Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha salutes the resilience and indomitable spirit of Immigrants
Head of the Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha Dr Vindhya Persaud
See full statement from the Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha:
As we celebrate the 184th Indian Arrival Day, it is important to pay tribute to the indefatigable and indomitable spirit of the Indian indentured Immigrants who came on the 5th of May 1838 and also to all those who came through the through the indentureship system.
Today, we reflect on the immense and incredible contributions of our ancestors who arrived as indentured immigrants to then British Guiana. Arrival Day gives us the opportunity to acknowledge and salute the visible and tangible imprints of their presence and impact in multiple spheres in our country. From the earliest days of struggle and sacrifice, they demonstrated remarkable resilience and courage in the face of hardship, callous and inhumane living and working conditions. There are multiple stories of their resistance against colonialism and their struggle for an independent Guyana and their fight for better conditions. Our country has benefited tremendously from their invaluable contributions in diverse spheres. Their industriousness in the agricultural sector in the earliest years and thereafter have been impactful and benefited Guyana’s economy for decades.
We recognize the remarkable foundation they laid for their descendants and all Guyanese to build on. We are grateful for their dedication in preserving a rich culture filled with beautiful traditions creating a heritage that contributes to Guyana’s kaleidoscope of festivals, cultural practices, national cuisine and everyday life.
As a people we can learn from their courage, unity against undemocratic practices and colonialism, consistent and ceaseless work to develop their community and country and their respect and love for each other that endured beyond the indentureship time and biological ties.
They have left an enduring and rich heritage that is enjoyed today in the foods we eat, clothing we wear, the festivals that are part of the national tapestry of diverse cultures. We are fortunate as a country to enjoy the diversity of the peoples who came and to be able to look back with pride on all their contributions and to have a legacy that is uniquely beautiful and varied. We have enjoyed peaceful and religious harmony and we must always use this to bridge all other barriers that may exist, remembering our ancestors collective struggles and arduous journeys in those early days of our country’s history.
As descendants of those who came as indentured immigrants, we have much to be proud of and to be grateful for and build on. We continue to celebrate our culture our heritage and our traditions.
We invite you to join us for Sanskriti, a celebration of our culture, our heritage, our traditions, today , May 5th at 4:00pm at the Indian arrival Monument, Palmyra Berbice to enjoy a beautiful cultural program featuring songs, dance and drama by the Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha’s Praants and artises, the Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre, other groups, an exquisite exhibition and hot traditional meals on the spot. Admission is free and no alcohol is allowed.
Happy Arrival Day!