burlington Farmer's Markets, attending the local fairs, and enjoying everything the region has to offer.


 Indira said she felt it was the right time to enter politics because of her constant conviction in serving the society. She is well aware of the issues facing her constituents and the province.


Indira Naidoo-Harris then opened the floor for questions.


Janus Adu Raudkavi, Gerard Paul, Mareck J. Godyn, Aaron Berhane, Ahmad Shah Hotaki and others took part in the discussion following her presentation. Various issues were keenly discussed


Indira Naidoo Harris candidly answered all questions during the discussion.


Thomas Saras thanked Indira for her time and wished her success in her campaign.





 Adjournment: Irene Keroglidis moved a motion to adjourn the meeting, Dr. Tajdolati seconded it. The motion was carried. The chair adjourned the meeting at 10:30 pm. The next meeting would take place on September 12, 2011, 6:00 pm at the committee room N# 4, at the Toronto City Hall.




The Minutes prepared by Neel Nanda, Secretary General of the NEPMCC and have been accepted by the executive as is for distribution to members.