With the mammoth slogan Har Ghar Tiranga, celebration of 75th year of India’s Independence had already spread its fervour among the ever-enthusiastic Surtis. On 14th August, 2022, the Parsi Pragati Mandal hosted a talent competition in the breezy, rainy weather at the Kadim Atashbehram Hall in Surat. Participants included toddlers to teenagers – they danced, hopped, recited poems, sang, delivered speeches, acted, or wore fancy robes! The talent was delightfully presented.
The dynamic ladies of Zoroastrian Women’s Assembly of Surat (ZWAS) helped the Mandal in co-ordinating the program. The judges for the competition were – stage and TV artists – Dhvani Trivedi and Yash Upadhyay who were amazed with the talent. Kudos to all the participants and congratulations to all the winners – those who earned the top spot, as per the age group, included: For Age group – upto 3 years: Persheus Shroff; 3 – 5 Years: Dizan Ambapardiwala; 6 – 9 years: Meherzad Shroff; 10 – 13 years: Marzee Kolah and Vivan Siddhpurwala; 14 years and above: Parizad Karanjia and Aazmin Besania.
This evening was graced by Chief Guest – visionary speaker and motivator, Ex-Vice Chancellor of South Gujarat University, Dr. Daxesh Thakar. He commended the pool of Parsi talent and expressed his thoughts on leading a happy married life, as Parsi Pragati Mandal and ZWAS felicitated six couples who had completed or would be completing 50 years of their marriage in the year 2022-23. A wonderful thought indeed to celebrate 50 years of togetherness and love! Heartiest Congratulations to the golden couples: President of Surat Parsi Panchayat – Jamshed, and wife Yasmin Dotivala who were duly honoured by Dr. Daxesh Thakar and Padmashri Yazdi Karanjia, amidst much cheer and applause; the eminent banker – Jimmy and wife Keshmira Kharadi; Writer and Pragati Mandal member – Rusi and wife Yasmin Besania; devoted banker – Fali and wife Villoo Contractor; Baman and Mehru Ichhaporia; and finally, Rusi and Roshan Surti who were unable to make it to the event and were honoured by the office bearers of the Parsi Pragati Mandal and ZWAS, at their residence. It was indeed a heartfelt moment, to see happy couples at this unexpected celebration.
Next, Scholarships were awarded by Parsi Pragati Mandal to the young academicians who had passed with flying colours. Worthy to mention that Daisy Variava, Kevin Besania and Aanoash Chichgar gracefully returned their scholarship amounts towards the benefit of other deserving candidates in need.
The event was ably conducted by Kainaz Variava and Benaifer Patel. Perin Karanjia spoke beautifully about the love journey of Jamshed and Yasmin Dotivala, while Maharukh Chichgar rendered the love story of Jimmy and Keshmira Kharadi. The gathering was addressed by Parsi Pragati Mandal President, Mahtab Bhatporia and the vote of thanks was given by ZWAS President – Delnaz Katpitia. The exuberance of the evening was summed up with a contributory parsi patru by Nozer and Freny Daruwala. And so ended a lovely event with the feeling of warmth and happiness in every heart, second to only the sense of patriotism summed up as:
‘Sare jahan se achchha hai Hindustan humara,
Tiranga uncha rakhega har Parsi, ye hai vaada humara!’