CG Panda leads celebrations in California

IMG 3099Vidya Sethuraman

India Post News Service

MILPITAS, CA: In a salute to the world’s largest democracy, hundreds of Indian expatriates in California gathered to celebrate their country’s 70th Republic Day on Saturday January 26 at India Community Center, Milpitas hosted by Ambassador Sanjay Panda, Consul General of India, San Francisco.

While India celebrated its 70th Republic Day at Rajpath in New Delhi with élan and in tight security with South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa as the Chief Guest, Bay Areans too came in large numbers to celebrate India’s Republic at the India Community Center, Milpitas.FIA Members with Consul General Sanjay PandaEarlier in the day, Consul General Panda hoisted the Indian National flag at Gadhar Memorial, San Francisco. At the function held at India Community Center, Consul General Ambassador Sanjay Panda led celebrations of India’s 70th Republic Day that included dance and musical performances and remarks from elected officials and community leaders on the strength of the bond between our two countries.
CG Sanjay Panda extended his warmest greetings to all gathered. He began his address by saluting the sacrifices of India’s Founding Fathers, for giving the country a constitutional set up where the dignity and individual freedom are fully assured. This constitution has made India into a secular-democratic republic. It has been a long and steady journey, with several potholes on the road which we had to negotiate, but eventually the Country’s democratic ethos and values have made it one of the strongest in the World, said Amb Panda.

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“As we strive to build the foundation of better India, there are millions of challenges to overcome, we have to eliminate poverty in shortest possible time, secure jobs for millions, ensure gender justice, improve Government capacity, increase citizen participation in governance, thereby securing our path for the strongest and peaceful economy of the World,” he said. He also spoke on the role of political exercise on the impending 2019 Indian General Elections. He spoke on the Indo-US relations and California has always played a special role in the same.

Former executive chairman and CEO of Cisco Systems John Chambers has been awarded Padma Bhushan in the “Trade & Industry – Technology” category. Chairman and CEO of Adobe Inc. Shantanu Narayen, and educationist Ganpatbhai Patel are the Indian American Padma Shree honorees from California.

Joining the Consul General were Assemblymen Kansen Chu, Fremont  Mayor Lily Mei, Vice Mayor Raj Salwan, Rishikumar, Councilmember of Saratoga;  and many other elected officials from all over Bay area.IMG 3023

It was a well organized lavish event with over 400 Bay Area’s elite, businessmen and community members attending the nearly three-hour event followed by a scrumptious dinner.

The Republic Day in India is celebrated every year with great pomp on 26th of January to honor the Constitution of India as it came into force on the same day in the year 1950. It had replaced the Government of India Act, 1935 as the governing document of India. On this day, a national holiday is declared by the Indian Government. The new Indian Constitution was sketched and approved by the Indian Constituent Assembly. It decided to celebrate the event on 26th of January every year as India became a republic.

Assemblymen Kansen Chu CG Sanjay Panda Daisy ChuAmbassador Sanjay Panda, who joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1991, most recently served as the Joint Secretary for the Indian Ocean Region in the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi. The Ambassador, who hails from Odisha, has also served in Belgium, France, Malaysia, Japan, Jordan, and the Seychelles, according to a CGISF press release. His last posting in the Indian Ocean region has given Panda ample opportunities to interact with the U.S. on maritime security concerns in the area, amongst other issues.

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