The Australia South Asia Society Inc (ASAS) was launched in Melbourne on Sunday at a function held at the Waverley RSL in Glen Waverley.
NRI Affairs Correspondent
ASAS Patron Dr Bandu Dissanayake launched the organisation, which seeks to serve the many South Asian communities in Victoria and Australia.
Among those who attended the glittering event were Mr Kapila Fonseca, Sri Lanka’s Consul to Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania; Mr Vasan Srinivasan, Member – Australian Multicultural Council and the Chairperson of the Mental Health Foundation Australia & Patron AIBC-Victoria; Mr Murugapoopathy, writer, editor and social activist; Bandu Dissanayake, former Consul Sri Lanka in Melbourne & Owner of Pahana Media Group; and Mr Neeraj Nanda, Editor – South Asia Times who together lit the traditional lamp.
Mr. Neeraj Nanda, who is also the President of ASAS, in his address detailed the main objective of the new organisation, which is to unite the South Asian communities from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Maldives, Bhutan and Afghanistan in Victoria and Australia. He said that advocacy of social, economic, cultural and political issues of the South Asian communities with the state governments and the Federal Government were ASAS’s primary objectives. He invited the South Asians in Australia to join ASA and to make it a strong platform for community enhancement and for raising community’s issues before the government.
The gathering was addressed by Mr. Vasan Srinivasan, Mr Kapila Fonseka and Mr Jason Wood, Federal Member from La Trobe and Assistant Minister for Community Safety and Multicultural Affairs. Mr Wood spoke via a video message.
The ASAS inauguration was followed by the ‘Noel Nadesan Books Launch’, presided over by Prof Kaushal Srivastava and conducted by Nithi Nithiayanathan. Four books were released during the book launching event.