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Warriors one step closer to new arena

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Jul 7, 2016; Oakland, CA, USA; A large welcome Kevin Durant banner is displayed on the outside of Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Jul 7, 2016; Oakland, CA, USA; A large welcome Kevin Durant banner is displayed on the outside of Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) — The Golden State Warriors Monday cleared another significant hurdle in the organization’s efforts to relocate the team back to its original home in San Francisco.

Owner Joe Lacob and Co. have purchased a plot of land in San Francisco’s Mission Bay neighborhood, where a group of activists filed multiple lawsuits in response to kill the project. Monday, a judge ruled against said activists.

San Francisco Superior Court Judge Garrett Wong ruled that the city’s environmental review of the proposed arena was adequate, effectively rejecting the notions of opponents who said it had failed to consider environmental impacts, including alternative sites for the $1 billion, 18,000-seat arena/entertainment complex. It has been named the Chase Center.

The ruling came exactly two weeks after Golden State signed free-agent superstar Kevin Durant.

In a statement, Warriors President Rick Welts said the ruling “brings us a huge step closer to building a new state-of-the-art sports and entertainment venue, which will add needed vitality to the Mission Bay neighborhood and serve the entire Bay Area extremely well.”

“We look forward to breaking ground soon,” he added.

Soon, indeed. As a result, the Warriors could potentially have shovels in the ground as early as the end of the year.

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee has portrayed the new arena as his legacy project, and called Monday’s decision by the judge “an important milestone in the process of bringing the Golden State Warriors back to San Francisco and to building a state-of-the-art entertainment venue the entire San Francisco Bay Area can be proud of.”

The Warriors have sought to relocate the team back to its original home for four years now — the organization’s original plan of moving the team to Piers 30-32 was ultimately dropped because of ferocious opposition. This year, the team said the opening of the Chase Center became further delayed until 2019 because of the lawsuits.

The ruling is just the latest in what has now been a 15-month battle between the Warriors and the Mission Bay Alliance, a group which is funded by a group of donors to the University of California, San Francisco. The group had argued that construction of such a complex would create traffic chaos, slowing down access to the nearby UCSF Medical Center, which sits just across the street from the proposed arena site.

The group added that a basketball arena would kill the neighborhoods character of life science and medical research.

The project received a stamp of endorsement from the UCSF Chancellor, the Alliance argued the Chancellor overstepped his authority when doing so before obtaining approval from the University of California regents.

Dennis Herrera, a San Francisco City Attorney, told the San Francisco Chronicle every aspect of the Chase Center has “has been thoroughly scrutinized under the law, and it has won overwhelming support every step of the way, from all parts of San Francisco — including its neighbors.”

“I hope that the decision becomes final soon, so that the much-awaited construction of the project can begin,” he added.

Basketball

India, Pakistan spar over women’s rights in Kashmir

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India

NEW YORK (Diya TV)  — At the United Nations, both India and Pakistan’s representatives took shots at their counterpart over women’s rights. Islamabad’s outgoing envoy to the UN, Maleeha Lodhi, said the women in Jammu and Kashmir were suffering due to the communication blackout in the state. India’s First Secretary to the UN Paulomi Tripathi said, without naming Pakistan, these “baseless statements” were ironic given the amount of honor killings that take place there annually.

Rajeev Majumdar is the new president of the Washington State Bar Association, becoming the first state bar president of South Asian descent in the United States.

For the first time, India entered the ranks of the top ten countries sending visitors to the United States, with tourists from India spending nearly $16 billion in the U.S. in 2018 alone.

And while the Kings and Pacers played two entertaining games in Mumbai, their legacy will include supporting five under-resourced schools in and around the region, outfitting them with Smart Classrooms, STEM training and new basketball courts.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Gandhi 150th birth anniversary noted around the world

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Birth Anniversary

NEW DELHI (Diya TV) —  Celebrations for Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary have been ongoing for the past year, but culminated with a ceremony in New Delhi featuring Prime Minister Modi and another in Washington at the Library of Congress. And France’s government worked with the Indian Embassy there to issue a stamp in honor of his birth anniversary.

US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal are meeting this week to continue the US-India discussion on trade and investment.

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb came to New Delhi to strengthen ties between the Hoosier State and India. Infosys has already made a large commitment there. Holcomb is part of a large delegation of Americans now heading Mumbai to take in the first-ever NBA preseason games in India featuring the Indiana Pacers and the Sacramento Kings.

Bollywood turned Hollywood actor Anupam Kher came to the Bay Area to keynote the Akshay Patra annual fundraising gala that helps feed children in India a hot meal during the school year.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Houston cop Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal remembered, fund set up for family

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Dhaliwal

HOUSTON (Diya TV) —  The loss of Harris County Deputy Sheriff Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal while on a routine traffic stop has stunned people around the country. Everyone from Texas governor Greg Abbott to the Houston Texans football team are honoring the Dhaliwal. A GoFundMe page has been setup to support his family, with totals so far in excess of $700,000.

Before Prime Minister Modi headed back to India following his Houston community summit & UN speeches, he met with Rep. Tulsi Gabbard. The Hawaii Congresswoman & Democratic Presidential candidate has been criticized for her support of Modi. But she was happy to highlight the importance of the US-India relationship on Twitter.

The NBA is in India this week for their first-ever preseason games that will feature the Indiana Pacers & Sacramento Kings. The Gateway of India was illuminated with bright colors & there are a series of events in and around the games going on in Delhi & Mumbai.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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