Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Anglo-Indian Gallery for a Calcutta Spring by A Correspondent
Befitting a city known for its multicultural and multilingual extravaganzas , the opening of the Gallery for Anglo-Indian Heritage at Calcutta adds a new dimension to its perspective. The Gallery showcases some of the most important encounters with people of courage and compassion who had shaped the history, heritage and culture of the race.
The Anglo-Indian Spring has also arrived.
The Ninth International Anglo-Indian Reunion is being held (6th –12th. January 2013) at Calcutta. On Park Street , a week long street celebration had colourful food stalls dotted along the pavements, some with Anglo-Indian cuisine in between the food delights of other communities. On the 31st December 2012, Anglo-Indians poured into the dance halls across the metropolis : Dalhousie Institute, the Rangers Club and the Grail Club were packed to the hilt on New Year's Eve.
Add to the good of all this, comes the timely introduction of the Anglo-Indian Gallery ,founded and directed by Melvyn Brown at 3 Elliott Road, Calcutta 700016. Books on the history and heritage takes a stand among the popular films made on the race in English and Hindi. It is also a first to observe the display if tapes on “Anglo-Indian Oral History” – voices from the past recalling many a historic moment. Magazines and newspapers with articles on the community are displayed.
Today, Anglo-Indian men and women are playing a dramatic role in the Anglo-Indian Spring. They are contributing much to their peoples pride of place in a nation where their mother- tongue is English. Once again they can galvanize, as before, in the fields of sport, education, armed forces and the fine arts. Despite the odds they face the Anglo-Indian Spring is refresh-ing to come by. Today’s youth are in centre-stage to confront any distraction or economic challenge.
The B.B.C. in London has a special corner in their library with Anglo-Indian books and literature. In a recent series called, “Who do you think you are” one of the personalities who thought he was a Scotsman turned out to be Anglo-Indian : he was Alistair McGowan, a British actor and comedian. He now belongs in the Anglo-Indian tapestry.