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Annual India Day parade held in New Jersey

Thousands of people lined Oak Tree Road in Edison and Iselin on Sunday to celebrate India’s independence with a boisterous jubilant parade. The 11th annual India Day parade took off under warm weather and partly cloudy skies, with American and Indian music, traditional South and East Asian dances and cries of the patriotic Indian slogan “Jai Hind!”.

Ronak Parikh of Edison comes out every year for the parade, and this year he brought his two sons, Khilen, 5, and Nivaan, 2. When Parikh was his kids’ age, growing up in India, the country’s independence from Great Britain was celebrated mostly with flag-raising ceremonies. Parades weren’t the custom, making Sunday’s event the type of Indian and American mix that is common in Middlesex County. One of his sons was waving an Indian flag, the other an American flag. “That’s what’s most important,” Parikh said. “The community is coming together.”

The Indian Business Association, which organizes the parade, said ovr 35,000 people came out last year to mark the founding of the world’s largest democracy in 1947. Many community organizations participated and Rajyalaxmiji “Hindu united day” team participated and Vilas Reddy Jambula ji dressed as Swamy Vivekananda, Satya Neemana ji’s banner and Vilas Reddy ji as Swamy Vivekananda created interest in the crowd. Entire time people stopped and took their pictures. (NSS)