Saudi Gazette report
RIYADH/JEDDAH — The 73rd Republic Day of India was celebrated with enthusiasm and joy at Indian diplomatic missions and schools across the Kingdom on Wednesday.
The Indian Embassy in Riyadh celebrated the 73rd Republic Day of India on Wednesday with great fervor. The celebration began in the morning with the flag-raising ceremony, which took place at the Embassy.
The Indian Ambassador, Dr. Ausaf Sayeed, unfurled the tricolor. Dr. Sayeed extended his greetings and congratulations to all participants and shared his remarks highlighting the growing ties between India and Saudi Arabia.
The flag hoisting ceremonies were followed by the singing of the national anthem and the reading of President Ram Nath Kovind’s address to the nation. Excerpts from the speech were read to members of the Indian community, friends of India and mission leaders in both Riyadh and Jeddah.
After the Ambassador read Indian President Ramnath Kovind’s message on the occasion.
This was followed by cultural performances given by students from Indian schools in Riyadh. The event brought together members of the Indian community based in the Kingdom.
In the evening, an official gala reception was organized by the embassy in the cultural palace of the diplomatic district, in the presence of the mayor of Riyadh, prince Faisal Bin Abdelaziz Bin Ayyaf Al-Muqrin.
The celebration saw the participation of members of the diplomatic city of Comma and Saudi dignitaries as well as the Indian diaspora. The village hall presented a painting exhibition, on the theme of Indo-Saudi relations, mounted by eminent Indian and Saudi artists.
Additionally, the space was decorated with numerous stalls representing Indian handicrafts, textiles, food and business entities.
The celebration takes on greater significance for Indians across the world as India celebrates the 75th anniversary of independence under the leadership of Azadi ka Amrit Mahostav.
The celebrations also coincide with 75 years of establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Saudi Arabia.
At the Consulate General of India in Jeddah, a flag hoisting ceremony was held in the morning at the premises of the Indian Consulate attended by about 250 members of the Indian community.
Consul General Mohd. Shahid Alam unfurled the Indian flag. It was followed by the singing of the Indian national anthem led by the Indian students of DPS Jeddah and joined by all who attended the event.
On the occasion of Republic Day, the Consul General warmly greeted and congratulated the Indians living in Saudi Arabia, and read the President’s message.
In his remarks, the Consul General highlighted the major initiatives of the Indian Consulate including the innovative use of IT resources, the efficient improvement of service delivery to the Indian community and the facilitation of access to the Consulate.
The flag hoisting ceremony also included the performance of patriotic songs by students from Indian schools as well as the presentation of patriotic displays by talented students.
The event was also broadcast live on the Consulate’s YouTube channel.
In the evening, Consul General Mohd. Shahid Alam hosted a reception at Park Hyatt Hotel, Jeddah. Ambassador Mazen Bin Hamad Al Himali, Director General, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Makkah Mukarramah Region, Jeddah, was the guest of honor for the program.
The reception also brought together senior Saudi officials, consuls general and diplomats from several countries, Saudi personalities and members of the Indian community.
In his remarks, the Consul General referred to the special strategic partnership between India and the Kingdom as well as the extraordinary warmth in the relations between the leaders of the two countries, especially in recent years.
He thanked the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman, and Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman for their contributions to strengthening relations between India and Saudi Arabia.
He also thanked them and the Saudi government for extending warm hospitality to Indians living in the Kingdom and supporting the efforts of the Indian Consulate to ensure the welfare of Indians in the Kingdom.
The reception also featured Indian cultural performances by talented Jeddah-based artists and an exhibition of fine paintings illustrating India-Saudi bilateral relations.