August 17th, 2003
Contact: Syed Ali
Telephone: (408) 219-1433
Santa Clara, CA., Indian Muslim Council – USA, an advocacy group working toward safeguarding Indian society’s pluralist and tolerant ethos, extends its best wishes to all Indians on the occasion of the 56th anniversary of India’s Independence day and calls on all Indians to remember the message of Mohandas Gandhi whose non-violent struggle was the key to India’s independence. Dr. Shaik Ubaid, the President of IMC-USA, said, “the principles of tolerance and non-violence that Gandhiji stood for are more relevant now than ever before”.
August 15th, 2003 also marks the first anniversary of the Indian Muslim Council, which was launched on August 15th 2002, accepting fully the symbolic significance of the day in Indian history, and pledging to ensure the independence of people and institutions from hate filled ideologies by promoting the common values of pluralism, tolerance and respect for human rights.
To cherish the importance of this day and promote inter-faith and inter-community understanding in the United States, IMC-USA launched a series of nationwide events including advertisements in leading newspapers and participating in India’s independence day festivities in various cities.
The Bay Area chapter set up a colorful booth at the India festival in Fremont, CA, hosted by the Federation Indian Associations of California (http://www.fiaonline.org). The booth showcased the richness of Indian culture and the centuries long history of unity in diversity. There was also a children’s slogan and drawing contest. Free balloons and candies were distributed. T-shirts and caps carrying the message of ‘unity in diversity’ were also available at the booth.
Sajed Ahmed, an IMC-USA volunteer said “We are very grateful to FIA for providing us the oppurtunity to take part in the festival and for all their help”. Rahmat Baig, West Coast President for IMC-USA said “We extend our best wishes to all Indians. Our message to all our fellow countrymen is that we should all unite and work together for a harmonious, peaceful and prosperous India”.The festival began on August 16th and will end on August 17th with a parade and awards celebration.