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Press Release - Baisakhi Celebration

Washington, DC
17th May, 2014

Ambassador Dr. S. Jaishankar hosted a reception at his residence on May 17, 2014 to celebrate the Sikh festival of Baisakhi. The festival symbolizes the beginning of the harvest season, a celebration of the fruits of the farmers' toil and a thanksgiving for a bountiful harvest.  For the Sikhs, it also marks the founding of the Khalsa Panth by Guru Gobind Singh.

Over two hundred guests belonging to the Sikh community from various parts of the United States attended the celebration, which featured a religious invocation, a cultural program of songs and dances from the Sikh tradition, and an exposition by a noted Sikh scholar on the relevance and meaning of Baisakhi.

In his greetings to the members of the Sikh community, Ambassador Jaishankar noted that the gathering was both to mark the auspicious occasion and to recognize the contributions and concerns of the Sikh community in the United States.   Reflecting on their rich contributions over the years to India-U.S. relations, Ambassador Jaishankar recognized the Sikh community in the U.S. as the pioneers among the Indian-Americans embodying the spirit of India, who also gave the first Indian-American Member of U.S. Congress. He emphasied Embassy’s commitment to the welfare and progress of the Sikh community in the United States, and cited as example his recent public support for the initiative to allow Sikh members of the U.S. military to display articles of faith.  

A congratulatory message on the occasion sent by Governor Martin O’Malley of Maryland was read out.