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Canadian Hindu Society of Saskatchewan hosts banquet to connect with the community

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Photo: http://saskatoontemple.net

Saskatoon, Canada: For over three decades the Hindu Society of Saskatchewan has been hosting an annual vegetarian banquet. The food is an important part of the event, but the most meaningful aspect is building bridges, the society’s president says.

Speaking on CBC’s Saskatchewan Weekend Subash Biswal said that “nobody lives in isolation.”

“Wherever you are, the community that you live in basically provides you everything,” Biswal said, adding it’s important to “build bridges, connect with the community and grow the community.”

The banquet is being held at Prairieland Park and features East Indian cuisine, entertainment, and keynote speech by Saskatoon Police Chief Clive Weighill.

Biswal said when he came to Saskatchewan a decade ago; he realized how important it was to connect with his temple but also with other communities in the province. The inclusiveness of the banquet is a crucial aspect.

“We have been tremendously working hard to include all groups in Saskatoon so that they come to the banquet,” he said.

“This is not a religious function. This is basically an elegant evening of camaraderie, foods, and talks.”

The funds raised through the dinner go towards the operation of the temple. Biswal said it also allows the greater Saskatoon community to learn about their Hindu neighbors.

“You can feel it once you walk in there, the tremendous melting pot that you see there,” he said.

Source: http://www.cbc.ca/

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Ethnic Indian Jai Sears responds to complaint against the statue of Gandhi in Grenada

Jai Sears wrote in response to a letter on Mahatma Gandhi entitled “Dustbin of history” written by Josiah Rougier

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Gandhi
Mahatama Gandhi, leader of non violence

Jai Sears from Grenada, Caribbean has written a letter to editor in response to complaints against the statue of Gandhi in Grenada. Here is the text:

I write in response to a letter on Mahatma Gandhi entitled “Dustbin of history” written by Josiah Rougier and published in the Grenada newspaper, The New Today (Nov 3, 2017). In his letter, Rougier is asking the Government to remove the bust-statue of Gandhi which overlooks Sauteurs Bay in Grenada where East Indians arrived 160 years ago. Rougier’s opinion is based on the false notion that Gandhi was racist because the Mahatma reportedly considered Indians to be superior to black Africans when he referred to the latter as “kaffirs.”

Gandhi was only 27 years old when he made that contextual statement. If Rougier had done his research, he would have found that Nelson Mandela said: “Gandhi must be forgiven for these prejudices in the context of the time and the circumstances.” The quote can be found in “Gandhi the Prisoner” by Nelson Mandela published in 1995. Gandhi was a man; he was not god. And even god made mistakes.

In favour of Mahatama Gandhi
Photo of Jai Sears

Rougier must instead focus on the Gandhi’s vision of non-violent protest and his belief in satyagraha which inspired rebels and revolutionaries around the world. Gandhi’s ideas influenced leaders of the African National Congress and the struggle by Indians and blacks against white apartheid rule in South Africa. From as early as 1956 when he was 27 years old, Martin Luther King, Jr. referred to Gandhi as “the guiding light of our technique of nonviolent social change.”

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Following the success of his boycott, King contemplated traveling to India to deepen his understanding of Gandhian principles. The fact is that Gandhi saw people of all races, castes, colours and creeds as equal which led to his assassination by a Hindu fanatic in 1948. So who is this unknown Josiah Rougier? Is he as illustrious as the great Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King? And is he disagreeing with his possible heroes?

A friend to all.
Jai Sears
Grenada, Caribbean