Several Houstonians including Ashok Dhingra, Ashoke Nath, Dinesh Shah, Jagdip Ahluwalia, Umesh Jain, Mrs Jain, Sushila and Durga D. Agrawal had the privilege of attending the Diwali Celebration at the White House held last Wednesday, November 10th. Former Ambassador to India Robert Blackwill lit a lamp in the presence of a large number of Indian Americans in the Eisenhower Building.
Ash Jain, of the State Department Bureau of Arms Control, read the message of President Bush as follows “I send greetings to all those celebrating Diwali, the Festival of Light. Observed by millions around the world, Diwali is a time for the Hindus to give thanks for their knowledge, happiness and other blessings received. Laura joins me in sending our best wishes. May the coming year be filled with goodwill and prosperity”.
Former Ambassador to India Robert Blackwill mentioned how President Bush is very keen to improve India-US relations, that the President will visit India before the end of next year. Blackwill paid rich tributes to the contribution of the Indian American community and spoke admiringly about how high technology had transformed the landscape of India. Recalling his years in India with nostalgia, he said he would be soon visiting India along with his wife, who also missed India.
Anant Rambachan, Professor of Religion of St. Olaf College gave the invocation. During the invocation, Diwali blessings were bestowed upon President Bush, his family and the people of the America and the prayer was offered for world peace and prosperity of mankind.