On I- Day, Sunita sends greetings from space!

FPJ BureauUpdated: Sunday, June 02, 2019, 01:54 AM IST
article-image

ARUN KUMAR Washington

Indian American astronaut Sunita Williams sent greetings from space as the community celebrated Indias 66th Independence Day with colourful parades, featuring Bollywood stars and cultural functions, but with a

prayer in their hearts for the Wisconsin Gurdwara attack victims.

Some 250 members of the community joined Wednesdays official celebration in Washington where Indian Ambassador Nirupama Rao unfurled the national flag at her residence and read out President Pranab Mukherjees message to the nation.

A cultural programme followed with a couple of patriotic sings in Hindi and Assamese. Similar events were held at Indian Consulates in New York, San Francisco, Houston, Atlanta and the Permanent Mission of India to the UN. ” I wish India a very happy Independence Day for August 15… India is a wonderful country and I am very proud to be a part of India,” said Williams in her message from her home amid stars as she displayed the Indian Tricolour on board the International Space Station ( ISS).

” Of course, you know that I am half Indian. My father is from Gujarat. So, I am familiar with culture and customs of India. I am so proud to be a part of this ( Independence Day) celebration,” added Williams, 46, who arrived at the ISS July 15 for her second sojourn in space.

The Independence Day festivities in US kicked off on Saturday with Bollywood actor Vinod Khanna leading the inaugural India Day parade on Long Island in Hicksville, an upscale suburb of New York emerging as the newest alt39 Little Indiaalt39 in the US. Indias Consul General in New York, Prabhu Dayal, also joined the parade along with local officials.

Bollywood actress Prachi Desai on Sunday led another India Day parade as grand marshal with music director Aadesh Shrivastava in Iselin, New Jersey, which has one of the largest concentrations of Indian- Americans in the US. In Henderson, Nevada, Friends of India hosted their second annual parade on Saturday featuring Miss Nevada 2012 Amanda Meagher and the national bird of India, a peacock.

In Boston, thousands gathered at the Hatch Memorial Shell on Sunday for daylong festivities featuring a mix of classical, fusion, and Bollywood music and dance performances and a sampling of cuisine unique to various parts of India.

Organised by the India Association of Greater Boston, the event also featured sombre reflection and prayer for the victims of the August 5 shooting at a Sikh Gurdwara in Oak Creek, Wisconsin.

The India Association of Los Angeles San Fernando Valley will have musician Bappi Lahiri and other Saregama singers at their celebration on August 18 in Van Nuys, California.

The biggest parade in the US, hosted by the Federation of Indian Associations for the 32nd time this year, will take place in Manhattan on August 19 and features Bollywood actor Saif Ali Khan, cricketer Anil Kumble, 40 floats, and dance and song performances.

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. To receive it on Telegram, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

RECENT STORIES

'Want to fulfil mum's dream': Mumbai Khiladis captain Vijay Hajare on playing in Ultimate Kho Kho

'Want to fulfil mum's dream': Mumbai Khiladis captain Vijay Hajare on playing in Ultimate Kho Kho

Mumbai: Hospitals witnessing increase in number of urinary tract infections in elderly

Mumbai: Hospitals witnessing increase in number of urinary tract infections in elderly

West Bengal: TMC leader Anubrata Mondal again skips CBI appearance in cattle smuggling scam

West Bengal: TMC leader Anubrata Mondal again skips CBI appearance in cattle smuggling scam

Ultimate Kho Kho: All you need to know When, Where, Format, Teams; Live on TV and online

Ultimate Kho Kho: All you need to know When, Where, Format, Teams; Live on TV and online

Bihar: Nitish Kumar told Amit Shah not to worry 2 days ago, says Sushil Kumar Modi

Bihar: Nitish Kumar told Amit Shah not to worry 2 days ago, says Sushil Kumar Modi