Association of Indians in America-NY Holds Diya Lighting At Times Square

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Leaders of AIA-NY pose for a photo-op at the Nov. 4, 2021, diya lighting ceremony at Times Square outside the Nasdaq stock exchange. Photo: courtesy AIA

The Association of Indians in America-NY held a “Deepavali 2021” Diya-lighting ceremony November 4 evening at Times Square, outside Nasdaq stock exchange.

The diya-lighting led by Chief Guest India’s Consul General in New York Randhir Jaiswal along with special guests–  New York State Senator John Liu and community leaders.

Harish Thakkar, president of AIA- NY, said “This Diwali is going to be very different from all the others we have ever experienced.”

He was referring to the traditional celebration by AIA in South Street Seaport, a landmark events of AIA-NY, enjoyed by more than 50,000 spectators every year.

This time, AIA NY, Diwali messages were displayed on the  Nasdaq Billboard for hours and  Mobile LED screen trucks displayed Diwali message in Manhattan, Queens, and Long Island for 12 hours on Diwali day.

“Diwali is the celebration of light and so, coming at a time of darkness, when there seem to be many sad stories of bereavement, sickness and financial hardship all caused by a virus, we need to ensure that our inner light stays ignited,” State Senator Liu is quoted saying in a press release from AIA.

“Instead of thinking of ‘Corona, it’s a time to share compassion, love and care with everyone around us,” Liu added.

He also said he had attended many AIA Diwali festival events at South Street Seaport and thanked organizers.

Consul General Jaiswal extended his warmest wishes to everyone and said that Diwali “truly brightens our evenings as we unite to celebrate the festival of lights, we mark the triumph of good over evil, light over darkness. Diwali’s central message of openness, peace and mutual respect is one we can all learn from.”

He praised AIA as a grassroots national organization well known for its social, cultural and educational activities, organizing the largest Deepavali festival in NYC for the past 32 years.

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