Bringing communities together at the Indian Summer Festival

TIM UppalTIM Uppal, Minister of State for Multiculturalism, met with board members of the Indian Summer Arts Society to discuss the Let’s Talk series, which has been designed to promote intercultural understanding and dialogue.

This series of accessible and intercultural community events, funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Inter-Action Program, will bring diverse communities together and feature performers from a wide variety of faiths and communities. The goal of the events is to promote greater awareness and understanding of faith, immigration, integration and tolerance.

During his visit this week to the Indian Summer Festival, Uppal emphasized the government’s commitment to recognizing the contributions and experience of the Indo-Canadian community. He outlined various initiatives the Government of Canada is undertaking to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the tragic event of the Komagata Maru, including:

* Designing and distributing an educational poster to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Komagata Maru incident;

* Participating in the unveiling of Canada Post’s Komagata Maru stamp at the Asian Heritage Month launch reception on May 6;

* Creating a Web page on CIC’s Web site to provide information on the tragedy and Canada’s role; and

* Providing funding of up to $89,500 for the Komagata Maru: Lions of the Sea exhibit, which will bring the story of the Komagata Maru to life and help educate Canadians on Sikh history.

“Canada is strong because we find unity in diversity, and our government is committed to bringing various communities together to promote intercultural awareness. Today, I am pleased to participate in the Indian Summer Festival, which is helping to introduce so many individuals to South Asian culture, and will lead to greater cultural understanding,” said Uppal.