Ms VAGHELA (Western Metropolitan): Recently I had the opportunity to participate in multiple garba events organised by various organisations across Melbourne and in my electorate. Garba is a form of dance which originates from Gujarat, which is my home state in India. Traditional garbas are performed globally around a centrally lit lamp or a picture or statue of the goddess Shakti. Traditionally it is performed during the nine-day Hindu festival called Navratri. The event is religious, cultural and social. This year prominent Gujarati folk singers and artists performed with their singing and dancing in Melbourne.
I attended many garba events this year and met with many talented artists and singers from India visiting Melbourne, including Divya Chaudhary, Alpa Patel, Sagar Patel, Aishwarya Majmudar, Kinjal Dave, Ishani Dave, Hardik Dave, Kirtidan Gadhvi, Umesh Barot and Jigardan Gadhvi, as well as local artists Manish Patel, Shalend Prasad and Shaineel Prasad.
I thank the organisers, including Nirav Patel from Jai Ambe Australia, Nirav Patel from Creative Events, Kuldeep Gajera, Hetul Thaker, Loyed Patel, Harry Patel, Utpal Patel, Palak Patel, Dev Gujarati, Dharmesh Chudasama, Ajaysinh Sindha, Nilam Panchal, Nishith Shah, Vikul Furia, Rajani Patel, Viral Patel, the Patidar Samaj team and others, for organising garbas and inviting me to their garba events.
On another note, Acting President Melhem, I would like to thank you, all my parliamentary colleagues, my electorate staff and all staff of Parliament House for your support over the past four years. Also, a special thankyou to all the constituents and community groups in my electorate for giving me the opportunity to represent them in the Parliament.