The gathering drew distinguished figures such as Consul General of India Somnath Ghosh, elected officials, and community leaders, including Chicago City Treasurer Melissa Irvin, Alderwoman Shweta Baid, Alderman Deborah Silverstein, Alderman Walter Burnett, Alderman David Moore, Alderman Lamont Robinson, Alderman Pat Dowell, Aldermen Jason Irvin, Judge Sanjay Tailor, Judge Rena Vantine, Dr. Bharat Barai, and Dr. Sreenivas Reddy, Chair of the IL Medical Board.
Commencing with the rendition of national anthems and devotional songs, the ceremony progressed to the symbolic lighting of the ceremonial lamp. Ajeet Singh, President of IABC, extended a warm welcome to all attendees, expressing gratitude to Mayor Johnson for commemorating Diwali with the Indian American community.
Mayor Johnson continued the Diwali tradition by distributing sweets to the participants. Consul General Somnath Ghosh underscored the global significance of Diwali, drawing parallels to International Yoga Day, and lauded India’s example of tolerance, coexistence, and diversity. He reiterated the Indian community’s solidarity in promoting peace, development, and prosperity in Chicago.
Dr. Bharat Barai conveyed Diwali wishes and evoked joyous memories by likening the festival to Lord Ram’s return to Ayodhya from exile. Dr. Sreenivas Reddy emphasized the imperative of unity in addressing contemporary challenges such as mental health and violence. The dignitaries commended IABC for its commendable efforts in promoting Indian cultural heritage and the symbolic triumph of light over darkness at the esteemed City Hall.
The ceremony culminated with a sincere vote of thanks from Keerthi Kumar Ravoori, the visionary leader of IABC, who expressed gratitude and outlined the organization’s unwavering commitment to building a more robust community through impactful events. Mayor Johnson, in a symbolic gesture, once again distributed sweets to underscore the enduring Diwali tradition, while IABC pledged to persist in its endeavors to strengthen community bonds.