‘Great Indian Festival’ In Ottawa Highlights Diversity & Unity

From left: Prof. Rao Nanduri, Uttam Makaju and Gomathi Barooda

Ottawa: The Great India Festival, in collaboration with the Canadian Center for Mindful Habitats, virtually celebrated the Multiculturalism Day of Canada with vivid programs.

Inaugurating the program by lighting the lamp, Artist Aruna Chagarlamudi highlighted the importance of culture and expressed wishes for the grand success of the event.

Initiating the panel discussion, the first segment of the program, Chairman of The Great India Festival and moderator of the panel discussion Prof. Rao Nanduri introduced the panelists and elucidated the importance of the theme “Connecting Canadian Culturally”.

Prof. Nanduri further explained the strength of culture in uniting people. Speaking on the theme of the discussion, panelist Dr. Gyaandeo Maharajh explained that the greater connection will lessen the difference we see among the people and culture. Reiterating the significance of culture, Dr. Maharajh stressed that we must know our culture to explain other.

The essence of human existence is no other than serving other which is possible only through connection, Dr. Maharajh further added. Ms. Gita Nurlaila, highlighting the issue of diversity, talked about Indonesia’s unity, in spite of wide and differences among its people.

Ms. Nurlaila also echoed on the power of culture in getting the opportunity to know other people and eliminating fear to ultimately foster unity. Mr. Uttam Makaju, the last panelist, representing Canadian Newa Guthi, explained that culture is an integral part of the human psyche which cannot be ignored even if they are far away from their motherland. Citing the activities carried out by Guthi, Makaju revealed his experience that cultural connection with Canadians remained deeper than other connections.

Mr. Makaju said : “We are thankful to Canada for embracing multiculturalism as a “Mantra” for its development and strengthening unity.”

In the second segment of the program, Ms. Gomathi Boorada, an acclaimed dancer, presented some snippets of “Canada Unity Dance” going to happen on August 5-8, 2021 in Ottawa. The first and second segment of the program was hosted by Festival Ambassador Ms. Kavitha Menon.

Starting the last segment of the program “Canada Celebrates Folklore”, program Coordinator and Co Director of Canadian Center for Mindful Habitats Dr. Pallavi Swaranjali welcomed everyone and said that they received fifteen stories based on various countries, reflecting human values and positivity and now they are waiting for illustration for these stories.

Dr. Swaranjali also spoke about the panel discussion from the narrators on the art of storytelling. At the onset, Ms. Cristine Mary highlighted major elements of storytelling, where as other narrators discussed characters, props, modes, culture to make storytelling more lively and meaningful. At the end of the session, Ms. Elysse LeRoy presented some images made by herself and Ms. Megan Phenenhour along with an interactive guessing game.

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