Commonwealth Bank celebrates Diwali with sounds of bollywood, dhols and tabla

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By Manju Mittal

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), on Thursday evening of October 27, 2016, celebrated Diwali in Bollywood style at the magnificent venue Waterview Homebush Bay Sydney, with over 500 guests, corporate partners. Also present were a number of Political leaders and members of the Indo-Australian community to enjoy the festive spirit. CBA took the opportunity to show their involvement with the Indian community in Australia as its Diwali annual affair is to connect and  reach out to the Indian community.

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Australians have learnt to celebrate this great festival of Indians with the same enthusiasm as other religious occasions. With an estimated 500,000 Indian population settled in the country, and majority of it being Hindu the lighting of lamps and diyas is something that appeals the mainstream with Diwali depicting victory of light over darkness.

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The venue on the night was decorated with Indian motifs and Diwali visuals and guests were welcomed in traditional manner on their arrival with tikka (red dot) on their forehead. Amrish was emcee of the evening as he warmed up the guests with humorous stories and the event commenced with the ceremony by honourable guests. The Guest of honours were Consul General of India, Sydney Hon. B. Vanlavawna, Jody Mckay MP, MLC Daniel Mookhey, MLC David Clark, Director and CEO, MultiConnexions and National Chair AIBC Sheba Nandkeolyar, Chairman Multicultural NSW, Dr.Harinath and many other distinguished NSW MPs.

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General Manager of Commonwealth Bank of Australia Mr. Ed Box spoke  of the strong emphasis CBA places on the multicultural diversity of Australia and how important it is to take care of all the banks’ customers from different backgrounds. “We are looking forward to helping support those Indian citizens that are looking to make Australia their new home and making that transition easier by taking the  bank to  them,” Mr Box stated that he is incredibly proud of fifty per cent of customers who are of Indian origin as well as the large contingent of Indian staff that CBA  employs.

Head of Migrant Financial Services Gunjan Pagare said Diwali means a lot to me “I have some of my best memories attached with the festival of lights, family get together, sweets, fireworks, music, fun, goodwill are all a part of the festival of lights”. Gunjan spoke about the desire for CBA to engage more with the Indian community and how CBA gives back to the community through its various sponsorships of Indian events.

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Consul General of India, Mr.B. Vanlavawna spoke about the Diwali festival and richness of Indian culture and congratulated CBA on holding a Diwali function,  Dr.Harinath acknowledged the gathering and congratulated CBA for their successful operations in Australia. It was a remarkable and vibrant event with smiles on every one’s face.

The cultural program kept the crowd entertained, DJ Dimple Hartaj Deez made sure he had the guests including MP’s tapping to his selection of Bollywood numbers.

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Performances from the Shiamak Dawar dancers filled the atmosphere in a celebratory mood. From traditional dances to Bollywood entertainment, it was a night full of Dhol sounds that enthralled one and all. Rucha Lange created sensation through her voice and the magic of live tabla by Maharshi Raval was brilliant. Delicious food was served by Delhi O Delhi Restaurant was the icing on the cake.

CBA’s celebration of the festival proved that Diwali is celebrated in the same festive spirit in Australia as it is in India.

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