iNDICA News Bureau-
Indians around the world celebrated the country’s 73rd Republic Day yesterday, marking 72 years of the adoption of the Constitution in 1950.
The festivities were larger and more community-focused this year, driven by the culture ministry’s ‘Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav’ program, a celebration of 75 years of a progressive India that began Mar 12, 2021, and will end Aug 15, 2023. The theme for this year’s Republic Day celebrations was ‘Vibrant India’.
The event hosted by the Indian embassy in Washington, DC, was an elaborate affair, commencing with the unfurling of the national flag by Ambassador Taranjit Singh Sandhu. Apart from the traditional elements of the national anthem and a viewing of the President’s address, the event showcased a short cultural program by students of the Gandharva School of Music, Richmond, Virginia.
Despite the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the event was attended by a number of people, both members of the Indian community and friends of India, in person and via the internet.
The ambassador’s address highlighted the strong ties between India and the U.S. in both bilateral and multilateral cooperation.
He also made note of three members of the community abroad being conferred with the Padma Bhushan — Madhur Jaffrey (for popularizing Indian cuisine) and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and Google CEO Sundar Pichai (for their leadership in the technology sector).
Several other places across the U.S. hosted Republic Day celebrations, including not just the flag ceremony but also a variety of community-focused activities, facilitating the involvement of prominent Indians and supporters of Indo-U.S. relations.
A grand event was planned and executed by the Indian-American community in Southern California, celebrating ‘Vibrant India’ at the Cerritos Centre of Performing Arts, Cerritos.
The celebration was held Jan 22 and showcased the food, festivals, diversity and current and future development of India, besides dances and performances in tribute to its rich cultural history. It was attended by several dignitaries, including Consul General TV Nagendra Prasad.
In New York City, the consulate general of India held a flag-hoisting ceremony Jan 26 and also supported several events in the run-up to Republic Day, including a celebration by the Federation of India Associations (FIA) New England, held in Worcester, Massachusetts.
The event was attended by several dignitaries, including State Senator (Massachusetts) Michael Moore, former US Congressman Joe Kennedy III and former Rhode Island Assemblyman Robert Lancia.
In Chicago, the FIA hosted a celebration that was attended by the incoming and outgoing FIA executive team, India’s Midwest Consul General Amit Kumar and US Congressmen Danny Davis, Brad Schneider and Raja Krishnamoorthi.
India House in Houston, Texas, hosted a similar ceremony, headed by Consul General Aseem Mahajan.