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Carnival Institute of Trinidad and Tobago to organise Lecture on Human Slavery on August 27

Trinidad and Tobago is a dual-island Caribbean nation near Venezuela and is a blend of multicultural and multi-religious society

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Port of Spain, August 21, 2016: The Carnival Institute of Trinidad and Tobago presents its August Lecture in collaboration with the National Museum and Art Gallery of Trinidad and Tobago on Saturday, August 27. The event will take place at the National Museum and Art Gallery, Frederick Street, Port of Spain at 6pm.

Trinidad and Tobago is a dual-island Caribbean nation near Venezuela and is a blend of multicultural and multi-religious society. The presence of Indian Diaspora there makes it more lively and continues to induce spiritual reconstruction among the people. If one visits the place, they will find a whole new scenario, but only a few know that this transformation has travelled decades.

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Port of Spain is the capital of Trinidad and Tobago and there is no denying that Carribean colonies were built on the backbone of slavery. In 1845, on May 30, a small sailing ship weighing 415 tonnes, the Fatel Rozack, was tied up at the lighthouse jetty in Port of Spain, Trinidad. After almost a 3 months and 6-days voyage from Kolkata (then Calcutta), around the southern tip of Africa and across the southern Atlantic, it came to Trinidad.

Newly arrived Indian labourers in Trinidad. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Newly arrived Indian labourers in Trinidad. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

As History says, this was no ordinary ship. With it, she brought 217 Indians who were given the false idea that they were heading for a better life and will work on the sugar estates of Trinidad. While five died on the voyage, most of them were women and under 30s. To the surprise, only five of them were men. On reaching the Port of Spain, Gazette reported, “the general appearance of the people is healthy”.

This was just the beginning! Soon over, 143,939 Indian labourers were shipped to Trinidad in the next 72 years. The majority of the labourers, that is 240,000 were sent to Guyana (then British Guiana), 36,000 to Jamaica, and smaller numbers to St Vincent, Grenada, St Lucia and Martinique.

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Indian Labourers came from several areas the country, such as- Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Bengal  (through the port of Calcutta) and Oudh. Not just that, in the early years it came through Chennai (then Chennai) as well. The labourers, most of them belonged to Hindu faith and only a few of them were Muslims.

The details mentioned here are just mere glimpses of their lives, the documentary holds in it much more. One has to watch it, to get closer to the lives of these Indian labourers, share their struggle and unsaid pain. One journey that doomed their lives forever! Their experiences were akin to slavery.

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Narendra Modi Considers Indians in Argentina as Bridge Between Two Nations

Narendra Modi is slated to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the G20 summit

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Indians in Argentina bridge between two nations: Modi. Wikimedia Commons

Prime Minister Narendra Modi who arrived here to participate in the G20 Summit, sought the help of the Indians in Argentina in strengthening bilateral ties and taking it to a new level by playing the role of a “bridge”, an official statement said on Friday.

Narendra Modi made the remarks on Thursday evening while attending a “Yoga for Peace” event.

The Prime Minister said that there were unlimited possibilities of mutual cooperation between the two countries and “we can avail the benefits of our capabilities in the field of business, pharma, oil, gas, IT and space”.

“The cooperation between the two countries has an ability to create a golden future in sectors of water, land and space. You are all India’s messengers. Your contribution is a bridge which connects both the countries,” Modi said in the event.

Modi said that practices like yoga can further enhance the relationship between the two countries.

“The meaning of Yoga is to unite. Yoga connects us with ‘wellness and happiness’. It led to overcome thousands of kilometres distance between India and Argentina and has been uniting the people of both the countries.”

He invited Indians residing in Argentina and their friends to visit India and understand the country in a vast way.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi (FILE PHOTO)

“All the Indians living in Argentina should come to India with their friends (and participate) in ‘Pravasi Bharatiya Divas’ programme to be organised in Kashi in January 2019. As the Ardh Kumbh will be going on at the same time in Prayagraj, you can observe the Indian culture, the face of a changing India and also a New India on these occasions.”

In the event, Modi said that issues such as global economy, sustainable development, climate change and economic fugitives, which are of interest to the entire global community will come up for discussion at the two-day summit that will begin on Saturday.

The event featured a mass yoga demonstration by 600 people, a song by famous Argentine singer Patricia Sosa, chanting of “Om Namah Shivaya” and a short Indian classical dance performance.

Congratulating “The Art of Living” for organising this event, the Prime Minister said that yoga improves the health of both the mind and body.

Also Read- Filmmaker Karan Johar Launches New Digital Division

Modi also spoke of Argentina’s interest in Indian philosophy, art, music, and dance; and the immense popularity of Argentine football stars, such as Diego Maradona, in India.

The Prime Minister congratulated the Argentine hockey team for winning their first match during the Hockey World Cup held in Odisha.

Narendra Modi is slated to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the G20 summit. (IANS)