History created as DSP Sings National Anthem Live on Times Square to Mark 75th Year Anniversary of the Motherland India
Over a thousand members of the community gathered in the heart of Times Square as the Federation of Indian Associations NY-NJ-CT-NE held its annual Indian tri-color hoisting on Times Square.
The flag was hoisted by Hon. Consul General of India Mr. Randhir Jaiswal and in attendance were the famous rockstar from India Devi Sri Prasad (DSP), renowned composer and singer Shankar Mahadevan and Mayor of New York City Hon. Eric Adams, Deputy Mayor Meera Joshi and Assemblyman from New Jersey Raj Mukherji. Also present were Indian-American NASA Astronaut Mr. Raja Chari and Indian American Formula-3 Race Car driver Atharva Desai.
From the motherland, political stalwarts Dr. Sambit Patra and Mr. Kailash Vijayvargiya also participated and addressed the gathering.
Speaking at the occasion, Hon. CG Mr. Jaiswal said that today we celebrate freedom, democracy, and all that we share with this great country – the United States of America. He expressed confidence that the two nations will continue to strengthen ties and continue building and expanding India US relations.
Mr. DSP expressed his excitement and pleasure to be at Times Square on this historic occasion and sang a few lines from ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ – a song composed by him and released on the eve of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav. He then sang the national anthem live along with the gathering.
Mr. Shankar Mahadevan sang lines from the patriotic song ‘Ae Watan Aabad Rahe Tu…’ and expressed his joy to join Devi Sri Prasad in celebration of India. He was proud to represent India at Times Square and in the presence of his family.
FIA Chairman Mr. Ankur Vaidya thanked distinguished guests in attendance and offered special thanks to the NYC Mayor, who during his council years offered his assistance to the community through FIA and would also review the incorporation of Diwali as a holiday. Vaidya expressed his gratitude and joy in witnessing the celebrations of the motherland being participated in large numbers on a Monday morning and thanked the distinguished guests, who were in attendance including the sponsors, Amneal, Dunkin and State Bank of India.
FIA President Mr. Kenny Desai said that he takes immense pride in the fact that the Indian National flag is being hoisted at this iconic landmark and saluted Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his vision and efforts for celebrating Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, which encompasses the Global community. Dance score on DSP composed song ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ was performed by Rudra Dance Academy to commemorate the 75 Years of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav.
Hon. Raja Chari, US Astronaut and commander of the NASA SpaceX Crew-3 mission to the ISS, served as a flight engineer aboard the International Space Station for 177 days in orbit. During his time on the International Space Station (ISS), he performed two spacewalks and helped in capturing and releasing three SpaceX Dragon spacecraft and two Cygnus cargo vehicles, expressing his joy in participating in this historic celebration of the motherland’s 75th anniversary. Raja Chari expressed his pride in attending the celebration and said his late father, who hailed from Hyderabad Andhra Pradesh, would have been extremely proud to see him being the guest of honor.
Atharva Desai and his father participated in the event. Atharva, who was dressed in his racing car suit, expressed his joy in being a part of the celebrations on Times Square and being in attendance of distinguished personalities.
Later in the day, the Iconic Empire State Building was lit up in the tri-color of the Indian National Flag – saffron, white and green. In attendance were DSP, Shankar Mahadevan, Hon. Raja Chari and DSP who was overjoyed and emotional while performing the lighting ceremony.
In the evening, a 220-ft Khadi tri-color was flown over the Hudson River – a spectacle photographed and shared on social media in the thousands within the first two hours of the Times Square building lighting.