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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2702

New Year: The national Celebrations of Sri Lanka in Tamil Nadu

Chennai, 13 April, (Asiantribune.com): The Deputy High Commission for Sri Lanka in Southern India celebrated the Sinhala and Tamil New Year in a festive ambience at the Chancery premises on 12th April 2008 in Chennai.

The Sinhala and Tamil New Year or the National New Year as it is also known, is a national and cultural festival of the Sinhala and Tamil people who follow the calendar of the sun. This festival has been celebrated since ancient times and is also an occasion when old traditions and customs come to the fore during a time of festivities and joy. The Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission celebrated the Sinhala and Tamil New Year or the National New Year as it is known, grandly at the Deputy High Commission premises with a ‘cultural evening’. Here, the Deputy High Commissioner Mr. P M Amza was joined by Ms. Karthika Punyaseelan in lighting the traditional oil lamp on this occasion.The Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission celebrated the Sinhala and Tamil New Year or the National New Year as it is known, grandly at the Deputy High Commission premises with a ‘cultural evening’. Here, the Deputy High Commissioner Mr. P M Amza was joined by Ms. Karthika Punyaseelan in lighting the traditional oil lamp on this occasion.

The Deputy High Commission in keeping with this age old tradition organized a ‘cultural evening’ which included music and dance reflecting the commonalities between the Sinhala and Tamil people.

The ‘cultural evening’ began with the lighting of the traditional oil lamp followed by a welcome address by P.M. Amza, Deputy High Commissioner for Sri Lanka in Southern India.2	The dancers of ‘Kala Mandali’ led by Ms. Karthika Punyaseelan, performing the Sinharaja Vannam during the Sinhala and Tamil New Year or the National New Year, at the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission.2 The dancers of ‘Kala Mandali’ led by Ms. Karthika Punyaseelan, performing the Sinharaja Vannam during the Sinhala and Tamil New Year or the National New Year, at the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission.

Emphasising the significance and importance of this national festival, the Deputy High Commissioner in his speech stated that both the Sinhala and Tamil people in Sri Lanka celebrated this joyous occasion on the same day which also highlighted the bond the two communities shared with each other. He also stated that the meaningful contributions made by the Sinhala and Tamil people, along with the other communities, have contributed to the development of Sri Lanka and added that the two communities still continued to strive for the betterment of Sri Lanka in various spheres. ‘Kalabushanam’ Mr. V. Muthalagu, a well-known singer who was especially flown from Sri Lanka, performing some memorable and mesmerizing Tamil and Sinhala songs during the Sinhala and Tamil New Year celebrations at the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai.‘Kalabushanam’ Mr. V. Muthalagu, a well-known singer who was especially flown from Sri Lanka, performing some memorable and mesmerizing Tamil and Sinhala songs during the Sinhala and Tamil New Year celebrations at the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai.

One of the highlights of the New Year celebrations included a performance by ‘Kalabushanam’ V. Muthalagu, a well-known and respected Sri Lankan singer who was especially flown to Chennai for the occasion. A singer par excellence Muthalagu began his musical journey in 1951 and gained recognition as a singer in 1953. Having so far sung over five thousand 5000 songs during his musical career spanning over 55 years he still remains among the most sought after playback and stage singers in Sri Lanka. A Tamil Folk Dance performed by the talented dancers of ‘Kala Mandali’ at the Sinhala and Tamil New Year organised by the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai.A Tamil Folk Dance performed by the talented dancers of ‘Kala Mandali’ at the Sinhala and Tamil New Year organised by the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai.

Muthalagu has been awarded the title of ‘Kalabushanam’ by the Government of Sri Lanka, in addition to being the recipient of the Presidential ‘National Singer’ award. Hailed as Sri Lanka’s A. M. Raja, Muthalagu has sung in Sinhala, Tamil and Hindi among others and also has the distinction of having sung with many veteran south Indian singers, including Mrs. P. Susheela, Ms. Jamuna Rani and Jikki and has performed in many European and Middle-Eastern countries. Another section of the audience watching the colourful and melodies performances during the Cultural Evening which was organized by the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission to celebrate the Sinhala and Tamil New Year, in Chennai.Another section of the audience watching the colourful and melodies performances during the Cultural Evening which was organized by the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission to celebrate the Sinhala and Tamil New Year, in Chennai.

The dance items, which have been choreographed and also performed by Miss Karthika Punyaseelan, a Sri Lankan student from renowned Kalashesthra along with her dancing group, ‘Kalamandali’, also reflect the cultural similarities between the Sinhala and Tamil people of Sri Lanka. Another captivating performance by the vibrant dancers of ‘Kala Mandali’ at the Sinhala and Tamil New Year organised by the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai.Another captivating performance by the vibrant dancers of ‘Kala Mandali’ at the Sinhala and Tamil New Year organised by the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai.

The musical extravaganza by veteran Muthalagu who was backed by the musical group, ‘Jeevaraja’s Sruthi Isai’, consisted of popular Sri Lankan songs in Sinhala and Tamil and the colourful dance performances by Ms. Karthika and her group captivated and enthralled the gathering.

- Asian Tribune -

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