Thursday, October 13, 2011

Friendship Flourishes

IAF Bureau

Continuing on its march towards building strong people-2-people connection between India and Armenia, IAF held its second meeting with its members on 11th October 2011. It was the continuation of the previous meeting held on Armenia's Independence Day celebration. The solidarity grew bigger this time, as more members joined the meeting, held at picturesque and historical Lodhi Gardens, New Delhi.

IAF Members in solidarity
The get together started on an introductory welcome note by Founder Mr. Rananjay Anand and then followed by introducing each other. One which is worth mentioning here is that, one of the most active members of IAF in India, Ms. Lilit Andreas made this occasion even special by surprising all members with her Home-made IAF Chocolate Cake and presenting rose flower to each members. It was a pleasant surprise for everyone and this cemented further the closeness of warmth between us.

All members shared this sweet cake and then began the general brain-storming session. Each members shared their experiences and views on their life spent in Armenia or in India and vice-versa. This time the topic of discussion was, what IAF can do in India utilizing this platform. Several options arises with lots of pros & cons. Finally people came to conclusion that though initially small, but we can organize small cultural events with member participation only.

During the discussions, IAF members Aman Bhardwaj and his guitarist friend Jitendra kept the momentum lighter and melodic through their musical performances. He promised to learn and  perform Armenian songs in future IAF meetings.
 The program ended on a high note with all being involved in their talks with different members till they dispersed and vowed to meet again in all future IAF meetings to contribute more.

IAF with love !!!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

IAF celebrates Independence Day of Armenia in India

By Karen Mkrtchyan

 “For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, 
See if they will not create a new Armenia”

IAF Members gathers to celebrate
Independence Day of Armenia on 21st September
21st September is a special day for Armenia, as it was on this day 20 years back that the Soviet Socialist Republic of Armenia officially was re-born into the current independent nation.  Like any other year, this year as well, the world witnessed celebrations by the Armenians and their friends and well-wishers across the globe, and New Delhi, the capital city of Incredible India was not left out from it. And neither were we at IAF willing to forget the importance the day had. Hence, in the evening of the same day, at the same time when another IAF group had gathered in Yerevan, a small but dedicated group of IAF members gathered together at Connaught Place to mark the 21st year of Armenia’s Independence . Even though on a short notice only a few of us could turn up, we at Indo-Armenian Friendship always believe that in the long run, it is Quality and not Quantity that makes a difference. There is a reason why I say this. If you are a member of IAF, then I am pretty sure you are familiar with the name Aman Bhardwaj-an active member in our facebook group. All of us present that evening were amazed at his dedication when this young man turned up , having travelled three hours from Aligarh to Delhi just to celebrate that auspicious day with us. IAF is proud to have such dedicated members who will stop at nothing to see that our NGO succeeds in executing all our plans smoothly. Aman also entertained using his amazing talent by singing  a few songs for us, and was even joined in and followed by a wonderful performance from our founder Mr. Rananjay Anand.

IAF members in discussion!
The get-together consisted of members from both countries, with the majority of us being students. To start the meeting on a good note, Founder & President Mr. Rananjay Anand welcomed everyone in the first ever IAF group member meeting in India and asked everyone to share their experience and then choke out a future plan of action for proper interaction. Lilit Andreas, an Armenian lady who is married to an Indian was also among us, along with her little angel daughter Ani, who, in Lilit’s own words is “a result of Indo-Armenian Friendship”. Lilit shared her experiences in India and also hinted on the various problems an Armenian girl is likely to face after coming to India, followed by useful tips and points as to how the various problems can be either avoided or solved. We also had two doctors amongst us, Dr. Dinesh Chauhan and Dr.Sony Jose,  who had studied in the Medical College of Yerevan and had returned to India after completing their degree. They both spoke Armenian pretty well and it was really heart-warming for us Armenians to see Indians speaking in Armenian-just as heartwarming it may be for them to see  Armenians speaking in Hindi. They both spoke about the years they  spent in Armenia and how close to their hearts Armenia was. After all, it had been their second home, just like India has been my second home for over ten years now.

Dr. Dinesh Chauhan sharing his experiences in Armenia
during his medical study in Yerevan
Interestingly, we had one journalist young lady from Armenia, Ms. Inga, who is studying in IIMC, and is in India on an ICCR scholarship, and another journalist from India, Ms. Nidhi Gupta.  Both these young and talented media representatives gave us their ideas from a journalists point of view, both stressing on the point that lack of information amongst the citizens of both the countries regarding Armenia and India is a major problem to be tackled, a point we all agreed on. Hayarpi and Anoush, both  on ITEC & ICCR  scholarships from India, also shared  their thrilling experiences in India.

Anush and Dr. Dinesh
The meeting also brought a new addition to our group. Arihant Kumar Vardhan, a Phd student in Persian Language at JNU also joined us, showing great interest in IAF.

Overall, the meeting was productive, and of course, as all good  and bad things come to an end, so did our meeting. Before we could realize, the clock had done its work and it was time for us to depart, promising many more meetings in the future to come. IAF thanks our founders Mr. Rananjay Anand and Ms. Ruzanna Ashughyan for organizing the get-together, and  wishes all Armenians a prosperous year ahead, and may this 21st independence bring our two countries closer and may we grow from strength to strength. Long live India Armenia. Long live Indo-Armenian Friendship.

Long live Indo-Armenian Friendship!

About Author: 
Mr. Karen Mkrtchyan is a full time student in 
India's premier Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi.