IVACC Arranges New Year Celebrations
By Talat Sattar

A group of Chinese dancers

In keeping with its past tradition the Indus Valley American Chamber of Commerce celebrated the New Year with usual zeal. Good and plentiful food and spirited attendees dressed in their best and in a buoyant mood added to the mirth of the festivities. The celebration turned out to be truly memorable and will be remembered for many, many years to come.
The New Year is an event that happens when a culture celebrates the end of one year and the beginning of the next one. The Indus Valley American Chamber of Commerce comprises people of different ethnicities, cultures, religions, races and orientations and that is why its new year celebration takes a unique dimension. This year the party was unique as Muslims were  celebrating  Eid at about the same time.
The new year is celebrated in a different way in different parts of the world. In Sikhism, the New Year festival is known as Baisakhi and is celebrated on 13 April. Fairs are held, women and children wear new clothes specially bought for the occasion, and men give each other new turbans as a token of good wishes.   
The Hindu New Year festival is called Diwali and is a festival of lights. It is celebrated differently in different parts of the world. Diwali marks the end of the year past and the beginning of a new one. For three days in late October early November every town and village in India glows with thousands of lights. The homes are decorated with little oil lamps known as diwa. These little lights are found in temples, houses, along window ledges and garden paths. In cities electrical lights are used to light up buildings. These are used to drive out evil and replace evil with goodness.
Muharram is the first month of the Muslim year and its first day is celebrated as New Year’s Day. The Islamic New Year throughout the world is held quietly, without the festive atmosphere of other New Year celebrations.
American New Year's celebrations include dance parties and many colorful events. Times Square in New York City has a ball-dropping event shown all over the United States. At the stroke of midnight on people  kiss or honk car horns. Paper blowers and whistles are also blown.
The IVACC party started with a Chinese band “Precious Jewel” performing the Chinese Ribbon Dance. The well-
presented dance was  greatly liked by the audience. It was followed up by a performance by  “Desi Angeles” and  a  dance by  Balbir Sodhi and Simran.
Punam Malhotra and Pammi entertained the audience by singing melodious desi songs. Punam was followed by a bhangra team of “Punjab Cultural Society” and “Andaz Group”. A beautiful gidha was performed by talented young girls and  followed by a Raistani folk dance. A Dandiya dance was performed by several participants and followed by a 'suited & booted' Bhangra. The party continued into the early hours of the next day. 
Alan Nakanishi was the chief guest and Mr. Iqbal Badwalz was the MC.
General Secretary Sukhchain Sing thanked the participants and the sponsors at the conclusion of the function.



Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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