The Magazine Covering All Aspects of The Indian World
Editorial Business Forum Political News Dispatches & Reports Letters Spotlight Travel Lifestyle Health India Sport Scene
December 2009 - January 2010
THE NRI INSTITUTE DIWALI DINNER 2009
The gathering was a glittering affair held at the Chalmondeley Room, House of Lords on Monday, 19th October 2009. The host was the Baroness Sandeep Verma, and guests consisted of the Who’s Who of English and Indian social, political and business circles.
This special occasion was graced by members of the House of Lords, such as Lord & Lady Swaraj Paul, Baroness Shreela Flather and Mr. Gary Denis Flather, and Lord Bates, Chief Whip in The Cabinet Office; Members of Parliament, such as Dominic Grieve M.P. and Sailesh Vara M.P.; the High Commissioner of India H.E. Mr. Nalin Surie and Mrs. Poonam Surie; Judge and Mrs. Mota Singh, and many more. Amongst the120 guests were prominent businessmen such as Mr. Mayank Patel of Currencies Direct Ltd., Mr. Kirti Patel of Goldshield Plc., and Mr. Rami Ranger of Sun Oil Ltd. The NRI Institute was represented by Mr. Jagmohan Singh, Secretary General, Mr. Udai .R. Patel, International Chairman, Dr. S. P. Sharma, President of the UK Chapter, and Mr. Krishan Ralleigh, Secretary of the UK Chapter.
The evening commenced in late celebration of Diwali (the Hindu Festival of Lights) with the guests enjoying the vintage House of Lords champagne, and proceeded to a sumptuous 4-Course dinner which was served with delicious House of Lords white and red wines. Mr. Jagmohan Singh commenced the formal part of the evening by speaking about the progress made by the NRI Institute in the opening of new Chapters, including the Mauritius Chapter which was officially opened by the President of Mauritius, The Rt. Hon. Sir Aneerood Jugnauth G.C.S.K, K.C.M.G., QC. Dr. S.P. Sharma followed by thanking Mr. Ashok Verma, husband of Baroness Verma, for his assistance in the organization of the evening’s festivities, and expanded on the progress currently being made in the Indian economy despite the global economic crises. This theme was carried by Mr. Udai Patel, International Chairman who compared the buoyant mood in India during this year’s Diwali celebrations, with the depressed mood in the previous year.
The guests were given the traditional welcome on behalf of Baroness Verma, by Lord Bates, as the Rt. Hon. Lady was called away on official duties to the House, and was followed by Lord Swaraj Paul, who spoke highly about the work of the NRI Institute and its Secretary General, Mr. Jagmohan Singh.
H.E. Mr. Nalin Surie, the High Commissioner of India briefly apprised the guests of events in India. The High Commissioner is a career diplomat who was, until recently the Secretary (West) in the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi, and has served in the Indian Missions in Hong Kong, Brussels, Dar-es-Salaam, Thimpu, New York, Warsaw and Beijing. The last word was reserved for Sailesh Vara M.P., who concluded the first formal part of the evening before wishing the guests bon appetit.
The final formal part of the evening was conducted over coffee and House of Lords chocolates, and consisted of several awards presented to individuals for their special contribution to commerce and fashion. The guests concluded the evening interacting with each other and taking in the glorious sights of the London Eye and The River Thames at night from the balcony of the Chalmondeley Room. All in all, it was a thoroughly enjoyable evening where the cocktail of the wonderful venue, the champagne, the guest list and the bonhomie in the room created a lasting memory for all those who attended.