UAE Celebrates Festival of Lights

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CGI in Dubai Dr Aman Puri quoted PM Narendra Modi during the celebration saying that the Indian diaspora are the permanent ambassadors of the country, reports Asian Lite Newsdesk

Indian expats in UAE and other senior officials, and government missions have celebrated Diwali, symbolising the victory of light over darkness and good over evil, with colourful lights, earthen lamps and candles.

This is the first time after Covid-19 that the residents of Dubai are celebrating Diwali at a grand scale.

Consulate General of India in Dubai celebrated 6th International Day of Diplomats and Diwali in the presence of members of Diplomatic Community in Dubai and senior representatives from Dubai Local Authority on Monday.

On the Indian festival of lights, the CGI hosted a lavish dinner reception with dignitaries, including senior officials of the UAE Government, friends of India, members of diplomatic corps, prominent representatives from the country’s business community, and other fields.

Dr Aman Puri, consul-general of India, quoted Prime Minister Modi during the celebration saying that the Indian diaspora are the permanent ambassadors of the country, the Khaleej Times reported.

“He (PM Modi) says that the career diplomats are the temporary ambassadors and members of our community by reflecting, by showcasing the best of Indian values and by building these bridges of business and investment, culture, academia… are truly our permanent ambassadors, helping the relationship between the two countries,” KT quoted Dr Puri as saying.

“This brings me to the splendid Diwali celebrations in Dubai which truly become special because of this large and vibrant in community bringing the Diwali cheer, sharing the true spirit of Diwali with all their brothers and sisters, from over 200 nationalities who consider the UAE their second home. I must say that our community is truly the living bridge between the two countries.”

The event also witnessed a cultural performance of Indian classical dances by the UAE based Gurukul group.

Meanwhile, well-known Emirati and former Diplomat Mirza Al Sayegh who was also one of the key attendees said, “I’d like to say Happy Diwali to everyone. It’s the (Indian) community that I cherish, love, support, worked with and lived with during my tenure as First Secretary, at the UAE Embassy in New Delhi, and then (Head) at the UAE Consular Mission in Bombay, as a Counsellor.”

He even shared memories of when the first few Indian expats arrived in the country, saying that they would distribute sweets on the festival, the Khaleej Times reported.

The world’s tallest building Burj Khalifa displayed a colourful projection to mark the Indian Festival of Lights, which is widely celebrated in UAE every year.

In Abu Dhabi, the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) headquarters, a key landmark in the UAE capital, was lit up in various colours to commemorate Diwali.

Sunjay Sudhir, Indian Ambassador to the UAE, lighted the façade of Adnoc headquarters.

Appreciating the gesture, the ambassador tweeted: “You are not only a part of India’s energy security but also it’s celebrations.”

Leaders wish Indian community

UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan on Monday wished peace, and prosperity to people celebrating Diwali, in three different languages including Hindi.

“Congratulations to all of those in the UAE and around the world celebrating Diwali, the festival of lights, and may the year ahead be one of peace, prosperity and happiness for you and your families,” UAE President tweeted.

Meanwhile, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, took to Twitter and wrote: “On the behalf of the people of the UAE, we congratulate all those who celebrate Diwali. Wishing them a happy festival.”

Extending his greetings to everyone celebrating Diwali, UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan wrote in Hindi and wished everyone “happiness, joy, peace and health.”

“Wishing the friendly people of India a very prosperous Diwali,” he added.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai also wished everyone on the occasion. “To everyone celebrating Diwali worldwide, Dubai wishes you a happy Diwali. May this occasion bring joy and happiness to all of you,” he wrote.

This is the first time after Covid-19 that the residents of Dubai are celebrating Diwali at a grand scale, with the participation of different government and corporate bodies.

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