CIA celebrates the colourful Hindu festival Diwali in Castle Hill

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By Manju Mittal

The Council of Indian Australians Inc. (CIA) organised a Diwali Fair on Saturday, 22nd October 2016 at the Castle Hill Showground.  Despite the gloomy and cold weather people gathered in large numbers to enjoy the festive spirit. The event attracted people of different communities and ethnicity to a celebration that everyone looks forward to a time to get together with the entire family, this festival of lights was the perfect weekend celebration.

The official part of the program commenced with presentation of a video on CIA recent achievements, with guests and audience rising for national anthems of both Australia and India. The entertainment segment involved performers and art forms from every part of India including classical, traditional folk and Bollywood performances. The theme was Diwali, of course  with henna stall, jewellery, clothes and delicious Indian food on offer from various regions.

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cia 3cia 4Sydney’s well known singer Shobha Ingleshwar and her co- singer Sanket and popular Golden Voices Band stole the show with their brilliant singing performance on old golden hits, a big thumping applause by the audience could be heard. A well choreographed Indian dance performance followed by Sydney’s talented singer and dancer Lalitha Chellappan and Nandi, Dharshani, added an extra touch of Bollywood colour to an eventful evening. Highlight of the night was fashion show presented by Shalini’s Indian fashion. The stage was an explosion of colour as fashion models graced the catwalk in their stunning traditional outfits.

The guest of honours were Consul General of India, Sydney Hon. B. Vanlavawna, Dr. Geoff Lee, MP for Greenway Ms Michelle Rowland, Ms. Julia Finn MP, Ms. Jodi Mckay MP, MLC Daniel Mookhey, MLC David Clark, Matt Kean MP and many other MPs attended the event. It  was a remarkable and vibrant event, with inspiring speeches. Mr. Praful Desai President of CIA acknowledged the gathering and thanked the guests also appreciated the role of volunteers and members of CIA.  Julian Leeser MP gave an inspiring speech in Hindi and  English.

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cia 6cia 7Diwali is celebrated in the same festive spirit in Australia as it is in India. CIA, thank you, huge crowd turned up in Castle Hill a week before the actual festival of Diwali with people wishing each other ”˜Happy Diwali’.



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