The Urdu Hindi Kavi Sammelan and Mushaira night showcased new faces and fresh talents who showed their passion for poetry and ghazal in Hindi, Urdu and Punjabi language. 

Held at Fickling Centre in Auckland, on Saturday, November 21, the event was organised by Urdu Hindi Cultural Association of New Zealand celebrating ten years of its establishment and operations in New Zealand. 

Attending the Mushaira event for the first time in New Zealand, High Commissioner of India in NZ, Muktesh Pardeshi said he was pleased by the efforts of UHCANZ in promoting the Hindi language through events like Kavi Sammelan night and reiterated the significance of Hindi language to be taught amongst the younger generation of Kiwi Indians. 

Mr Pardeshi applauded the efforts of Urdu Hindi Cultural Association of New Zealand for promoting Hindi, Urdu and Punjabi language and encouraged to host more of such events in the future. 

The event was also attended by Minister of Transport and MP for Mt Roskill Michael Wood, Dr Deborah Russell, first elected Kiwi Indian MP Dr Gaurav Sharma, former MP Kanwaljit Bakshi, Jeet Suchdev from Bhartiya and Professor Malcolm Wright among others. 

As the evening progressed, contributors to UHCANZ and poetry enthusiasts took on the stage to read their poems (Shayari and Kavita) in Hindi, Urdu and Punjabi language, and sing ghazals along with the tunes of harmonium and tabla on the stage. 

“I was really looking forward to the Kavi Sammelan night and witnessed many new faces with fresh voiced and poetries that elevated my heart and spirit,” a member of the audience said. 

A surprising element of the event which received a standing ovation and a thunderous round of applause was a Kiwi man ‘Daniel’ singing the popular spiritual Sufi song ‘Dama Dam Mast Qalandar’. 

The audience was taken by a storm witnessing the energy, enunciation and singing of the traditional Sufi song by an English-speaking Kiwi person. 

Few other highlights of the event were the releasing of UHCANZ’s annual magazine ‘Dhanak’, presenting Lifetime Achievement Awards to the writer, poet and a veteran of Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu language Shiv Bhagirath and Dr Ashley Bloomfield for his guidance and leadership in the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. 

Dr Bloomfield who could not attend the event due to prior engagements sent a video message to the Association thanking him for the award and encouraged everyone to help support each other get rid of Covid-19 from New Zealand. 

“We are thrilled to have received such encouraging words from High Commissioner Muktesh Pardeshi about promoting the Hindi language, and he was very pleased with the Kavi Sammelan event,” Roopa Suchdev, president of Urdu Hindi Cultural Association of NZ told The Indian Weekender.