Indra Jatra celebrated at Soreng, Everester Manita Pradhan felicitated

ADITYA GOLAY UNDERLINES NEED TO PRESERVE CULTURE, CALLS ON GOVT TO VACCINATE UNDER 18 YEAR OLDS.


Soreng, 20 Sept [IPR]: The Newa Guthi, Soreng, celebrated IndraJatra today at the Community Hall here with area MLA, Aditya Golay, as chief guest, accompanied by Everester Manita Pradhan as guest of honour. Among other special invitees were SDM-Soreng, Ranjan Rai, SDPO Mahendra Pradhan, former Chief Secretary PK Pradhan along with various chairpersons and advisors of the Government of Sikkim. The programme was organized not just to celebrate the festival but also to commemorate Manita Pradhan for her achievement and for bringing pride and glory to the nation and the State along with the Newari community. She was presented with the customary shawl and a token of appreciation by the chief guest. Addressing the gathering, Ms Pradhan extended warm greetings to all the guests and officials and spoke about the importance and relevance of the festival, especially to the Newari community. After the short summary, reminiscing her struggles and hardships, she spoke about her journey from being a nobody to joining the ranks of the few women to have climbed the Everest. She admitted that at a certain point in her career, she did feel like accepting defeat, but her sheer determination to achieve her aim kept her going. She advised the younger generation not to give up on

their dreams and aspirations, especially when the going gets tough and face them with courage and confidence. She concluded her address by expressing her sincere gratitude towards the Chief Minister for his encouragement and also for providing her with financial aid. She also thanked the MLA for his spontaneous assistance when asked for and remarked that she was humbled by the honour and love she has received from the community through today’s recognition. The general secretary of the organizing committee, GM Pradhan, then provided an indepth explanation on why and how Indra Jatra is celebrated and informed that like any other indigenous group living in the State, the Newari community too can trace its roots back to Nepal but were happy and fortunate to have been born in a secular state like Sikkim where every festival is celebrated with equal zeal and appreciation. He also thanked the IPR department for producing and showcasing the importance and relevance of the Indra Jatra festival through a recently released documentary. The programme was then addressed by MLA Aditya Golay who extended warmest greetings and best wishes to everyone celebrating the festival and expressed his gratitude towards the community. He said that Sikkim is known for co-existing in peace and harmony while celebrating all the different festivals and traditional rituals. He also shared his concern regarding the fading away of age-old traditions and cultures, especially among the younger generation. He reached out to all the youngsters by asking them to preserve and strengthen conventional customs and beliefs. The MLA also took the opportunity to inform the gathered attendees about the upgradation of the present community hall into a bigger and better Town Hall under the New District formation plan. Talking on the topic of political favouritism and preferences, he strictly informed

all the elected representatives to end such practices. He said that everyone must be treated with fairness and equality regardless of their political inclinations. "Our society has to come forward in bringing about better changes. Government aids and benefits must reach those genuinely needy ones and it's our duty to provide what is their right," he added. He also requested the Central and the State Governments for a vaccination campaign of children below the 18 years of age at the earliest. He concluded his speech by saying that he felt honoured to be a part of the celebration and that he was

thankful for the invitation. The programme ended with the presentation of token appreciation and gratitude towards the chief guest by conferring him with the traditional khada and Newari topi. The event also included cultural dances by the locals.