NRIs dish out on blending homelands

 

NRIs dish out on blending homelands
Avantika Mohan

On Republic Day, Indians who live in the UAE share how their 'desi' culture fits into the UAE's multicultural outlay, making it a collective comfort zone for one and all.

By Melissa Randhawa

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Published: Fri 25 Jan 2019, 11:00 PM

Last updated: Sun 27 Jan 2019, 12:44 PM

Deepika Mundra Saboo
The city of my dream, Dubai, is home to many people coming from different geographies, thus creating a confluence of varied diversities, culture and traditions. Dubai is expanding at a breakneck speed, all thanks to its visionary ruler. Without his efforts and will power, the city would never gain its shine that it carries today.
It's been more than 12 years living here and I've never felt as though I'm staying away from my homeland. This is because of its close proximity to India which is less than a four-hour flight away. Whether it is Republic Day or Independence Day, the flag hoisting ceremony at the Indian Consulate gives me a sense of pride and goosebumps. Diwali, Holi or any Indian festival is celebrated with more zeal, enthusiasm and, not to forget, Indian sweets that are easily available.

Vanita Prasanna Udyawar
Being an Indian who resides in foreign countries isn't an easy thing, but life gets easier when it comes to a country like the UAE. Here, the number of expats exceeds the number of locals, which totally gives justice to my above statement. The UAE has number of places that support different cultures, especially Indian. When I'd visited the Rooftop Lounge in Bur Dubai few weeks ago, I was surprised to hear Bollywood songs. I enjoyed that day, having experienced something related to my culture and language. These are just a few things about a beautiful country like the UAE. Here, we respect all nationalities and give importance to different cultures.
The UAE has shops that sell products from different parts of the world, and as an Indian who seeks different types of masalas and food items, the country has never let me down. My family and I stay together and cherish the cultures and traditions here. To mark this special Republic Day, we are grateful that the good ties between our nations makes us feel closer to our homeland. I am proud to live in the UAE.

A. Krishnan
Happy Republic Day to all of you. What I find most amazing is that we have brought our cricket and Bollywood to the UAE. You can see all nationalities, including Emiratis watching Indian movies. Another thing that I am always conscious of is that I have learnt more about India and Indians after coming here. In fact, true Bharat Darshan as I have gotten to meet people from all Indian states, almost as if I have travelled to India by being away from it.

Avantika Mohan
I have spent more years in Dubai now than in the country I belong to, and I'm looking forward to many more. Staying here doesn't make me feel that I'm away from home. The warmth and the culture reminds me of home and it's like I never left India. The first thing one notices here is the assimilation. People will absorb, speak your language and make you feel at home.
Places like Dubai Mall, the beautiful Miracle Garden and La Mer beach are like a second home to me now. I love how closely my actual home country and new current home country work together to make things convenient for us. There's no place I'd rather live in than in Dubai.

Amandeep Singh Guglana
Sat Sri Akaal (greetings) to all readers and my Sikh brothers of the UAE. As a Sikh living in Dubai I enjoy following my culture and values from back home without any hindrances and with full freedom. My wife always says "Maanas ki Jaat Sabhe Eke Pehchan Bo" - a beautiful phrase from Guru Granth Sahib that means "Recognise all of mankind as a single cast of humanity".
In Punjabi when we say 'Jee Aaya Nu', it means we welcome whosoever comes to our house with gratitude, and show them respect and our happiness. Likewise, the UAE is a multicultural country that welcomes people who hail from various cultures. Just as we Punjabis have faith in Langar and doing sewa, Dubai also believes in mankind, humanity and giving cultural freedom to all its residents. By building one of the most beautiful Gurudwaras for our community, they have shown their selfless service to share with others.
I really love the way we celebrate our festivals and Gurpurabs here with freedom and liberty. And if I talk about our Punjab's famous delicacies like Sarso Da Saag and Makki Di Roti, Dubai has ample number of restaurants. Hence, I love living here.

Nikhil Praveen Mendon
A home away from home, having lived in Dubai for more than five years, I can proudly call the UAE my home. Like many people, I had come to the city of dreams and opportunities to pursue a dream of being a personal trainer because fitness is what I religiously believe in. It plays a major role in the lifestyle of hundreds of thousands of Indians, and yoga, which originated in our ancient era is the reason I believe fitness is something we have naturally inherited. Besides welcoming me with arms wide open, UAE has provided me with more than anything I could ask for. The culture, tradition, food, warmth and harmony are what make living in Dubai so peaceful and convenient.
I think I can speak for my fellow Indians when I say that it is hard to be away from your hometown, especially during festivals and feasts. But the UAE brings it closer to us by celebrating them here. Be it Diwali, Holi, Eid, Christmas or Onam, every occasion is celebrated with pure love and respect for every religion or faith. It goes without saying that Dubai is beautifully decked up during the festivities. The year 2019 is marked as the "Year of Tolerance" and I can't wait to see what's in store for us expats.

Deepika Mundra Saboo
Deepika Mundra Saboo
Amandeep Singh Guglana
Amandeep Singh Guglana
Nikhil Praveen Mendon
Nikhil Praveen Mendon
Vanita Prasanna Udyawar
Vanita Prasanna Udyawar
A. Krishnan
A. Krishnan

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