The Indian Independence Day was celebrated with pride and nostalgia by the diaspora community all over the world on Aug. 15. While several groups observed the 72nd Independence Day celebrations over the past few days, many events are scheduled for the coming weekend as well.
Indian embassies and high commissions in various countries hoisted the tricolor to mark the occasion. Other than attending the official ceremonies at these centers, persons of Indian origin organized many events to showcase and enjoy the heritage of their native country.
The fervor was there for all to see at many sites around the world, including the Empire State Building in New York, the Niagra Falls in Canada and the Burj Khalifa in Dubai.
Happy India Day from New York City! Together with the Federation of Indian Association, we’re honoring India’s Independence Day by recreating the Indian flag in lights tonight. 🇮🇳
— Empire State Bldg (@EmpireStateBldg) August 15, 2018
Dinesh Bhatia, the Counsel General of India in Toronto, shared the image of the Niagra Falls bathed in the tricolor on his Twitter handle.
Magnificent video of the iconic Niagara Falls in #Canada illuminated in Indian tricolour tonight on 15 August 2018 to commemorate the 71st anniversary of Independence Day of India @PMOIndia @MEAIndia @IndianDiplomacy @IndiainToronto pic.twitter.com/08hQAfFLH5
— Dinesh Bhatia (@dineshbhatia) August 16, 2018
People of Indian community gathered at Indian diplomatic missions in Dubai and Abu Dhabi to be a part of Indian flag-hoisting ceremony.
— Burj Khalifa (@BurjKhalifa) August 15, 2018
In Naperville, Chicago, “India Day” celebrations presented a colorful sight to people on Aug. 12. The event, organized at Knoch Park, presented colorful ethnic attires, musical beats and aromatic Indian food to the participants.
“One of the biggest draws to the event was Bollywood rock star Sukhwinder Singh, known for his rendition of Jai Ho, a song made popular in the movie, Slumdog Millionaire,” Chicago Tribune reported on the event, which is being organized by the Indian Community Outreach since 2015.
Gov. Bruce Rauner addressed the crowd with a few words, and then briefly joined Singh in the Jai Ho rendition, the report added.
The Indian community in New Zealand came together to celebrate India’s Independence in Auckland. The event, held at Mahatma Gandhi Centre three days ahead of the actual day, was attended by Finance Minister Grant Robertson, who acknowledged the contributions of the Indian community, and called them “true partners in the country’s progress,” indiannewslink.co.nz reported.
“The Indian community brings cultural diversity to New Zealand. The Labour Party and the Labor government respects multiculturalism and respects people of all ethnicities. Our Parliament is a true example of our multicultural approach with MPs from various communities serving New Zealand and New Zealanders,” Robertson said, according to the report.
Indian diaspora across Australia also held several cultural events to mark the occasion. Bollywood actress Rani Mukherjee hoisted the tri-color at the iconic Federation Square building last week. She was in Melbourne to attend the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) 2018.
Happy Indepedence Day India 🇮🇳! Today, me and other Indians celebrate the day our country was liberated and recognized as a free, separate nation ❤️! Although India still has many problems and a long way to go in terms of LGBTQ rights, protection of women and treatment of Muslims, I still am proud of it, and grateful to be an Indian-American 🇮🇳🇺🇸❤️! Bharat Mata Ki Jai! JAI HIND!!!!
A post shared by 💘 Rani Mukherjee Chopra 👸🏾 (@ranimukherjeefp) on
In the United Kingdom, a pro-India rally was organized to counter a pro-Khalistan rally in London on Aug. 12, and celebrate India’s Independence Day. Around 200 people were gathered at London’s Trafalgar Square to show their support for India, holding placards that said, “Sikhs for a United India” and “We stand for one united strong India.”
The Independence Day celebrations are, however, not over yet in many parts of the world.
In Toronto, Canada, a huge celebration will take place at Nathan Phillips Square on Aug. 19. The annual India Day Festival and Grand Parade, being hosted by Panorama India, with the support of the Consulate for the 19th year, is expected to draw over 75,000 people, Toronto Sun reported.
Bollywood actor Jimmy Sheirgill will be the Marshal at the parade. Malkit Singh, famously known as the “King of Bhangra,” and Canadian singer Parichay will also perform at the event, besides 300 local dancers and Panorama Idol singers, the report added.
Another mega-event will be held in Midtown, Manhattan, on Aug. 19. This year, the New York City India Day Parade, which is called the largest Indian parade in America, will mark the 38th anniversary of the event, organized by the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) every year.
Kamal Haasan, the famous Indian film actor-turned-politician will be the Grand Marshal at the 2018 India Day Parade, which featured Baahubali actor Rana Daggubati last year.
“For three years in a row, the parade has attracted a crowd of more than 180,000 visitors. The event acts as a mouthpiece for the diverse Indian-Asian population in the United States,” metro.us reported.