What they miss about home

Even as they look back fondly at the days spent at home, Non- Resident Gujaratis (NRGs) recollect memories of the ‘best days’ of their lives, and tell Ritika Arora what they miss the most about their homeland. They’re known as the Indian ‘Diaspora’ abroad, and make up such a significant chunk in several foreign lands that they often outnumber the locals. Indeed, Indians settled abroad, or the ‘NRI’s as we like to call them, have dispersed so widely across the world that it would now be difficult to find a corner of the globe that has not witnessed contributions from ...
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The Right Start: Ganesha goes Green

Amrita Ganguly-Salian discovers a wave of environmental sensitivity preceding the preparation for the upcoming Ganpati festival all over the country. Last year, while crossing the Seepz Flyover in Mumbai, my daughter happened to glance out of the vehicle. She calmly said, “Ma, my friend Ganesha”. I wouldn’t have reacted beyond “Hmmm”, if I had not seen the regally crowned head of the deity passing at eye-level to us on the other side of the flyover boundary wall. It took a while to realize that it was a gigantic idol that was being ferried to some venue on an open truck ...
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Unstoppable Social Jetsetters

Mansi Tanna takes a peak into some of the elite social clubs of Kolkata. Kolkata- the city of joy is really joyous when it comes to socializing; there are a number of high-end clubs in Kolkata. Membership to these prestigious clubs is highly coveted by the social elites of the city. Residents in Calcutta can join these clubs for entertainment and pleasure. There are sports clubs in Kolkata as well as clubs for recreation. Members of the clubs have to abide by certain norms and rules to continue membership with the clubs. These clubs highlights on the lavish lifestyle of ...
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The Golden Illuminati

The Global Vipassana Pagoda (GVP) was built, among others, to express gratitude to Gautama Buddha, for dispensing what followers believe is a universal teaching for the eradication of suffering, to educate the public about the life and teaching of the Buddha, and to provide a place for the practice of meditation. It is a replica of the Shwedagon Pagoda of Yangon, Myanmar to show the gratitude of India to Myanmar for preserving the nonsectarian Vipassana Meditation, in its pristine purity; the actual relics of the Buddha are enshrined in the GVP. The foundation stone was laid in October 1997 and ...
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Back to the ol’ Vedas

World Association of Vedic Studies is all set to explore Vedic Knowledge for Civilizational Harmony in its 8th International Conference to be held at Port of Spain from August 4-7, 2010. World Association of Vedic Studies (WAVES) is holding its 8th International Conference at the University of West Indies, St Augustine Campus, Trinidad between Aug 4th and 7th, 2010. The Conference is being hosted by Saraswati Mandiram Trinidad and Tobago Inc and is supported by the Sanatan Dharma Mahasabha of Trinidad and Tobago (SDMS), The National Council for Indian Culture (NCIC) and the Vedic Mission of Trinidad and Tobago and ...
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Collourrffull Carriibbean Jjhandii—ss

Pandita Indrani Rampersad, PhD, introduces a special Vaishnava tradition followed by persons of Indian origin in Trinidad and Tobago. Indians in the Caribbean have been undergoing rapid creolization in places like Trinidad and Tobago, where the cultural playing field has never been level because of chauvinistic ethnic based politics, and in places like St Vincent and Jamaica their numerical strength proves a disadvantage. In the midst of creolization, one sees colourful, triangular flags flying on bamboo poles, called Jhandi-s and they are raised and planted in conjunction with Puja-s; they proliferate in rural parts of Trinidad , Guyana and Suriname, ...
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Indian Arrival Day in Trinidad and Tobago

Dr Kumar Mahabir elaborates on the annual celebrations to commemorate the arrival of Indians at the island country of Trinidad and Tobago. On May 30 1845, the Fath Al Razak docked in the Port of Spain harbour in Trinidad and Tobago with 225 adult passengers on board. The passengers were immigrants from India who had come to the British colony to work in the sugarcane plantations after the abolition of African slavery. They had spent 103 days on sea during the arduous and dangerous journey that spanned 14,000 miles (36,000 km). The immigrants were contracted for five to ten years ...
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Left, or right of the hyphen?

Dr Arnold Thomas reflects on the identity of St Vincent citizens of Indian origin, or Indo-Vincentians. The history of Indian immigration to St Vincent and the Grenadines is now well documented although not fully published as yet. But since we are marking June 1 as Indian Arrival Day it is useful to recap its significance. But first I would like to deal with a popular mythology: that the mutineers of the 1857 Indian Mutiny were sent to St Vincent. The facts are: following the Mutiny in 1857, the London-based West India Committee representing the planter interest in the West Indies ...
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Utsav, a la Trinidad!

A sketch of the various festivals of Indian origin, still celebrated in fervour in the island nation of Trinidad and Tobago, penned by Dr Kumar Mahabir. Few places in the world offer so many types of festivals all year round as Trinidad and Tobago in the English speaking Caribbean. The range of festivals reflects the diversity of people who can trace their roots to Africa, India, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. Trinidad is well known for hosting the breath-taking beauty of Carnival (in February), described as the “Greatest show in earth.” But there are more festival attractions for tourists than ...
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Mauritius: Land with an Indian Heart

Sarita Boodhoo, while tracing the history of the Indian Diaspora in Mauritius, explains how the Indian heart of the island nation is still in the right place. The Advent In the year 1834, a tiny island called Mauritius was all set to witness a historic event. The British brought in a group of 75 contract laborers from India and employed them in the island’s sugarcane fields. With time, this handful of individuals grew to form the Indian Diaspora of Mauritius. This arrival was unique for one more reason. Among all the plantation colonies across the world, Mauritius was the first ...
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