MAY 2019
Khaas Baat : A Publication for Indian Americans in Florida

Florida News


Rahul Bahl, eighth-grader at Liberty Middle School in Tampa, has been selected as the newest and one of the youngest recruit student-athlete at IMG Academy in Bradenton. Started in 1978 by legendary tennis coach Nick Bollettieri, the multi-sport training destination has hosted, trained and taught some of the world’s top athletes. Students reside on campus while pursuing their athletic and academic goals. “We always knew about IMG, but then they approached us to apply,” his parents Raj and Kiran Bahl say. “Rahul submitted an academic application with official transcript and essay. He was then seen playing as well – it was then a solid yes.”

Playing soccer since he was crawling and in clubs/competitions at 3 years of age, Rahul, now 13, has maintained a commendable score in his athletic “goals” as well as keeping straight A’s with honors academically. He has represented the Wesley Chapel Soccer Association, Florida Premier FC and Liberty Middle and also represented Team USA against Berlin, Germany, late last year. He will begin high school this year at IMG Academy studying AP courses and playing soccer on a national level.


Bringing to Bharatnatyam the finest and enhanced qualities, Rudram Dance Company (RDC) aims to carry on the legacy of the classical Indian dance style of Bharatanatyam. Based in Tampa, the company has had the honor of performing under the guidance of its founder and director Tara Priyadarshini Bikkasani. Apart from teaching Bharatanatyam, the school regularly organizes workshops and performances by accomplished artists visiting from India.

An accomplished dancer and one of the finest exponents of Bharatanatyam, Tara Priyadarshini Bikkasani is a disciple of THE late Krishnaveni Lakshmanan of Kalakshetra in Chennai. Bikkasani further had intensive training from Uma Rao of Kalakshetra. Her vision is to bring Bharatnatyam to the stage in the creative and quality productions.

Hillsborough Arts Council and the Commissioners of Hillsborough County have recognized these efforts and granted RDC a financial grant for the year 2018-2019. With this acknowledgement, Hillsborough Public Libraries have invited Rudram Dance Company to do interactive programs at various centers throughout this summer.

RDC is traveling to perform at Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana where in several musicians and dancers come from India. The company will perform June 16 at USF Theater (Performing Arts Center). And this is partly funded by Tampa Arts Council along with Commissioners of Hillsborough County. Also scheduled are professional Bharatanatyam dancers Shaly Vijayan (senior professor of Kalakshetra, Chennai) from June 4-13 and Viraja Shyamjith Kiran (Kalakshetra, Chennai) from Aug. 20-Sept. 3 to conduct workshops. All Bharathanatyam dancers in Tampa can attend the workshops.

Rudram Dance Company and Hillsborough County Public Library invite everyone for an “Outreach and enrichment program of Indian Classical Dance” at following Tampa libraries:

June 25: 6 p.m. at Charles J. Fendig Public Library;

July 13: 2 p.m. at Jimmie B. Keel Library;

July 15: 2 p.m. at Arthenia L. Joyner University Area Community Library;

July 16: 6.30 p.m. at City of Temple Terrace Library;

July 27: 1 p.m. at 78th Street Community Library.


A community-based robotics team from New Tampa has advanced to FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Razorback Invitational World tournament at Fayetteville, Ark., from May 16-19 after winning second place at the FIRST® LEGO® League Regional Championship tournament in Plant City.

The team Techno Wizards includes two middle and four elementary school students: Anika Prasad, Ayona Bagui, Dhruv Kulkarni, Naina Sethi, Netra Vijay and Nikhil Katiyar. A field trip to NASA gave them a chance to meet with a real astronaut and the trip to iFly enthralled them to get an idea of simulation experienced in space.

For this season, working under the guidance of coach Sudhir Katiyar and co-coach Vijay Shanmugam and other parent volunteers, they researched numerous topics such as space radiation, plant pillows, growing food in space, etc., and chose one that seemed most important to them – the well-being of astronauts. Creating a microgravity environment in their prototype, they depicted a possible solution to prevent health hazards to the astronauts.

Around 50 teams competed during the State Tournament on April 6 at Delray Beach. The group is raising funds for travel. An official GoFundMe page has been launched at:

FIRST LEGO League is an international program for students created to introduce them to real-world engineering challenges by conducting research projects and building LEGO-based autonomous robots to complete tasks on a thematic-playing surface. In 2018-2019 INTO ORBIT season, teams need to identify a physical or social problem faced by humans during long duration space exploration. The competition is judged in three areas: Project, Robot Design and Core Values.

homeeventsbiz directorysubscribecontact uscontent newseditor's notehealth
immigrationfinanceMINDBODY/NUTRITIONmoviesfashionbooks/getawaysIIFA 2014ART
astrologyyouthmotoringplaces of worshipclassifiedsarchivesBLOGFACEBOOK
Read the Editor's Blog. By Nitish Rele Classifieds Motoring Astrology Books Fashion Movies Finance Immigration Health Editorial News Content Find us on Facebook! Art