Hindi Diwas celebrations at NSW Parliament House showcase young talent


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Youth shine in Hindi poetry competition

In a special gesture, NSW Parliament House opened its doors in t celebrating Hindi Diwas on September 17, by hosting a poetry competition for youth.

Hindi Diwas is celebrated globally on September 14, to commemorate the Hindi language (written in Devanagari script) being adopted by the Constituent Assembly of India as an official language of the Republic of India on this day in 1949. A range of activities are organized by on the day such as poetry recitation, drama, essay writing, debate, competitions and discussion on various topics in Hindi.

The poetry competition, organized by Rekha Rajvanshi of the Indian Literary and Art Society of Australia (ILASA) Inc and Gambhir Watts, OAM, President, Bhartiya Vidya Bhawan, was supported by the Mr Sunjay Sudhir, Consul General of India in Sydney and Yuva Australia. The program at Parliament House was hosted by Dr Geoff Lee, MP Parramatta, and was particularly dedicated toward the youth.

Sixteen contestants aged between 18-30 took part in the competition in two categories – recitation of their favourite poems and presentation of their own work of poetry. All the contestants chose meaningful poems to read and the ones who presented their own compositions were also of a very high standard and quality.

The winner of the first prize in the self-composition poem category was Manish Kumar ‘Rasik’ (27), who wrote a beautiful poem titled ‘Khamosh Mohabbat’. Carrying away the second prize was Akanksha Srivastava who recited ‘Ban Sako to Insan Ban jao’, while Simian Bargoti recited ‘Pal Pahar Har Rat Din Sath Rahti hun Tumhare’. Two consolation prizes were awarded to Divya Joshi and Vishakha Nagaja, who travelled from Canberra to participate in the competition. Writing and reciting Hindi poetry is an old tradition in their families as Divya’s grandfather writes poems and Vishakha’s mother is a well renowned Hindi poet. An extra appreciation prize was awarded to Priyanshi Saxena for the originality of her poem.

In the second category of recitation, Akanksha Srivastava was awarded first prize for her rendition of ‘Ganga Udas Hai’, while the second prize went to Reetika Shik for reciting Harivansh Rai Bachchan’s poem ‘Jo Beet Gai so Baat Gai’. Swati Bansal recited ‘Koshish karne valon ki Haar nahin hoti’, which won her the third prize. Consolation prizes were awarded to Vibhu Behl for ‘Unchai’ a popular poem of By Atal Bihari Vajpayee, and Ananya Soni for reciting ‘Lahron se Dar kar Nauka Par nahin Hoti’. All the other contestants performed well, with a special
mention going to Vishaka and Divya Upadhyay.

The winners received cash prizes, which all participants were presented with certificates and medals.

Mr Sudhir congratulated the organizers on a successful event and encouraged youth to participate, while Mr John Ajaka, Minister for Multiculturalism was appreciative of the initiative and expressed his support for languages. Also present were Mr Damien Tudehope, MP, Epping; Ms Julia Finn, MP, Granville; and Ms Jodi Leyanne McKay, MP Strathfield, who enjoyed the event despite not understanding Hindi. The judges comprised of five eminent Hindi scholars and poets such as Dr Peter Friedlander, senior lecturer ANU Canberra; Hindi Urdu poet Ashraf Shad; Abbas Raza Alvi; Dr Prabhat Sinha; and Dr Shailja Chaturvedi.

Said Ms Rajvanshi, “This is the first time Hindi Diwas was dedicate to youth and organized at the NSW Parliament House. Our youngsters need to keep our languages and literature alive. These talented poets now have the opportunity to showcase their talent.” Mr Watts thanked all attendees for their support of the Hindi language and its literature.

The event was sponsored by CEO Multiconnexions (Sheba Nandkeolyar), CEO NRE Coke Arun Kumar Jagatramka, Editor Pardes Express Jugandeep Singh and CPA Harkirat Singh, and managed by ‘A Royaale Event’.

The event was enjoyed by all, with Pradeep Upadhyay, father of contestant Divya Upadhyay commenting, “It was indeed a great program! It assured us that the young talent of Australia would carry the flag of our language into the future in this land. I was glad to feel that the baton of Hindi is being passed into worthy hands and we can look forward to a bright future as far as our culture is concerned.”

The Hindi poetry competition was instrumental in not just promoting Hindi in Australia, but showcased the best of today’s young talent and filled them with confidence as they presented in a very special venue.

The Indian Telegraph Sydney Australia

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