New FIAV leadership takes office

Sury Prakash Soni & Gurucharan Singh Gandhok. Photos: FIAV

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 6 January 2021: The new leadership of the Federation of Indian Associations of Australia (FIAV) has taken office. A media release emailed to SAT on Jan 5, 2021, says the following were elected by the FIAV AGM held on December 12, 2021, at Museum India, Dandenong:

Mr. Sury Prakash Soni, President; Mr. Gurucharan Singh Gandhok, Vice President; Ms. Usha Gulapalli, Vice President; Mr. Pradeep Gaur, Treasurer; Dr. Reena Dubey, Asst. Treasurer; Mr. Pritom Dutta, General Secretary;
Ms. Sanchita Abrol, Asst. Secretary; Ms. Rashmi Gore, Committee Member, Mr. Gandhi Bevinakoppa, Committee Member and Mr. Sudharsan Sritharan, Committee Member.

“We sincerely thank all committee members and member organizations for their continued community service over the years. The new committee looks forward to working closely with community leaders, state and federal government for benefit of the Indian diaspora in Victoria, ” the media release says.

Source- FIAV media release, Jan 5, 2021.

Council survey rejects Gandhi statue in Dendenong

Mural of Mahatma Gandhi by Julian Clavijo in Little India, Foster Street. Photo: @julianclavijosart

By Neeraj Nanda

MELBOURNE, 29 July 2018: A proposal by the Federation of Indian Associations of Victoria (FIAV) to install a life-size statue of India’s father of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi opposite the Dandenong Station and adjacent to Little India, Foster Street shops has been shot down in a community consultation survey which closed on 7 June 2018.

According to a reliable source, more than 900 people participated in the survey commissioned by the Dandenong Council with more people saying no to the proposal. The survey information and other matters came up recently before a meeting of the Indian Prescient Task Force led by Gabrielle Williams, MP, Dandenong.

SAT contacted the Dandenong Council to know about the outcome of the survey and was told by Anya Murray that the information collected in the survey has been submitted to the Indian Prescient Task Force for a decision and the Council is likely to issue a media statement on the issue in a few weeks in August 2018.

FIAV leader and member of the Indian Prescient Task Force, Vasan Srinivasan talking to SAT said, “The Indian Prescient Task Force decided not to have any statue including that of Mathama Gandhi in the area.”

“I am not willing to take the proposal to another level, “Mr. Vasan told SAT.

Mr. Vasan also said, “We do not need any money for the Gandhi statue but the Dandenong Council needs to take leadership on this issue. Gandhi is more popular than anyone else in India and hence I do not support any other statue there.”

Another proposal to install a statue of Basava, 12th-century Lingayat philosopher and social reformer also did not succeed at the Task Force meeting. Though this was not part of the Council survey.

Interestingly, three largescale artworks including one on Gandhi were commissioned and completed by the Dandenong Council in Little India, Foster Street to celebrate the Indian and subcontinent flavor of the area.

The Council website says,” Melbourne’s south-east region is home to more than 52,000 people of Indian origin. Approximately 12,400 first generation Indian residents currently call the City of Greater Dandenong home.”

Only recently the Immigration Museum with the support of the state government hosted an exclusive exhibition ‘Mahatma Gandhi: An Immigrant, an interactive exhibition from 5 April to July 2018. The highlight was the visit of Gandhi’s granddaughter Ela Gandhi, a former member of parliament in South Africa.

Thomas Joseph is new FIAV President

Photo: SAT/NN

By Neeraj Nanda
Ballarat, 24 Aug: Mr. Thomas Joseph was today elected President of the Federation of Indian Associations of Victoria (FIAV) at the AGM held here. He is from the La Trobe Indian Association. The outgoing President Mr. Vasan Srinivasan, who led the Indian umbrella organisation in Victoria for five years, will remain member of the FIAV Trust along with four others.
The outgoing President detailed the activities of the FIAV and explained the plan to setup an aged care facility near Dandenong. The 60 beds Indian specific aged facility is likely to cost around $ 16 million. The announcement of the facility and its funding plans are likely to be announced before the November elections in Victoria, Mr. Vasan said.
He also explained the recent opening of the Indian Museum at Little India, Dandenong and its expansion plans.
The newly elected President Thomas Joseph pledged to expand FIAV work and unite the Indian community towards common goals.
The following were elected office bearers of the Federation of Indian Associations of Victoria (FIAV) at the AGM held at Ballarat:
President: Thomas Joseph; 2 Vice Presidents – Sharad Gupta & Sudesh Singh; Secretary – Jitender Kumar; Treasurer – Ambrish Deshmukh; Surya P. Soni & Supriya were elected to 2 other posts.
Co-opted members – Usha (Editorial), Goldy Barar(Youth & Sports), Kazween(Woman’s Affairs), Vernon(Membership), Mokika Raizada(Events), Usha (Seniors Affairs) & Krishna Arora (Catering). They will head the respective subcommittees.


- SAT News Service.