Gujarati society in S Africa celebrates its centenary
A Gujarati society, which was established here under the guidance of Mahatma Gandhi, celebrated its centenary by remembering their forefathers who made sacrifices to ensure better world for the future generations.
Shree Transvaal United Patidar Society, which was established in 1912, celebrated it 100th birthday at the Patidar Theatre in Lenasia here, that has been the venue of thousands of community functions for more than three decades.
The chairman of the Society, Shashibhai Daya gave an account of how the first settlers from the community who worked as labourers and some as hawkers of fruit and vegetables, made many sacrifices to ensure that their children had better lives.
Daya also commended the role of the women of the Society, who organise regular activities under the banner of the Bhagini Samaj, and the youth members of the Society, who consistently excel in Eisteddfods and other educational and cultural events.
Special guest Ashwin Trikamjee, President of the South African Hindu Maha Sabha, said, "We should take a lesson from the efforts of our forefathers a hundred years ago who had absolutely nothing but were able to stamp their cultural and religious practices on South African society to leave a legacy," Trikamjee said.
"We still form an integral part of South African society today, with the Indian community represented proudly and strongly in all arenas, because of the vision of our forefathers that if they retained our culture and our religious beliefs, no law or apartheid could that away from us," Trikamjee added.