Cultural show by Bhutanese in Australia

Published on Oct 24 2008 // Main News

Adelaide (Australia), October 24: Bhutanese artists and performers rocked the stage in Adelaide today with their dances, songs and cultural shows, first of its kind since their resettlement began in Australia five months ago.

“Look forward to future, never forget the past,” said Hieu Van Le, Lieutenant Governor of South Australia. Himself a refugee from Vietnam 31 years ago, Hieu holds the second highest position in the state in hierarchy.

While addressing the Bhutanese gathering and cultural programme, Lieutenant Governor Hieu assured all possible support to promote Bhutanese culture, language and identity in Australia. South Australia is a home to 200 nationalities with the same number of languages spoken and cultures practiced, Hieu said. He further added Adelaide is the best place to live in Australia.

The cultural show, first introduction of Bhutanese community in Australia, was organized as part of their celebration of Dashian and Tihar. They also served different Bhutanese dishes to participants.

Of 200 families resettled in Australia in the last few months, 32 families comprising 81 members have been settled in suburbs surrounding Adelaide, South Australia. Bhutanese settled in other Australian cities also attended the program.

With the Nepali speaking Bhutanese, the population of Nepali ethnic origin has been increasing in Australia, said Deepak Bista, the founder and Vice President of Nepal Australia Friendship Association (NAFA). “We all are same culturally and ethnically,” Bista said.

Bhutanese refugees expressed their happiness with the support provided by the Australian government in their settlement. We promise to abide by Australian laws, while promoting our cultural identity far away from the Dragon Kingdom, said Bikram Adhikari, one of the first Bhutanese refugees to arriver in Adelaide. He also acknowledged the support provided by Nepalese community in settlement process.

The programme supported by the Department of Immigration. Multicultural and Citizenship and Migration Resource Centre was participated in by representatives of Nepalese, Indian and other community members organizations. Contributed by Bhuwaneshor Sharma, a Nepalese journalist in Adelaide