Editor, News-in-Asia, 15 August 2018, where the title runs “Large attendance marked India’s 71 st. Independence Day celebrations in Colombo”
An impressively large number of resident Indians and Sri Lankans braved inclement weather to attend the Indian Independence Day flag hoisting ceremony held at ‘India House’ here on Wednesday. Men, women and children dressed in their best, turned up to express their joy over India’s turning 71, and to show their solidarity with a resurgent India.
High Commissioner Taranjit Singh Sadhu hoisted the Indian national tricolor. And with the tone perfect Sri Lankan navy band striking the appropriate tune, the envoy inspected a guard of honor presented by a contingent of smartly turned out Indian security personnel.
After the formalities, the guests were treated to a program of colorful Tamil folk dances performed by a Sri Lankan cultural troupe.
In a welcome departure from the past, the refreshments laid out went beyond the idli, dosa ,vadai routine and included upma and jalebi.
The focus of the event was High Commissioner Taranjit Singh Sandhu himself. Guests made a beeline to take pictures and selfies with the envoy, whose friendly demeanor, sympathetic approach and easy accessibility, have made him a popular and sought after personality in the island, and given the High Commission itself, a friendly image.
In the evening, the famous Indian pop and Bollywood playback singer Usha Uthup, the first pop singer to appear in Conjeevaram saris and the traditional Indian bindi, regaled a large audience at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall.