Friday, August 24, 2018


                                    ( Anupam Kher and T V actress Prachi Tehlan  )







India Day Parade is 38-years-old  now. The Parade, sponsored by the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) is annually organized to commemorate the Independence Day of India. The parade is the largest celebration of India’s independence outside of India itself, with over 180,000 visitors each year.

The FIA represents more than 500,000 Asian-Indians in the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.

On 15th  August 2018, the top of Empire state Building was lit up in Indian Tricolors ( LED light display,) Tricolors were also displayed at Niagara Falls  .

It was Drizzle but it was India,  India and India all along the fashionable  Madison Avenue right from 38 street to down town. Kudos to NYPD for an efficient and  fool proof security /  Traffic management . This    Busy Madison Avenue was totally  closed to  traffic on the parade day .Barricades were erected at various places and adequate and well planed restrictions were put with least inconvenience to public .

Inspite of intermittent drizzle, crowds watched the Parade all along the route .Indian community members , performers and  various  groups  marched down Madison Avenue to downtown   led by actor politician Kamalhassan  as the grand marshal of the Parade. He was joined by his daughter Shruti Hassan, Bollywood actor Anupam Kher,  singers Kailash Kher, Shibani Kashyap and Mickey Singh as well as designer Rosy Ahluwalia; and Shital Mahajan, sky diver and recipient of the Padma Shri award.

I saw  Sir Vivian Richards on Antigua and Barbuda  Troupe vehicle  waving to Indian spectators all along the route. He obliged every spectator  who came to shake hands with him.  Saw some   people of Indian origin  from Caribbean islands witnessing the Grand event  . Spoke to  Christopher Krishna a gentleman of Indian Origin .

“  Yeah , My ancestors  were  from India .   We don’t speak Hindi  but we know what  India is  .  Love Indian  food , music and customs. Many  from   Trinidad and  Guyana   in the crowd.  Their ancestors Indian.”

Spoke to a man from Antigua and Barbuda . He said :

“ Yeah My ancestors Indian . Antigua and  Barbuda  two islands . Now one independent  country of   British commonwealth . We had so many  persons of Indian origin but most of them have moved out . A small community left  now . We have some Indian Food Restaurants  also . They sell mix of Indian and Chinese food to remain economically  viable . My father over here  in U S A. I too join him. Very beautiful beaches in Barbuda and Antigua  .  Good Tourism . I  love    Indian Music. Love Indian dances , films and customs.  Can’t speak  Hindi . Have picked up Thoda  thoda . You guys lucky . You speak Hindi  We sometimes feel culturally rootless.”

Saw People from  South India Dancing on Punjabi songs . The dance by Haryana troupe was amazing. So were the dances from Maharashtra , Gujarat , Bihar ,  Punjab and other states of the  country .  so many Americans watched the Parade and kept on clicking photographs. For them it was a real treat and a great cultural  Show Bonanza from India . An elderly American lady who was watching the parade standing for about three hours ( in the intermittent drizzle ) told me :

“ I wish to be born in India in my next life. Love all the  cultural diversity  and colours  of your country . Thank you for your clarifications. Keep this chocolate for your family . Namaste .”

At the end of the parade route, a street fair featured Indian-American businesses from the tristate area showcasing their products at booths. Also on display were Indian arts and crafts, clothes, jewelry and regional cuisine.

I conclude with lines from my poem " Zindabad Aey Wattan" ..

Teri Nadiyon se Amrit barastaa Rahe,
Teray kheton se miltaa Rahe Sab ko Ann
Tujh pe mushkil kabhi bhi na Aaye koyii
Teray baagon mein ho Rang o Boo ka chalan
...Zindabaad Aey wattan

Mausamon ki Mehar Har Gadi ho yahaan
Meharbaan ho Havaaon ka bhi Baankpan
Mast Lehron ka sangeet Bajtaa Rahe
Saahilon pe teray Chhan-Chhana-Chhan-Chhanan
.....................Zindabaad Aey Wattan.

Aey Himaala Teri Sarparasti Rahay
Ta Abad Hon Suhaagan ye Gang o jaman
Sookhi Dharti ko Pyaason Ko Miltaa rahay
Teri Jheelon ka Aur Aabshaaron Ka Dhan
...............Zindabaad Aey Wattan

(Avtar Mota)

Creative Commons License
CHINAR SHADE by Autarmota is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.
Based on a work at http:\\\.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.