Gujaratis of North America Host Former Gujarat CM Rupani in SoCal
By VIJAY BHATT
NORWALK, CA – Vijay Rupani, the former chief minister of Gujarat met with prominent Gujaratis, community leaders and other guests at an event held at the Sanatan Dharma temple here, on Feb.11.
Organized by Gujaratis of North America, an initiative of founder president Pramod Mistry and co-founder Kanaksinh Zala, the event saw a large attendance.
Mistry and Zala presented an informative video about the activities of GONA, narrating its salient objectives include uniting all Gujaratis in North America, imbibe Gujarati language, culture, and imparting its essence to US born children of Gujaratis.
With this in view, the founders said GONA also aimed to encourage cooperation and unite the different Gujarati organizations throughout North America. Some of the specific projects include an international exchange program where Gujarati youth will visit their parents’ homeland and explore their roots.
GONA also intends to do some collaborative projects with the government of Gujarat. Currently, GONA is promoting ‘Gujarati Shikho Abhiyan’ on its website and plans to launch a mobile App for easy access and online classes to teach Gujarati. Their mentorship project aims to have school and college students connect with youth mentors in the US.
Vijay Rupani in his speech, applauded GONA for its initiatives. He extended assurances that the state government would always support programs that would benefit its citizens. He also praised Indian Americans who are working together for the growth and progress of the motherland.
Earlier, the event began with a procession entering the event hall, with members crying out “Bharat Maataa Ki Jai” and carrying the Indian tricolor. Mistry and Zala greeted Rupani and his wife Anjali with garlands followed by the inaugural lamp lighting by the former CM. Everyone then participated in the chanting of the Gayatri Mantra and Navkar Mantra.
Yogen Bhagat and his group Bollywood Step Dance presented two items. The evening concluded with a symbolic musical tribute to the late Lata Mangeshkar and observance of silence.
For more information on Gujaratis of North America: gonausa.org