Scott Morrisson likens immigration to Garam Masala blend at Hindu Council’s Diwali Fair


By Neena Badhwar

Prime Minister Sc0tt Morrisson, his wife Jenny in beautiful pink sari and his two daughters graced Hindu Council of Australia’s Diwali Fair at Parramatta Park on November 4, 2018. Other politicians included David Coleman, the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs and Boarder Protection, Deputy Leader of the opposition Tanya Pilbersek, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Julian Leeser Federal MP Seat of Berowra, Phillip Ruddock Mayor Hornsby Shire, Jody Mckay MLA Labor Party NSW, Michelle Rowland ALP Member Greenway and many more including community leaders from various Indian associations. The atmosphere was filled with excitement with stalls all around selling wares, house and land packages to newly arrived Indian families, food stalls selling popular street foods of India, Hare Krishnas singing bhajans, astrologers reading hands, children on rides, proud effigy of Ravana in rich pink attire, western union happy to help you with money transfers, it was a show of India in one place. And entertainment in plenty from Bollywood to Ram Sita Kalyanam (Vivah) on the 3rd of November at the same venue.

In his speech to the community which came in thousands to be part of the mela, Prime Minister Morrisson said, “Well can I thank you for your wonderful welcome and thank you so much for inviting me to be here today, Consul General to Premier Gladys Berejiklian it’s wonderful to be here with you, the Deputy Leader of the Opposition is here also with us, it’s great to have you here and all the other distinguished guests who are with us here today. Thank you for all being here to celebrate this wonderful celebration of light, of hope, of the future, which is what Diwali is all about.

He went on to tell the story of garam masala that we make as immigrants, “I want to tell a story about garam masala. In our house it is our habit on a Saturday night if I am home that I will cook. It’s true and I love garam masala and when I think about garam masala I think a lot about how successful immigration has been to Australia over centuries because Australia is the most successful immigration nation on earth. The most successful the most cohesive and it’s something we celebrate and we all celebrate it from all walks of life, all sides of politics and we celebrate it because it’s the fabric of our community it’s the fabric of our city, it’s the fabric of our nation.

Now masala as you know means a mixture of spices but garam in the Urdu means, it means, it means, it means things that are good and right and getting the right combination and the right blend so you take your cumin and you take your fennel and your black and your green cardamom and put together with the black peppercorns. Yeah.”

“Throw in some cloves, a few other things you know, you grind it up it makes a wonderful blend and you know that is one of the many generations of immigration, immigrants to Australia has been about laying down, laying down more flavour, more texture, more fabric, more depth, more strength and it’s the combination of these things as Australians have come from all the parts of the world that makes it such strong country, such a united country, such a cohesive country and so what I want to say to you today is thank you for coming out in such large numbers celebrating your religion, celebrating your faith, celebrating a culture that is all brought together in this country by tolerance, by respect, by the things we all believe in as Australians we come from so many different places but what we are united by as Australians the values that we hold, the values of having a go as all of you have had and you’ve been able to achieve and have your families and grow your communities all over the country but particularly here in the heart of Sydney in Parramatta it is something that is very much worth celebrating.

Mr. Morrisson also compared Parramatta to Mumbai Central, lending his support for Diwali, “In terms of our relationship with the Indian community and India itself this is an area of enormous growth in terms of our relationship. Indian nationals moving to Australia are the fastest growing and largest   group coming to Australia today and there is such an alignment of beliefs and values that make this such a happy fit, a very happy fit so it’s great to be here today celebrating with the Hindu community here, out of the Indian community here in Parramatta, this is really Mumbai central in so many ways when you think about the community and how it comes together.”

He added that the immigration was creating a pinch in the cities of Sydney and Melbourne that the government is looking into offering other cities such as Perth, Brisbane, Adelaide and Darwin where they want to see more people and where the jobs are.

He said he had cooked Mumbai chicken curry the night before and that his wife owns the pink sari she wore to the fair admiring how pretty she looked. He said his daughter loved Butter chicken and when asked about Bollywood movies he demonstrated a dance step to a thundering applause from the fair revellers who had come to watch. With most leaders dressed in Indian attire with ladies in beautiful saris and men in achkan suits, Hindu Council’s fair is definitely making its mark, a perfect blend that Australia has become as described by the Prime Minister in his address.

In the end he said, lets protect our religious freedoms, adding,   “Deepavali is a festival of faith, it’s about optimism, it’s about hope it’s about triumph, it’s about family, it’s about looking into the future with positivity.”



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