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Charlotte Amalie
Wednesday, August 10, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesINDIA ASSOCIATION, GUESTS CELEBRATE DIVERSITY

INDIA ASSOCIATION, GUESTS CELEBRATE DIVERSITY

Peace, harmony and continued alliance among Virgin Islanders of various backgrounds were singled out as vital ingredients for the territory's future at the annual Indian Republic Day celebration Thursday at Marriott's Frenchman's Reef Hotel.
The evening, hosted by the India Association of the Virgin Islands, was dedicated to its founder and past president, the late David Mohanani, and commemorated the 49th anniversary of the Indian Republic, the world's largest democracy, association president Lal Sakhrani noted.
A crowd of 300 welcomed special guest Sashi Uban Tripathi, the first woman to hold the position of consul general of India in New York.
"There is no field that has not been conquered by women," she said.
Tripathi described the V.I. community as "a cocktail" of different cultures and toasted that it "be drunk with prosperity."
In separate speeches, Gov. Charles W. Turnbull, Lt. Gov. Gerard Luz James II, Senate President Vargrave Richards and Dr. Orville Kean, president of the University of the Virgin Islands, lauded the India Association for its contributions to the community.
The governor, stressing the theme of diversity, said the younger members of the India Association are truly Virgin Islanders who must play a role in shaping the territory's political and economic future.
On behalf of the association, Sakhrani presented two UVI scholarships, pledged textbooks to Charlotte Amalie High School and made contributions to the Police Department's Canine Corps, the V.I. Resource Center for the Disabled and the All Saints School library.
Tripathi is a poet, singer, naturalist and parent, and as a member of the Indian Foreign Service has served in numerous capacities worldwide. Among her posts: high commissioner of India in Zimbabwe; ambassador of India to Poland; and first secretary at the Indian embassy in Moscow.
She said the idea of democracy in India was never a foreign one and cited an ancient Hindu proverb that translated to "Where there's consensus, there's God."
"The Indian community has gone through a process of growth and of maturation" in the past 10 years, she said.
"I felt a majority of Indians were still trying to establish themselves," both financially and professionally, a decade ago, she said.
"Now Indians in North America are well-established and their achievements have not just been noted but also appreciated by the mainstream," she said.
As a result of such accomplishments, she feels that Indians have become more assertive about public issues.
"I have noticed a self-confidence and self-assurance which wasn't there 10 years ago and now the Indian community is willing to play a greater role in mainstream public affairs," she said.
Tripathi also said tradition is not threatened simply because many Indians today are products of several cultures.
"Our culture is deep-rooted, ancient and rich," she explained. "I think our kids are bright enough to absorb the best of both worlds," but parents have to do their part by providing the right resources and "creating that atmosphere."
She cites her family as her greatest accomplishment because "I have two lovely children and a husband who is not only my colleague but also my best friend. In that I feel I am blessed."
Despite the fact that she has lived in several countries, she prides herself on the fact that her family remained together throughout her children's upbringing.
"It's tough — it's not easy when you play so many roles," she said. "There are competing interests" and often she was juggling her time and emotions.
"Juggling and striking a compromise are ultimately the greatest satisfaction."

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Peace, harmony and continued alliance among Virgin Islanders of various backgrounds were singled out as vital ingredients for the territory's future at the annual Indian Republic Day celebration Thursday at Marriott's Frenchman's Reef Hotel.
The evening, hosted by the India Association of the Virgin Islands, was dedicated to its founder and past president, the late David Mohanani, and commemorated the 49th anniversary of the Indian Republic, the world's largest democracy, association president Lal Sakhrani noted.
A crowd of 300 welcomed special guest Sashi Uban Tripathi, the first woman to hold the position of consul general of India in New York.
"There is no field that has not been conquered by women," she said.
Tripathi described the V.I. community as "a cocktail" of different cultures and toasted that it "be drunk with prosperity."
In separate speeches, Gov. Charles W. Turnbull, Lt. Gov. Gerard Luz James II, Senate President Vargrave Richards and Dr. Orville Kean, president of the University of the Virgin Islands, lauded the India Association for its contributions to the community.
The governor, stressing the theme of diversity, said the younger members of the India Association are truly Virgin Islanders who must play a role in shaping the territory's political and economic future.
On behalf of the association, Sakhrani presented two UVI scholarships, pledged textbooks to Charlotte Amalie High School and made contributions to the Police Department's Canine Corps, the V.I. Resource Center for the Disabled and the All Saints School library.
Tripathi is a poet, singer, naturalist and parent, and as a member of the Indian Foreign Service has served in numerous capacities worldwide. Among her posts: high commissioner of India in Zimbabwe; ambassador of India to Poland; and first secretary at the Indian embassy in Moscow.
She said the idea of democracy in India was never a foreign one and cited an ancient Hindu proverb that translated to "Where there's consensus, there's God."
"The Indian community has gone through a process of growth and of maturation" in the past 10 years, she said.
"I felt a majority of Indians were still trying to establish themselves," both financially and professionally, a decade ago, she said.
"Now Indians in North America are well-established and their achievements have not just been noted but also appreciated by the mainstream," she said.
As a result of such accomplishments, she feels that Indians have become more assertive about public issues.
"I have noticed a self-confidence and self-assurance which wasn't there 10 years ago and now the Indian community is willing to play a greater role in mainstream public affairs," she said.
Tripathi also said tradition is not threatened simply because many Indians today are products of several cultures.
"Our culture is deep-rooted, ancient and rich," she explained. "I think our kids are bright enough to absorb the best of both worlds," but parents have to do their part by providing the right resources and "creating that atmosphere."
She cites her family as her greatest accomplishment because "I have two lovely children and a husband who is not only my colleague but also my best friend. In that I feel I am blessed."
Despite the fact that she has lived in several countries, she prides herself on the fact that her family remained together throughout her children's upbringing.
"It's tough -- it's not easy when you play so many roles," she said. "There are competing interests" and often she was juggling her time and emotions.
"Juggling and striking a compromise are ultimately the greatest satisfaction."