The Connecticut Chapter of the Global Organization (GOPIO-CT) celebrated India’s upcoming 76th Independence Day with a flag hoisting at the Stamford Govt Center on August 6, a ceremony with elected Connecticut officials and dignitaries and a festival with dances and music of India at the Mill River Park in Stamford.
According to GOPIO-CT, a floating crowd of over 3,000 people attended flag hoisting followed by the India Festival and kite flying at the Mill River Park.
A press release said, “Dressed in colorful traditional Indian attire, with melodious music from the popular Bollywood world, dances depicting the wide variety of Indian culture, kite flying, spicy Indian cuisine, and booths decorated with Indian symbols and face art, the festivities were a treat to the fast-growing Indian American community in the state of Connecticut and New York’s Westchester County.”
The day-long celebrations began with the hoisting of the American and Indian flags at the Stamford Government Center by Stamford Mayor Caroline Simmons and Chief Guest India’s Deputy Consul General Dr. Varun Jeph. GOPIO-CT President Dr. Jaya Daptardar hoisted the Connecticut State flag. American and Indian national anthems were sung students of Stamford’s Hindi School.
Mill River Park Collaborative Board Chair Arnold Karp extended a warm welcome and said the park has become focal point for the community to come together and celebrate.
“The India Festival in Stamford, CT is a tribute to a strong and vibrant Indian-American community that has excelled in almost all areas of life in this adopted nation of ours,” said GOPIO-CT Trustee/Advisor and Chairman of GOPIO International Dr. Thomas Abraham.
“Through events like the India Festival, we are cultivating and developing community networking with all the younger elected officials,” Dr. Abraham added.
Stamford Mayor Caroline Simmons proclaimed August 6 as India Independence Day in Stamford to commemorate Indian Independence and thanking the dedication of the Indian American community.
Prominent among those who addressed and greeted the Indian American community included State Senator Ryan Fazio, State Assembly Representatives Domique Johnson and Rep. Anabel Figueroa. New Haven Mayoral candidate Tom Goldenburg spoke of his connection with India where he stayed over a decade in Kerala.
Two other non-profit community organization representatives, Norwalk International Cultural Exchange Founder Janet Evelyn and Stamford’s Building One Community Program Director Fanny Ferreira also greeted the audience.
High School graduates for area schools were honored with certificates and gift cards and was coordinated by GOPIO-CT Executive Vice President Mahesh Jhangiani.
Many other nonprofit organizations like NAMI, EKAL Foundation, and Hindi Pathshala also joined. The program ended with the grand fashion show with Kashi Collection presented by Prachi Narayan.
Connecticut General Assembly has issued a citation honoring the India Day Celebration to mark the 76th Anniversary of Indian Independence from British colonial rule on August 15 1947.
Signed by state assembly’s Pro Tempore Marten M. Looney, House Speaker Matt Ritter and Secretary of State Stephanie Thomas, the citation was presented to the Connecticut Chapter of the Global Organization (GOPIO-CT) which organized the celebration on Aug 6.
The citation read, “In recognition of the 76th Anniversary India’s Independence from British Colonial Rule on August 15th, 1947, today we come together to celebrate the occasion with GOPIO-CT and other community organizations to help promote awareness of Indian culture, customs and contributions of people of Indian origin. The entire membership extends its very best wishes on this memorable occasion and expresses the hope for continued success,” it added.