Show organisers in Auckland keep us so busy with their cultural and entertainment programmes (sometimes four or five on the same day) that we sometimes almost miss important events. One such is the cultural programme of the Uttarakhand Association of New Zealand held at the Mahatma Gandhi Centre in Auckland on December 25, 2015.
Anil Thapliyal, a Member of the Executive Committee of the Association, sent us the following report:
About 400 persons of Uttrakhand origin from different part of New Zealand attended and danced to music at a cultural festival held on Christmas Day in Auckland.
Singers Virendra Singh, Sahib Singh Ramola and Heema Negi Karasi presented folk songs and dances with the support of Vinod Kumar (Key Board), Gaurav Maithani (Tabla) and Ranjeet Singh (Dholak).
The concert began with ‘Nanda Zagar’ and ended with heritage song ‘Bedu Pako Bara Masa,’ a favourite of the late Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of Independent India.
Earlier, the idol of Nanda Devi, brought from Hamilton, was carried on shoulders to the stage with beating of Dhol-Damon a traditional musical instrument of Uttrakhand.
Speaking on the occasion, Association Chairman Ram Lakhera said that the participation of the younger generation was encouraging and hoped that they would continue to evince interest in their tradition and culture.
In a message read out at the event, Uttrakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat greeted the members of the community in New Zealand and congratulated the Association for organising the cultural festival.
Established on March 30, 2013, the Uttarakhand Association of New Zealand aims to “bring all people of Uttrakhand on one platform, promote, popularise and pass on the rich cultural heritage of the State among the people of New Zealand.”