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Indian Youth Group Showcase

Ranjani Saigal

The Indian Youth Group, which is the youth wing of the India Society of Worcester presented a fabulous culture show on Saturday, April 2, 2005 at the Westborough High School in Westborough, MA. Organized by high school students, the event featured wonderful presentations by youngsters in the Worcester area.

The program opened with a Saraswati Vandana by  students of Neelima Chaturvedi. Darshana Jani students presented Radha Na Bole Re, Dhoom Machale,Aham Brahmasmi and Sainyaji. Students of Jasmine Shah presented Wohi Din Aa Gaya, Chilman Uthegi Nahin, Mehndi Mehndi,Mitwa and Yeh Kisna Hai.  Students of Mitali Biswas presented Gori Gori, Chumma Chumma and Odhnee Odhke Nachoon.Students of Sridevi Thirumalai presented Murugan Shabdam and students of Nina Gulati presented Krishna Shabdam. Sajana Ve Sajana, East or West, India Is the Best, Hindi Remix Medley,Dilbara Dilbara, Purani Yaadein, Mehendi Hai Rachne Wali, O O Sparks and  Jhanak Jhanak  were choreographed and presented by youngsters. After intermission, students of Swati Panda presented a musical treat  The program ended with Nach Da Punjab a high energy Bhangara number. Anu Garg, Shivani Jain, Aurnab Bando and Navin Jain were the Mcees for the evening.

“The IYG has been an integral part of my youth and adolescence, and personally I am very proud of how far we have come” says Aurnab Bando who is one of the Presidents of the IYG.  The IYG has been a very active group for Indian American youngsters aged 12-18. The group is involved in several community service activities.  Some of the past projects include collecting winter coats for the poor, holding a food drive for a food pantry and serving food at the annual Bishops Dinner. The group also helps warp Christmas gifts that are distributed to local shelters. Other activities include Christmas caroling in local nursing homes and holding Holiday Teas for the India Society’s Senior Citizens Group, Humraahi.
For many years the group was run under the mentorship of Caroline Passey  More recently Shri Garg was elected as the mentor. “I feel so special  that the children have elected me to be their mentor. I can never fill Caoline Passey’s shoes. But I try to do the best I can“, says Garg who feels that being a mentor to the IYG is one of the most pleasurable things in his life.

The IYG also holds a  lot of fun activities including a DJ night, a trip to the beach and movie nights. “There is a time in every Indian kid’s life when you realize you are cool to be Indian. This is a great moment when you understand that while you have everything your non-Indian friends have, you have something more – your Indian heritage. IYG is a space for kids to cherish and treasure their Indian heritage” says Rishi Bawa who is also a President of the group. “We try to bring our non-Indian friends to these events so that we can share our culture with them”

Can high school students really work together as a team and have the responsibility to put a show together? “We do have our moments where team work is put to a test. But in  the end it all comes together. The success of events like this showcase gives us a great sense of accomplishment”, says Aurnab Bandho.

Showcase 2005 clearly shows that the future of the Indian American community is safe in the hands of the younger generation. 


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