Saturday, March 30, 2013

PM Kamla's Holi message

File: Celebrating Holi in Trinidad. Photo credit: Max Ottley
Dear Fellow Citizens of Trinidad and Tobago, 

For the first time in our diverse and multi ethnic Trinidad and Tobago three religious festivals will be celebrated this weekend: Spiritual Baptist Liberation Day, Easter and Phagwa.

Phagwa or Holi is celebrated in Trinidad and Tobago by the Hindu Community as the Festival of the Harvest and is signaled by the bloom of the Poui trees that are part of the landscape of our beautiful islands.

Phagwa is also known as the Festival of Colour in which people dance to special songs known as chowtals and squirt abeer and smear gulal on each other in merriment.

There is also a solemn religious significance. It marks the destruction of evil in the embodiment of Holika and the triumph of the forces of good.

Read the story of Holika and Prahlad
This like many other religious festivals transcends all boundaries and is now celebrated throughout Trinidad and Tobago as a national festival. 

There are various aspects of Holi, or Phagwa, which makes it significant to our lives. It is a time when cultural and social barriers are broken down and people gather in pure merriment. It reminds us that good always triumphs over evil and that we must always use the opportunities which present themselves in our lives in a positive way.

Today, as we play together today, enjoying the fun and friendship that is associated with Phagwa, let that sense of camaraderie extend to your daily lives, to your homes, to your schools, and to your communities. Be a true reflection of the beautiful colours of this festival that binds you to your heritage, your faith, your culture, your values, and your hopes for a brighter future.

On this auspicious weekend of festivals on behalf of myself, my family and my Government, I wish everyone Happy Holi.
Kamla Persad-Bissessar, S.C., M.P. 
Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai