Atlanta Mayor Hosts Diwali Celebrations
India-West Staff Reporter
ATLANTA, GA – In a first-of-its-kind event, Atlanta Mayor, Andre Dickens joined the Hindu American community in a Diwali celebration and dinner.
Sponsored by Coalition of Hindus of North America, the event brought together the Atlanta Hindu Community along with the Consul general of India, L Ramesh Babu. It also marked the culmination of the various Hindu Heritage Month Celebrations in the state, following Governor J. Kemp’s early proclamation.
Addressing the gathering, the mayor recognized the role played by the community. “It is undeniable that Atlanta is stronger and better thanks to the many international communities that we have here and those individuals who have made Atlanta their home. The South Asian and Indian communities make an incredible impact on Atlanta’s culture, and Atlanta’s economy.” he said.
The mayor gave a nod to the contributions made to the Atlanta economy by Indian entrepreneurs who brought in thousands of jobs. He also referred to the special place Mahatma Gandhi had in the civil rights movement.
He concluded, “So just as Gandhi was a guiding light to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I wish you all a bright evening of festivities and a wonderful Diwali celebration.”
Ramesh Babu in his speech said, “We all know that India and the United States enjoy a comprehensive global strategic partnership covering almost all areas of cooperation in human endeavor. So, it is driven by shared democratic values between India and USA and convergence of all the issues. And one of the most important parts of the India-US relationship is a vibrant people-to-people contact.”
Others at the event included State representatives Solomon Adesanya and Mesha Mainor, Cobb County Commissioner Jerica Richardson and former City Council president, Felicia Moore.
“Georgia and Atlanta have been at the forefront of recognizing Hindu American community, being the first to recognize Hinduphobia in the Assembly, the Governor’s proclamation of October as Hindu Heritage Month and now the Mayor’s Diwali Dinner,” said Vice President of CoHNA Rajeev Menon. “We expect to continue to build on this relationship going forward to forge stronger ties with the political leaders and the Hindu American diaspora.”