New York: In good news for the Indians of New York, a holiday has been declared in public schools in the city on the occasion of Diwali, the Hindu celebration known as the “Festival of Lights,” starting next year.
New York Mayor Eric Adams announced on Thursday that the city’s schools will have a Diwali holiday starting next year. New York Assembly member Jennifer Rajkumar introduced a bill to recognize Diwali as a festival. She was also supported by Mayor Adams and New York City Schools Chancellor David Banks.
According to the reports, every year on the first Thursday of June, ‘Anniversary Day’, formerly known as Brooklyn Queen’s Day, will be given a Diwali holiday. This will be included as a Diwali holiday in the public school calendar.
Jennifer Rajkumar said in a press conference that the time has come when New York’s Diwali festival, celebrated by more than 2 lakh followers of Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs and Jainism, should be recognized.
She said that there was no place for the Diwali holiday in the school calendar, but my law will make it. Jennifer Rajkumar also said that the new program of schools will also take 180 days of schooling. According to the education law of the state, it is necessary to have 180 days of school in a year.
Mayor Adams said the decision on recognizing Diwali as a festival was long-awaited. “We would encourage children to understand what the festival of Diwali is. On this we will start the discussion and tell the children how you can be illumined by the light of the inner soul. Just as light is spread all around on Diwali, in the same way the light within us should be awakened, which removes the darkness.”
Diwali Begins in Times Square, Harris and Trump to Celebrate Today
Meanwhile, Diwali celebrations have begun at New York’s Times Square. US Vice President Kamala Harris and former President Donald Trump will celebrate the festival of lights at their residence on Friday. Indian-Americans started reaching New York and Washington from Thursday night.
Now Diwali events will be organized for about a week by the Biden administration and members of the US Congress. Kamala Harris has invited eminent Indian diaspora, diplomats and members of the administration to Diwali celebrations at her residence on Friday.
US President Joe Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden have invited Indian-Americans to the White House to celebrate Diwali on October 24. At the same time, Foreign Minister Antony Blinken will host another Diwali party at the State Department along with the diplomatic community on 26 October.
Diwali is also being celebrated at the US Capitol, which will be attended by eminent lawmakers as usual. Former President Trump will celebrate Diwali at his residence in Mar-a-Lago in Florida today. About 200 Indians will participate in it. There will be Bollywood dances and Indian cuisine will be served to the guests.