City celebrates 25 years of SIAF
At a special reception at the City Chambers, members of the Scottish Indian Arts Forum (SIAF) celebrated their silver anniversary with a performance of traditional Indian dance to contemporary music.
Started by a small group of Indian and Scottish volunteers in 1994, SIAF, a registered Scottish charity, has been promoting Indian culture and arts through festivals and performances of music, dance, drama and film since its inception 25 years ago.
Joined by Mr David Abernethy, Governor of HM Prison Edinburgh, the Indian Consul General of Edinburgh Mrs. Anju Ranjan and friends of SIAF, the civic celebration was hosted by the Lord Provost of Edinburgh.
Commenting, Lord Provost Frank Ross, said: “Over the last quarter of a century, SIAF has played a central role in promoting inclusivity and fostering fantastic community relations between the many different people who call our Capital 'home'.
“Much of this work has been voluntary, promoting Indian culture and arts to increase integration. And, as we celebrate 25 years of SIAF, this is a real opportunity to highlight how far Scots-Indian art, music, dance, literature, food and heritage has come, with events like Dusherra and Holi spreading the benefits and enjoyment to future generations.
“On behalf of everyone in the city, I am pleased to host this celebration to give my sincere appreciation to SIAF for their ongoing achievements. Long may Edinburgh embrace its Indian and Scottish traditions!!
Rajnish Singh, President of SIAF, said: “SIAF is a volunteer led organisation right since its inception. Completing an active and successful 25 years is a big milestone for us and we are very proud of it. We are grateful to Lord Provost for honouring this and hosting the reception for commemorating this. The City of Edinburgh Council had been an integral part of our journey and we at SIAF are very thankful for their support.
"On behalf of the entire Committee of SIAF, I would like to extend our big thank you to everyone who has been a part of this journey in any form: funders, past Committee members, volunteers, performers, suppliers and attendees to our various events.
"We are kicking off the 25 years with our flagship event, Dusherra 2019, this weekend at our longstanding picturesque venue of Calton Hill, Edinburgh. It is a free event and open to all – perfect for an afternoon/evening day for the families and friends. I would like to mention HM Saughton Prison for their excellent support in building the effigies through their prisoners’ woodcraft projects, for more than 12 years now. We have a packed schedule of dance and music shows within a bigger marquee and the finale of effigies burning and fireworks. We extend our invite to all and look forward to welcoming you on the day!’’
The reception concluded with dance performances by Gaby and Nandini of Theiya Arts and SIAF inviting all in and around Edinburgh to their annual flagship event Dusherra on 13 October 2019 at Calton Hill - a free event and open to all.