Her Excellency Ruchi Ghanashyam, High Commissioner of India, travelled to Bedford last week (15 August) on the most important date in the Indian calendar, their independence day.
Over 300 people met at 7.30am to witness the raising of the Indian flag both in Harpur Square and then at the Old Town Hall.
The event was organised by Bandhan, a diverse group of women of Indian origin.
They collaborated with other Bedford based community, charity and voluntary organisations and interfaith groups to pull the Indian Independence Day celebrations together.
To commemorate the event, Her Excellency Ruchi Ghanashyam High Commissioner of India raised the Indian flag with Professor Gurch Randhawa, the Deputy Lieutenant for Bedfordshire, Mohammad Yasin, MP and Meryl Dolling, High Sheriff of Bedfordshire.
Dr Vinita Manjure, chairperson of Bandhan said: “It is a matter of great pride that we have transcended the barriers of culture, language, states and religion to congregate at the Harpur Square on this glorious August morning, together in solidarity and united in our joint endeavour to do good,”
Bedford’s Indian talent and cultural diversity was also showcased through a variety of performances from: 21st Century Education Trust, Sandhya Rao school of music, Nritham Dance Academy, NRI Music and Ananda Arts.
Celebrations continued hours later at an evening event at the Harpur Suite with speeches from various people of Indian origin, including Sati Judge, one of the first people of Indian origin born in Bedford, who talked about life for the first Indian settlers in Bedford.
Mayor Dave Hodgson added: “It was great to see so many people joining in the celebrations to mark Indian Independence Day in Bedford.’
“Well done to Bandhan Bedford and everyone involved in bringing local people together, along with the Indian High Commissioner, for this special occasion.”