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Malay Mishra says farewell to TT

By Anne Hilton Tuesday, July 30 2013

The farewell cocktail reception hosted by Indian High Commissioner HE Malay Mishra last Friday was charged with emotion and regret for members of the East Indian Ccommunity who, thanks to the High Commissioner, now have closer ties to their roots in the Indian sub-continent.

The list of guests was headed by the President himself, Anthony Thomas Aquinas Carmona. Also present was leader of the COP Prakash Ramadhar, and former Prime Minister Basdeo Panday as well as leaders of the East Indian Community, and members of the diplomatic corps.

Speakers at the reception said that in the four and a half years he has been here, the High Commissioner has worked to develop closer relations between India and TT in the course of which he has made many friends. Mention was made of the setting up of a cultural information centre in the High Commission and the introduction of Ayurvedic studies in UWI.

He was involved in arrangements for the Prime Minister of India who came here for CHOGM (Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting) last year, and the state visit of Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar to India.

He made an outstanding contribution to the Sikh community here with the temple in Tunapuna. The National Council for Indian Culture praised the High Commissioner’s efforts to increase scholarships to India for those wanting to pursue a career in Indian music and the arts; members of the business community stressed the High Commissioner’s work to increase bilateral trade. Another speaker mentioned the High Commissioner’s work to encourage bridges between TT and India, to include Tobago, likening the spread of Indian culture to the Banyan tree.

The High Commissioner began his speech by acknowledging the presence of President Carmona and former PM Basdeo Panday, then he sang a song that, if memory serves, is dedicated to the Mahatma Gandhi. He said how much he had enjoyed his tour of duty in Trinidad and that, after a brief stay in India, he was looking forward to his new posting in Budapest, Hungary, saying he was familiar with Western Europe but the heartland of Central Europe would be a new experience for him.

The cocktail reception ended with a short cultural programme and the many friends he made here wishing him “bon voyage” and thanking him yet again for his contribution to developing closer ties between India and TT.

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