Dussehra-Milan: Bonding through Culture

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Hiroaki Naomi, Vice Mayor of Matsue City being felicitated by
MadhuriJi, representative of Indians in San’in community at
Dr Hajime Nakamura hall on behalf of HSS Japan
Japan: ‘Dussehra-Milan’ is being organised by Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh Japan from last 5 years to utilise the auspicious occasion of "Vijaya-Dashmi" for connecting various Indo-Japanese cultural organisations which are actively working in Japan for the last few years. This year, Dussehra Milan was celebrated virtually to follow the on-going safety measures.
To execute the virtual event and to present the token of appreciation from HSS Japan, Karyakartas from more than 20 Shakhas in Japan personally visited the representatives of around 60 organisations across Japan. Eventually, this year's Dussehra Milan was so far the biggest event, turning the challenges into an opportunity due to the sincere team effort. Utilising the virtual format, Karyakartas from remote areas participated. Apart from usual programs like geet and subhashit presentation, there were two group songs by Balas, and an exciting skit in Sanskrit performed live by the Yokohama Shakha.
During the virtual event, around 55 organisations were briefly introduced and virtually appreciated by HSS Japan for their contributions and activities for society as well as highlighting some of the great work being done at the times of COVID. This includes representatives from Bengali Associations, Orissa community, Sindhi community, Jain Sangh, Punjabi community, Marathi Mandal, Telugu Sangham, Kannada group, Tamil & Kerala community, and several other cultural and spiritual groups like Art of Living, Patanjali Yoga Samiti& AMMA Japan. Representatives of various Hindu Temples in Japan including ISKCON temple, Swaminarayan Temple, Shiv Temple, and Temples in Osaka & Okinawa enthusiastically participated in the event. Representatives of Nepali community, Bangladeshi Hindu community, Shri Lankan Professional Group, Tibet community were also present during the event which was felicitated in person by the Karyakartas prior to the event. Japan's biggest Nationalist Group, Nippon Kaigi had also conveyed their greetings on this festive occasion.
Brief updates on various activities being carried out by HSS Japan was also shared during the event, which includes the Shakha activities, regular Sewa activities and various traditional festivals which were celebrated with the host community. Some of the recent activities are Vishwa Prarthana Yagya, hospital visits to thank COVID warriors, supporting food distribution for single Japanese mothers, helping stranded Indians in Japan and Surya NamaskarYagya during which 1,20,000 rounds of Sun salutations were performed by more than 200 Karyakartas during 75 days.
During the Dussehra Milan, winners of the Ramayan quiz contest were also announced. Utilising the concept of virtual classes, online course of "Katha Ramayan" was started by HSS Japan during August 2020. More than 115 students were registered for the online course, which was conducted via 3 classes, separated by age group.
Thompson Marsh Professor of Law at University of Denver Dr Ved Nanada spoke on occasion and appreciated the activities of various organisations. He highlighted the importance of events like Dussehra Milan to unite all the culturally active Hindu organisations in Japan.