WITH Indians accounting for more immigrants to Orange than New Zealanders, the Indian community has formed an umbrella group to bring families together.
Called Desi Aussies of Orange, the word ‘desi’ is a loose term for the people, cultures, and products of the Indian subcontinent or south Asia.
It is derived from the word ‘desh’ or ‘des’ from the Hindi language, meaning country or homeland.
President Vijay Bohra, who came to Australia in 2006 and has settled in Orange for the past five years, said the association was formed earlier this month.
“We believe there’s something like 800 people living in Orange whose families come from the Indian sub-continent,” Vijay Bohra said.
“In Orange, there are families who have come from different parts of the Indian sub-continent and while these families represent quite different cultures, they also have many more traditions and culture in common.”
Mr Bohra said while settling into the Orange community had been easy for him, the group and its committee of 10 would bring people together for gatherings, offer support and share culture with the wider community.
We need to make sure we don’t forget our tradition and our culture and values.Vijay Bohra
“We need to make sure we don’t forget our tradition and our culture and values, and it’s for the kids as well,” he said.
“Having events gets us on the same platform, we have a chance to mingle together and make new links as well, with people who have come to the community.”
The group will host its first major event at Kenna Hall this Saturday as part of the Diwali festival, a dinner featuring the Bhangra Dancers and music.
Indian Consul-General Shri B Vanlalvawna will visit as part of the celebrations and he will also visit the Australian National Field Days.
“The Diwali festival is a traditional Indian celebration of goodness, happiness and joy,” Mr Bohra said.
“We want people to be part of it.”
About 300 people are expected – tickets for the event are available from the Midcity Motor Lodge, Overlander Indian Restaurant, Orange Motor Lodge, Anita Indian Grocery Store, Red Pepper Indian Cuisine, Pizza Hut and Gloria Jean’s Coffees.
The night will start at 6pm and everyone is welcome.
For more information, call Mr Bohra on 0430 110 884.