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Diwali Commemorative Stamp: Tulsi Gabbard’s initiative to include Hindu Festival in US Postal Service

Tulsi Gabbard launched a signature campaign in 2014 to ensure that the United States Postal Service prints a stamp recognizing the Hindu Festival of Diwali

  • Tulsi Gabbard, first Hindu Congresswoman of the US had renewed the efforts of bringing out a stamp recognizing Diwali as a special event
  • Efforts had previously been taken by the Indians settled in America and many other organisations as well. But none of them had been entirely successful
  • Gabbard says that now, they are almost at the point of winning this battle

Hinduism is probably the only religion in America whose festivals remain unrecognized. In spite of the fact that thousands of Indians in America celebrate the festival of lights every year, American Postal Services refuse to bring out a stamp which pays heed to the special days of Diwali. Other major religions of the world have some sort of recognition and mark in the American calendar and lives. Hinduism seems to have gotten the worst of it all. It stands almost unnoticed amidst all other religions of the world, as far as U.S is concerned. In spite of the fact that a huge number of Indians and specifically a huge number of Hindus settle down in the United States of America, there is not even a small postal stamp recognizing or celebrating the spirit of Hindu festivals.

Hinduism seems to have gotten the worst of it all. It stands almost unnoticed amidst all other religions of the world, as far as U.S is concerned. In spite of the fact that a huge number of Indians and specifically a huge number of Hindus settle down in the United States of America, there is not even a small postal stamp recognizing or celebrating the spirit of Hindu festivals.

Congresswoman Gabbard. Image Source : Wikimedia Commons
Congresswoman Gabbard. Image Source : Wikimedia Commons

Tulsi Gabbard is the first Hindu woman to be a part of the United States Congress. Her love for Indian culture and festivals led her to launch a signature campaign back in 2014 to ensure that the United States Postal Service prints a stamp recognizing the Hindu Festival of Diwali. Last year too, in 2015, many of the Indian-American communities in the U.S. had tried to bring about the stamp recognizing Diwali as a special day but they did not succeed. It is unfortunate that being an Indian-American is not enough to bring this small change. The demand for Diwali Stamp got push only after Gabbard started the campaign- it came under the spotlight and people started taking the issue seriously.

Gabbard said, “After decades of progress towards creating a postage stamp that recognizes the festival of lights, finally, we’re almost there”.

She further asserted that even though this is one of the final moments of struggle for the campaign, she definitely needs solidarity from Indians all over the world to succeed in her endeavour. “Every year when we get together and we celebrate Diwali, the beautiful festival of lights, we’re celebrating the triumph of good over evil, of right over wrong. Now, a lot of people having been working hard to try to get a Diwali stamp here in the United States, but we need your help,” she said.

“Please join me in signing this petition so that we can increase the volume of all of our voices all across the country in urging the United States Postal Service to create a Diwali stamp to recognize this special day and to further increase and enrich our nation’s tapestry of religious and cultural diversity,” Gabbard appealed to people in her un-dated video message in 2014.

Gabbard with PM Modi. Image Source : Wikimedia Commons
Gabbard with PM Modi. Image Source : Wikimedia Commons

A media release had previously mentioned that PM Narendra Modi too had agreed to write to President Obama, supporting the cause.

Hopefully, this time, Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard will succeed in bringing out a stamp in the honour of the Indian festival of lights. That way, the efforts made by the other Indians previously will not go in vain and Hinduism will finally get some sort of token recognition and appreciation in America.

To view the petition and the video, click here.

– prepared by NewsGram team.

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