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Ground Breaking Ceremony Marks India Center Inaugural

Pradeep Sharma

Sunday March 16, 2003, was another milestone in the history of the India Society of Worcester.To celebrate the beginning of the India Center construction project, the ISW community held a groundbreaking ceremony. The occasion was opened with a Bhoomi Pujan, a prayer to bless the land, which was conducted by Priest Shri Laxman Satyal Shastry from the Sarve Dev Temple. Mr. Pradeep Sharma, the President of the ISW, Mr. Subu Kota, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees, Mr. Shashikant Modi, Chair of India Center Committee, Dr. Satya Mitra, chairperson of the India Society fundraising committee and Mrs. Meera Gupta, Vice President of the ISW, all took part in the pujan. Suresh Gupta served as the master of ceremonies, explaining what exactly the Bhoomi Pujan was, as well as the plans for the day.

After the Bhoomi Pujan, Shri Shyam S. Sharma did the ground breaking ceremonial digging, the founder of the ISW and president for the most number of terms. He was joined by Board members, EC members, town of Shrewsbury selectmen Mr. John Lebeaux and other members present. This was followed by a welcome speech given by Mr. Pradeep Sharma, Mr. John Lebeaux; Selectmen from the town of Shrewsbury were a guest speaker at the event. A vote of thanks was given by Mr. Subu Kota.

Prasad (ladoo) was distributed and Garma Garam Cholle - Batoore prepared by the Chef of India restaurant in Shrewsbury, were served afterwards. The Center still has a funding need of approximately $150,000. In order to help fund for the project, the ISW is selling inauguration day BMW raffle tickets. Various naming opportunities are also available for past and prospective donors.. Mr. Subu Kota has donated $100,000 and the multipurpose hall will be named as “Subu and Vikky Kotta Hall.”

In an email to Lokvani, Mr Pradeep Sharma, President of the India Society of Worcester writes “As the Indian community in central Massachusetts grew larger and stronger during the boom of the 80’s, we desired a place where our children could learn about the different languages, cultures, and religions of India: a place where adults and elders could meet to discuss important matters and participate in various activities.

All the above needs gave birth to the India center. In 1991 after many years of searching, the ISW acquired a five-acre lot. The land came with three structures. It is at a prime location in Shrewsbury, MA, just off exit 22 on Rt. 290. The new India Center will have a 4,450 living area, which will include the following facilities: 6 classrooms 1 kitchen, 1 storage area and an office. All the utilities and ample parking for the patrons.

Now after many years of fundraising and planning we are at a point when we can say it is happening. It is not a dream anymore. It would be unfair not to mention the people behind this success. The credit goes to all the donors who donated generously and waited patiently for the last 13 years to taste the fruit of their labor. Many thanks also go to the past and present ISW officers whom, over the years, worked very hard and put their heart and soul into this project”.

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