Excitement is mounting as Auckland’s Indian community prepares to celebrate 100 years in the City of Sails. 2020 marks the centenary of the Auckland Indian Association Inc. (AIAI), and an inauguration dinner will take place at the Mahatma Gandhi Centre on Saturday, December 14 to officially launch the festivities.

More than 700 guests are expected to attend, as AIAI representatives unveil the dynamic line-up of exhibitions and events planned for the 2020 centennial. These will include a religious programme (katha) for up to ten days, cultural celebrations and a Gala Dinner to conclude the celebration.

“It’s going to be a fantastic night, and we are so excited to share our centennial plans with everyone,” AIAI President, Narendra Bhana said.

The AIAI has played an integral role in providing Auckland’s Indian community with vital links to their culture and heritage, hosting more than 25 weddings each year, and delivering education to over 70 students at their Gandhi Gruh Gujarati School.

The Association and its over 3,500 members have also embraced and contributed to the greater Auckland community through the building of iconic landmarks such as the much-loved Mahatma Gandhi Centre and Shri Radha Krishna Temple as well as extensive fundraising initiatives for a wide range of charities. Recipients have included the Auckland City Mission, Child Cancer Foundation, Alzheimers New Zealand, Shine, Ronald McDonald House, Breast Cancer Foundation, Starship Foundation and many more.

“India has a very rich and diverse culture. One of the primary objectives of the AIAI is to protect and preserve Indian culture in New Zealand. The centennial celebration in 2020 will be a great opportunity for us to showcase how we have achieved our objective over the last 100 years.”