“T&T provides opportunities to forge win-win synergies”
Trinidad and Tobago occupies a special ...
Montserrat: The Indian community comprises a few Indian business families.
Please talk us through some high-level visits and cultural tours that have taken place in recent years. Due to the coronavirus pandemic physical visits from both sides have been suspended at present. I hope they will resume soon.
Culture: Culture is a very important aspect of our relationship. 42% of the Trinbagonian population has Indian ancestry, 18% of them are practising Hindus, 5% are Muslims and the others are of Christian faiths (especially the Presbyterian faith). They celebrate Diwali, Phagwa/Holi, Shiv Ratri, Janmashtami and Christmas with traditional gaiety and fervour.
Indian music, dance, Bollywood films, among others, constitute an integral part of the local cultural heritage. A melange of Indian and African music has given rise to new genres called Soca and Chutney. People of Indian descent, despite tremendous hardships and privations, have risen to new heights such as Nobel Laureate Sir Vidia Naipaul who was from T&T, Shri Basdeo Panday and Smt. Kamla Persad-Bissessar, who both rose to become the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago. The West Indian cricket team also has many players of Indian descent.
Cultural Troupes from India visit T&T from time to time. Some of the recent troupes that visited include:
- 8-Member Qawwali troupe led by Shri. Shahid Niazi.
- 8-Member Mayurbhanj Chhau Group “Project Chhauni group” led by Shri Pagulu Jena and
- 6-Member Odissi Dance Group led by Ms. Jyotsna Rani Sahoo.
What kind of facilitation is presently provided by the Mission for PIOs who want to trace their roots back in India?
We provide consular and PIO services under the broader concepts of “India at your door step”. We organize consular camps in various parts of T&T, Grenada and Dominica so that people can get their services including OCI cards without much hardship. During the pandemic the Mission evacuated stranded Indians from these islands through special flights.