Issue No: CXVIII; Vol No: 07-12 Editor: Barry Oâ€™Brien Regd No: DL (ND) - 11/6099/2009-2011 RNI No: 43057/74 July 2019 December 2019
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
AWARDS CEREMONY The All-India Anglo-Indian Association honoured several branches and individuals at the Awards Ceremony of the National Annual General Meeting held in Lucknow. Here are some of the highlights of the evening.
THE FRANK ANTHONY AWARD FOR THE BRANCH OF THE YEAR
he President-in-Chief presented ‘The Frank Anthony Award for the Branch of the Year’: gold to the Lucknow branch; silver to the Bangalore and Devlali-Nasik-Igatpuri branches and bronze to the Madurai, Jamshedpur and Tiruchirappalli branches for their all-round excellence in 2018-19.
Issue No: CXVIII; Vol No: 07-12 Editor: Barry O’Brien Regd No: DL (ND) - 11/6099/2009-2011 RNI No: 43057/74
July 2019 - December 2019
The Official Magazine of The All-India Anglo-Indian Association
02 A letter to members about the AGM at Lucknow from Barry O’Brien, President-in-Chief
STATUTORY WARNING You will need several hours to read this issue of The Review simply because it covers such a broad spectrum. The National AGM at Lucknow held in October 2019 is well documented in photographs, reports and reactions. The fact that the AGM was finally held on schedule in Lucknow, having overcome a major last-minute challenge, speaks volumes for the inner strength of this great Association and the grit and determination of its members. Bravo, Lucknow! The other highlight of this issue is the coverage of NYM-3, another super successful event of 2019 attended by 243 youth delegates under the age of 35. Well done, Bangalore and AIAIAY! Thank you, FAPS, Bangalore! There are several other highlights in this issue as we continue to celebrate the lives and achievements of our people in India TODAY. Your heart will burst with pride as you read about Anglo-Indians who are making a significant contribution to nation-building in MODERN India. You will read about the first Anglo-Indian High Court Judge; how an Anglo-Indian led the restoration of a heritage church; how an Anglo-Indian CEO is making his mark in the healthcare industry; how young Anglo-Indians are making waves in academics, on the ramp, in journalism, on the football field, and in fields as varied as animal-care and sports management. This is MODERN INDIA! These are MODERN DAY ANGLO-INDIANS! -The Editor
AGM 2019 at Lucknow: Presidential Address by Barry O’Brien, President-in-Chief
Vote of Thanks to the President-in-Chief ’s Address by Dr Cheryl-Ann Shivan (Villupuram-Pondicherry) and Lester Fernandez (Tangasseri)
20 AGM 2019 at Lucknow: Roll of Honour 21
AGM 2019 at Lucknow: National Awards Ceremony
AGM 2019 at Lucknow: 50 Faces
29 AGM 2019 at Lucknow: Reactions and Reports from Delegates – Dr Cheryl-Ann Shivan (Villupuram-Pondicherry); Lester Fernandez (Tangasseri); Karl Young (Pune); Nevada Dalby (Jamshedpur); Glen Daniels (Pallavaram) and Julian Redden (Devlali-Nasik-Igatpuri) 35
NYM-3 at Bangalore: The Future is Ours – A report by the AIAIAY Committee
Young Achievers: Shania Hoskins, Bangalore; Dale Halstead, Pune; Asher Thomas, Khurda Road- Bhubaneswar; Clynton Culpeper, Khurda Road- Bhubaneswar; Errol Besterwitch, Nagpur; Ninashka Ford, Nagpur; Sarah Coutinho, Nagpur; Leah Morris, Trivandrum 49
Branch News: The President-in- Chief visits Lucknow, Dehradun and Bhopal branches
Branch News: Visakhapatnam; FNG (Faridabad-Noida-Ghaziabad); Guntakal; Ranchi
Branch News: Vijayawada; Cochin; George Town; Madurai
Branch News: Bangalore; Tiruchirappalli; Bangalore City
Branch News: Trivandrum; Vepery; Vypeen
54 Branch News: Calcutta; Delhi; Pallavaram 55
Branch News: Coimbatore; Agra
56 Branch News: Khurda Road- Bhubaneswar; Villupuram- Pondicherry
37 NYM-3 at Bangalore: Roll of Honour
Branch News: Danapur; Korba; Ootacamund; Mumbai
38 NYM-3 at Bangalore: Delegate Reactions
Branch News: Nagpur; Mysuru; Pune; Allahabad; Jabalpur
40 NYM-3 at Bangalore: A Photo Essay
Branch News: Devlali-Nasik- Igatpuri; Jamshedpur
44 Pride of the Community: Conrad Dias (Cochin) sworn in as Kerala High Court Judge; Restoration of Christ Church (Mumbai)— Congratulations, Chairman, Rudy Woodman; ‘Best CEO’ Award for Dr Russel Lawrie of Nagpur
Branch News: Ayanavaram; Hyderabad-Secunderabad; Celebrating Wilma Kingsellers’ 40+ Years of Dedicated Service to the Bhusawal Branch
This Academician Lives Life with a Purpose – an article on Peter Fanthome, educationist, ex-MLA and a stalwart of Lucknow branch
The Life and Times of Commander Noel Kelman (Goa)
We Salute Them - Obituaries
45 Super Achievers: Adrian Peters, Hyderabad-Secunderabad; Kimberly Fernandez, Mumbai; Joshayet Rozario, Pallavaram; Cyrus Maclure, Lucknow; Lyle Michael, Mumbai; Vivean Fenwick, Vijayawada; Gayle and Deveney Dweltz, Mumbai;
Delegates of Uttar Pradesh with the President-in-Chief and the First Lady
To Members of The All-India Anglo-Indian Association From the President-in-Chief Dear Friends, 471 delegates from across 16 states attended the National AGM held in Lucknow. On behalf of the Governing Body, I thank those who took the trouble of making it a point to be there; to those of you who could not be present, do try and come to the next one—you missed what was a truly memorable AGM! We salute the Lucknow branch, led by President Adrian Michael and Vice President Charmaine Fanthome Beecham, who were well supported by Secretary Warren Hopkins, Treasurer Allen Morrison, Genevieve Lobo, Austin Morris, Desmond Michael, Wayne Godin, and their hardworking team. The feedback that we have received from across the country has been overwhelming. The AGM was excellently organised on all fronts, including accommodation, transport and hospitality; the food was delicious, and the evening parties were thoroughly enjoyed by members of all ages.
Adrian and Deepa Michael
The Governing Body conveys its deep sense of appreciation and gratitude to Adrian and Charmaine for leading from the front, raising funds and paying attention to every minute detail. To all those who stood by the Association—the managements of St Teresa’s College and Delhi Public School, Shaheed Path; Air Marshal (Retd) Denzil Keelor; Mr Peter Fanthome, ex-MLA; Mr Rajneesh Chopra; Mr Shahwaj Arif; Mr Rahul Bhasin and other generous friends and well-wishers of the community—we say ‘thank you’ from the bottom of our hearts. To the super youth of the Agra branch and their mentors, we say, ‘Thank you for being there every step of the way. Your contribution was very significant.’ We would also like to sincerely thank Shivan from Pondicherry, Brett Tanner from Coimbatore and Lester Fernandez from Tangasseri for giving us music that kept us on the floor for hours—and doing so, ‘for love’! We thank our comperes and MCs—Andy Hoffland of Delhi, Anthea Hodges of Delhi, Craig Kerr of Lucknow, and Vanessa Wilson of Coimbatore—for sacrificing their own enjoyment to carry through our events with panache. Another comment many of you made was that the business meetings were interesting, informative, and meaningful and that not a minute was wasted. While humbly accepting the compliment, we thank you for participating in the discussions and conducting yourselves in an exemplary manner. We are grateful to God that we were able to unite, as we do every year as a community, for three very special and meaningful days of deliberation, discussion and camaraderie. God bless our small but gallant community! God bless our beloved Association! With my warmest regards and best wishes,
Barry O’Brien President-in-Chief The All-India Anglo-Indian Association Empathise, Educate, Empower Together, We Can
Clarence and Charmaine Beecham
The All-India Anglo-Indian Association Annual General Meeting, 05 - 07 October 2019, Lucknow
THE PRESIDENTIAL ADDRESS Barry O’Brien, President-in-Chief
very good morning and a very warm welcome to each one of you to the 144th Annual General Meeting of The All-India Anglo-Indian Association.
I extend a special welcome to all those who are attending the AGM for the very first time. All have been welcomed to attend the Presidential Address in the past over the years, but we are also welcoming, to join us in this entire movement and the AGM process— except business meetings —families, non-AngloIndian spouses and children – to join us in this celebration. A very warm welcome to each one of you!
A very warm welcome to all our stalwarts and senior citizens, and people who have come from far and wide - especially those attending after a long time: Freddy Hall of Vepery; Denzel Lazarus, life member from Gorakhpur. Then we have our stalwarts, those who never miss an AGM - Margaret Devadasan from Calcutta, a member since the 1960s; Blossom Lillywhite of Mumbai, a member since 1961; Adrian D’Cruz of Fort Cochin, since 1962; Darryl Burke, now of Goa, has been a member since 1969 and still has the first receipt he received - his registration proof. Thank you very much members for taking the trouble of coming from every corner of India. Those of you who could not make it, we miss you and look forward to seeing you at the next AGM. Some of you are unwell and some of you couldn’t get leave or couldn’t make it for some other reason. We miss you, but we know that you are with us in spirit. There is a special family from Delhi—three generations are present today. Preston and Guy Johannes, and their mum, and their children are here. Three generations from the same family attending the AGM! Wonderful! I also would like to welcome all ex-MLAs, MLAs, my Governing Body, and all of you. We have four MLAs here: Mr Glen Galstaun (Jharkhand), Mrs Vinisha Nero (Karnataka), Dr Denzil Godin (Uttar Pradesh), and Mr Greg Mann (Uttarakhand). Let’s give them a round of applause. Thank you for being present. Friends, let me start by sharing with you my views about the India we live in. The India we live in is very different from the India our parents and grandparents lived in. There are
similarities too. This India, like it was then, is in many respects, a beautiful India. If you haven’t been to God’s own country in Kerala, if you haven’t been to the Sundarban jungles in Bengal, if you haven’t been to magical Jaipur, if you haven’t been to the tiger reserves in central India, if you haven’t been to breathtakingly beautiful Arunachal Pradesh, you haven’t seen India – the loss is entirely yours! I appeal to all Anglo-Indians: save some money and—before you go to Singapore and Bangkok and anywhere else—visit India, see India, know India. That will make you feel so special about living in this wonderful country. The many world class beaches in Goa and elsewhere, the churches and temples of south India, the historic landmarks of the north — there is just so much to see! It is sad indeed that many AngloIndians who can afford to travel, don’t travel enough in India. We need to travel, and I am sure relatives and friends of yours will come out of the woodwork, and you won’t even have to pay for hotels! Please try and take your children. Do you know that the children of many Anglo-Indians who live abroad often end up seeing more of India than our own children who live in India do? So that’s my first message to you. Experience India. Feel India. If I had the time, I’d actually take the train right from Trivandrum or Kanyakumari and go up to Kashmir or the north-east. Do start travelling with your family in India before you think of going elsewhere; it’s a beautiful India. Now let’s focus on the population of India—the huge numbers — this is both a great advantage as well as a clear disadvantage. We all know why it is disadvantage – since it is one of the primary reasons for poverty in our country; it is also contributing significantly to environmental concerns. I am now going to share some statistics with you of the population of India which will throw some light on the positive side of having
a large population. We all know that in the late seventies and early eighties China started incentivising its people to have one child – today, four decades down the line, they have run into a big problem – the problem of an ageing population! India, on the other hand, has moved in the opposite direction. Ours is one of the ‘youngest countries’ in the world. Those in the age group of 15 to 69 are considered a country’s active population. In 1971, India’s active population was about 53% of its total population - today, that has grown to almost 63%. Only 5.3% of our population is above 65—that’s less than 6%. As much as 65% of India is below the age of 35. By 2020, the average age of the people of China will be 37, the average age in Japan will be 48, while the average age in India will be just 29. So, ours is a young, very young nation. This is a huge advantage for our country; an advantage we need to cash in on. And that is why it is so relevant even in our Association, in our community, to involve the youth. They are the largest in number, so how can we not engage them? How can we not involve them? Sadly, I heard a committee member of a branch making a rather negative comment recently: ‘You know I can’t tolerate these youngsters – they are giving us so much trouble in our branch.’ If youngsters won’t ‘give trouble’, who will? If youngsters don’t make mistakes and do things that are considered wrong, who will? And what about all the positive contribution that they can make, and are making? I am not asking you to look the other way when they are ‘doing something wrong’. No! We will have to speak them, counsel them. But to do that we will have to first stand beside them, listen to what they have to say. This will lead to them ‘accepting’ us, respecting us…then, and only then, can we counsel them, then and only then can we have a balanced relationship with them.
Governing Body Members
I am tired of hearing in India—right from when I was growing up—not just in our community, but in all communities, ‘You must respect elders.’ Of course, you must respect elders. But I say, elders must also respect young people. We must respect our own children and people of that generation. Many of us do. Denise and I have three daughters: going to be 26, going to be 24, and going to be 20. It’s not difficult hearing all that they have to say…it’s very difficult! It’s very challenging. Because they have opinions of their own, ideas of their own, and sometimes even value systems of their own. Something that we consider ‘ahh’, they consider ‘hmm’. You can’t force everything down on your children, it’s just not on. We had an in-depth family discussion the other day. The topic was ‘sexual preferences’, and we were given a lesson on the subject by our three girls – they were well informed, clear thinking and spoke with conviction. Did they manage to convince us and did we agree with all they were saying? No…. not all of it…but we gave them our undivided attention, listened patiently, participated actively, often disagreed emphatically….that’s the important thing – to give them an opportunity to have their say. We needn’t agree with all they say or do but we must give them the time, respect them and engage with them. My appeal to branches therefore is: those of you who have set up a youth committee and are encouraging our youth, you deserve the biggest awards. If you have an active youth committee, and you are backing them all the way, you’re doing the right thing —that is what is needed today more than anything else. If you do not have enough young people in your branch to put together a committee, but you are involving your youth in the events and affairs of the branch, you are also doing the right thing - wonderful! But I am sorry to say, we have already received some feedback that the youth who are being actively involved and encouraged in most branches, are not being accepted as easily as they should be in a handful of branches – and this attitude needs to change! Now to the other side: young people, learn to give respect. You can’t just put something up on social media talking about uncle or aunty or whoever, just as he or she can’t put it up about you. Young people, you must give respect to experience and to age. Even if you call us ‘old fuddy-duddies’ under your breath, no problem. But don’t do it on social media or on a public platform. You can come and tell us, ‘I want to have a chat with you,’ ….so, it works both ways! I am very, very keen that we involve the youth in our branch activities. The youth should help in branch activities; that means they help you with the legwork. The youth can also initiate their own activities, like in Coimbatore for their Olympic Games, which is almost entirely done by the youth. In Calcutta, a couple of football tournaments are organised by the youth. Ayanavaram, Agra, Bangalore, Cochin, Mumbai, Pune, and a few other branches, all have events that are youth initiatives.
The entire Governing Body feels strongly about this, but I would like to especially thank Dr Oscar Nigli. At the AGMs of his branches, he actually engages the youth right there at the meeting. I think it’s really important; it makes them feel involved and good. Coming back to India… How populated is India? Just to frighten you a little - the population of Australia, the UK, and Canada together is 125 million. The population of Uttar Pradesh alone is 200 million. Australia has 24 million and just Mumbai and its suburbs have 21 million people. We all know that the population of India is huge – but that’s how huge it is, in comparison to others! In such a large country, it is impossible to have one party, one opinion, one way of thinking. It is impossible not to have differences and problems: as your family grows, your problems grow. India is so huge that it would be unwise for anybody to say we are going to wipe out poverty in so many years—in fact anybody who says they are going to wipe out anything within an elected five year term or two, are building castles in the air—because it is really difficult and challenging and it will take a generation or two to get there. Any government needs to be supported, even if you didn’t vote for them. The Prime Minister is the Prime Minister for every Indian, irrespective of whether you voted or didn’t for his or her party; the Chief Minister is the Chief Minister of the state irrespective of whether you voted or didn’t vote for his or her party. The same goes for members of the Opposition – they are also elected. We therefore cannot be irresponsible in our observations, especially on social media, about them. Constructive criticism and your well thought out opinion about a policy of the government are always welcome, but you should not attack someone at a personal level. Even amongst ourselves, I am sorry to say many AngloIndians cannot differentiate between constructive criticism and irresponsible comments of a personal nature, particularly on social media. India’s biggest problem of course is poverty. Going by the World Bank’s definition, earning less than 1.90 US dollars per day per head, is being in the ‘extreme poverty’ bracket. 1.90 US dollars is about 150 Indian rupees per day. 33% of Indians don’t earn that, so, by this definition, one in three Indians lives below the poverty line – that’s 872 million people! That means 21% of the entire world’s poor live in India. That is the sad truth. Now let us reflect on our own community. Is there a section of our community that is struggling to make ends meet? Of course, there is! Unemployment, housing and healthcare are problems faced by people in our community too. The numbers however, I feel, are far less, in terms of the percentage living below the poverty line – those earning less than Rs 4,500 a month. Ours is a small community, so we know, at least we should know, who the people are – those who need our help. What of course has been a perpetual problem of the community is the section of people
Delegates with their branch placards who do not want to help themselves. That aside, we as individuals, and as an organisation, need to continue to do what we can for the financially disadvantaged, especially the elderly. If you know of any Anglo-Indian above the age of 60, with no one to turn to and no place to go, we must help them get into one of the many senior citizens’ homes we have across the country - in Delhi, Lucknow, Calcutta, Bangalore, Chennai, Ooty, Coonoor, Hyderabad…if you know anyone who is a senior citizen and does not have a home, the Association will do whatever it can to help the person find one. Very few communities can say that, because the numbers are too high, but our numbers are not, so we can do it. In fact, when it comes to education, we are very fortunate that there are so many Anglo-Indian schools that continue to educate and care for our children. Sadly, there are also many that are hiding under the umbrella of being an AngloIndian or a minority institution but are not doing much, and some that are not doing anything at all for our children. To those schools that are educating our children without charging a rupee, I say a very sincere ‘thank you’ for keeping their commitment and fulfilling their duty towards the community. To those who aren’t, I urge them to reflect on this and even examine their conscience on this matter. I was talking the other day to the press in Lucknow and I told them about this simple Muslim lady who was standing outside The Frank Anthony Public School, Calcutta, and waiting at the gate while the Calcutta Branch was distributing its annual scholarships. I saw her and asked the security guard who she was. He replied, ‘She wants to talk to you.’ I approached her. She spoke to me in Hindi: ‘I am a single mother with three children.’ I thought she had come for admission, but she continued: ‘No, no! My children are in … (she mentioned the name of a school). I have come here because I want to become an Anglo-Indian. My religion is my religion, but how can I become an Anglo-Indian?’ I was quite intrigued by this and I asked her why she wanted to become an AngloIndian. She promptly replied, ‘There are so many
benefits. People say everything is free here. The school doesn’t charge fees, and other help is given by this organisation.’ Sometimes, some of us forget how fortunate we are in many ways - worse, we often take things for granted….yes, we have our challenges, our hurdles, but we have our opportunities and blessings too….let’s not forget to count them! There are other serious problems faced by the poor in India – lack of good sanitation, scarcity of drinking water, proper healthcare facilities… these have been perennial problems, more serious in rural areas. Now to the economy - India was perceived to be moving in the right direction in terms of our economy, but in recent months, there has been a slowdown. I am sure you know the factors behind this slowdown – since it affects each and every one of us. The government is committed to making India a 5 trillion-dollar economy five years from now, but there are major problems now because Indians are buying less as the economy continues to lose steam. Why is the economy losing steam? Experts say the factors are: a drop in industrial production, weak demand in the auto and FMCG industries—very important sectors, but very weak demand over there due to consumers not coming out to buy these products. Slower growth has been projected for India. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) predicted that in 2019-20, the economy is going to slow down. A major problem is the slowdown in the manufacturing sector…and this is becoming more and more apparent. And just like the economic slowdown is going to affect you, the dangerous levels of air pollution are also going to affect you. The problem is that so many Indians, so many of us, refuse to realise or accept the fact that everything affects everybody, to a smaller or greater extent…but it affects us; and in the case of the environment, it affects us all, equally and extensively! So, if you are thinking the environmental crisis is not going to affect you, that political issues and economic issues are not going
(From left to right) Basil Keelor; Flt Lt (Retd) Alfred Delegates from Bihar Tyrone Cooke; Air Marshal (Retd) Denzil Keelor; Neville Lazarus to affect you—you are thinking wrong! Friends, we live in a very small world. Every problem is our problem. You cannot be unconcerned about it any longer, you cannot live in your, ‘it’s-not-going-toaffect-me’ cocoon. Everything is affecting us and will continue to do so, be it economics, political or the environment. Take pollution, for instance – it is having a catastrophic effect on every one of us. So, we need to be conscious of this and do whatever little we can, to show that we care, and to build awareness. So, why don’t we at our branches do something about the environment? Just once a year do something small – maybe an awareness campaign, a seminar – something to voice our concerns and spread the word. But now let’s get to the elephant in the room – even more important than the economy as far as I am concerned – preserving the secular fabric of this great nation. Even if India’s economy improves— and I am far from convinced that it is going to improve in the near future—we want to live in a country ‘where the mind is without fear’. Many of us believe that the mind is with fear now. On the one hand, the fear is there, it is real—we don’t want to be told what to eat, how to dress, where to go, how to pray. But on the other hand, the Prime Minister of India has on several occasions assured people, and I will quote the Prime Minister: ‘India will remain secular’; ‘Religion is a matter of personal choice. We will not allow anyone to spread hatred’; ‘Religious tolerance should be in the DNA of all Indians.’ Referring to attacks on some Delhi churches in the past, the former Finance Minister, the late Arun Jaitley said, ‘These incidents and people have no place in India.’ Friends, no government in India should take its people, including us, for granted. The present central government is now very strong in terms of numbers; they came to power with a big mandate. But the moment there is majoritarianism in India, the moment any government feels this is a small number of people, Anglo-Indians, Christians or any other minority, what difference can they make, it goes against the Constitution of the
country in letter and spirit. The population of Christians in India is under 3%—even the Sikhs are more in number—and 80% of the entire population of India is Hindu. From the day the Constitution was adopted, an India for every Indian was born, irrespective of their numbers. You cannot have an India in which the majority will decide and dominate, because then you are going against the soul of the Constitution of India; and most Hindus, the largest in number, will never allow that. They never have, they never will. So, we hope, we pray, that the Prime Minister and the Government of India, whoever it is at any given time, keeps this in mind: we want an India where the mind is without fear. This was a poem written by Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore. He wrote Where the Mind is Without Fear. Close to a century later, I have written an antonym to his great verse. Where the mind is with fear and the head hangs in shame, Where you are not free, Where caste and creed have broken us into fragments, and we are separated by religious walls, Where words fear to come out from the depth of truth, Where intolerance breaks the arms of love and compassion, Where the clear stream of reason has completely lost its way — Into that dreary desert sand of desolation, where the mind is led into the depths of despair, where thought and action that denigrate the spirit of India; Into that hell of hatred, my Father, let not my country burn. If you want my personal opinion, Indian democracy is too strong—we, the people of India are too strong—for any government to ignore us, the people of India, minority or otherwise. That’s for sure. And I am quite confident any government—including this—sees it: the only India that will survive, be secure and strong, and united, is an India dominated solely by the Constitution of India.
(From left to right) Frank Freese (National Vice President and Governing Body Member in charge of Maharashtra); Andrew Hoffland (Master of Ceremonies); Adrian Michael (President, Lucknow Branch); Craig Kerr (compere)
I am not a world expert like my wife and daughters are, so I will just take only a couple of minutes to share with you my ‘worldview’, and concerns. Just like the political climate in India and other climates in India, we should also be conscious about the world climate. Friends, what is happening in the world, is extreme polarization. You either like Trump or you hate him; you either have deep admiration for Macron or you don’t. There seems to be no middle path. In most countries, it’s like this. Polarization is taking place at a global level; and in many countries, extreme right-wing governments are being elected to office - often, it’s to vote out an incompetent or nonperforming government. So, voters may not agree with everything in the manifesto of the party they are voting for, but they end up voting out a sitting government that is a non-performing one. However, often, even in our country, governments perform and don’t get re-elected. That too is a political reality. But for you and me, the voter, what is important is to know what’s happening here in India and elsewhere around the world – may not be in too much detail but we need to keep ourselves informed. If you don’t know anything about North Korea and the United States of America’s recent blow-hot-blow-cold friendly sparring, if you don’t know that the political temperature keeps rising and falling only to rise again in the Middle East, if you don’t know what is happening in our very own Kashmir in some detail, or if you don’t know what Imran Khan is up to, you are not informed; and you cannot afford to be ‘un-informed’, because if you are ‘uninformed’, you will soon be ‘misinformed’ or ‘disinformed’, and there is nothing more dangerous than leading one’s life and basing one’s decisions on disinformation, that which is factually from the truth. So, I urge you, friends, each one of you, to be concerned and aware of what is happening around you, not just immediately around you, but around you, geo-politically. Encourage your
children to do the same. Keep your ear to the ground. If you don’t, you could be left behind, or worse, influenced by perceived facts that are untrue, and news that is nothing but fake. Create an atmosphere at home of sharing knowledge, sharing concerns, sharing news, sharing information. That has been the game-changer of this era – the ease and speed with which one can share and receive information. Because the world is so small today. Until about the mid- 1990s, only 6% of the world’s population used the internet. In 2005, it was about 16%; that’s just 14 years ago. Today, in 2019, 60% of the world uses the internet. So, think of how small the world is and how easy it is to share information. Therefore, please be informed before you are misinformed or disinformed. Sadly, there is a flipside too. A great concern of the world today is the over dependence and over use of the internet and technology and this affecting peoples’ mental health, especially the young. It is a grave concern; a great challenge; a global problem – mental health! Don’t ever think it will not touch you or your family. So-called ‘normal’ boys and girls or adults seem very normal…till they jump off a balcony. You think, ‘Oh, that can’t happen to me and my family.’ Please don’t say that, don’t wait for it to happen. Those of you who have young children - teenagers, young adults —be alert, be aware, be concerned. I know you could be thinking you are good parent—of course, you’re a good parent; so are most of us. But mental health is a serious issue, a real concern - you never know when it’s going to strike because it is a silent killer. It is actually killing people; the number of suicides is rising by the day, here in India and elsewhere. There are also people who aren’t going through with it, people who are living as if they are dead. Let us be concerned about them too and on high alert. Young people, you are the best people to help other young people who are facing such challenges. Be alert, be a counsellor, be a listener.
(From left to right) Glen Galstaun (Honorary Treasurer), Barry O’Brien (President-in-Chief), Rudolf Woodman (Honorary General Secretary) Listen to what they have to say. They say that the best counselling is to listen to somebody, give them time. Before you give them a lecture or advice, empathise with them. Befriend them. Talk to somebody else about them before you even go to an expert. It’s a great problem and we must be very conscious about it, and act on it. Now, let me switch to ‘the effective use of technology’ and social media. I have said it before—branches, you must use social media. Historians and sociologists are of the opinion that the primary reason for the most solid institution in the world (by ‘solid’ I mean that which is built on a rock, that which will not disappear), that is the Roman Catholic Church, lasting a good 2000 years, and counting, has been its stated theological rigidity, and continuity in this regard – some see it as . Many of us are Roman Catholics, but we know it is rigid, especially when it’s time to get married to somebody outside the community and all that. Initially, the Roman Catholic Church must have seen the internet and social media as a gift of the devil! Nobody used social media. Then came along crazy Pope Francis, who is over 80 years old and he is such a reasonable and clear-thinking man. He must have said to himself, ‘Hang on, who said it’s invented by the devil?’ And guess what he did? He went on to the internet. He is an Instagram user, he is a Facebook user, and he is one of the most popular persons on social media. So, if the Catholic Church can do it, why can’t we? Please use it and do not be destructive on it. I would like to share with you my views on leadership. All of you are leaders somewhere or the other - in your branches or in your homes or in your parishes, your places of work. Friends, leadership has evolved as the human mind and the human heart have evolved. Gone are the days when leaders only showed up on big occasions, gone are the days when leaders maintained a distance from their people, and were expected
to do so; gone are the days when leaders sat separately. Yesterday, I was so happy when all of us Governing Body members walked onto the terrace and we couldn’t find a seat. There was no ‘head table’ or ‘reserved table’ for the Governing Body. (with a wink and a smile) Please keep a table for us today. (laughter) The point I am trying to make is that leaders today must be visible, available, accessible, down to earth, real people who can connect – not only-seen-from-a-distance, heroworshipped, larger than life cult personalities. This is the age of the Justin Trudeau, Jacinda Ardern genre of leadership – be present, stand and deliver! The Prime Minister of New Zealand took a break, had a baby and went back to job of leading her country, while her partner stayed home to take care of the baby. She goes to the supermarket like every other citizen; buys her groceries, like every other person. The days of standing on ceremony and getting bogged down by protocol are over – barring of course, reasons of security. Respecting the leader is key, not fawning over him or her. Sycophancy is out; genuine respect is in! So, if you are the President of your branch or if you’re the President-in-Chief or a Governing Body Member, you don’t need bodyguards around you. Let the people come to you. Sit down and chat with them. Some will talk sense, some will confide in you, some will gossip, some will try and cause trouble, some will give you the wrong news, some will try to influence you for an award at the next AGM (laughter)…you will have to give them a patient hearing, you will have to listen…you will need to listen! I am going to share with you my quick acronym for leadership: ACT. I don’t mean act like we do on stage; I mean act. Don’t just talk. Act. Do. Deliver….or at least try and deliver! The A stands for being ‘ACCEPTABLE’. You cannot be a leader unless the people accept you. I’m sure many of you experienced ‘Christian
Brother education’ or ‘Jesuit priest education’ where corporal punishment was not just permitted, back then, it was the norm. I did! When we got caned by Father Bouché in St Xavier’s, on Monday mornings, for getting a ‘C grade’ for bad behaviour or for doing badly in a test, not only did we feel the physical pain but we would be hurting big time emotionally too. Angry and upset with him. This would happen in the morning. Then at 2 o’clock in the afternoon, after lunch, he used to walk around when we used to have a ‘study period’. And, as a ‘C grader’, you would be thinking, ‘Oh, I hate this man!’ And then he would come and give you a warm cuddle, and you would smell his cigar, fell his warmth, experience his love…and he would give you a tiny little toffee… and that was it. Back to loving him again. We accepted him and, therefore, we even accepted his cane. You don’t have to accept the leader’s cane these days, but if you accept the leader you will accept being corrected – even admonished! So, leaders, be accepted and you are through. But to be acceptable, you have to be AVAILABLE. Rudy Woodman keeps telling me, ‘Barry, it’s very good that you are visible.’ If you are not visible, you are not available. You need to be ‘visibleavailable’. Having said that, just because the President-in-Chief is available or the Governing Body members are available, please remember that we are not available at two in the morning. (laughter) So please don’t send us messages saying, ‘I can’t find my bag – the one that the Lucknow branch gave me the day I arrived.’ Yesterday we were visiting the delegates at the two schools where they have been put up - I must say, the arrangements at St Teresa’s and DPS, Shaheed Path, are excellent and they deserve a loud round of applause – well, we were there greeting all our members, and I was dying for a cup of tea or coffee. So, I asked a couple of our outstation delegates, ‘Can you organise some tea or coffee for us?’ They said, ‘No; can you?’ (Laughter.) Yes, sometimes you will be expected, as the leader, to even organise the tea and coffee too – please don’t do that: expect the leaders to do everything for you – but yes, expect them to be available and visible, in good times and in bad, but don’t take them for
granted or take advantage of them. The next A is also very important – as a leader, you have to be ACCOUNTABLE. If you are an MLA or a Governing Body Member, or a branch President or a Secretary or Treasurer, Committee Member, or the President-in-Chief, or a manager or a CEO… you must be accountable. That means you have to, at the end of the year, present a report card of what you have done and how you have performed. You cannot just occupy the seat and carry on year after year as if it is your right to do so. Then we get to ‘C’ - you must be COMMITTED. It is because you are committed that you are here today. There has to be a deep commitment. And if you can’t give the Association time—and you want to give another organisation or cause time —do so, but with a great sense of commitment. Unfortunately, some people spread themselves too thin. They are on several committees, hold several posts, and end up going from one meeting to another, not being able to do justice to any of the posts they hold. They would be far more effective if they limit the number of responsibilities they accept and not spread themselves thin. I am happy to tell you that except for the huge responsibility of the post I hold here, I have only one more responsibility, beyond my family and professional commitments, and that is as the Chairman of The East India Charitable Trust – the Trust is based in Calcutta; it runs two old folk’s homes, provides financial assistance to about a hundred deserving families every month, besides educational scholarships, rations and financial assistance for medical needs. So, I request all of you to make your choice. If you are going to be the President or take responsibility as a committee member, or Governing Body Member, you have to give it time and you have to be committed. Obviously, you will go through phases where you will not be able to give it much time due to other commitments, but those should just be phases. C is also for staying CONNECTED - not only with the people! If you do not have a single contact
Delegates from Uttar Pradesh
Delegates at the Inauguration and National Awards Ceremony
Youth Delegates attended the Business Meeting in large numbers
whom you can approach in your circle for a sponsorship or you are not networked enough or confident enough, and if others on your committee are in the same boat as you, how are you going to function? You need to network. At the Awards Ceremony yesterday, we thanked all those wonderful people—most of them were not Anglo-Indians, but they came forward to help us. That’s because we have leaders like Adrian Michael and Charmaine Fanthome Beecham - they have networked, they are connected. So, connect with journalists, connect with decisions makers from the industry, with businesspeople, connect with the administration. Invite the local Head of the police or the local MLA or a well-known citizen as a chief guest – your city needs to know what is happening and what you are doing. Others beyond your city also need to know. You need to network, you need to connect, especially—don’t misunderstand me—with influential people. That’s the best way to help those in need, that’s the best way to try and find solutions. That, some of us may say, ‘sadly’, is the most effective way to reach out to people in need.
your members and prospective members? I’m not talking about those who have worked hard through their lives and have retired. They are the best off, actually. They have the funds and the fun and the time. In fact, that’s the best time to do social work, honestly. How could I speak to you as the President-in-Chief if I didn’t have a regular and sufficient source of income? There has to be a known source of income. I am not saying go home and resign, but I am saying you should think about this: if, due to circumstances, you are not in a position to take care of yourself and your family financially, it’s very difficult to make a greater commitment - because this involves money. Voluntary service of doing some legwork, putting up decorations, helping out at an event, contributing your skills and ideas, that’s fine; but not with matters that involve finances, because, sadly perhaps, perception is often more believed than the truth. So, when you are leading your branch or hold an important portfolio, how people look at you—the perception they have of you—is almost as important as the truth. I believe every human being should stop to assess themselves, and every organisation should do the same: press the pause button and say, ‘Where am I? Where am I going?’ As head of the Association, I always press the pause button and ask, ‘Where are we headed?’ As an individual, you need to introspect and ask yourself whether as a person, as a spouse, a parent, as a professional, whether what you are doing is right or do you need to course-correct, or improve on something. Stop. Introspect. I try and do it every week - just for a couple of minutes, about myself over the last three years, and then about the Association.
The ‘T’ in ACT is for TRUTHFULNESS. If you are corrupt, the Association will be branded corrupt. If you are collecting money, and your hands aren’t clean, the Association’s hands will be judged to be unclean. So, friends, I appeal to you, if you require funds because you have no known source of income or are yourself in need of regular and substantial help to get by, you should not offer to serve on your branch committee. Please don’t misunderstand the point I am making. It is not a conceited observation clouded in arrogance – I am not saying you have to be wealthy and rich to be a committee member, certainly not. What I am saying is that I need to have some semblance of financial stability in my life and not be in desperate need myself if I am going to raise or manage funds to help others.
Friends, the last two years and ten months have been the most challenging, the most stressful, and yet, the most beautiful years of my life - because I enjoy every moment of it! Well, almost every moment! (Laughter) You should enjoy what you do – at least of what you do. If you are the president or the secretary and you’re always saying, ‘I’ve had enough of this,’ move on! No problem. Or take a break and come back a few years later. Here I would like to thank all of you who empathise with me and send me messages. Messages that keep me going; beautiful messages; meaningful messages that motivate me. Messages, not of praise, but of your sincere and deep sense of gratitude for the time that my family and I give the Association, the sacrifices we make, and the effort that we are putting in. I keep every one of them. Yes, friends, even leaders need to be motivated, even leaders need to be inspired. So, don’t take your leaders for granted. Empathise with them; motivate them; thank them. So, when the time is right, you can give them your feedback if you feel they are going wrong, even advise them.
If you are, let’s say in your thirties or forties or early fifties, and you don’t have any known source of income, and people don’t actually know what you do to earn a living—how are you going to lead and win the acceptance and respect of
The problem with people in the world, not just in India today, is that there seems to be a quota system everywhere – even for praise! (Laughter) Some people think: ‘I’ve got two for the day: one for this one in the morning, and one for someone else
About 160 of the 471 delegates who attended the AGM were below the age of 35
in the evening. That’s it. No more praising people. Quota done for the day.’ But when it comes to criticism, there’s apparently no quota. We throw it around like it’s going out of style - freely and with gay abandon. I urge you to stop to say ‘thank you’ or ‘well done’ to people who deserve it… and this thing (holds up mobile phone) is such a horrible thing sometimes…but such a beautiful thing too. Many people express themselves better through texts than while speaking. So, don’t hesitate to send a message of encouragement or gratitude to someone who has touched your life in some way or who is putting in a special effort – that someone could even be a leader! That has been my reward, my feel-good moment: people sending me messages or writing to me. Also, then, if you feel like I have done something that you do not agree with and you write to me saying, ‘I don’t think, Barry, you have done the right thing,’ then I have to be open minded. I request all of you, tell your Governing Body Members, your branch presidents, others on the committee, your friends, your boss, your family – say ‘thank you’, ‘sorry’ or ‘well done’. Say it, say it today. Don’t wait for tomorrow. Tomorrow may never come! ‘ So, on to my self-assessment. I do believe that I have matured in the last two years and ten months. I have also learnt to deal with stress better - I now choose what I want to stress about. I don’t stress any longer about what I think are non-stressful events or topics or opinions...and I am grateful to this great Association and all of you for giving me the opportunity to evolve and mature as a person. I have no hesitation in saying that being the President-in-Chief of The All-India Anglo-Indian Association has made me a better person, because I honestly feel that today I am less judgmental of people. About myself as well! About a decade ago, when I was the MLA in West Bengal, I felt
extremely stressed, even depressed, if I could not help someone – even if it was reasons way beyond my control. I was too anxious and touchy about criticism and I felt genuinely offended even when it came from armchair critics whose lifelong hobby was to spew negativity. Nowadays, I only take serious note of suggestions and criticism from those whom I believe are intelligent, rational and ‘without an agenda’. The final point in my self-assessment report card is this – yes, I sometimes make an incorrect assessment and end up taking an incorrect decision, I often take quick decisions – but, if later I feel I was wrong, I take an even quicker decision of correcting or altering my decision. Coursecorrection is key for a leader. It doesn’t weaken your leadership; it strengthens it. Now to the minuses that have happened to me over the past two years and ten months. Well, the biggest minus has been the loss of ‘family time’. The other way of looking at it is that it hasn’t been affected - because my family is with me - Denise and the girls support and help me every step of the way. To my colleagues in my company I owe a big ‘thank you’ - I am really grateful to them. They hardly see me and keep our work going. The people I write books for, my publishers…they have been so understanding, while I have been missing deadline after deadline. I write schoolbooks for a living; I conduct quizzes and motivational sessions. All of it has been affected these last couple of years. I am not complaining to you – just stating a fact. Hopefully, as I manage my time better and things will settle down, and you won’t hear me saying this again. Don’t worry about it - the doctor hasn’t told me anything yet and I am feeling fine—but a big minus for me since December 2016 has been that I have not been able to take as much care of
my health as I should have. Time has been the problem yet again. But I need to make the time and not make this President-in-Chief responsibility an excuse for my carelessness with regard to my health. All of you, especially young people, should do the same. Take good care of yourselves. Make it a top priority on your ‘to do’ list. Let’s now get to the most important part of my address - an assessment of the community. Let us introspect and look at ourselves as a community. Let’s draw up the Balance Sheet of our community as we perceive it. Here’s my assessment of it PLUS and our MINUS, and each of the letters refers to an inherent quality of the Anglo-Indian community, according to me, and something that is an acquired quality. P stands for the inherent quality of PASSION. Rarely will you see an Anglo-Indian doing something without passion. Most Anglo-Indians work with passion, help with passion, sing and dance with passion, play with passion, even fly kites with passion…and so many of you are serving the Association with passion. It is something inherent; it is not something you can grow to acquire. We were born a passionate community and we continue to be one. We even fight with each other with a lot of passion. (Laughter) The acquired P is PERFORMANCE. Many AngloIndians have glowing CVs…but some don’t. They may not be suitably qualified for a particular position they are sure their performance will see them through. I’ve heard many Anglo-Indians say, ‘Uncle or Sir, just get me in. After that, I’ll manage.’ Because they know they can deliver. I’m sure many of you have been recognised or given greater responsibilities than a colleague who is more qualified than you, on sheer performance. When I joined a prominent school in Calcutta as a young teacher, I was surrounded by PhDs and MPhils – some had been teaching even before I
Delegates at the Business Meeting - there were as many ladies as there were gentlemen
was born. I realised I had to prove myself and win my spurs by my performance as a teacher. So, it was the last period on a Friday afternoon, and I was on my way to the classroom. There was a huge noise emanating from it – the last classroom in the corner. As I walked down the corridor, I kept wondering what I was going to do to control and then teach – they were already on ‘weekend overdrive’. It was then that the Anglo-Indian in me, the performer in me (in this case, quite literally!) surfaced. I took my shoes off outside the classroom and ran in, in my socks, jumped on to my chair, and yelled out, in Bengali: “Shaap, shaap! There is a snake! Close the windows and the doors… Quick, quick!” Some students panicked, some started jumping onto their benches. Then I froze. All of them froze. They stared at me - their mouths wide open. I then asked them in a stage whisper, ‘Did you feel frightened?’ And some of them said, ‘Yes.’ And I said, ‘Now if you open Radiant Reader to chapter 9, we are going to find out how D H Lawrence felt when he came face to face with a snake.’ They were quite attentive and very interested in Lawrence’s poem from then on. (Laughter) Only a crazy AngloIndian teacher would do something like that. Performance matters. I mean performance as a teacher, as an officer, as a railway employee. We don’t count hours. We don’t look at the watch, we don’t mind working longer hours, giving it our best shot. We now come to L. L is for our inherent quality of LOYALTY—you can’t take it away FROM US! I don’t think any community can match us on this score. Loyalty to the organisations we work for, loyalty to our friends, and of course, like everyone else, extreme loyalty to our nation…and loyalty starts with loyalty to your family. No community is more loyal to the family and sacrifices more than the Anglo-Indian, especially the Anglo-Indian woman. How many of you have sacrificed your own lives looking after a sick uncle or a brother; or looking after somebody who is the so-called black sheep of your family— scolding them, but looking
after them too. The second is an acquired ‘L’ and the greatest strength of this Anglo-Indian community: the gift of LANGUAGE – or at least it should be! Many Anglo-Indians who may not even have studied beyond middle school write so well. No grammatical errors, every comma in place, no spelling mistakes – since it is our mother-tongue. Unfortunately, some of us have not mastered our own language while others have. It’s true that very few Anglo-Indians say ‘dis, dem, doze’ nowadays, except in caricature videos. Those days are gone. But, on the other hand, that we are not improving the level of our English. I’m sure Professor Henry Higgins would have had a lot to say about it! Let’s read more, let’s make our children read more. Let’s cling to our language, respect it and be enriched by it. We have to realise that the better we are at reading, writing and speaking the English language, the more advantageous a position we will see ourselves in – especially in modern India. Like me, most right-thinking people in India know the worth and value of it in India. Even Prabir, who drives my car and doesn’t speak English, knows it and is doing all that he can to ensure that his daughter speaks English fluently. Yes, the good news is that there is absolutely no need to worry about anyone’s agenda of a ‘one language policy or two language policy’ in India today. English, the language in which the Constitution is written in, the language of the Supreme Court and many High Courts, is here to stay and grow in popularity and so are the number of people speaking it. It is the language that connects people in India, many of whom do not speak any other language but their mother-tongue. It is the language that puts you at an advantage at most job interviews; it is the language that helps Indians build confidence and create more opportunities for themselves. ‘Conversational or spoken English classes’ is an industry in itself. Go to Punjab and you will see what I mean. In India last year, English Language Teaching (ELT) was an industry of 3 billion US dollars; and the number of English medium schools over the last 15 years have increased by 300%— I’m not referring to Anglo-Indian schools - English medium schools. There is a huge demand for teachers. Mr Frank Freese and others keep telling our youth to ‘go back’ to teaching, because the community has far fewer teachers today. They should… and if you can’t become a teacher in a school because you do not have the qualifications, put a board up there that says ‘Aunty Diana’s Spoken English Classes’. Your classes will be in great demand. Being fluent in our mother-tongue is a huge, huge opportunity for every Anglo-Indian to take advantage of to the full. In 2017, 12.5% of Indians read English papers or could read English. Studies say, that is expected to quadruple in the next decade! Keep that in mind and go for it!
Now on to the ‘second language’. I am so happy to tell you that those days of us speaking ‘kitchen’ Hindi or no Tamil have gone. Many of us speak, quite fluently, another language. How many of you are fluent in ‘another’ Indian language too? (Many raise their hands.) Excellent! Hasn’t it helped you in your life? Because you have a name like Philip Tocher and you are speaking Telugu fluently, you are Bernard Rodrigues and you speak Hindi fluently, your name is Oscar Nigli and Tamil rolls of your tongue with ease. At the press conference the other day, Glen Galstaun addressed the media in Hindi and left them nodding their heads in approval, some were actually shaking their heads in disbelief when they got to know that Glen even knows how to type in Hindi. I am proud to tell you that I speak Bengali fluently and Hindi fairly well. What I am saying to you is the second language - the regional language - and Hindi are really important. For an Indian to succeed today, if you are trilingual, you are at an advantage. Try and encourage your children to be trilingual – even if they aren’t very good at reading or writing the third language, they should speak it fairly well. Those days of not knowing an Indian language are gone; in fact, many of our children are doing very well in Hindi and other languages. The U in PLUS is for the inborn quality most of us have – of being UNRELENTING. My favourite newspaper The Telegraph advertises itself as ‘Unputdownable’. A true Anglo-Indian is ‘unputdownable’, unrelenting. You saw it yesterday: Anglo-Indians, the Keelors, Cook, the Masons, Blossom Fernandez, and many others— each of them unputdownable! You just can’t put us down, be it the workplace or at a social gathering, because we will make our presence felt; we are unrelenting. Keep that up. But don’t let it surface as aggression; you can be unrelenting and unputdownable without being aggressive and offensive. The women of our community have always been ‘unrelenting’. I paid a rich tribute to the women
We sincerely thank our friends and well wishers for standing by us and making the AGM a grand success
Joe and Charmine Bailey, along with their charming daughter Amaris, were given a warm welcome by the President-in-Chief. Mr Bailey is the Convenor of the next World Anglo-Indian Reunion to be held in Canberra, Australia, in 2022 of our community last year - I mentioned that they should receive the Bharat Ratna. Being born a woman in India in many families is still a challenge, if not a curse, but not in an AngloIndian family. Because even on ‘those four days’, you can go into the kitchen, you can sleep anywhere. In fact, there’s a term which we love using: ‘Who wears the pants?’ I think for the Anglo-Indian community it should be reversed; if you find a man who is calling the shots, you should say ‘he’s wearing the frock’ or ‘he’s wearing the skirt’. Because in our families, in many cases, the woman is the central strength and the pivot of the family. We salute you, ladies. I am happy to tell you that The All-India Anglo-Indian Association now has thirteen branch presidents who are women! (Loud applause) It’s a very good sign. The acquired ‘U’ is the quality of being UNAFRAID. I am putting it in the ‘acquired’ category because it is something that each individual develops as he or she moves on in life. Courage is a common character trait amongst Anglo-Indians. Going out of your way and taking a calculated risk to help someone, that sort of courage, or standing up for what is right. Let’s move quickly on to ‘S’. It’s a very important trait – we are SUPPLE. This means we can adapt to situations. As soon as Michael Peters and Shannon Vassou of Trichy got to know that in under six weeks we had make all the arrangements and change our plans for this AGM, they respond with: ‘Don’t worry, Barry, we will sleep on the floor.’ Our Governing Body Member and MLA in Karnataka, Vinisha Nero, told me, ‘Barry, if there is no hotel, I would love to stay with all our delegates in the schools.’ That’s the trait I am talking about – being adaptable, being flexible. On my birthday some years ago, I was travelling to Surat via Mumbai on work. My flight landed in Mumbai late; I rushed to the Mumbai railway station but missed my train. I bought an ordinary ticket and jumped on to the next train without a reserved berth…and guess who the TT was? A blue-eyed Anglo-Indian! He didn’t know who I was, but he said, ‘I am so sorry, sir, I can’t find a single berth for you.’ So,
I said, ‘No problem.’ Those days there was a tiny little seat near the toilet for the TT. The young fellow offered me his TT seat, saying: ‘You must have it – please sit here, Sir.’ I said, ‘No way, it’s for you…relax, I’ll manage’. I sat up all night on the floor on newspaper pages just outside the toilet. We finally took it in turns to sit on his tiny seat and chatted through the night and became good friends. Two Anglo-Indians adjusting! I arrived the next morning in Surat and conducted an energy-sapping quiz contest a couple of hours later. That too came from the Anglo-Indian in me. I’m sure you have adjusted and adapted to tougher situations in your life too. That’s the Anglo-Indian in you. The other ‘S’ is for being STREET-SMART. Some people look at this derogatorily; I don’t. Being street-smart is being able to think on your feet. Yesterday, you heard about Gloria Berry and what she did on the aircraft – used her common sense and courage to save peoples’ lives. She was thinking on her feet – a common Anglo-Indian trait! Now to ‘MINUS’ – our minuses! M for MYOPIA. Too many of us are short-sighted - not thinking ahead, not planning ahead. Take health insurance for instance – many Anglo-Indians are not conscientious about it. Even our Association and our branches in some ways - just going from event to event to event. What about thinking about some fundraising – funds that will help your branch run better or go in for a long-term project or doing something new? Look ahead. Let’s not be myopic, as individuals, as leaders or as an Association. I is for INSECURE. I still feel that some AngloIndians – a small number - are little insecure – still! A few of us still say, ‘I didn’t get the job because my name is this.’ If that has indeed happened, it’s the exception, not the rule. Don’t feel so insecure. I think it’s fear. Friends, all human beings, in fact all living creatures, have experienced fear, and experience some sort of fear, often or every now and then. That’s the law of nature. It is normal to ‘fear’ and feel insecure
at times. Accept the fact, take it in your stride and move on. Don’t get bogged down by it. Don’t succumb to it. Let’s get to N – NEGATIVITY! This is a huge problem for many of us. There is nothing wrong with having a difference of opinion with others, but don’t find fault in everything they do. If you can’t help a person, an organisation or a leader overcome challenges and remove barriers, at least don’t be negative and become an obstacle yourself. We have in our community a few people whom I refer to as The Patron Saints of Negativity – they’ve written the book on it! Some of them are armchair critics who have done close to nothing – for others and even themselves – and some are more vicious for whom spitting venom and abuse has become second nature. Don’t oppose for the sake of opposing; don’t let personal malice and animosity blur your thinking and sensibility. That’s negativity! But the good news is that the numbers are on the decline and people with a more positive outlook are becoming more visible and more vocal by the day, and that’s a very positive sign. Another minus - U for UNGRATEFUL. Sir Henry Gidney, our leader almost a hundred years ago, said, ‘I shall spend my life working for an ungenerous, ungrateful community.’ I don’t agree with him on ‘ungenerous’—I think we are a very generous community—but ungrateful we definitely are! Many of you have experienced this: they will take the help, they will take the scholarships, and then it’s ‘bye-bye’…some will even look the other way when they see you, or worse, even ‘badmouth’ you later on. You don’t want ‘thank you’ cards or someone to gush over you, but a little text message would be nice; and if they can’t do that, they should at the very least, not run you down! That is just so sad. While on this subject, I would like to urge our youth, please ‘give back’ to the community after you settle down in life and are in a position to help someone. Please give back to society. I know
many people, orphans who studied in one of our boarding schools and are now doing well in life, they send back money to their alma mater for years—that’s what I mean by ‘giving back’! So please, don’t just be grateful with words, be generous, and express your gratitude in deeds too. Finally, the S in MINUS is for SMALLMINDEDNESS – pettiness. It’s different from negativity and ungratefulness. Small-mindedness is being worried about things that don’t matter so much. A friend of mine, wiser than me, once told me, ‘Choose your battles. Don’t let everything upset you. Wait for the bigger issues.’ Good advice, I think! Yes, it pays to be a little more open-minded, a little more patient, a little more diplomatic, some would say, clever —but please don’t be small minded! Sadly, some of us are too petty, too narrow in the way we look at life. Don’t let small, petty things upset you. I’m going to leave you with two final messages: one for those who are not in their youth, and one for our youth. First, to those of us who have left our youth behind us. I’m going to share a few verses of a beautiful poem with you titled ‘The Touch of the Master’s Hand’ by Myra Welch, where an auctioneer is auctioning this old violin: ‘Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer Thought it scarcely worth his while To waste much time on the old violin, But held it up with a smile. ‘What am I bidden, good folks,’ he cried, ‘Who'll start the bidding for me?’ ‘A dollar, a dollar. Then two! Only two? Two dollars, and who'll make it three?’ ‘Three dollars, once; three dollars, twice; Going for three…’ But no, From the room, far back, a grey-haired man Came forward and picked up the bow; Then wiping the dust from the old violin, And tightening the loosened strings, He played a melody pure and sweet, As a carolling angel sings.
Denzil Lazarus of Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh (seated in the middle) and Desmond Lima of Jharsuguda, Odisha (right) call themselves ‘old AGM friends’ – for years, they met once a year at the AGM and recharged their ‘friendship batteries’. They met at Lucknow after a gap of many years and renewed their vow of friendship. Neville (left), Denzil and Judy Lazarus’s son, witnessed this incredible bond first hand.
The Rajahmundry branch was back with a bang! Revived after nine years, delegates and their families participated actively at the AGM and let their hair down at the get-togethers. They are seen here with the Presidentin-Chief and our First Lady, and some delegates of the Visakhapatnam branch. Everyone looks so relaxed and happy! The music ceased, and the auctioneer, With a voice that was quiet and low, Said: ‘What am I bid for the old violin?’ And he held it up with the bow. ‘A thousand dollars, and who'll make it two? Two thousand! And who'll make it three? Three thousand, once; three thousand, twice, And going and gone,’ said he. The people cheered, but some of them cried, ‘We do not quite understand. What changed its worth?’ Swift came the reply: ‘The touch of the Master's hand.’ Friends, picture the Association as the violin: if you are inactive, the branch is inactive; if you are dishonest, then the branch is dishonest. The Association does not exist—it’s a non-entity— without you! You make the Association. You are the Association. The violin is in your hands; you have to give it its value. Most of us enjoy praising our Association because we believe this violin is worth something, because people like you and me and all of us are playing a beautiful song, a beautiful tune. Don’t let it fall out of sync and go out of tune; don’t let it lie and get dusty in the corner. Use the violin; the touch of the master’s hand is His hand—His hand is on us. But it is you who have to make it happen with His Bl essings. The old man had to pick it up and play it himself. God is not going to play it for you. God’s hand is on us, but it’s up to us to play that violin and play it in tune and keep the strings well-tuned. Finally, my message for our youth. Young people, you have changed the course of history of this community and this Association, believe me. You are changing it because of your contribution to the community, especially now. Most of you are serious about your education, you are getting good jobs, and now you are getting involved in the Association. I can tell you, that’s the game changer. The game changer is the involvement of our youth. I shall again turn to another truly
meaningful piece of writing. One of my favourite poems of all time - If by Rudyard Kipling. I will rephrase it just a bit: Young people, young Anglo-Indians…. If you can keep your head when all about you Are losing theirs and blaming it on you, If you can trust yourself when people doubt you, But make allowance for their doubting too; If you can wait and not be tired by waiting, Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies, Or being hated, don’t give way to hating, And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise: If you can dream—and not make dreams your master; If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim; If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster And treat those two impostors just the same; If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools, Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken, And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools: If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue, Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch, If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you, If all men count with you, but none too much; If you can fill the unforgiving minute With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run, Yours is the Earth, young friends, and everything that’s in it, And—which is more—you’ll be wonderful AngloIndian sons and daughters….serving yourselves, your families, your community and this great nation. Thank you very much for listening so patiently. God bless you; God bless our wonderful community.
The All-India Anglo-Indian Association Annual General Meeting, 05-07 October 2019,Lucknow
Vote of Thanks to the President-in-Chief’s Address by Dr Cheryl-Ann Shivan, the President of the Villupuram-Pondicherry branch, and Lester Fernandez, Secretary of the Tangasseri branch Dr Cheryl-Ann Shivan Villupuram-Pondicherry
espected Presidentin-Chief, members of the Governing Body, MLAs, former MLAs, and delegates from all over India, a very good afternoon to all of you. I have been given the honour to react and respond to the President-inChief’s speech. The best part of it was, and always is, long; but it is very often punctuated with a lot of humour, so we do not find it tedious. Our President-in-Chief started by honouring India, a glorious nation with a huge youth population, and emphasising the need for the older a n d
younger generations to be mutually respectful. He cautioned against using social media to grind personal axes or to pass unkind remarks, and then went on to speak about us being a very fortunate community in many respects, especially when it comes to access to education. Anglo-Indians are an integral part of India: what happens here affects each one of us. While there is now a fear in minority minds, he was very positive, saying that our democracy is too strong to be trampled on and dismissed. Mental health was the next focus, and the youth were identified as the best people to contribute. Branches were advised to use social media. The President-in-Chief then went on to speak about leadership and his mantra of ACT: A for Acceptability—that comes along with being available and visible— and Accountability; C for Commitment and Connection; and T stands for Truthfulness. The need for leaders to introspect was also discussed; he spoke about himself, saying that the last few years had been challenging and stressful, but they had been beautiful, and he had enjoyed every moment. He was critical of his tendency to make
quick and often wrong decisions, but equally happy that his ego does not come in the way of coursecorrecting. He also stressed the need for leaders to be motivated, and for their committee members to inspire and help them. Additionally, leaders were also asked to be very conscious of their health and wellbeing. He next went on to analyse the community and discuss some of the pluses and minuses of the community, which has inherent and acquired qualities. The pluses of the community are: P for Passion and Performance; L for Loyalty and Language—the unique gift of the Anglo-Indian community is the language which we acquire naturally, and others must learn; U for being Unrelenting, Unafraid and Unputdownable; and S for Supple (meaning adaptable) and Streetsmart, meaning thinking on one’s feet. The minuses—which we were advised on how to overcome— are: M for Myopic, I for Insecure, N for Negativity, U for Ungrateful, when he also stressed on the vital importance of people ‘giving back’; and S for Small-mindedness, where we waste time worrying about things that do not matter. The Association, the Presidentin-Chief concluded, only exists because of its members; therefore, only if we work in sync with one another can we do well and thrive.
We were also reminded not to be judgmental. Finally, a word of appreciation was extended to the youth, who are changing the course of the history of the community. The poem ‘If’ by Rudyard Kipling made a befitting conclusion to the President-in-Chief’s address. On a personal note, Mr Barry O’Brien was to me, until a few years ago, only a name that I might have chanced upon in The Review, or in connection with the names of the late Mr Neil O’Brien or the quizmaster Mr Derek O’Brien. But then, like a bolt from the blue, I get a call from Mr Barry O’Brien in connection with reviving the Villupuram branch and, for the first time, recognising the Anglo-Indians in Pondicherry and renaming the branch the Villupuram-Pondicherry branch. We, as a branch will ever be grateful to you, Sir, and to Dr Oscar Nigli for making this happen. In conclusion, I would like to quote Maya Angelou: ‘Let our united mission be not simply to survive but to thrive, and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humour and some style.’ I can confidently say that this truly embodies what we as a community, and what our President-in-Chief, the Governing Body Members and all delegates here are and what we will continue to be. Thank you.
Lester Fernandez Tangasseri
ood afternoon to the President-in-Chief, Governing Body Members, dignitaries and dear friends. Cheryl has covered what Mr O’Brien had spoken to you about in detail, so I shall not go into that. Instead, I will talk to you about my experience with Barry O’Brien, the person. This is my second AGM; my first AGM was in 2005—it has been a long gap of fourteen years, and I am here at this AGM because of him.
The stage and hall looked classy and impressive; the young team handling the audio, video and lights did an excellent job. Well done Desmond Michael, Wayne Godin, Shery Oommeen and Sesha Kumar Nanda!
I am a very involved Rotarian. In 2005, I was doing much for the community, but after that I slowly moved on to the Rotary movement, achieved, grew in the movement, and made many friends. Recently, I was appointed Secretary of the District Conference, which is the biggest programme of the Rotary year with around 2000 delegates. I was asked to get a good speaker to speak at the Conference. I immediately thought of our Presidentin-Chief since he had recently visited our branch and we had a good interaction with him. The question was: how could I get him down? To get such a busy person to come from Calcutta just to speak for half-an-hour was a challenge. I kept
sending messages to him, saying it’s a huge event and I am the Secretary so please come, and it’s being held in God’s Own Country, Kerala, and we will take care of everything. After a few weeks, he replied saying, ‘I am coming with my wife, Denise.’ On the day of the event, we were all anxiously waiting for Barry’s speech, which would be just after the interval for tea. Normally, everyone takes time to assemble after the tea break, so the speaker who is up next usually has only half the audience or even quarter of the audience. When Barry started, there was actually twenty five percent of the audience present; but Barry, as you all know, draws people to him, both on and off stage. He draws people with his expressions, and the power with which he speaks. People slowly started coming in, and there was soon a house full. Around 2000 delegates sat there, listening to Barry. And believe me, it was an amazing address! I am a proud Anglo-Indian, but that day I felt even more proud to be one. An Anglo-Indian had come all the way and had won the respect and admiration of my fellow Rotarians. Our leader had done me proud. The icing on the cake was that Barry O’Brien, the professional motivational speaker who normally charges a lot of money to speak at such occasions, announced it in public that it was because of Lester Fernandez and the Rotary movement—because Rotary does a lot of good work for society—he had made it a point to come all the way. And friends, he did not charge us his fat fee – he did it free of charge! Barry O’Brien, as our leader, has made Anglo-Indians very proud, and of course, as an orator, he can hold and impress any audience. Another quality is that he knows everybody; after so many years of being with the community, he can point out to anybody in the audience by name and call them up. That is another very good quality of our leader who is much loved and respected. Thank you, President-in-Chief, Sir, and thank you friends for giving me a patient hearing.
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
AWARDS CEREMONY The All-India Anglo-Indian Association honoured several individuals and branches at the Awards Ceremony of the National Annual General Meeting held in Lucknow. Here are some of the highlights of the evening.
Three Great Officers Of The Indian Air Force Were Honoured For Their Outstanding Contribution To The Nation
he President-in-Chief, Mr Barry O’Brien, on behalf of the Association, proudly acknowledged the outstanding contribution of three great Anglo-Indian officers, all Martinians—Late Wing Cdr Trevor Keelor, Flt Lt (Retd) Alfred Tyrone Cooke and Air Marshal (Retd) Denzil Keelor—for their gallant service while
defending our nation during the 1965 Indo-Pak war. Mr Basil Keelor, son of the late Wing Cdr Trevor Keelor, received the commemorative plaque on behalf of his father. Flt Lt (Retd) Alfred Tyrone Cooke and Air Marshal (Retd) Denzil Keelor received their commemorative plaques from the President-in-Chief during the
ceremony to a standing ovation from the audience that was present, representing 49 branches from across the country. Mr Alfred Cooke had flown in all the way from Australia to attend the ceremony. The Lucknow branch produced three excellent films depicting the incredible success stories of these great fighter pilots.
The Dorothy Crosthwaite Homes, Lucknow, Was Inducted Into The Anglo-Indian Hall Of Fame
n behalf of the Association, the First Lady, Mrs Denise O’Brien, inducted the Dorothy Crosthwaite Homes, Lucknow, into ‘The Anglo-Indian Hall of Fame’ for providing a safe and happy home for so many of our senior citizens since 1939. At the conclusion of
a meaningful audio-visual presentation, Mrs Charmaine Fanthome Beecham, Trustee, along with the residents of the Home, accepted the citation scroll, as Cliff Richard sang Young Ones and the 500-hundred strong audience clapped and cheered.
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
Internationally Acclaimed Journalist, Neville Lazarus, The Only Anglo-Indian To Win A Bafta And An Emmy, Is Honoured By The Community
n behalf of the Association, Mrs Denise O’Brien, presented ‘The Reach for the Stars Award’ to journalist Mr Neville Lazarus of Gorakhpur and Delhi, for doing the country and community proud. A reporter, researcher and producer with Sky News, Neville has been recognised for his outstanding work and has won several international awards including an Emmy and a BAFTA—the latter as part of a three-member team that risked their lives as they sailed up the river, deep into the night, from Bangladesh across the border to meet, film and report on the
plight of Rohingya refugees being driven to the edge by the army in Myanmar. Neville also had the honour of addressing some Members of the House of Lords at Westminster Palace, London, in the Speaker’s chamber. Neville’s topic was ‘genocide’ and this was a United Nations’ initiative. Our hearts burst with pride as we congratulate Neville and wish him many more successful assignments and years of courageous reporting. We also remember in our prayers his ever supportive wife Chavi, who, to quote Neville, ‘is the hero in our family as she sacrificed her career to look after the kids and
The Pride Of The Community Honour Bestowed On The Gomez Family Of Trivandrum
n behalf of the Association, Mrs Denise O’Brien, bestowed the ‘Pride of the Community Honour’ on the Gomez Family of the Trivandrum branch for being a role model family built on the bedrock of strong principles and values, upholding the culture and traditions of our community. The Gomez family, that has done the community proud, comprises talented individuals, each an achiever in their respective fields: Mr Vernon Gomez, a highly acclaimed architect and the founder-chairman of the Chempaka group of schools; Dr Daphne Gomez, a lecturer in English, who did her PhD on the American playwright Edward Albee, and is the founder of the Chempaka group of schools; Dr Sacha Gomez, a homeopathic doctor, who is now in private practice in the UK; Ms Maya Gomez, an architect with a Masters in Planning, who has a private practice in Trivandrum, teaches art and design, and paints with passion and dexterity. Sacha’s wife Donna is a registered social worker in the UK, where they live with their three little boys, Jordan, Dylan and Jayden. Maya’s 21-year-old twin boys are Ryan, who is an electrical and electronics engineer, and Marc, who is studying business and finance. So there you have it—a wonderful family of achievers and potential achievers, doing themselves and our community proud! God bless each one of them! (Maya received the honour on behalf of her family at the AGM in Lucknow.)
home. She was in Welham and then St Stephens’; their son Neil, who is in his second year of Electronics and Electrical Engineering at Manipal Institute of Technology; daughter Pia, a class XI student of Jesus and Mary in Delhi; and his proud parents Denzil and Judy, who are leading a happy retired life in their home in Gorakhpur with the seven other members of their family—their beautiful dogs! May God continue to bless the Lazarus family and watch over Neville as his work takes him from Kabul to Karachi, and Kashmir to Hong Kong.
A 'Thank You' Message from the Gomez Family
t was a real pleasure to receive this award on behalf of my family at the AGM at Lucknow. Although I was asked earlier for a brief write up about each one in the family, and for a few photographs, the award itself came as a surprise. The Anglo-Indian community lives large and is generous with its appreciation. Formal recognition and commendations at the Association level follow from this inherent trait of generosity. The President-in-Chief, Barry O’Brien, makes it a point to know each and every one personally, and has a way of making every delegate feel special. His speeches are famous, going well into two hours, and well worth attending an AGM for. The gracious First Lady, Denise O’Brien gives out the awards. The AGM was conducted flawlessly over three days, with close to 500 delegates from all over India landing in Lucknow. The organising committee did a wonderful job through the three action-packed days, with absolutely no waste of time. Business sessions during the day (conducted with panache) were followed by nights of partying and dancing into the wee hours. Formal wear was compulsory at all sessions, and this automatically upped the ante, lending old world grace to the proceedings. My dad, Vernon, and mum, Daphne, are proud and touched at this honour and, along with my brother Sacha, his wife Madonna, and I, express their gratitude to Barry, Denise, and all the members of the Governing Body of the Association, as also to President Janet D’Souza and fellow members of the Trivandrum branch. Maya Gomez
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
The Sharon Barron Award For A Young Teacher
rs Denise O’Brien presented ‘The Sharon Barron Award for a Young Teacher’ to Mr Craig Kerr (left) of the Lucknow branch and Ms Samantha Chatelier (right) of the St Thomas Mount branch. (Mrs Dawn Wilson, President of the St Thomas Mount branch, accepted the award on behalf of Ms Chatelier.) Sharon Barron, a promising teacher who unfortunately passed away in 2018, was the President of the Youth
Committee of the Ayanavaram branch. She was bright, talented and intelligent. She was 25 and already a leader, confident and caring. At the initiative of our Presidentin-Chief Mr Barry O’Brien, last year, the Association has instituted this award in memory of her. It will be presented every year to a promising young teacher who is a member of our Association and under the age of 35.
The Spirit Of The Anglo-Indian Woman Honour
The Sonika Chauhan Youth Award For Courage
rs Denise O’Brien, on behalf of the Association and The Sonika 27 Foundation, presented ‘The Sonika Chauhan Youth Award for Courage’ on Ms Cynthia Bosser (left) of the Podanur branch and Ms Blossom Fernandez (right) of Bangalore. (Mr Philip Fowler, President of the Podanur branch, accepted the award on behalf of Cynthia.)
Sonika was a dynamic and spirited young woman whose love for her parents, Vijay and Sharon, was the centre-point of her life. A successful model and rising TV star, Sonika passed away in a car accident at the age of 27. This award has been instituted by her parents in memory of their dear daughter.
The E T McCluskie Award For Enterprise
rs Denise O’Brien bestowed ‘The Spirit of the Anglo-Indian Woman’ on Mrs Charmaine Fanthome Beecham of the Lucknow branch. Charmaine, the Vice President of the Lucknow branch, fits effortlessly into each of her roles—as a mother, wife, daughter, teacher, educator, career woman and good friend. She, along with her branch, successfully organised this year’s National AGM at Lucknow. Charmaine is the quintessential AngloIndian woman: intelligent, beautiful, hardworking, generous and full of life.
rs Denise O’Brien presented the ‘The E T McCluskie Award for Enterprise’ to Mr Brian Mason of the Bhusawal branch for doing the community proud with his business acumen and hard work that have led to considerable commercial
success as Mr Mason set up a successful mineral water plant. This award is named after E T McCluskie, a businessman, who founded a township named McCluskieganj specially for Anglo-Indians in early 1930s near Hazaribagh (now in Jharkhand).
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
The Driver Carroll Award For Service Beyond The Call Of Duty
rs Denise O’Brien presented the ‘The Driver Carroll Award for Service Beyond the Call of Duty Award’ to Mr Elvis Mason of the Bhusawal branch. Elvis, while driving a bus from Bhusawal to Mumbai in Maharashtra, spotted a stranger near the
town of Panvel, trapped in floodwaters and struggling to save himself. Elvis got down from the bus, walked through the raging flood water risking his life and saved the life of that stranger. This very act of his bravery has made the branch and the community immensely
The Gloria Berry Award For Courage In The Face Of Danger
proud. The award is aptly named after the legendary Anglo-Indian train driver Percy Carroll of the Calcutta–Mumbai mail, who, in 1959, sacrificed his own life and saved the lives of many passengers.
when Air India’s ‘Kashmir Princess’ was sabotaged on a flight between Hong Kong and Jakarta. The surviving crew members testified to her courage and bravery during the last minutes of the flight.
The Award For A Dedicated Social Worker
rs Denise O’Brien presented ‘The Award for a Dedicated Social Worker’ to Mr Kevin Simmons of the Bhusawal branch.
Her mother received the award posthumously awarded to Gloria from the then President, Dr Rajendra Prasad. This award has been instituted in honour of this brave AngloIndian lady.
The Olive Anthony Honour For A Spouse For Being A Pillar Of Support
rs Denise O’Brien presented ‘The Gloria Berry Award for Courage in the face of Danger’ to Mr Allan Mason of the Bhusawal Branch. Allan, a fisherman and a trained swimmer by profession, risks his own life and has saved many people’s lives from drowning in a river adjacent to his home. The local
administration recognised Allan’s effort by felicitating him and authorised him as a trained rescue swimmer. (Mr Mason’s brothers, Elvis and Brian, received the award on his behalf.) The first Anglo-Indian woman to win an Ashok Chakra (Class II - 1956) was air hostess Gloria Berry, who died in 1955
rs Denise O’Brien presented ‘The Olive Anthony Honour for a Spouse for being a Pillar of Support’ on Mr Vinod Kumar (left), husband of Mrs Barbara Kumar, Secretary of the Podanur branch, and Mr Julius Devadason (right), husband of Mrs Margaret Devadason, a stalwart of the Calcutta branch. (Mr Philip Fowler, President of the Podanur branch, accepted the award on behalf of Mr Kumar.)
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
The President-InChief's Choice For The Member Of The Year
The Joy Michael Award For The Creative Arts
Special Recognition For Motivating Our Youth At The National Level
he President-in-Chief presented the ‘Presidentin-Chief ’s Award for the Member of the Year’ on Trevor Rosemeyer of the Agra branch.
The President-InChief's Choice For The New Member Of The Year
he President-in-Chief presented the ‘Presidentin-Chief ’s Award for the New Member of the Year’ on Troy Hodges of the Delhi branch.
rs Denise O’Brien presented ‘The Joy Michael Award for the Creative Arts’ to Mr Nicholas Moses of the Ayanavaram branch. Nicholas, a talented photographer and cinematographer, has already made his mark in the movie and media industries in South India. He is the cinematographer of the film Calcutta, I’m Sorry, directed by Harry MacLure, which depicts the journey of
an Anglo-Indian woman from Coonoor (Nilgiris) to Calcutta to explore her roots. Joy Michael was a renowned director, theatre personality and co-founder of Yatrik, a repertory company based in Delhi. A recipient of the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian honour, she passed away in March 2019. This award has been instituted in her honour.
The Norman Hutchinson Award For Outstanding Talent
r Oscar Nigli and Mrs Rachel Nigli hand over a plaque as a recognition for his effort and contribution to Mr Graham Heiden of the Mumbai branch for motivating our youth at the national level during the National Youth Meets and also for his role as an effective youth mentor.
Special Recognition For A Youth Mentor
The President-InChief's Choice For The Youth Member Of The Year
he President-in-Chief presented the ‘Presidentin-Chief ’s Award for the Youth Member of the Year’ on Renelle Rosemeyer of the Agra branch.
rs Denise O’Brien presented ‘The Norman Hutchinson Award for Outstanding Talent’ to Mr Glen Young of the Bhusawal branch. Mr Young was awarded for pursuing a unique and unusual craft called intarsia. Intarsia is an ancient craft, perfected in Italy in the 15th and 16th centuries, where a variety of shapes, sizes and species of wood are fitted together to create a 3D mosaic picture. Glen’s wife Delphine is also a creative artist who is highly skilled. Norman Hutchinson, an orphan who was born in Calcutta and grew up at Dr Graham’s Homes, Kalimpong, went on to become the official portrait artist of Queen Elizabeth II. He passed away in Morocco in 2010. This award has been instituted in honour of the great AngloIndian artist.
r Oscar Nigli and Mrs Rachel Nigli hand over a plaque as a recognition for her effort and contribution as a Youth Mentor to Ms Ingrid Rozario of the Calcutta branch.
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
Honour For Loyal And Dedicated Service To The Association
The President-In-Chief's Honour To A Family For Loyalty And Dedication To The Association
he President-in-Chief bestowed the ‘Honour for Loyal and Dedicated Service to the Association’ on Mr Ashok Chadha for his dedication, and loyalty, and the significant contribution he has made to the Association and the community over the last five decades. Mr Chadha received a gift hamper and a shawl from the Presidentin-Chief to a standing ovation from those present during the ceremony.
Honour For A Branch President
r Oscar Nigli, National Vice President and Governing Body Member in charge of Tamil Nadu, and his wife, Mrs Rachel Nigli, bestowed the ‘Honour for a Branch President’ on (left) Mr Edmund ‘Eddie’
Jones of the Delhi branch, and (right) Dr Cheryl-Ann Shivan of the Villupuram-Pondicherry branch, for leading their branches from the front with dedication and drive.
he President-in-Chief bestowed the ‘The President-inChief's Honour to a Family for Loyalty and Dedication to the Association’ on the Abraham Family of Ayanavaram, Chennai, for their dedication, and loyalty, and the significant contribution the family has made as a whole to the Association and the community over the last five decades. (Mr Randolph Wilkins, President of the Ayanavaram branch, accepted the award on behalf of Mr Henry Abraham, former President of the Ayanavaram branch, and the Abraham family.)
Honour For A Branch Vice President
r Frank Freese, National Vice President and Governing Body Member in charge of Maharashtra, bestowed the ‘Honour for a Branch Vice President’ on (left) Mrs Susan Coutinho of the Nagpur branch, and Mr
Glen Daniels of the Pallavaram branch for selflessly serving their branches with dedication and drive. Glen (right), who was not present at the AGM, received the plaque in Chennai from Dr Oscar Nigli.
Honour For Loyal And Dedicated Service To A Branch
onorary Treasurer Mr Glen Galstaun and Mrs Glenda Galstaun bestowed the ‘Honour for Loyal and Dedicated Service to a Branch’ on Mr Llewelyn Watts of the Trivandrum branch, Mr Dudley Roberts of the Hyderabad-Secunderabad branch, and Mrs Wilma Kingsellers of the Bhusawal branch, for selflessly serving their branches with dedication, loyalty and consistency.
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
The Neil O'Brien Youth Award
r Phillip Tocher, ex-MLA, National Vice President and Governing Body Member in charge of Andhra Pradesh and Ms Delphine Du'bois, Governing Body Member, presented 'The Neil O'Brien Youth Award' Category: gold to the Agra, Cochin and Pune branches; silver to the Calcutta and Coimbatore branches and bronze to the Ayanavaram, Pallavaram, Erode and Mumbai branches.
Honour For A Branch Secretary
r Frank Freese, National Vice President and Governing Body Member in charge of Maharashtra, bestowed the ‘Honour for a Branch Secretary’ on Mrs Charlene Andrews of the George Town branch, Mrs Tanya Figredo of the Madurai branch, and Mr Tyron Lazarus of the Danapur branch, for selflessly serving their branches efficiently and effectively with dedication and loyalty.
Honour For A Branch Treasurer
r Glen Galstaun, MLA, Treasurer and Governing Body Member in charge of Jharkhand and Mrs Glenda Galstaun, wife of Mr Galstaun and President of the Patna branch, bestowed the ‘Honour for a Branch Treasurer’ on Mrs Patricia Palmer of the Jabalpur branch, Mr Allen Morrison of the Lucknow branch,
and Mr Colin Carrison of the Khurda Road-Bhubaneswar branch, for selflessly serving their branches with dedication, loyalty and consistency. (Mrs Palmer and Mr Morrison received their awards during the ceremony; Mr Carrison was not able to attend, and his award was sent to his branch.)
Sometime in the early 1980s, a British journalist was in Calcutta to research a documentary film he was making on the Anglo-Indian community. One of the questions he asked Mr Neil O’Brien, who was the community’s nominated MLA in West Bengal at the time, was: “What can you tell me about their appearance – how do they look?” Mr O’Brien replied: “I don’t think I can answer that in words. Join us on Saturday at the Calcutta Rangers Club for an ‘Anglo-Indian Dance’. I am sure you will get your answer there.” The journalist did attend the Dance, and saw for himself that there was no specific answer to his question. He concluded by telling Mr O’Brien: “I think AngloIndians just look like Anglo-Indians!” Here are 50 ‘Anglo-Indian faces’ clicked at the AGM in Lucknow – members from every corner of India. The journalist was right!
National AGM at Lucknow
Reactions and Reports from Delegates VILLUPURAM-PONDICHERRY DR CHERYL-ANN SHIVAN
en members of the Villupuram-Pondicherry branch decided to make the trip to Lucknow to attend the National Annual General Meeting. The very same members had attended the previous year’s AGM in Pune; the anxiety levels were a bit high that year, since it was our very first meeting. However, we had come back with fears allayed, scores of friends made, and a promise to ourselves to be back the next year!
The National Annual General Meeting took place between the 5th and the 7th of October 2019. The evening of the 5th kickstarted the two-and-a-halfday event with the National Awards Ceremony. We soon learnt that we were 471 delegates from 49 branches across 16 states, and the oldest attendee was the 97-years-young Iris Reuben. After a compact welcome address by Adrian Michael, the President of the Lucknow branch, the President-in-Chief, Barry O’Brien, also welcomed everyone on behalf of the Governing Body and stated that the evening would be a celebration of the spirit of being
Anglo-Indian and an occasion to celebrate and be inspired by the achievements of fellow AngloIndians. At this point, Andrew Hoffland took over as compere; with Mr Hoffland being vested with the duty of calling out the awards and Mr O’Brien providing the commentary, the evening promised to be both informative and entertaining! The National Awards Ceremony was indeed special! A hundred and four awards were to be given away. The Lucknow branch screened three films about the war heroes that La Martiniere College has produced: men who dared to dream and became legends. Most of us rarely meet and interact with men of such calibre, but that night, we were introduced to three—albeit one posthumously. The late Wing Commander Trevor Keelor, Flt Lt (Retd) Alfred Cooke and Air Marshal (Retd) Denzil Keelor are Indian Air Force legends. All three had schooled at La Martiniere College, Lucknow, joined the Air Force and performed heroic feats during the India-Pakistan War of 1965 that earned them the prestigious Vir Chakra award. The Vir Chakra citations were read out as each of them were
presented plaques and scrolls by the President-in-Chief. Basil Keelor, the son of the late Wing Commander, received the award on behalf of his father. Each of the awardees addressed the gathering, and what Air Marshal Denzil Keelor shared with the audience warmed and reassured many. Air Marshal Keelor assured the community that the Association and the Institution were working together in great harmony and this was going to continue forever. At no point would the Institution forget its responsibility to the community. It would ensure that it grows stronger as it was doing under the leadership of Mr O’Brien, and this would continue to happen if everyone worked together leaving politics out of the picture. I was personally touched by the simplicity of the great man. Yet another inspiring AngloIndian introduced to us that evening was Neville Lazarus, the BAFTA and Emmy awardwinning, internationally acclaimed journalist of Sky News, who was honoured with ‘The Reach for the Stars Award’. Mr Lazarus advised that if one stayed true to one’s profession and spoke the truth, especially in today’s day and age, one would be rewarded. A host of other well-deserved recognitions were also conferred that night for a variety of feats, talents and services. I would like to make special mention of 'The Olive Anthony Honour for a Spouse for being a Pillar of Support' that was instituted for the first time. Several AngloIndians today have married out of the community and their spouses play vital roles in community functions, especially if they are married to office bearers or committee members; that is why this new award was welcomed most wholeheartedly by many of us. Another nonAnglo-Indian who received a great round of applause was Ashok Chadha, who was honoured for his dedication and loyalty to the Association and
the Institution since the 1970s. I clapped hard for the gentleman who never failed to respond to my queries, especially when we were new to scholarship work. I am sure there were others that night who shared the same sentiment. With the institution of The AllIndian Anglo-Indian Association Youth (AIAIAY), and with the youth and its mentors being active on many fronts, special recognition awards were given for motivation and mentorship. Since the youth are our future, and because they have become more active than ever before, these awards will go a long way in uniting the next generations and encouraging them to work with and for the community. The National Awards Ceremony was interesting and informative, and helped create awareness about the work that the community is involved in and personal achievements that might have otherwise gone unnoticed. I do not think that any branch went back disappointed that day. Depending on their level of engagement, some returned with as many as three or four awards. The last award for the night, and one that was truly deserved, was The Frank Anthony Award for Branch of the Year which went to the Lucknow branch. Adrian Michael, the President of the branch, and his stellar committee deserved the long round of applause they received for their meticulous planning and for the dedication and doggedness that helped them steer adroitly around speed bumps that cropped up during the planning of the event. The occasion lived up to the promise that Mr O’Brien had made in his introductory remarks. We had befittingly celebrated the spirit of everything AngloIndian! The ceremony was followed by a Meet and Greet night that afforded everyone an occasion to renew friendships and make new ones, to savour Lucknowi cuisine, and to dance to great music by Shivan from
Pondicherry and Brett Tanner from Coimbatore. Everyone went back tired, but happy. The first business session commenced at 10 a.m. on the 6th of October 2019. The Presidentin-Chief, Barry O’Brien, Rudolf Woodman, the Secretary, and Glen Galstaun, the Treasurer, led the session. The muchawaited President-in-Chief ’s Address came up first and, as has become customary, people competed to guess the time duration of his speech. The President-in-Chief commenced by first placing the Anglo-Indian community in the larger Indian context. He stressed on the need for each one of us to remember that we form an integral part of the country. In doing so, we must accept our Indianness wholeheartedly, work in synchrony with the larger culture, and keep abreast of what is happening nationwide. The community was asked to make use of social media as one way of connecting with people and staying informed. His next focus was on leadership qualities and on the need for introspection, followed by a very informed critical analysis of the community. The Presidentin-Chief also dwelt on the role of Anglo-Indian youth as instruments of change. All deep matter, but delivered with distinctive Barry O’Brien flair and panache, with a generous sprinkling of anecdotal evidence—now serious and now chatty—and with body language that mimicked his thoughts, the audience was kept engaged from start to finish, and just like that, one hour and thirty eight minutes had sped by. The rest of the morning, the afternoon session on the 6th, and the morning session on the 7th of October dealt with some amendments to be made to the Association’s ‘Green Book’, now turned ‘White Book’. The discussions were pertinent, the questions raised by the members present were answered, and decisions incorporated by general consensus. During the lunch
sessions, branches had a photo session with the President-inChief, the First Lady, and the Governing Body Members of the respective state. At the end of third day’s business session, Gregory Mann, the Anglo-Indian MLA for Uttarakhand, Dr Denzil Godin, the Anglo-Indian MLA for Uttar Pradesh, and Joe Bailey, Convenor of the World Anglo-Indian Reunion, from Canberra, Australia, addressed the gathering. The first two spoke on the community, and the need to reach out to AngloIndians that are not in the Association’s fold and to be true to the work one does. Mr Bailey, who was participating in the meeting as an observer, detailed his life in Chennai before he immigrated to Australia, and then dwelt briefly on the next World Anglo-Indian Reunion to be held in Canberra. For the very first time, half a business session was dedicated to the youth. Heading this meeting was the President-inChief together with Vanessa Wilson, the President of the AIAIAY, Clive VanBuerle, the Youth Mentor, and AIAIAY Vice Presidents, Renelle Rosemeyer and Zoë Shivan. Ms Wilson spoke very engagingly on the need for the community to sustain one another, especially in times of need, and drew examples from her own life to justify how members of the community from different walks of life helped her overcome difficult moments. She also expressed gratitude to Dr Oscar Nigli for discovering her potential. The youth in the gathering were then asked to introduce themselves and it was a pleasant surprise to discover the out-of-the-box occupations that some were engaged in. Cyrus Maclure was especially interesting as he detailed his work in animal welfare. What was also heartening was that many showed a strong inclination for academics. As we listened to and learned about these young people who will lead the community in the future, and a sense of promise pervaded.
Woven into the Anglo-Indian socio-cultural fabric is its proclivity to entertain and be entertained, the nights of the 6th and 7th paid full tribute to this trait. At ‘The Power of Flowers’ evening, members appeared in a variety of floral attire; especially appreciated were those who took the time and made the effort to create their costumes—flowery hats, wristbands, and necklaces so innovative and pretty that the hotel staff had them pose for pictures before they proceeded to the hall. Marcus and Barbara Parker (VillupuramPondicherry) walked away with the prize for the most appropriately dressed couple. Shivan and Brett Tanner were joined by Lester Fernandez from Tangaserri to produce excellent, non-stop music of all genres. Anglo-Indians have this wonderful relationship with the dance floor which they renew over and over again when there’s good music, and when it comes to showing off their moves, age has never been a deterrent. It was each to their own style that night, with Lisa Marie Pereira (Devlali-NasikIgatpuri) and Wayne Philbert (Pallavaram) dancing away with the prize. The Grand Ball was the finalé to the meet. The ladies and gentlemen were turned out in their finest. The informal and carefree celebrations of the previous evening, and the more stately and impressive dignity of this night were demonstrations of the intrinsic Anglo-Indian characteristic of adaptability and the very reasons why we have survived the winds of change so well. The lovely evening was also a tribute to all those who worked in the forefront and behind the scenes to ensure the success of the Lucknow AGM. On behalf of the Villupuram-Pondicherry branch, I say a big ‘thank you’ to everyone, and here I also appreciatively include all those who came from far and near, from city branches and smalltown branches, stalwarts and tenderfoots. Each one is part of the whole that we call The All-
India Anglo-Indian Association. So, till the next National AGM, it’s now a fond au revoir!
TANGASSERI LESTER FERNANDEZ
he AGM at Lucknow was my second; my first AGM was way back in 2005, at Bangalore. I owe the full credit of my attendance to our President-in-Chief, Barry O’Brien. He has inspired me several times: first, when he visited the Tangasseri branch in 2017, and the second when he obliged me to come from Calcutta, along with his wife Denise, to speak for a Rotary conference in Trivandrum in 2018. It was really a proud moment for me, as secretary of the conference, when Mr O’Brien made an outstanding presentation to nearly 2000 delegates; and, believe me, he was one of the best speakers among a panel of elite speakers from across India! We soon became close friends, and in our ensuing conversations, he requested me to become more active in the Association and to serve our community at large. Coming back to the AGM: It was a wonderful event, and I would like to congratulate Adrian Michael and his entire team for giving us a memorable AGM. The planning, registration, travel, accommodation, food, and other minute details were well taken care of. They made sure everyone was comfortable from the beginning to the end. The President-in-Chief and Governing Body ensured that the inauguration, awards ceremony, business meetings, evening get-togethers and the Delegates’ Ball were top class. Kudos! At the national awards ceremony, which was colourful and well organised, individuals and branches that worked hard and put in their best efforts during the year were recognised. The joy of the awardees was apparent from the cheer and smile on their faces. The meet and greet session that followed
was memorable as members from different branches bonded with old friends and built new relationships. The presence of a large number of youth members was really encouraging. Day two, 6 October, began with services at St Joseph’s Cathedral and the Epiphany Church, followed by a packed breakfast. The business meeting was called to order, and the President-in-Chief ’s address commenced. It was a wonderful experience listening to a very lively address. Mr O’Brien knew how to hold our attention, win our admiration with humour and élan. After the address, two delegates from the floor were asked to respond; I was privileged to be one of them. During lunch break, branches were given an opportunity to take group photographs with the President-in-Chief and the First Lady. We reassembled in the evening for the theme party, ‘Flower Power’. It was an amazing sight: flowery frocks, tops, shirts and trousers; innovative headwear, necklaces, make up; and everything flowery in true Anglo-Indian style! The costume competition commenced, and the judges picked the best dressed couple. The Mumbai branch also won a prize for their themed group costume. The competition was followed by dinner and dancing. The business meetings on Day 3 saw many members actively participate in the discussions. During the meeting, the President-in-Chief announced that he had received voluntary contributions of Rs 57,000 from the delegates towards medical expenses of a financially challenged Association member of the George Town branch, Chennai. He thanked the members for their generosity and handed over the sum to the branch president. That evening was the much-awaited Delegates’ Ball: the men looked elegant in their suits while the ladies looked gorgeous in their gowns. The band from Delhi began to play, and the dancefloor was soon packed. After the band’s first set, I was given an opportunity to DJ a session
which was very well appreciated by all. I cherished the opportunity and wholeheartedly thank Mr O’Brien for giving me the privilege. The band continued to play, followed by the lively music of Shivan and DJ Brett Tanner. It was an extraordinary evening which will linger in the minds of all for a long time to come. The AGM 2019 at Lucknow was a resounding success and I thank all those who contributed to its success.
PUNE KARL YOUNG
he first ever Annual General Meeting in Lucknow was attended by members from all over India in large numbers. The president and committee of the Lucknow branch worked relentlessly to organise this meeting and make it a huge success. The business sessions on both the days were very interesting and extremely informative. The highlights of the business sessions were the President-in-Chief ’s address, which was extremely detailed and had a tinge of wit and humour, and the update on the contribution made by the youth from all the branches this year, given by the AIAIAY President, Vanessa Wilson. The Pune branch would sincerely like to thank the Lucknow branch, along with the committee members and the youth committee of the Agra branch, for working tirelessly to ensure that all the delegates were well taken care of.
JAMSHEDPUR NEVADA DALBY
he AGM 2019 held at Lucknow was indeed the most exciting event for us as a community. Ten members of the Jamshedpur branch were privileged to be a part of this important occasion where members travelled from all parts of the country to be together, to be with the community, and to be part of the revelry as only Anglo-Indians know best.
The accommodation provided to the delegates at Delhi Public School was most comfortable, but what made it better was the company of so many fellow Anglo-Indians, all with the same spirit, speaking the same language, all partying and laughing and joking well into the night. The inauguration was a formal and spectacular event. The business sessions are usually serious affairs, but they were made most interesting by our President-in-Chief. The third day’s session was reserved for youth affairs, and it was the best session of all. It was so heartening to hear about our Anglo-Indian youth from different parts of the country doing so well—so enterprising, so innovative and adventurous! The stories of their success and determination had us all engrossed throughout the session. The food was fantastic on all three days—Anglo-Indian, Lucknowi, South Indian, North Indian—it was all there aplenty, kebabs galore. The Delegates’ Ball was a wonderful experience especially for those of us who were attending the AGM for the first time. Anglo-Indians in the true sense of the word, men in suits and ties, ladies in gowns, were all there, singing, dancing and just enjoying themselves.
PALLAVARAM GLEN DANIELS
he delegates from the Pallavaram branch would like to say a big 'thank you' to the Governing Body, the President-in-Chief and the Lucknow branch for hosting a wonderful AGM. It was a memorable AGM indeed, according to our branch Secretary, Camillee Daniels. This was her first AGM, and she was very happy to meet many Anglo-Indians across the country.
DEVLALI-NASIK-IGATPURI JULIAN REDDEN
eventeen delegates from our branch attended the AGM in Lucknow 2019. We were comfortably put up and well looked after at Delhi Public School, Shaheed Path. On campus, we greatly enjoyed the company of our fellow AngloIndians from different parts of the country, and we were equally delighted to meet up with old and new friends at the business meetings and the evening entertainment functions. The business meetings were well conducted and all the points in the agenda were attended to harmoniously and successfully.
NYM-3 at Bangalore The Future is Ours A report by the AIAIAY Committee, consisting of Vanessa Wilson (President); Shane Baptist (Secretary), Zoë Shivan (Vice President) and Renelle Rosemeyer (Vice President); and Clive VanBuerle, Mentor and Chairperson of the Organising Committee for NYM-3.
he All-India AngloIndian Association’s investment in the future has changed gears! The All-India Anglo-Indian Association has always believed that the youth are its greatest resource and has focused its efforts on empowering this resource for the future of the community. The National Youth Meets have been the hotspot events of The All-India Anglo-Indian Association Youth, bridging the gaps in the community and helping youth across the nation to learn, share and 'being Anglo-Indian'. Two hundred and forty-three Anglo-Indian youth from 13 states and 35 branches across the country came together at The Frank Anthony Public School, Bangalore, to meet, compete, learn, share ideas, and build camaraderie. The third edition of the National Youth
Meet (NYM-3), the largest in terms of numbers and branch representation, was held on 10 and 11 August 2019. It is a matter of pride that almost half of the delegates at the meet were female—this is proof of how the women of our community are empowered! The theme of the meet was ‘The Future is Ours’. Here are some highlights of NYM-3:
• Career Clinic: Curated and
hosted by Melroy O’Connor (Assistant Vice President at Deutsche Bank Operations) and Sandeep VK (Head of HR for One Savings Bank, India), the event featured professional assessments, career insights, mock interviews and group discussions. • Group Discussions: These were conducted by Denise O’Brien, Janet D'Souza and Andrew Hoffland.
• Workshops: Workshops gave everyone
an opportunity to improve already existing skills and learn some new ones. Andrew Hoffland conducted an explosive workshop on ‘Script Reading and Theatre’; a workshop on semi-professional and professional photography was curated and hosted by Gerard De’niese; and one of Bangalore’s leading DJs, Roland Monteiro, conducted a workshop on DJing as a career. • Masterclasses: Barry O’Brien, one of the country’s finest public speaking professionals, conducted a masterclass on public speaking and encouraged youth to overcome their fears and become confident with their oratory skills. Nelson Moses from Suicide Prevention India Foundation, one of the country’s premier social start-ups, conducted a workshop on ‘Understanding Boundaries’; this was extremely timely and well received. ‘Living in the #Metoo Era’ was another highly impactful and packed class, conducted by Chryslynn D'Costa, Co-Founder and Head of Research and Design at Serein, a diversity and inclusion consulting firm. The session was co-hosted by Clive VanBuerle, President of the Bangalore branch and SVP, HR of ISGN Corp. This masterclass had the audience at their participative best and discussed topics such as gender diversity, sexual harassment and bystander intervention. • TED-type Talks: Nothing is more inspiring than listening to life-changing stories from fellow Anglo-Indians. The NYM team did an incredible job of finding the most inspiring individuals to take the stage and share their most vulnerable and life changing moments that brought them success and happiness. ‘Discard your excuses… Strive and Attain’ was a talk by Arthur De’Concesiao on how he overcame challenges of not having functional limbs and yet stayed positive. ‘What Champions are Made of ’ was the title of a motivational talk by Blossom Fernandez, a courageous young Anglo-Indian woman and triathlete, who is fighting the odds and now living her
• Sports and entertainment: The two
things that have always bonded AngloIndians over the years are sports and music, and that tradition continues to flow amongst our youth. Delegates participated in football, basketball, fireball and table tennis matches. The nights were filled with memories of costumes, gowns and suits, with incredible music by the professionals: DJs Brett, Vanessa and Tyrone from Coimbatore, belted out new and classic hits at the costume party, and Bangalore’s very own band, The Crown Tree, was in attendance at the Masquerade Ball. • Mentors Matter: The 20 branch mentors participated in a ‘Gatekeeper Training Programme’, which teaches adults who work with youth and teens how to identify early signs of depression, stress and related behaviours that could lead to them being suicidal. The programme was conducted by Suicide Prevention India Foundation. • Social Media: Another benchmark set during this NYM was its extensive social media presence. • Media Coverage: NYM-3 was covered by mainstream media houses including The Times of India and The New Indian Express. Each year the National Youth Meet grows in stature as a flagship event of The All-India Anglo-Indian Association. Our President-inChief is clearly ahead of his time, knowing that the future of our Association and our community is in the hands of its youth. For the first time in many decades, young AngloIndians are embracing the Association. They are making friends from across the country; viewing their community more positively; inspiring each other; and are realising that we are a small but powerful group of people and a true force to reckon with… the future is truly ours! We sincerely thank the President, Air Marshal (Retd) Denzil Keelor, and members of The All-India Anglo-Indian Education Institution, without whose support and
guidance this event would not have been possible. We also record our gratitude to: Mr Kevin Pope, Principal, Mr Edwin Flynn, Vice Principal, and the staff of The Frank Anthony Public School, Bangalore, for hosting the meet and providing tremendous support; Mr Eric de Rozario (Governing Body Member and the outgoing president of AIAIAY) for leading this initiative; Mr Rudolf Woodman, Honorary General Secretary, for his continuous guidance; Dr Oscar Nigli (Vice President) and Mrs Rachel Nigli for their presence and support right through the event; Mrs Vinisha Nero (MLA and Governing Body Member) for her presence at the Awards Ceremony; Mr Eddie Jones, Governing Body Member and Committee Member of The All-India AngloIndian Education Institution; Mr Graham Heiden, for always being there for our young people; all our speakers and facilitators; the Bangalore branch committee and NYM-3 organising committee; Mr Brendon Bastion, the MC; Mr Russell VanBuerle, for all the props; Mr Shane Baptist for the social media and communication execution; the Mumbai branch for sponsoring the prizes; delegates and mentors; our sponsors, including Riggers Soundgear and Taylored Events, and Mr Harvey Lopez; Mr Somnath Dasgupta for all the behind-the-scenes support; the Governing Body; and finally, but most importantly, our President-inChief, Mr Barry O’Brien, our First Lady Mrs Denise O’Brien, and their family for their unwavering commitment, dedication and sacrifices for the Association. NYM-3 was more than just a meet. We understood our youth better, we learnt what drives them and the experiences that made them who they are. It has bonded them closer than they ever were with a feeling of belonging and familiarity of a family and that is why we religiously give it our all to organise every NYM; for better tomorrows, for better future. We are the Youth of the Nation!
After attending workshops, motivational sessions and sporting action, the evenings were a time to relax and have fun. One of the highlights was the NYM Prince and Princess contest, conceived and anchored by Graham Heiden, trusted mentor of many of our young members across the country. The winners of the contest are seen here with the President-in-Chief and the First Lady. They are, from left to right: Second Runners up: Shania O'Connor of the Bilaspur branch and Ryan Barrett of the Dehradun branch; Winners: Chelsea Stewart of the Mumbai branch and Brett Tanner of the Coimbatore branch; First Runners up: Dion Bunyan of the Rajahmundry branch and Katelyn Nazareth of the Bangalore branch.
NYM 3 - DELEGATE REACTIONS 6 Dâ€™Costa, 2 Gethswyn m) (Ayanavaraand regional Compliance inator ord branch co
n lots of We did lear s which we g in valuable th ent in our life m le p im could . to succeed
Carissa Sandy, 20 (Ayanavaram) Student It was indeed a wonderful experience getting to meet youth delegates from across the country!
Shireen Rodrigues, 32 (Delhi) Education counsellor It was a turning point for me because I had the chance to meet so many Anglo-Indians from across the country which made me value my community more.
Rosemary Fernandes, 25 (Devlali-Nasik-Igatpuri) Programmer and actor/ model Everything was so well planned and executed, and I took back a lot of memories.
29 ozario, an de R h t a n o J ) (Cochin DJ
ee youth ely to s er under v lo a s It wa all ov er rs from membe working togeth f, e o th ro f o e on ent betterm for the . y it n commu
Fabian Netto, 31 (Podanur) Head educational instructor My first NYM helped me learn new techniques that added a spark to my further endeavours.
Clarissa Dias, 27 (Coimbatore) Expert t Subjec Matter pedia for Ex t to Had fun and go w ne ole wh take home a M-3. NY m fro e nc rie expe
Quinton Doll, 31 (Pune)
Teacher and spoken English trainer
You learn so much about yourself here. The NYM is a forum to learn and unlearn things.
, 32 Lester Redden ri) pu at -Ig sik Na (DevlaliFootball coach It was a fantastic e: so much to do nc rie pe ex rn from, positive lea and actions! vibes, great inter
Annett e (Dehra Barrett, 19 dun) Unde
rgradu ate stu dent It was m y first ti attendin m g the N e everyo Y M and ne welcom made me fee l so e!
NYM 3 - DELEGATE REACTIONS Bernadette Caster, 30 (Ayanavaram)
avid, 27 Timothy D wn) o (George T
st Martial arti
I love the friends I have made at NYM-3: They have been very supportive, caring, loving and trustworthy. At NYM, you make friends who are family!
elps us The NYM h ith each w e at associ row as an g other and . n io at ci o Ass
Alannah Fernandes, 29 (Mumbai) PhD Scholar It left us empowered and motivated and gave us a sense of belonging knowing that the community cares for the betterment and wellbeing of its youth!
ira, 25 Lisa Marie Pere puri) at -Ig sik Na lila ev (D Teacher ntastic, NYM 3 was a fa entous om m ry, na extraordi event!
David Windsor, 31 (Podanur)
Judaea VanBuerle, 21 (Bangalore)
Musician and photographer
HR Administrator It was an amazing first experience attending NYM 3!
I love the way everything was organised, right from the gate to all the events we participated in - it was organised very well.
Cyril Storey, 20 m) (Visakhapatna o
Nicolas Barnett, 35 (Pune)
iG Ground staff, Ind
azing! It was NYM 3 was am rm which at an unique pl fo of new taught us a lot things.
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NYM 3 - DELEGATE REACTIONS nam) (Visakhapat Eoin Daly, 20 udent
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Mariah Sneyd (Jamshedpur) Undergraduate student The Association has taken an amazing initiative to bring the youth of the Anglo-In dian community together. It’s always nice to mee t new people and, moreover, learn a lot of new things through this platform. My favourite sess ion was the masterclass on creating bounda ries—something we all need to learn and know in our day-to-d ay lives. The talks by Arthur De Conceicao and Blossom Fern andez were inspirational and motivational. Last, but not the least, the public speaking workshop with our very own Pres ident-in-Chief, Barry O’Brien, was indeed very educatio nal and resourceful. I’m thankful to the Association for providing us with this platform.
NYM 3 - A PHOTO ESSAY Youth members from across the country assembled at The Frank Anthony Public School, Bangalore, for the National Youth Meet – NYM-3 held on 10 and 11 August 2019. There were 243 participants, accompanied by their mentors, from 35 branches across 15 states of India. The event was exceptionally well planned and executed by the hardworking Bangalore branch committee, led by its dynamic President Clive VanBuerle, in tandem with the youth of the branch and the National AIAIAY Committee. The event was held at The Frank Anthony Public School, Bangalore. We place on record our sincere thanks to the Chairman, Air Marshal (Retd) Denzil Keelor, for his guidance at all times, and the special effort put in by the Principal Mr Kevin Pope, Vice Principal Mr Edwin Flynn and the teachers and staff of the school for ensuring that our delegates were comfortable and the necessary arrangements were made to make their stay a pleasant one. Thank you very much, FAPS, Bangalore!
TAKING THE OATH
FAPS’s BRILLIANT BAND
WARM AND INFORMAL
DENTAL CLINIC BY YOUNG ANGLO-INDIAN DENTIST
LIVING IN THE #METOO ERA
SESSION FOR MENTORS
WHAT CHAMPIONS ARE MADE OF
DISCARD YOUR EXCUSES
Historic Day For Our Community: Conrad Dias Sworn In As High Court Judge
The Cochin branch felicitated Justice Dias on 14 December 2019
The following message was posted on our official Facebook page on 18 November 2019.
oday is indeed a historic day for the Anglo-Indian community! Conrad Stanislaus Dias was sworn in as an Additional Judge of the Kerala High Court.
A highly respected advocate, Mr Dias graduated from Government Law College, Thiruvananthapuram, in 1994. Since then it has been a success story all the way, built on the pillars of hard work, sincerity, integrity and skill. On behalf of the members of all our branches across the country and the Governing Body of The All-India Anglo-India Association, I congratulate Conrad Dias, the pride of our community today. I had the privilege of meeting him and chatting with him in a relaxed atmosphere earlier this year on the 5th of May in Cochin at a get-together organised by the Cochin branch. A good friend of his, Governing Body Member, Mr Adrian D’Cruz, told me that Mr Dias had accepted the invitation to meet Denise and me at the get-together and spend some quality time with our members. He finally made it even though there was a bereavement in his family. He spent an hour with us—listening, speaking and sharing. He came across as being so humble, so grounded, so genuine! In all humility, he thanked the community for their love and support and asked for our prayers. Today, six months later, our prayers have been answered and he has been given the position he deserves. I congratulated him a little while ago and assured him of our continued prayers for him. May God’s hand and blessings be upon Conrad Dias through every decision he makes and judgement he takes in what promises to be an even more illustrious career. Barry O’Brien President-in-Chief
Restoration of Christ Church—Congratulations, Chairman, Rudy Woodman Mumbai—the Award of Merit from UNESCO, Asia-Pacific Region, for the conservation and restoration of Christ Church, a heritage site, which was opened for prayer way back in 1833. The award was presented last month at Christ Church on its 186th anniversary.
The following message was posted on our official Facebook page on 10 September 2019.
udy Woodman, Chairman of the Christ Church Trust, Mumbai, is seen here receiving a prestigious award from the Bishop of
Rudy had this to say: ‘I have always believed that if we do not protect what our founding fathers did for us then we are failing in our duties.’ Thank you, Rudy, for all that you do for society. We feel privileged to have you as the Honorary General Secretary of our Association. Barry O’Brien President-in-Chief
‘Best CEO’Award For Dr Russel Lawrie Of Nagpur
r Russel Lawrie, a member of the Nagpur
branch, was presented the ‘Best CEO’ award at the Six Sigma Healthcare Excellence Awards, Asia’s biggest leadership summit in healthcare, held in New Delhi on 26 December 2019. Around 1600 decorated leaders of the healthcare industry, including doctors, CEOs and directors were nominated for this coveted award by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs,
Government of India. General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Defence Staff of India, was the chief guest at the awards ceremony. The Union Health Minister and three chief ministers were also present. Dr Lawrie is the CEO of Asha Group of Hospitals, Nagpur. While presenting the award, Anurag Thakur, Minister of State for Finance, said that Nagpur had come onto the international medical tourism scene on account of dynamic leaders like Dr Lawrie.
SUPER ACHIEVER Adrian Peters, Hyderabad-Secunderabad
eet Adrian Peters, a young 21-year-old member of the Hyderabad-Secunderabad branch who says, ‘Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.’ When Adrian realised that his maths grades were dropping miserably and his family couldn’t afford private tuitions, he put his whole heart and soul into working hard in maths and ended up scoring full marks in all his examinations from there on. Adrian was able to relate to others who had economic constraints and reached out to children from financially weak backgrounds, travelling great distances before and after college to teach them maths—all this without charging them a rupee! Adrian topped his Intermediate Exam with 95%, and when he graduated in June 2019 in MEC (Maths, Economics and Commerce) with 95%, he was the college topper! Besides academics, he is an excellent athlete, and represented his school and college in cricket, table tennis and boxing. He has a beautiful baritone voice and can woo many an audience with his singing. A confident young man, Adrian has won several personality contests: he was among the Top 4 in the Times Fresh Face competition, Hyderabad, and among the Top 10 for Telangana’s Next Top Model. Adrian’s parents, Dominic and Anita Peters, are very proud of their son, who currently works as a marketing specialist and process trainer for Amazon and is the Youth Vice President of the Hyderabad-Secunderabad branch. Adrian was awarded the 'Spirit of the NYM Award' at the NYM in Bangalore in 2019. Adrian is a humble, kindhearted and conscientious human being. His quality of empathy and concern was what fascinated me the most and prompted me to pen this article. When one speaks of an all-rounder, the writing is clear on the wall—Adrian Peters! Graham Heiden
Kimberly Fernandez, Mumbai
hampions are made from a mixture of grit, perseverance and hard work, and this can well be said about Kimberly Fernandez, a member of the Mumbai branch and daughter of Hanzel and Belinda Fernandez (Vice-President of the Mumbai branch). Kim, as she is popularly known, has the rare distinction of being Head Girl during her ICSE year at St Peter’s School, Mumbai— where she was also awarded the prestigious ‘Society of St Peter’s’ medal for the Best Girl—and Head Girl during her ISC year at Christ Church School, Mumbai, where she captained the school and junior college football, basketball and athletics teams. She successfully graduated with a bachelor’s degree in management studies from the prestigious St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, where she was awarded the Valerian FX Pais Scholarship for excellence in academics and sports, and the Ashok Kamte Memorial Scholarship for outstanding sportsmanship. At the age of 22, Kim established her very own sports company— ZARS Sports— that conducts local, national and international events in football. It is her mission to empower and encourage young girls and women across the county to pursue sport, and she has built a team of all-female coaches to coach children at her academy, thus providing them with employment and financial security. Kim is a member of the Maharashtra senior women’s football team and has represented the state of Maharashtra in the Under-19 Football School Games Federation of India and the All India Football Federation. She represented Mumbai University in zonal inter-university football and basketball tournaments; captained the Mumbai District senior women’s football team that won the All-Maharashtra Inter-District Football Tournament; has participated three times in the All-Maharashtra Inter-District Basketball Championship; and has set fire on the athletics track at state and district level meets, her strengths being pentathlon and shot put. Kim was also manager of the Maharashtra Under-19 women’s football team, worked at the Brand Experience and Events Department at Star Sports, and was part of the FIFA Under-17 World Cup in 2017.
Joshayet Rozario of the Pallavaram branch being awarded a world record certificate for his 24-hour non-stop relay martial arts shadow fight demonstration.
An AIFF-certified football coach and grassroots leader, in 2019 Kim was honoured to be one of four people from across the world invited to the FIFA Best Footballer Awards in Italy, where she had the opportunity to meet and speak with international footballers like Lionel Messi, Megan Rapinoe, and José Mourinho. Kim’s mantra is simple—’Life is a game; have the sportsmanship to enjoy it.’ Graham Heiden
SUPER ACHIEVER Cyrus Maclure, Lucknow
t a time when people care more about themselves than the world around them, this Good Samaritan of the animal kingdom will never walk past and turn a blind eye to a wounded animal. All of 29, Cyrus Maclure Cowasji of the Lucknow branch is the CEO of his own company, CYRO, which works for animal welfare. CYRO is a pet sanctuary and rescue unit for injured animals, birds and reptiles, with a dairy, kennels, animal handling and training facilities, and a crèche. The profits are used to take care of rescued animals. Cyrus comes from a family that has always loved animals. He began learning dog handling when he was still in school, and participated in many dog shows,
winning scores of awards. His passion for dogs took him to international-level dog shows, where he showcased dogs that he had bred himself and bagged championships. He used his prize money to finance his own kennels and soon after he finished school, he opened his own farm and named it ‘The Kingdom of CYRO’.
SUPER ACHIEVER Lyle Michael, Mumbai
hile still in school, Lyle Michael, a youth member of the Mumbai branch and son of Warren and Nina Michael, realised that he had a flair for writing when ‘words came easy to him’ each time he had to pen his English essays. Lyle’s love of playing with words grew as he entered the prestigious St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, where he acquired a bachelor’s degree with distinction in Mass Communication and Media Studies, while simultaneously completing a diploma in culinary arts and related services where he was awarded ‘The Student of the Year’. While in college, he was editor, secretary, and state representative of the All-India Catholic University
Federation, and was the State Representative of the World Youth Day in Sydney in 2008. After college, Lyle gained tremendous
experience with leading tabloids and magazines like The Times of India, The Indian Express, and Dogs and More magazine, and was Senior Features Writer and City Correspondent for the elite Uppercrust magazine. In 2018, Lyle moved to the US to get a master’s degree in Arts Journalism from the SI Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, New York. He studied arts and culture
Cyrus is passionate about horses and riding and has done an in-depth study of rodeos while earning his BA and MFA degrees. He would study animal medicine by himself as a child, and later volunteered at vet clinics to get experience in treating animals. Now, this young man treats sick and injured animals himself ! Cyrus Maclure has become a name to reckon with in animal care and handling and is associated with several NGOs dealing with animals. The farm has grown in leaps and bounds: Cyrus has had to appoint staff and volunteers to help keep his animal kingdom running; and he has brought back to life many written-off cases—this, he says, gives him immense satisfaction. In recent times, while other NGOs are shutting down, Cyrus continues to be the saving grace to animals in distress. Graham Heiden
reporting across platforms and finally graduated as a Bleier Film student. While studying, he worked as a staff and contributing writer for The Daily Orange, The Stand, The Post and Courier, The New House and Syracuse.com. He also worked as a marketing and publicity intern at Jonathan Slaff Associates, writing about music and culture.
Lyle is currently Project Editor for Bartleby Press, and Communications and Development Assistant at the Cambridge Office for Tourism, where he is helping to market Cambridge as a tourist destination. Lyle describes himself as ‘a traditionalist who wields a pen with flair, an aficionado of the arts, music, dancing, food, wine, pets, travel… with a weakness for cherished time with family and friends.’ When one reads articles penned by this 32-year-old journalist, one realises that the pen is indeed mightier than the sword! Graham Heiden
Vivean Fenwick of the Vijayawada branch received the Academic Proficiency Award (I BA TTM) for the year 201920 at Maris Stella College, Vijayawada.
SUPER ACHIEVERS Gayle and Deveney Dweltz, Mumbai
YOUNG ACHIEVER Shania Hoskins, Bangalore
hey say it takes two to tango, and this can well be said about Mumbai branch’s youth members Gayle and Deveney Dweltz, the twin daughters of Ricardo and Sheryl Dweltz.
After graduating from St Agnes School, Mumbai, these ginger-haired beauties began studying for their bachelor’s degrees in Software Development at the St Xavier’s College, Mumbai. They are also talented kickboxers, with yellow belts in this martial art. It was at the renowned fest ‘Malhar’, hosted by St Xavier’s College, that the duo was discovered and approached to model for the cover of L’Officiel magazine. From then on, there was no looking back, and Gayle and Deveney have featured in Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Grazia, Elle and Verve ever since. These 20-year-old trendsetters have modelled for Myntra, Ajio and Amazon, and walked the ramp at the Lakmé India Fashion Week, showcasing the creations of noted Indian fashion designer, Manish Malhotra. Gayle’s message to the youth of our community is, ‘Happiness isn’t about getting what you want all the time; it’s about loving what you have and being grateful for it,’ while Deveney says, ‘Never give up on your dreams, no matter what.’
hania’s ICSE marksheet read: Shania Britany Hoskins Bishop Cotton Girls’ High School, Bangalore
English Literature - 99; English Language - 94; Hindi - 88; History and Civics - 89; Geography - 88; Math - 96; Physics - 88; Chemistry - 91; Biology - 93; Computer Applications - 94. That makes it an aggregate of 555/600; percentage - 92.5%. Currently she is in Christ College, Bangalore, doing her 1st PUC PCMB. She’s preparing for JEE and hopes to pursue engineering at IIT. That’s her dream! We are sure that all your dreams will come true Shania because you are intelligent and hardworking. God bless you and all that you do. Shania’s father Dr Christopher Hoskins is a senior member of the Bangalore branch and the Head of the Department of Political Science at St Joseph’s College, Bangalore. She has done her Dad, Mum Noreen and elder sister Marvel proud. We too are proud of her and her achievement and wish her all the best for the future.
While they both usually walk the talk and talk the walk together, they are loud and clear individually, when they echo the words of Jerry Smith: ‘I may be a twin, but I am one of a kind!’ Graham Heiden
Dale Halstead, Pune
ale Halstead, a student of The Bishop’s School, Undri, Pune, scored 93% in her ICSE board examinations in 2019. A consistent performer right through school, Dale has been at the helm of her class in the rankings on many occasions, making her among the top ten in her batch and one of the star young achievers of our community. Dale is also a good singer and a regular member of the school choir. She
plans to do her MBA (specialising in Finance) post her Commerce graduation and embark on her journey of joining the family business as a private banker and financial analyst. Dale has done her parents, her school and the community proud. Congratulations Dale! Keep working hard and achieving!
Asher Thomas, Khurda Road-Bhubaneswar
he Khurda RoadBhubaneswar branch congratulates Asher Thomas for his great achievement in Taekwondo. Asher, son of Lyndon and Sonja Thomas, and grandson of John and Daphne Dickson and Jennifer and the late Lionel Thomas, who are members of the branch— did the community proud by beating older and more experienced opponents to win the silver medal in the under-44 kg category of the Inter-District Taekwondo Championship. Asher fought like a champion throughout and lost the final by only one point; though he lost, he gained the respect of all present. We wish him all the best for the future.
Clynton Culpeper, Khurda Road-Bhubaneswar
lynton Culpeper is the son of Tyrone and Judelene Culpeper and grandson of Colin and Mary Carrison, members of the Khurda Road-Bhubaneswar branch. Clynton is a top-ranking student of class 8 in De Nobili School, Dhanbad. His ambition is to become an IAS officer. He is a very good cricketer and an aspiring artist who won an award at the district-level art competition. This Christmas card is one of his works. We wish Clynton every success in the future. Colin Carrison
Achievers from the Nagpur Branch
rrol Besterwitch, a student of Class 11 in St Vincent Palloti College, is a young, dynamic and extremely talented youth member of the Nagpur branch. He is a singer, producer, composer, keyboardist and a bass guitarist. He has composed six songs and has produced twelve tracks and three lead guitar pieces in a short span of four months. He aspires to become an international singer and hopes to carve a niche for himself in the field of music. He loves to play hip hop, country pop, lo fi, rap, trap, house and hymns. We wish him good luck for his future.
inashka Ford is a student of St Vincent Palloti School, studying in Class 7. This talented 12-year-old is an exceptional singer with an amazing voice, who can mesmerise you with her songs in English, Hindi, Spanish and Korean. A multi-talented girl, she is a voracious reader who is also good at academics, dancing, drawing and sport. She recently came second in the ‘Read N Grow’ Inter-school Competition held in Nagpur. We wish her all the very best for her future endeavours.
arah Coutinho, a Class 9 student of St Joseph’s Convent High School, topped the Trinity College Theory Exam, Grade IV. Nagpur is proud of this young achiever! The credit goes to Khurshed Masani, her teacher, and her parents, Sean and Sheeba Coutinho. We wish her all the very best for her forthcoming Grade V examination.
Leah Morris, Trivandrum
eah Morris recently completed her graduation successfully (B.Tech. Computer Science). We congratulate Leah who has done her parents, Shane and Yasmin, and the community proud. Keep aiming for the stars, Leah! God bless you and all that you do.
The President-in-Chief Visits Lucknow, Dehradun and Bhopal Branches LUCKNOW, UTTAR PRADESH
Representatives of the Lucknow branch and their families welcomed the President-in-Chief over dinner on 22 November 2019. Mr O’Brien, accompanied by his charming daughter Raisa, was on a private visit to Lucknow for a seminar with educators. The branch committee requested ex-MLA and former Governing Body Member, Peter Fanthome, and the President-in-Chief to jointly release an album containing photographs of the National AGM.
Members gathered at the Dorothy Crosthwaite Homes on 15 December 2019 for a Christmas Senior Citizens’ Get-together and Children’s Carnival. Everyone spent time with the senior citizens, chatting and playing tombola. After a lovely lunch, they received Christmas gifts from the branch. The children enjoyed themselves with candy floss, popcorn and a bouncing castle, and received gifts from Santa. The branch held its New Year’s Eve Ball on 31 December 2019 at the Grand JBR. All 157 members and guests present had a special and memorable night.
DEHRADUN, UTTARAKHAND Dehradun branch youth member Annette Barrett visited Prem Dham, Home for the Aged, and handed over snacks and goodies for the residents. It was much appreciated! This is a photograph of our branch committee for 2019-2020, elected earlier this year at the Branch AGM. Representatives of the Dehradun branch committee and members met with the Presidentin-Chief, who was on a private visit to Dehradun for a seminar with educators, at Hotel Four
BHOPAL, MADHYA PRADESH
Points by Sheraton on 3 November 2019. Mr O’Brien was accompanied by his daughter and colleague Raisa. Greg Mann (the nominated Anglo-Indian MLA for Uttarakhand and branch Treasurer), Stephanie Jonas (Vice President), Patricia Hilton (Secretary), David Hilton, Gerri Banon,
Vernon Shepherd, Philip Burrett, Jeffery D’Cruz and Craig Temple had a very spontaneous and fruitful interaction with Mr O’Brien over tea. Though tired from travelling, he was his friendly, down-toearth and energetic self. He complimented the Anglo-Indians of Dehradun for their contributions in various fields, particularly education. We had a good discussion on how the Dehradun branch could contribute t o w a r d s taking the Association’s vision of youth engagement forward. Craig Temple
Committee members of the Bhopal branch, led by branch President Balthazar Bourbon and his wife, spent a memorable evening with the President-in-Chief Barry O’Brien when he was in Bhopal on a professional assignment to address principals and teachers. This day was a historic one, since it was the first time a President-in-Chief had visited the branch. We chatted with him over high tea, and Mr O’Brien said he was touched that the President of the Jabalpur branch Philip Palmer, as well as Lenny Lobo and Leslie Lobo, had travelled all of 330 km each way to be a part of this special evening. He was also delighted that Genevieve Pereira of Itarsi, and Darryl Birdsturgeon of Indore had travelled all the way on a working day to be with him. We thank our President-in-Chief for making it a point to meet us, answer our questions, interact with us patiently and spontaneously, and inspire us to keep working for the community.
VISAKHAPATNAM, ANDHRA PRADESH
GUNTAKAL, ANDHRA PRADESH The newly inducted ad-hoc committee of the Visakhapatnam branch (seen here after its first meeting) comprises: President: Frederick Pereira; Vice Presidents: Clive Perry, Charles Thomson; Secretary: Candice Foran; Treasurer: Richard Smythe; Committee Members: Leslie Pereira, Neville Mills, Elizabeth Gallyot, Eoin Daly, Cyril Storey The branch began its Christmas celebrations with a Children’s Christmas Party. The children enjoyed games, goodie boxes, prizes and receiving gifts from Santa. Over the festive season, Christmas hampers were distributed to many senior citizens, who were paid surprise visits by groups of members. Deserving families also received essential commodities and Christmas hampers were donated to Mother Teresa’s Home for the Aged. Residents of the Jubilee Home of St Joseph’s Nursing Home received Christmas hampers and an invitation to the Christmas Dance. The Christmas Dance was organised on 26 December 2019; it was a very pleasant, homely show. Vice President and Governing Body Member, Philip Tocher, and his wife, graced the occasion. There were many prizes and gifts, and dancers set the floor on fire to the rhythms played by the live band. The season’s festivities ended with the New Year’s Eve Ball. There were prizes for competitions, melodies for everyone to tango to, and a huge bonfire that brightly provided warmth and cheer.
FNG (FARIDABAD-NOIDAGHAZIABAD), HARYANA-UP The FNG branch’s Christmas Tree celebration on 22 December 2019 was a grand success. The young and old enjoyed Christmas carols, tombola, dancing and games; the food was finger-licking good. The children were very excited to meet Santa. Members of the FNG branch spent quality time with Governing Body Member Edmund Jones at a Meet
and Mingle programme held on 24 November 2019. The new ad-hoc committee of the branch was inducted on 24 November 2019 at a meeting chaired by Mr Jones. It comprises: President: Terance D’Sylva; Vice Presidents: Thelma Hodges, David Hooper; Secretary: Shane Hodges; Treasurer: Desmond D’Sylva; Committee Members: Noreen Rodrigues, David Young, Steven Wright, Ronald Franklin.
The members of the Guntakal branch spread the love and joy of Christmas by visiting the homes of senior citizens and less-privileged
brothers and sisters and presenting them with Christmas hampers. On behalf of the Association, the branch President also gave each family a gift of Rs 1000 and wished all of them a Merry Christmas. It was a memorable day for all.
GOA The newly elected Goa branch committee consists of: President: Justin Clarke; Vice President: Colin Hoogewerf; Secretary: Darryl Burke; Treasurer: Jeffrey D’Souza; Committee Members: James Andrews, Barbara Lornie, Andre Shackleton, Belinda Eremita, Celine Rebello.
RANCHI, JHARKHAND The Ranchi branch held its Christmas Bash on 19 December 2019 at Bishop Westcott Girls’ School, Namkom, courtesy Miss N Jacobs, Principal. The party commenced with a fun game and dance competition for the children,
and group and solo performances from the youth. Santa distributed gifts to all the children. Single parents of the branch were specially felicitated, thanks to MLA and Governing Body Member Glen Galstaun. Scrumptious snacks and a delicious dinner were graciously
sponsored by the principals of the Bishop Westcott schools. After Housie, a draw was held for hampers sponsored by Mr A Williams, Mrs J Edwin and Mrs L David. The members danced the night away, ending with a traditional tribal folk dance.
VIJAYAWADA, ANDHRA PRADESH The Vijayawada branch celebrated Thanksgiving with a special Mass at the Pezzonipet RCM Church on 24 November 2019. Special thanks to Gregory Lincoln and his team for preparing the music for the service. The Christmas Treat and Sports was held on 23 December 2019. Sports events were conducted for children and a Nativity play reflected the meaning of Christmas. Toys and hampers were distributed
by Santa. Food hampers were also distributed to our older members. The lucky draw winners walked away with a Samsung mobile phone, kitchenware, and a pressure cooker. The Write and Win Contest was a one-of-a-kind step taken by the branch to encourage cocurricular activities among the children. Congratulations to the winners! Essay Contest Winner: Aden Lincoln; Drawing Contest Winner: Antonette Lincoln. theme extended to the decorations, food and even the bright Hawaiian shirts some people wore! A limbo dance competition, games for kids, a lucky draw, and music from our two youth DJs added to the fun. The youth went all out on 9 November 2019 with ‘Fright
The Cochin branch celebrated its 65th Anniversary with a thanksgiving mass at the Santa Cruz Basilica, followed by the Branch AGM on 18 August 2019 at the parish hall. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Llewellyn de Rozario; Vice Presidents: Marlene Jackson, Merilla Isaacs, Denzil Bayer; Secretary: Tanis Gomez; Treasurer: Rosalind Peters; Committee Members: Bassanio Caesar, Patrick
also graced the occasion at the Hotel Fort Queen, Cochin, along with Governing Body Members in charge of Kerala, Adrian D’Cruz and Derrick Fernandez. Mr O’Brien delivered the keynote address, welcoming Mr Dias and congratulating him for being recommended to sit in the Kerala High Court as a Judge. Mr Dias responded, thanking Mr O’Brien and the Anglo-Indian community for the invitation and recognition extended to him. This was followed by dinner and dancing.
Godinho, Coral Godinho, Cynthia Menon, Neena D’Cruz, Joseph Isaacs, Carlton Rodrigues, Mark Nunes. On 5 September 2019, the branch hosted an evening for members to meet our President-in-Chief, Barry O’Brien and First Lady Denise O’Brien, who were on a private visit to Kerala. Mr Conrad Dias,
Later, the branch felicitated Justice Dias for becoming the first AngloIndian judge to be nominated as a Justice to the Kerala High Court at a dinner at the YWCA Hall on 14 December 2019. Despite the floods, the branch celebrated Onam, the harvest festival, with a Hawaiian Day for members and guests. The Hawaiian
Night’, a ‘spooktacular’ Halloween Treat at Hotel No 18 for members and invitees, decked up in their finest costumes. The costume competition and parade were followed by dancing to music from DJs Arnold, Darryl and Jonathan.
GEORGE TOWN, TAMIL NADU The George Town branch gathered on 14 December 2019 at The Bishop Corrie School to celebrate Jingle Bell Chimes, an evening of fun and frolic. Compered by Elvina Ellis, the event included indoor sports, a quiz about the Association, the Christmas raffle, carol singing, and a delicious afternoon tea. Senior members received gift hampers of dress and shirt material. Dr Oscar Nigli, Governing Body Member, addressed the gathering. The arrival of Santa was followed by the prize distribution and dinner. Our thanks to all donors, Dr G K Francis, and the headmaster of Bishop Corrie school.
MADURAI, TAMILNADU The Madurai branch organised a Children’s Christmas Tree and Senior Citizens’ Day on 23 December 2019 at Hotel Western Park. Food packets from Fortune Pandiyan Hotel, toys and gifts were distributed to fifty children, thanks to the generosity of the Le Chatelier Trust. Our seniors enjoyed the evening; they each received a cake box and an envelope as a token of love from branch members and Madurai Anglo-Indians now living in Australia. The evening ended with a sumptuous dinner. Moses Pears
TIRUCHIRAPPALLI, TAMIL NADU
BANGALORE, KARNATAKA The Bangalore branch held its annual Independence Day Hockey Festival for the Claudette Shadrack Memorial Rolling Trophy on 15 August 2019 at the Holy Ghost Parish Grounds. Fourteen teams participated, including two under-14 teams and two under-8 teams. The day saw families meet, stroll with their pets, and feast on delicious barbecue. Former Indian Olympian, Arjuna Awardee and famed hockey drag flicker, Raghunath VR, Margret DeConceicao, former Karnataka hockey player, and Ken Powell, former Olympian athlete, were special guests. The highlight of the day was the special match between committee members of the Bangalore branch and the Bangalore City branch. A cake was cut to celebrate Independence Day and Anglo-Indian Day. Tournament Winners: Best Player (Girls) – Martha D’Silva; Best Player (Boys) – Jayden Beatty; Best Player (Men) – Mark Bennett; Best Player (Women) – Nikita Hookens; Best Goalkeeper – Daniel Raphael;
(formation day); this was a superb initiative to raise funds for youth events. Branch President Clive VanBuerle joined the ride, along with some committee members. Vinisha Nero, MLA and Governing Body Member in charge of Karnataka, flagged off the ride. Billiards and snooker are games that Anglo-Indians traditionally excel at. The branch wanted to do something different and conducted the first Luke Watson Memorial 6 Red Ball Snooker Tournament on 12 October 2019. After the knockout rounds and semi-finals, Brendon Bastion, Sean Davis, Michael de Rebello and Wayne Gambian battled for a spot in the finals. Sean Davis beat Wayne Gambian to win the inaugural tournament. Thanks to Elston Bell, Brendon Bastion, and all the volunteers and participants. The Bangalore branch organised its 107th Christmas Tree on 21 December 2019. Over 170 kids up to the age of 12 received gifts from Santa, and 40 senior citizens were also present. Mrs Nero kicked off the proceedings with a few words. This was followed by a magic show,
The Tiruchirappalli Branch AGM was held on 24 August 2019 at the Southern Railway Anglo-Indian Institute. Governing Body Member Dr Oscar Nigli, presided over the meeting. Wilfred Rozario (Vice-President, Pallavaram), Randolph Wilkins (President, Ayanavaram) and Neville Rozario (President, Golden Rock) attended the meeting as special invitees. The board examination toppers of the branch were honoured, along the youth delegates who took part in NYM-3. Dr Nigli conducted an interactive session with the youth, where they shared their ideas, opinions and experiences. The meeting was followed by a dinner. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Shannon Vassou; Vice Presidents: Ryan Johnson, Dominic Johnson, Joseph Reeves; Committee Members: Esmiralda Peters, Michael Peters, Glen Johnson, Brian Augustus, Royston Lazarus, Gerard Drewitt. Michael Peters
BANGALORE CITY, KARNATAKA
Most Promising Player – Sheraton Barreto; Junior Runners-up – Titan Juniors; Junior Winners – AIHC Juniors; Runners-up – AIHC Yellow; Winners – AIHC Red. The youth organised a motorcycle ride on 02 November 2019 to celebrate Karnataka Rajyotsava
games and races, a bouncing castle, a merry-go-round, cotton candy and popcorn for the children. An on-the-spot talent contest saw fifteen enthusiastic participants show off their talent. Santa arrived on a horse-drawn chariot and was welcomed with hugs.
The Bangalore City branch hosted a Meet and Greet lunch for members at Savoury Restaurant and Residency on 1 September 2019. The event was well attended by families. Branch President Rochelle Fernandez and Ashton Francis presented the team, plan and focus for the year, and Dr Bunnie Labeyrie shared two business opportunities with members. The branch’s Sports Academy, driven by committee member Ashton Francis, kickstarted in the month of September. Hockey and football are played for two hours every Saturday and Sunday morning at the Kacharakanahalli
Grounds. It is very encouraging to see players of all ages come together every week to practice and catch up with each other. Coaches Larry and Stafford never fail to motivate the players. The Christmas Treat took place in the Catholic Club on 14 December 2019. The event was emceed by Dr Labeyrie and Nikita Martin, a youth member. Games were organised by the youth, who also arranged a special surprise line dance performance and a medley of Christmas songs. The little ones were delighted by the arrival of Santa. Everyone enjoyed snacks and dinner, as well as the music of DJs Sean Miller and Denzil Henderson.
TRIVANDRUM, KERALA The Trivandrum branch celebrated Anglo-Indian Day on 28 July 2019. Games were conducted by the youth, and DJ Lester Fernandez had everyone dancing. Dinner consisted of a spread of delicacies cooked by homegrown cooks, Pearl Rodricks, Yvonne Fernandez and Janet D’Souza. The harvest festival of Onam was celebrated on 22 September 2019 at Vivin Luxury Suites, near Pattoor, Trivandrum. Members dressed in traditional Kerala attire: the ladies in Kasavu sarees and gentlemen in jubba and mundu. Albert Thomas delivered an Onam message in his own inimitable style. This was followed by a talk and demonstration on the health benefits of alkaline water by Monu Mathew of Annamm and Water (Life), the main sponsor of the celebrations. Traditional Onam songs were led by Suresh Kumar, Merlin and Isabel. It is customary to have a floral carpet at functions such as these; we substituted it with a vegetable carpet! This offbeat carpet was affordable, and the vegetables were given as prizes and auctioned off after the event. Everyone sat in rows to enjoy the traditional Onam feast, called ‘Onasadya’, with numerous vegetable preparations and a beef preparation laid out on plantain leaves. The evening ended with
VEPERY, TAMIL NADU The 40th Branch AGM was held on 3 August 2019 in St George’s School, Chennai. National Vice President and Governing Body Member Dr Oscar Nigli presided over the meeting, and leaders of
Raymond Thomson, Corrina Delcourt, Anna Mary, Gwen Hall, Ruth Brewart, Neil Armstrong. On 19 October 2019, the branch had its first youth group meeting with branch President Marlon Brewart. The youth members bonded and discussed how they
the other branches in Chennai were also present. Dr Nigli delivered an encouraging message for the youth and appreciated the contribution of Kenneth Reinhardt towards the branch. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Marlon Brewart; Vice President: Freddie Hall; Secretary: Joan Dixon; Treasurer: Vanessa Kumar; Committee Members: Kenneth Reinhardt, Ann Thompson,
could contribute to the community. Members of the Vepery branch visited St George’s Home for Senior Citizens, Chennai, on 26 October. It was a rewarding experience for the members, who spent an hour singing, praying and bonding with the residents. The members then went on to visit a branch member who was seriously ill, Dora Connors, and spent some time with the family in prayer.
tombola and singing. The Branch AGM was held on 28 July 2019. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Janet D’Souza; Vice Presidents: David Rebeiro, Maya Gomez, Yvonne Fernández; Secretary: Jessel Rodricks; Treasurer: John Rodricks; Committee Members: Tony Carvalho, Eugene D’Silva, Hyacinth Carvalho, Robert Mendez, Ubald Varney. On 1 December 2019, the branch hosted a Senior Citizen’s Lunch for the residents of the Sancta Maria Convent, an old age home in Trivandrum city, in remembrance of three parents of committee members who had recently passed away. Members spent an afternoon chatting and singing songs with residents, followed by a lunch spread that included a squid delicacy. Members offered a helping hand to the rain-ravaged northern and central districts of Kerala. On being informed by the district authorities in the morning that, while the needs of the human beings were met, cattle and poultry were in dire need of feed, the branch swung into action. The committee collected funds from large-hearted and magnanimous members and sent around 700 kilos of feed to submerged Nilambur, in Malappuram district, the same evening. Their timely response was appreciated by the Assistant Collector, Anu Kumari, who was in charge at the collection point of the district administration. The branch choir participated in Canta Vita, the carol competition conducted by the Ayanavaram branch on 7 December 2019. The Christmas Mela was held on 21 December at St George’s School, thanks to Dr G K Francis. The event had multiple stalls and games for all ages, as well as delicious snacks and food. Santa and Mrs Claus brought gifts for the kids. The residents of St George’s Orphanage and Old Age Home also
attended. Members had a great time with games, caricature artists, balloon sculptures and more. For the first time, the Vepery branch released is own wall calendar for the year 2020; Dr Oscar Nigli did the honours. The branch has its own WhatsApp group and Facebook page. Members are very active on all social platforms. Godwin Brewart
VYPEEN, KERALA The Vypeen branch held its Christmas Tree on 14 December 2019. Sports for all ages were conducted in the morning. The evening saw the arrival of Santa, the Christmas raffle, snacks and tombola.
CALCUTTA, WEST BENGAL To celebrate the President-inChief’s birthday, on 14 September 2019, the Calcutta branch organised a Blood Donation Drive at the Tata Medical Centre, a specialist cancer hospital and research institute. We thank Carolyn DuPratt for making the arrangements for the drive and all those who donated blood, including the birthday boy—the President-in-Chief himself! The youth of the branch organised a Bonfire Night on 23 September 2019 at the Frank Anthony Public School. It was an evening filled with
fun, food, games, music, dancing and, of course, a whole lot of AngloIndian warmth! Branch members also visited Shishu Bhavan, an orphanage for differently abled and special needs children, whose bright smiles and cheerful spirits left us feeling very good. The youth of the branch hosted the first-ever Inter-school Carol Singing Competition, ‘Jingle Bell Rock Out’, at the Frank Anthony Public School, on 30 November 2019. Fifteen renowned schools of the city participated. It was a wonderful and extremely well organised event.
DELHI Anglo-Indian Day Celebrations and the Delhi Branch AGM were held together on 2 August 2019. After a thanksgiving service at which The Frank Anthony Public school choir was in attendance, members were treated to a mouthwatering Anglo-Indian meal of yellow rice, ball curry and devil’s chutney. On 9 November 2019, a Red and Black Dance was held with a live band in attendance. Attendees enjoyed the music and competitions, with prizes contributed by branch committee members. The revenue generated from this event was utilised to assist a needy family of the branch. The Christmas Tree and Treat was held on 16 December 2019. In order to promote equality, children in a similar age group were given the same gifts by Santa; this initiative was appreciated by all parents. The children were cheered on by adults as they enjoyed games, hot drinks and candy floss. Senior citizens were also given gifts, contributed by generous branch members. The Christmas Dance saw members bring visiting family and friends to experience the joy of Christmas, with a band in attendance that played into the early hours of the morning. All events were held at The Frank Anthony School premises; we place on record our sincere thanks to The All-India Anglo-Indian Education Institution and The Frank Anthony Public School, Delhi, for their cooperation and support. Anthea Hodges
PALLAVARAM, TAMIL NADU The Pallavaram branch organised a fun Food Fest on 18 August 2019. Tombola and the many food and games stalls kept everyone busy, and the band kept members on the floor. The 34th Branch AGM was held on 14 September 2019. Former MLA and Governing Body Member Dr Oscar Nigli presided over the meeting. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Justin D’Sylva; Vice Presidents: Andrea Starr, Dominic Middleton, Glenn Daniels; Secretary: Camille Daniels; Treasurer: Owen D’Belle; Committee Members: Chantelle VanHaltren, Richelle Hart, Charmaine D’Sylva, Savio Starr, Jude Pope, Percy Cunningham, Terrence VanHaltren, Daniel Potts. The Senior Citizens’ Party was held on 27 October 2019 at the Quality Inn Hotel, Meenambakkam, Chennai. It was a memorable day for our elders who enjoyed themselves with dancing, party games and tombola. Our President-in-Chief addressed them from his home in Calcutta and thanked them for all their support to the Association and to the community. Hyacinth VanHaltran won the ‘Groovy Grandma’ title, for being fit and active even at the age of 92. All the seniors received a gift as they were bid goodbye. Over 100 members enjoyed the Branch Day Out at the Hudson Resort on 24 November 2019. The resort had plenty of entertainment for all ages, including boat rides, bullock cart rides, swimming pools and waterfalls. Sports and games were organised for the youth. After a sumptuous lunch
and a few rounds of tombola, games and music had everyone dancing. The Christmas season began with Carol Singing, headed by the youth, who visited the houses of our members. The branch choir also participated in the carol competition, Canta Vita, organised by the Ayanavaram branch. The Christmas Tree was held on 21 December 2019. Sports and games were organised for the children, while the adults enjoyed tombola and party games. Each child and pensioner received a gift from Santa. The wonderful evening ended with dinner.
COIMBATORE, TAMIL NADU The Coimbatore branch held its 56th AGM on 28 July 2019 at Stanes Anglo-Indian Higher Secondary School. The meeting was presided over by National Vice President and Governing Body Member Dr Oscar Nigli, who also had a one-on-one interaction with the youth. Awards and certificates of appreciation were given to students and branch members. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Patricia Tanner; Vice President: Sandra Nigli; Secretary: Vanessa Wilson; Treasurer: Terrence King; Committee Members: Basil Nigli, Clarissa Dias, Brett Tanner, Anthony Dias, Tyrone Dias, Ansela D’Souza, Ferin Kaduthose. On 15 August 2019, the branch organised an entertaining fundraising activity—a Housie Night at the residence of Secretary Vanessa Wilson. It was fascinating to see the intense concentration and excitement on the faces of the players, and the silence punctuated with the voices of the callers, Ralph Simmons, Brett Tanner, and our youngest caller yet, Ethan King. All enjoyed a wonderful evening that ended with a high tea. A special thank you to Noel Gonsalvez for his assistance. The sixth edition of the Anglo-Indian Premier League (AIPL), organised by the Coimbatore
youth on 2 October 2019 , saw teams from across Tamil Nadu participate, including Ooty Mountain Lions (captained by the President of the Ooty branch, Gary Everett), Master Blasters, Mean Machine, Deadly Edleys, Pallavaram Thunderbolts. The runners-up were crowd favourites, Podanur Sports Club, and the winning team was Erode Vipers, who came along with their President, Crayston Marcar. They took home a trophy and a prize of five thousand rupees. A special thank you to the event sponsors, Clinton Rosario, Charleston Gomes, David Bartholomew and Greig D’Souza, and Nigel Galway. As a special Children’s Day treat, the branch organised a fun evening at DCamp Fitness Centre. The children played Soapy Football and enjoyed paintball target shooting and the trampoline. We are grateful to our sponsors: Ansela and Greig D’Souza, Mrs and Mr Lodson D’Souza, and Mrs and Mr Kadilstion Cardoz.
AGRA, UTTAR PRADESH The Agra branch celebrated AngloIndian Day on 3 August 2019 with Mass at St Mary’s Church, a special prayer and blessing by Father Stephen, and high tea. The evening celebrations at St Anthony’s Junior College included tombola, karaoke and a dance session. We express our gratitude to the CJM sisters for allowing us to use the school hall, Andrew Guthrie, the D’Souza family, and all those who helped. The youth celebrated Teachers’ Day on 14 September 2019; it was a fun afternoon with games, tombola, a quiz, cake and snacks. The Mini Diwali Fair and Tombola was held on 26 October 2019. There was also an onthe-spot fundraiser for Sunshine Leonard of the George Town branch, a courageous woman fighting cancer. It was a fun-filled afternoon with members showcasing their culinary talents. The youth celebrated Halloween in a ‘spooktacular’ way on 31 October 2019 at Glen Scaife’s residence. There was food, music,
dancing, a costume competition, and a delicious biryani meal cooked by Tyron D’Souza. Sheila Guthrie was felicitated with the Lifetime Achievement Award for Agra Zone on 1 November 2019 for her dedicated services in the field of nursing. She worked for 42 years as a dedicated nurse. She is only 89 years-old and is super active. The youth celebrated Men’s Day and Children’s Day on 17 November 2019. The programme commenced with a prayer by Father Prakash, and a speech by the youth president, Kimberleen Rosemeyer. A drawing competition and fun games, like jumbled shoes race, were organised. Each child received a goodie bag of sweet and toys. The youth visited Aradhna Foundation, an organisation that helps educate slum children, and presented students
The Christmas Tree was held on 22 December at Stanes Anglo-Indian Higher Secondary School. Carols and the Nativity tableau, conducted by Patricia Tanner, ushered in the Christmas spirit. The evening featured high tea, and fun activities and games for all. The costumes worn at the fancy-dress competition for kids were truly innovative. Santa came to wish all a Happy Christmas and to give the kids their gifts. He also gave out special hampers to each of our senior citizens, raffle draw prizes, and participation gifts and awards for the competition winners. The festivities ended with a delicious dinner. Patricia Tanner and Vanessa Wilson with notebooks, stationery and some goodies to bring in the Christmas season. The Agra Anglo-Indians in their winter finest assembled on Boxing Day at The Grand Hotel for the Christmas Tree and Ball. The Annual Regina Creado Memorial Games Day was held on 28 December 2019, in remembrance of Regina Creado and Jimmy Dueman. We enjoyed playing pitthoo (seven tiles), tombola, and cricket, and eating a scrumptious biryani lunch. The Agra branch thinks about other people and animals! Tyron D’Souza and Blake David took part in the Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, an annual international ride that takes place to spread awareness about men’s mental health and prostate cancer. Renelle Rosemeyer and Rochelle Martyr participated as pillion riders. On International Dogs Day, the youth visited the People for Animals (PFA) shelter for stray and abandoned animals, to spend time with the dogs and donate essentials and dog food.
KHURDA ROAD-BHUBANESWAR, ODISHA The Khurda Road-Bhubaneswar branch celebrated Anglo-Indian Day on 2 August 2019 at the Sacred Heart Church parochial hall. The evening began with eight rounds of whist. After a break for snacks and cold drinks, members settled down to play housie with Randolf Redden, our veteran caller. The evening ended with dinner: ball curry and yellow rice. The 8th Branch AGM was held on 24 August 2019 at the Town Hall, Jatni. Eric de Rozario, Governing Body Member in charge of Odisha and Bihar, was present, along with Tyron Lazarus and Mervin DuBois of the Danapur branch. An open house discussion led by Mr de Rozario and Mr DuBois followed, and the day ended with a sumptuous dinner. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Shawn Rodrigues; Vice Presidents: Sonja Thomas, Erica Jacobs, Ryan Francis; Secretary: Bernadine D’Souza; Treasurer: Colin Carrison; Committee Members: Patricia D’Costa, Malcolm Rodrigues, Patrick Francis, Dominic Carrison, Slade Jacobs, Natasha Leak. At the AGM, four students were awarded Young Achievers Awards, certificates and cash prizes: Clive D’Costa, a Plus 2 student of La Martiniere College, Lucknow, for coming first in kabaddi at the district level; Clynton Culpeper, a class 8 student of De Nobili School, Dhanbad, for coming first in art and craft at the district level; Asher Thomas, a class 6 student of Loyola School, Bhubaneswar, who won a silver medal in Taekwondo at the district level; and Nigella Feegrade, also from Loyola School, Bhubaneswar, who was the team escort for the German hockey team at the World Cup held in Bhubaneswar. Members were also recognised for serving the community selflessly: Arline D’Souza received the Milestone 50 Award for her contribution to education and over 50 years of service as a teacher and headmistress; and Colin Carrison received the award for serving the community. The branch held a Social Evening on 9 November 2019 at the Sacred Heart Church parochial hall. The show started with a chocolate wheel for the children, followed by games and a fancy-dress competition, while the adults participated in a whist drive. The prize distribution and an address by John Dickson, a senior member, were followed by housie and dinner. With a nip in the air, the branch organised a Blanket Donation Drive, and received over 60 blankets from members. These were donated to the Old Age Homes for the sick, dying and destitute at Bhubaneswar on 14 December 2019. For the first time, an Inter-School Drawing and Colouring Competition was held on 17 December 2019 at Mission School, Jatni, with 216 students taking part. The participants were assigned themes ranging from village life, and festivals of India to climate control. It was a wonderful experience
VILLUPURAM-PONDICHERRY, TN-PONDICHERRY The 70th AGM of the Villupuram-Pondicherry branch was held on 14 July 2019. Governing Body Member Dr Oscar Nigli presided. Student achievers were rewarded, and the constant support received from members was acknowledged. The hockey team was also felicitated. The newly elected branch committee consists of - President: Dr Cheryl-Ann Shivan; Vice Presidents: Gregory Hart, Geraldine Caster and Ashley Carter; Secretary: Earlam Pereira; Treasurer: Tyrone O'Brien; Committee Members: Nadine Paris, Capt Charlotte Fernandez, Francis Herft, Deborah Fernandez, Marcus Parker and Dexter Stephenson. The branch celebrated Anglo-Indian Day on 24 August 2019. The branch’s educational project, ‘The Villupuram-Pondicherry Anglo-Indian Alumni Education Project’ was also launched: it provides financial assistance to 17 children for their education. Former Anglo-Indian residents of VillupuramPondicherry who now reside in Australia organised a dinner-dance to raise funds for the branch’s initiative. Jennifer Patel (née MaClure) represented the alumni at the get-together. After the conclusion of the official part of the meeting, members stayed on and took part in games, some dancing and dinner. The Children’s Christmas Tree and Treat was held on 20 December 2019. Senior citizens of the branch were also honoured. The festivities included
THE REVIEW for those involved, and it has given us a lot of confidence to organise more competitions for students in future. Special thanks to Anita ma’am; the school administrator, Arline D’Souza; and the headmistress, Sophia Redden, for hosting us. Christmas celebrations began on 22 December 2019, when members and committee members went Carol Singing. The carollers left from Sacred Heart Church, Khurda Road, and visited every Anglo-Indian household in Jatni over the next five hours. The Christmas Tree was held at the Town Hall, Jatni, on 24 December 2019. The evening began with a chocolate wheel, treasure hunt and musical chairs for the children, while the adults were served coffee. Santa took the children on a ride through town on his truck and gave them Christmas gifts. The Children’s Fancy Dress Competition and Sports Day for all was the next event. The bright costumes added colour to the show. The winners were awarded prizes and every participant received a bag of goodies. The adults began their sports with a shooting-the-cans event; followed by a competitive badminton drive with singles and doubles events. The games
continued until 10 p.m., after which everyone settled down to a delicious dinner. The season concluded with the New Year’s Eve Ball at the Catholic Charities Hall on 31 December 2019. There were a few competitions and a variety of snacks served through the night. Members gathered around the bonfire to bring in the new year. The show ended at 2:30 in the morning. Thanks to Charlene Wallace and Mrs and Mr Malcolm Rodrigues for donating the gifts and cake, and to those who helped with various arrangements—Randolf Redden, Zenish Wallace, Wilfred Redden, and Myra Redden. Collin Carrison games for all ages and a fancy-dress competition for the little ones. Children handed over gifts to the seniors and received their blessings. Santa presented children with gaily wrapped surprises and gave hampers out to some families. The night ended with dinner. A Christmas Dance was held for the very first time in Pondicherry on 26 December 2019 in Hotel Bon Sejour. Pondy’s very own music maker, Shivan, and the very promising guest DJ, Ryan Benny from Chennai, kept the attendees dancing all through the night. Dr Cheryl-Ann Shivan
DANAPUR, BIHAR The Danapur Branch AGM was held on 14 August 2019 at the Don Bosco Academy Hall, Patna. Ex-MLA and ex-Governing Body Member, AG de Rozario, led a prayer and addressed the gathering, wishing everyone for Anglo-Indian Day. New members were welcomed and preparations for the branch’s upcoming Golden Jubilee were discussed. Students of the branch received cash awards for their perseverance. The following youth committee was elected: President: Mark
Murray; Vice Presidents: Ishika Cowell, Rachael Sahu; Secretary: Elvis Strong; Treasurer: Derrick Magnum; Committee Members: Aaron Lazarus, Chelsea Lazarus, Jason Chesney, Steve Chesney, Iris Strong, Melody Dubois, Trish Knight. The newly elected branch committee consists of: President: Eric deRozario; Vice Presidents: Fiona de Rozario, Adrian Blaquiere, Alan Cowell; Secretary: Tyron Lazarus; Treasurer: Mervyn DuBois; Committee Members: James Reid, Terence Chesney, Derek D’Souza, Clyde Lazarus, Regina Cowell, Catherine Daniell.
OOTACAMUND, TAMIL NADU The Ooty Branch AGM was held on 31 October 2019; the meeting was presided over by Governing Body Member Dr Oscar Nigli. The Laidlaw Memorial School and Junior College of St George’s Homes, Ketti, Tamil Nadu, received
the prestigious British Council International School Awards 2019-20 on 29 November 2019 in Chennai. Norman Wood, Chairman and Governing Body Member of the school, and the Principal of the school, Gary Everett, received the award. Mr Everett is also the President of the Ooty branch of the Association.
KORBA, CHHATTISGARH The Korba branch’s 2nd AGM was held at the YMCA Hall on 30 September 2019. Governing Body Member in charge of Chhattisgarh, Bernard Rodrigues, presided over the meeting, having travelled all the way from Raipur. Despite a heavy storm and a power cut, members of our branch attended the meeting and made it a success. Tea and lunch followed the meeting. The newly elected branch committee consists of: President: Ricardo Gunnion; Vice Presidents: Adrien Rodrigues, Venecia Clarke; Secretary: Gradin Gallyer; Treasurer: Robin Rodrigues; Committee Members: Mr Robert Paul, Mischeal Singh (née Paul), Sabrina Rajurkar (née Rodrigues), Brian Rodrigues, Jessica Clarke. The Christmas Tree started with a prayer and carol singing, followed by sports for children and adults. Gifts and prizes were distributed by Santa, and everyone enjoyed the delicious snacks. The New Year’s Eve Dance at Hotel Centre Point started with a dance competition, after which prizes were distributed. Guests from other branches were welcomed with a gift. The night ended with a bonfire and a lovely dinner. Gradin Gallyer
Despite heavy rains, the Mumbai branch celebrated Anglo-Indian Day at 20 Downtown, Eros. Members had an enjoyable evening, and the show went on until one in the morning. The Branch AGM was held on 31 August 2019 at Christ Church School, Byculla. Student achievers received trophies and certificates for academic excellence. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Blossom Lilywhite; Vice Presidents: Graham Heiden, Jason O’Connor, Belinda Fernandez; Secretary: Sandra Frederick; Treasurer: Norman Stokes; Committee Members: Glenda Michael, Aldo Michael, Kane Roshier. The branch had its Christmas Celebrations on Wheels on a Sunday evening in December, as 80 members drove around in a festively decorated open bus, serenading passers-by with carols and songs of the season! The bus made a halt at the famous Chowpatty beach, where the youth conducted games. Back in the bus, sumptuous snacks and soft drinks were served, and each participant received a Christmas gift from Santa. Anglo-Indian schools from Mumbai and Pune came together to give the audience a ‘blast from the past’ at ‘Music Mania’, an evening hosted by the Mumbai branch at Christ Church School. The event was the brainchild of the enthusiastic youth members, mentored by branch Vice President, Graham Heiden. Sandra Frederick (Youth President) and Kane Roshier (Committee Member) were the hosts for the evening. Musicians Amelia D’Souza (née Greene), Earnest Flannigan and Cyrus Dubash judged the competition. Bombay Scottish School, Mahim, emerged winners with their ABBA medley, while The Bishop’s School, Camp, Pune (performing Boney M), and Bombay Scottish School, Powai (performing The Eagles), were the first and second runners-up.
NAGPUR, MAHARASHTRA The youth of the Nagpur branch hosted Halloween Night on 31 October 2019. The best costume competition saw participants walk
helped everyone relax and build bonds of togetherness. The Branch AGM was held on 25 August 2019, with National Vice President and Governing Body Member Frank Freese presiding
down the ramp and tell us about themselves. Prizes for the best costume were awarded to Malcolm Lavocah (as Joker) and Veronica Jacob (as Harley Quinn). It was a spooky and exciting evening! The branch celebrated AngloIndian Day with great pride and enthusiasm. His Grace Elias Gonsalves, the Archbishop of Nagpur, was chief guest for the occasion. A live youth band was the major attraction of the day. Tombola and a sumptuous meal made the day more special. The branch enjoyed a fun-filled
over the meeting. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Christopher Dee; Vice Presidents: Arthur Narcis, Anthony Besterwitch, Susan Coutinho; Secretary: Glenda Ford; Treasurer: Anthony Besterwitch; Committee Members: Irene Jacob, Esmond McLeod, Donald Ford, Elishba Demorias, Malcolm Lavocah. To celebrate Children’s Day, a sports day was held on 17 November 2019. Children and adults took part in interesting games and were awarded certificates and cash prizes. The day ended with
The youth of the Pune branch hosted a Children’s Day Celebration and Tombola Night on 16 November 2019. The evening began with games like puzzle-making, tail the donkey, save your tail, and balloon wars. Gifts and snack packets were distributed while the adults played tombola. The evening ended with a scrumptious dinner, with members contributing homemade dishes. Karl Young
ALLAHABAD, UTTAR PRADESH The Allahabad Branch AGM was held on 14 September 2019 at Boys’ High School and College. Dr Denzil Godin, nominated AngloIndian MLA for Uttar Pradesh, accompanied by his wife Lina, graced the occasion. The meeting was followed by tombola, dancing and a sumptuous dinner. The newly elected branch committee consists and memorable Annual Picnic at Glen Woods’ beautiful farmhouse in Kalmeshwar, Nagpur. Everyone enjoyed playing games and tombola, and swimming in the pool. After a yummy breakfast and sumptuous lunch, members relaxed under the orange trees and explored the farm. The picnic
a round of housie and delicious biryani. The Christmas Tree was held on 21 December 2019. The main attractions of the evening were Santa and the live youth band. Tombola, the hamper draw, the beautiful masks worn by couples, and the lip-smacking food were well appreciated.
meeting. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Michelle Suresh (née Rodrigues); Vice Presidents: Joy Dove, Alistair Rodrigues; Secretary: Dr Lester Nunes; Treasurer: Charles Lewis; Committee Members: Felicia Rodrigues, Crezwel Coats , Anthony Smith, Lewellyn Rodrigues.
The Mysuru Branch AGM was held on 18 August 2019 at the Railway Institute, Mysuru. Honorary Secretary and Governing Body Member in charge of Karnataka, Vinisha Nero, presided over the
of: President: Christabel Luke; Vice Presidents: Larry French, David Luke, Rev. Stanley Belton; Secretary: Larry French; Treasurer: Michael Johnstone; Committee Members: Mrs C Moore, Ms L Moore, Ms A French, Mrs S Bennett, Mr M Bennett, Ms A D’Cruz, Mrs A D’Cruz, Mrs J French, Mr S Belton, Mrs D Jonathan. Larry French
JABALPUR, MADHYA PRADESH The Jabalpur Branch AGM was held on 24 August 2019. The newly elected branch committee (Seen here with Lorraine Lobo, Ex-MLA): President: Phillip Palmer; Vice Presidents: Elvis Paul, Patricia Palmer, Dunstan Gamble; Secretary: Dunstan Gamble; Treasurer: Patricia Palmer; Committee Members: Gerard Rosario, Royston Gee, Terence Jones, Cheryl Calaco, Christine Lobo, Clifford Blaquiere.
DEVLALI-NASIK-IGATPURI, MAHARASHTRA On 14 July 2019, the Devlali-Nasik-Igatpuri branch donated some of the money collected from the Lenten Appeal donations to St Patrick’s Play School, Devlali, for the purchase of school items required by needy students. The rest of the money was diverted into the Good Samaritan Fund of the branch and will be used to provide financial assistance for Christmas to underprivileged members of the branch. Branch members had a fun evening with Barnes students, when they took the Anglo-Indian boarders of Barnes School and Junior College to the windmills of Sinnar, Nasik, on 3 August 2019. Everyone enjoyed the scenic journey and had a great time running around, taking pictures
and eating snacks. A dinner of yellow rice, ball curry, devil’s chutney, raita, custard and jalebis, sponsored by the branch, was served at the Barnes School mess, after which folks enjoyed tombola, music, dancing and party games. On behalf of all the boarders, Jonathan Jobard thanked the branch for the lovely evening. The Branch AGM was held on 17 August 2019 at the AIAIA Hall, Nasik Road. Frank Freese, Governing Body Member in charge of Maharashtra, presided over the meeting. The newly elected branch committee comprises: President: Julian Redden; Vice Presidents: Elaine Canday, Colin Brown, Maureen Naterwalla; Secretary: Colin Nelson, Committee Members: Rosalind DeSouza, Keith Pereira, Petrina Lakishrani (née Canday), Lisa Marie Pereira.
JAMSHEDPUR, JHARKHAND The Jamshedpur branch celebrated Anglo-Indian Day on 3 August 2019 at St Joseph’s Welfare Centre. The event started off with a sapling planting of an ixora plant. Maryanne Ekka led the prayer. This was followed by an address by the President, Nevada Dalby, and the cutting of the cake. The scholarships sanctioned by The All-India Anglo-Indian Education Institution were disbursed. While the adults played housie, the children were busy playing games.
The Good Samaritan Tombola and Karaoke Evening was held on 14 September 2019 at the AIAIA Hall, Nasik Road, in aid of an Anglo-Indian family. Members and friends enjoyed themselves dancing and playing tombola. Everyone sang Happy Birthday to our President-in-Chief. Children’s Day was celebrated on 14 November 2019 in Evans Hall, Barnes School and Junior College, Devlali. The function was attended by the boarders of Barnes School, along with the children of the branch, members and friends. The tombola and prizes were generously sponsored by Jennifer Thomson, Secretary of the branch. The branch organised a Bonfire Night in Devlali on 14 December 2019. The members and friends present enjoyed carol singing, tombola and dancing. The bonfire and the tasty food sold by Mom’s Recipe (Meals on Wheels) kept everyone nice and warm. The evening went a long way in bringing in the spirit of Christmas. A big 'thank you' to the Canday family for allowing the use of their compound and building the bonfire. Members and friends of the branch visited Nirmala Home for the Aged, Nasik, on 18 December 2019 to spread some Christmas
Dinner was the traditional yellow rice, ball curry and hell’s flame chutney. The Jamshedpur branch celebrated Children’s Day on 9 November 2019. Branch and committee members visited the Rock Ford Public School, Jamshedpur, which has 280 children from underprivileged sections of society in classes LKG to 9. The members distributed notebooks, charts, pens, pencils, crayons, stationery, and sweets. It gave everyone immense happiness and satisfaction to see the joy on the faces of the children.
cheer. All those present enjoyed singing carols and chatting with each other. The residents were given gift bags of snacks and toiletries. The sisters also very kindly prepared some rose cookies and sweets for us. We left with pleasant memories of the evening. The Christmas Dance and Children’s Treat was on 21 December at the AIAIA Hall, Nasik Road. A good crowd enjoyed the music, dancing, games and tombola. Santa distributed treat packets to all the kids. The New Year Dance on 31 December 2019 began with a welcome prayer. This was immediately followed by the first dance session of lively country foxtrot music. The rest of the evening and night saw the folks enjoying themselves with party games, tombola, music and dancing, before heading out to the compound for the singalong and bonfire. Julian Redden
AYANAVARAM, TAMIL NADU The Ayanavaram Branch AGM on 21 July 2019 was chaired by Governing Body Member in charge of Tamil Nadu, Dr Oscar Nigli. Dr Nigli also honoured branch President, Henry Abraham, for the great service he has done for the community. Mr Abraham has been an important part of the branch since its inception and served as President from 2005 to 2019. He is an outstanding leader and a role model to many. Unfortunately, he had to step down from his post due to ill health. The youth took part in this AGM significantly; elections for the youth committee were also conducted. Carissa Sandy was elected Youth President, while Mikhail Luker and Ricky Hibba were elected Vice Presidents. The youth of the branch held their Christmas Carol competition, Canta Vita, on 8 December 2019 at St George’s Anglo-Indian High School. Eight choirs from different parts of Chennai competed and a 250-member audience made the event a great success. The Ayanavaram branch choir performed, and the young comperes did a wonderful job. The judges were DJ Vanessa Wilson from Coimbatore (who is also the President of AIAIAY) and Shivan, a veteran musician from Pondicherry. The event was also attended by special guests, Dr Oscar and Mrs Rachel Nigli, and AIAIAY Vice President Zoë Shivan. Awards: 1st place: Santa’s Elves (Madhavaram); 2nd place: Santa’s Little Helpers (Perambur); 3rd place: Nativitatis Chorum (Perambur). The Christmas Treat and Sports was held on 22 December 2019. Eighty senior citizens also joined us for lunch and received a Christmas gift each. The children enjoyed sports, games, the photobooth, bouncing castle, and ice cream, candy floss and popcorn counters. DJ Kevin Joseph’s music attracted Santa Locklyn Jeffries from the North Pole.
The Hyderabad-Secunderabad Branch AGM was held on 27 July 2019. The newly elected branch committee consists of: President: Warren LaTouche; Vice Presidents: Richard Clark, Peter Padua; Secretary: Hilary Platel; Treasurer: Clive Thompson; Committee Members: Dudley Roberts, Gavin Corrie, Urbert Fenwick, Karl Chutney. After the elections, student awards sponsored by Dr Raylene Platel were given out, and senior citizens received cash gifts sponsored by Wendy LaTouche. The evening
ended with a grand dinner and dance. The Christmas Tree was held on 21 December 2019 at the Amruthvani Hall, Secunderabad. The children were thrilled to be visited by Santa. The highlight of the evening was a long overdue felicitation of Dr Raylene Platel, and Warren and Wendy LaTouche for all that they do for the Association. Lively music, good food and dancing made it a memorable evening. The Boxing Day Dance was held on 26 December 2019 at the Tivoli Gardens, Secunderabad. As always, the hall was jam-packed, and the great music and dancing continued until five in the morning. Hilary Platel
Celebrating Wilma Kingsellers’ 40+ Years of Dedicated Service to the Bhusawal Branch Dear Mrs Wilma Kingsellers, We sincerely thank you for your long and dedicated service to the Bhusawal branch and the Anglo-Indian community. Congratulations on your tenure recognition and achievement as you celebrate this significant anniversary of your membership and dedicated service to the Bhusawal branch. Reaching this milestone is a very special occasion for you, and it is testimony of your loyalty to the Association over the years. We know that our growth and success is dependent on having devoted and capable members such as you. Our members are our greatest asset, and we are delighted to honour your dedicated service and commitment to the Association. Thank you very much! Your dedication and service are much appreciated. You are a valued member and your continued contributions
are vital for the branch to continue and to be successful. We look forward to your ongoing support and we also look forward with great expectancy to many more good years to come. Glen Young President, Bhusawal Branch
(Wilma Kingsellers joined the Association in the late 1970s and has served the branch in various capacities - President, Vice President, and Treasurer. As a goodwill gesture, Wilma has also given free tuition to deserving Anglo-Indian children of Bhusawal. With encouragement and the right support, these children are doing well and are very successful in life.)
The Community Makes Us Proud - Peter Fanthome, Lucknow The following article was published in Hindustan Times (Lucknow edition) on 28 December 2019.
THIS ACADEMICIAN LIVES LIFE WITH A PURPOSE LUCKNOW: This gentleman wears multiple hats. ‘Educationist by choice’ and ‘politician by accident’, he is a social worker too.
Memorial School, Kurseong, Darjeeling, in West Bengal as a teacher way back in 1974 and worked for about a year.
Meet Peter Fanthome, 67, an academician who later became a politician (former Member of Legislative Assembly) and social worker. Fanthome taught English and Mathematics for nearly 45 years and for 35 years, he was the principal of St Teresa’s Day School and College that grew from strength to strength under his leadership.
TEACHING CAREER BLOSSOMED IN LUCKNOW
He also established and financed the Audrey Fanthome Auditorium on Ashok Marg. The proceeds from the hall go towards the senior citizens of the Dorothy Crosswaite Homes in Lucknow as medical treatment of the elderly people required money, he said.
VIRTUES OF BEING A GOOD TEACHER “A teacher has to have leadership qualities of an all-rounder like Kapil Dev and should be a visionary like Shubash Chandra Bose. Both are worshipped as demi gods and led by examples. One is a champion captain who helped India win the 1983 World Cup when nobody gave them chance and another is a pioneer leader. If teachers can inculcate virtues among students of these two stalwarts, they are bound to excel in life. They will become role models for their students. And teachers having these qualities command highest respect from their pupils both present and past,” said Fanthome, sitting on a sofa in his Model House residence, clad in a thick woollen pullover with a muffler round his neck.
TEACHERS COMMAND RESPECT He regrets, “Today the so-called teachers are unable to command respect. It is time for them to introspect. They must ponder over why their teachers got so much respect. Maybe there is some disconnect between the present generation teachers and their students.” Fanthome’s father was a senior railway officer and his parents wanted him to join the Indian Railways. Fanthome, however, decided to chase his dream of becoming a teacher. “Teaching always fascinated me. So, I became a teacher by choice,” said Fanthome who joined Goethals
He joined St Francis’ College, Lucknow, in January 1975 and taught English and Mathematics till December 1981. “In all these years, I found most students feared Mathematics for reasons best known to them. The subject is not so difficult provided you get the concepts right. Teaching Mathematics naturally became my instinct. Now I have students who are chartered accountants and did really well in their professional life,” he said. “When I see my students in high positions it gives me immense joy. I feel proud that I lived a life with a purpose and contributed my bit so that others may lead a purposeful life. The thrill I get on seeing my students do well in their professional life cannot be expressed in words.” “That is why I keep saying teachers can’t
demand respect. You earn or command respect for certain good things that you have done in life over the years. Yes, there are certain new laws and guidelines that have restrained teachers from disciplining their pupils but this should not be a hinderance in getting respect from their pupils,” he said.
AS PRINCIPAL OF ST TERESA’S DAY SCHOOL After his mother’s death, Fanthome decided to quit St Francis’ College and became principal of St Teresa’s Day School & College, Lucknow, situated in a densely populated Model House area. “There were just 300 students and it was only up to Class 4. Each year, I added one class and finally in 1990 the first batch of students appeared for the ICSE (Class 10) examination. Classes 11 and 12 were added after sometime,” said Fanthome, former President, Association of Heads of Anglo-Indian Schools, UP. There was no looking back thereafter for Fanthome. He opened two more branches of St Teresa’s—one in Aashiana and another in Itaunja. In addition to this, there is also a playschool ‘Little Audrey’, in Triveni Nagar.
POLITICIAN BY ACCIDENT To become a politician was never on his agenda. Way back in the 1990s, an ex-pupil and a bureaucrat called him, saying that the then Chief Minister Mayawati wanted to meet him. “I went to see her and she told me that I should be going to the Vidhan Sabha as an Anglo-Indian representative. I told her to give me some time. She gave me only a few minutes. I called up a few wellwishers who told me that I should not miss this opportunity,” he said. Fanthome loves to call himself a politician by accident. He was three times nominated member in the Legislative Assembly of UP from 1997 to 2007 in the 13th and 14th Vidhan Sabha and then again in the 16th Vidhan Sabha. “I have worked with different Chief Ministers. It started with Mayawati, Kalyan Singh, Rajnath Singh, Mulayam Singh Yadav and later on Akhilesh Yadav. “I have good relations with all these Chief Ministers. But I found Akhilesh more diligent who did well, given whatever opportunity he got,” Fanthome said.
The Life and Times of Commander Noel Kelman
ommander Noel Kelman celebrated his 90th birthday on 10 June 2018 at the Defence Colony Gymkhana Club in Goa with great style. Despite his being confined to a wheelchair, his indomitable spirit and charisma shone on that evening.
Commander Kelman’s 32 years of dedicated and selfless service in the Navy earned him many laurels and commendations, and also the respect of his superiors, peers and the men that served under him. He joined the Royal Indian Navy at the tender age of 15 years as a seaman. During World War II, he served along the North African coast and escorted convoys across the Bay of Bengal to participate in the Burmese operations. At the end of the war in May 1946, he was part of the Commonwealth occupation forces in Japan. The ship that he was on was given the job of taking Japanese submarines out to sea and sink them. During that operation, a typhoon struck the Tokyo Bay while they were towing six submarines; five of the submarines which were being towed sank immediately. The sixth submarine, still secured to the
ship, was hampering the ship’s movements. This is where Noel displayed exemplary courage and showed his mettle and seamanship. He and two other sailors jumped onto the submarine in the midst of stormy seas and fierce winds, at great peril and danger to themselves, and managed to cut the submarine tow rope and set the submarine adrift. He and his colleagues spent the entire night adrift on the submarine, which was rolling on the high waves, with the ever-present danger of the submarine sinking. Through the night, he encouraged his two other colleagues and kept up their spirits. He was still cheerful when rescued the next morning. For this act of courage and leadership, Noel was awarded the King’s Commendation and His Majesty’s high appreciation for the service rendered. This was published in the London Gazette on 30 May 1947. His bravery and courage came to the fore again during the Liberation of Goa in 1961. A naval operation was mounted to flush out the Portuguese garrison on Anjadev Island on 18 December 1961. An assault party in three boats proceeded to the island. The boat which then Lieutenant Kelman was in charge of, came under intense fire and three sailors were killed. Noel was shot in both thighs. Despite being seriously wounded, he maintained discipline, continued steadfastly towards the beach, and led his men to
flush out the Portuguese troops and secure the island. He spent two months in hospital recuperating. For this act of gallantry, he was awarded the Ashoka Chakra, Second Class (now the Kirti Chakra). At the time, he was the only naval officer after Independence to win a gallantry award. One particular day, during Lord Louis Mountbatten’s visit to Burma, whilst inspecting a parade, Lord Mountbatten noticed a young seaman with a decoration on his chest. He stopped and asked of the seaman, ‘Young fella, what is this decoration you are wearing?’ The young seaman happened to be Noel Kelman, who proudly told Lord Mountbatten that it was the King’s Commendation which he earned in Japan immediately after World War II for an act of bravery. On hearing this, Lord Mountbatten promptly saluted the soldier. Noel vividly remembers that day, which is etched in his memory. On his 90th birthday, Commander Kelman was presented with a memento by the Naval Historical Museum Society. He climbed the ranks of the Navy and retired as a Commander in 1977. He settled down to a retired life in the Defence Colony, Goa, with his wife Pat. Both were an integral part of the colony and their home was always open to everyone. Noel was known for his jovial nature and his love of jokes. He was the life and soul of all the parties and always displayed his ‘never say die’ spirit. The Anglo-Indian community in Goa was proud to call you one of their own; the community salutes you. Sent in by the branch See page 63
to counter the accuracy of the machine-gun fire. A few minutes later, by the time the boat beached, it had been riddled with bullets. Kelman had been wounded on both his thighs—fortunately only flesh wounds but all the same, seriously,’ Singh wrote. The Portuguese defenders surrendered soon afterwards.
The following article was published in The Week magazine on 27 August 2019.
We Salute Them! GOA
Noel Kelman Noel Kelman, a founder member of the Goa branch, passed away on 23 August 2019, aged 92. Noel was born in Kolar Gold Fields and had a long and illustrious career in the Navy, starting at the tender age of 15. He received a commendation from the King of England in 1947 and the Kirti Chakra in 1962.
INDIAN NAVY HERO OF 1961 GOA LIBERATION WAR PASSES AWAY Retired Indian Navy commander Noel Kelman, who won the Kirti Chakra for his role in the 1961 Goa Liberation War, died in Porvorim, Goa, on August 23. Kelman (92) was buried in Panaji on Monday with the Indian Navy according ceremonial honours. Kelman was a founder member of the Goa branch of The All-India Anglo-Indian Association. On its Facebook page, The AllIndia Anglo-Indian Association noted Kelman had joined the then Royal Indian Navy at the age of 15. He was awarded a commendation from the King of England in 1947. Kelman was honoured with the Kirti Chakra for his bravery during the Indian Navy’s conquest of Anjadip Island of the coast of Goa. In his book,
Blueprint to Bluewater, the Indian Navy, 1951-65, retired rear admiral Satyindra Singh details the role Kelman played in the eviction of the Portuguese. The 1961 Goa Liberation War was the shortest major conflict India fought since independence, lasting just three days, and the first to feature a major role for the Navy. Kelman was a senior commissioned gunner during the war. Kelman was commanding a boat from the ship INS Trishul to Anjadip when it came under heavy fire. ‘Kelman, with great presence of mind, continued towards the beach, zigzagging the boat
Soon after landing on Anjadip, Kelman was advised to return to the Trishul. But he chose to stay on to assist with operations, despite his injuries. He returned to the Trishul only after the tricolour was raised on Anjadip. Singh wrote, ‘The fine example, high quality of leadership and outstanding personal courage displayed by Senior Commissioned gunner N. Kelman, in complete disregard of his personal safety and discomfort, inspired the men under his command and contributed greatly to the victory of the day.’
KHARAGPUR, WEST BENGAL
The following message was posted on our official Facebook page on 15 December 2019. OLIVE LENNON PASSES AWAY—A HUGE LOSS FOR THE COMMUNITY Olive Lennon, 94, President of the Kharagpur branch, passed away peacefully in her sleep early this morning. A legendary teacher, she received a prestigious honour to a standing ovation at The Telegraph School Awards for Excellence held in Kolkata on 7 September this year, her 94th birthday. When I, as the nominated Anglo-Indian MLA at the time, revived the Kharagpur branch after two decades, I realised that the community wanted only one person as its president—Olive Lennon—already well into her seventies! Initially a trifle reluctant, she finally agreed not to turn down my request to lead the branch for ‘a few years’ till it stood firmly on its feet. That request was repeated every year, year after year, simply because she was the most respected Anglo-Indian in this heritage railway town. Today, thanks to a dedicated and hardworking committee led by Mrs Lennon, the Kharagpur branch is an active and caring branch with about 225 members. This year, she must have called me a dozen times, requesting me to attend the branch AGM. She scolded me, saying, ‘The President-in-Chief lives less than three hours away from us but he hasn’t yet visited us. You kept pushing me all these years
to sit in the chair. So you better come now, Barry, my dear friend— because I think this is going to be my last AGM.’ I promised her that I would attend the AGM—not as the Presidentin-Chief but as ‘Barry, her dear friend’. I did... and she was unanimously elected yet again—much against her wishes! She had a bit of a sore throat, but was up to it—looking radiant, speaking ever so clearly and leading ever so firmly! When I wished her goodbye and told her we would meet sometime soon, she replied, ‘Maybe... maybe not!’ Sadly, it’s ‘maybe not!’ On behalf of the Governing Body and all our members, I salute you and pray for the repose of your soul. Sleep well, my dear friend, Mrs Lennon. It’s a rest well deserved, a life well lived, a community well served. From safe in the arms of Jesus, watch over your beloved branch, your favourite place— Kharagpur! Barry O’Brien President-in-Chief The All-India Anglo-Indian Association
We Salute Them! VILLUPURAMPONDICHERRY
Joan Parker The Villupuram-Pondicherry branch records, with a deep sense of sorrow, the passing of one of its members, Joan
Parker on 8 October 2019. Joan was the beloved mother of Marcus (who was present at the AGM in Lucknow), Aaron and Walter Parker. She was a quiet person with an immeasurable amount of love that she spread around, generous to the core, and with a subtle sense of humour that had everyone in splits when in conversation with her. She will be greatly missed not just by her boys, her daughtersin-law Barbara and Preetha, and her little grand-daughter Abigail, but by all those who were fortunate enough to have known her. Dr Cheryl-Ann Shivan
Dorothy Geraldine Pearson was born in 1942 to Major Anthony Jones (British-Indian Army) and his wife Gemma (née McGowan) in Allahabad. She and her family migrated to Birmingham, England, in 1961, and Dorothy began working in a local clothes factory and, for the first time, tried her hand at cooking. Many years later, this led to the publication of Grand Ma’s Old Anglo-Indian Cookery Book, a collection of Anglo-Indian recipes. Tragedy struck when her husband Neil, a keen hockey player, died on the playing field from a massive heart attack in April 1991. He was just 49. Distraught and grieving, the young widow travelled to Goa to recuperate and plan her future; but Dorothy fell in love with Goa. She bought an apartment in Goa in 1992 and began spending winters there. Dorothy established herself as a couturier and spent much of her time making gowns, suits and clothes for her clientele. Her other hobbies included cooking, angling, travel and gardening. She was a member of the Goa branch from its inception in January 2009 until her demise on 10 January 2020. May her soul rest in peace.
KOLAR GOLD FIELDS, KARNATAKA
Olga Lewis Olga Lewis, one of the oldest members of the Kolar Gold Fields branch, passed away on 27 August 2019 at the ripe old age of 87. Olga was well known
in KGF and was one of the best teachers of her time. She served many years all over the country in various schools in Shimla, Nainital, and Mussoorie. She retired from St Joseph’s Convent English School, Champion Reefs, KGF. She was a very loving, kind and deeply religious person, who always thought about the less fortunate. She will be missed by one and all. May her soul rest in peace. Catherine Taylor
Michael Narcis, a member of the Nagpur branch and brother of Arthur and Christopher Narcis, passed away on 22 October 2019. He was 63 years old. He leaves behind a host of relatives and friends. May his soul rest in peace.
Hilda Pereira The Nagpur branch bid farewell to their oldest member Hilda Pereira, who passed away on
26 January 2020. She was 93 years old and had lived in Calcutta before she settled in Nagpur. She was a nurse by profession, an accomplished violinist, and a great singer. May her soul rest in peace. Susan Coutinho
VEPERY, TAMIL NADU
Philo Delcourt The following message was posted on our official Facebook page on 15 October 2019.
Philo Delcourt has been a long-standing member of the Vepery branch. My association with her is over two decades. A stalwart who was on the branch committee for many years, she was a great support to me. She was a grateful Anglo-Indian, always remembering good things done. On behalf of The All- India Anglo-Indian Association, I condole her demise. All our prayers. Dr Oscar Nigli
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
The All-India Anglo-Indian Association honoured several branches and individuals at the Awards Ceremony of the National Annual General Meeting held in Lucknow. Here are some of the highlights of the evening.
The Albert Barrow Award for the Best Secretariat
Mr Rudolf Woodman, Honorary General Secretary, and Mr Bernard Rodrigues, National Vice President and Governing Body Member in charge of Chhattisgarh, presented ‘The Albert Barrow Award for the Best Secretariat’: gold to the Goa and Tiruchirappalli branches; silver to the Pallavaram, Ayanavaram and Lucknow branches and bronze to the Bhusawal branch.
The Major General Williams Award for Projects and Events
Mr Derrick Fernandez, Governing Body Member in charge of Kerala, Mrs Juila Fernandez, and Mr Greg Mann, MLA, presented ‘The Major General Williams Award for Projects and Events’: gold to the Calcutta and Devlali-Nasik-Igatpuri branches; silver to the Danapur, Bangalore, Patna and Jamshedpur branches and bronze to the Vijayawada, Jabalpur and Trivandrum (not in the photopgraph) branches.
The Joyce O’Brien True Spirit of the Community Award
Dr Denzil Godin, MLA, and Dr Mrs Lina Godin, Mr Joe Bailey, President, Australia Anglo-Indian Association, Canberra, and Mrs Charmine Bailey, presented ‘The Joyce O’Brien True Spirit of the Community Award’: gold to the Podanur, Pallavaram and Mumbai branches and bronze to the Kolar Gold Fields, Hubli, Korba, St Thomas Mount and Jhansi branches.
Hotel Clarks Avadh, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh • 5 October 2019
Regd No: DL (ND) - 11/6099/2009-2011 RNI No: 43057/74
The All-India Anglo-Indian Association honoured several branches and individuals at the Awards Ceremony of the National Annual General Meeting held in Lucknow. Here are some of the highlights of the evening.
The Sheila Irani Award for the Most Promising Branch
Mr Justin Clarke, Governing Body Member in charge of Goa, and Mrs Linda Clarke, presented ‘The Sheila Irani Award for the Most Promising Branch’: gold to the Delhi and Bangalore branches; silver to the Villupuram-Pondicherry and Erode branches and bronze to the Allahabad, Rajahmundry and Guntakal (not in the photopgraph) branches.
The Derozio Award for Projecting the Community
Mr Adrian D’Cruz, Governing Body Member and Mrs Vinisha Nero, MLA and Governing Body Member in charge of Karnataka, presented ‘The Derozio Award for Projecting the Community’: gold to the Bangalore branch; silver to the Devlali-Nasik-Igatpuri and Agra branches and bronze to the Pune branch.
The Sir Henry Gidney Award for The Review
Mr Warren LaTouche, Governing Body Member in charge of Telangana, and Mrs Wendy LaTouche, presented ‘The Sir Henry Gidney Award for The Review’: gold to the Madurai, Jamshedpur and Khurda Road-Bhubaneswar (not in photograph) branches; silver to the Tiruchirappalli, Bangalore, Devlali-Nasik-Igatpuri, Agra and Nagpur branches and bronze to the Patna branch. Printed and Published by Mr. Barry O’Brien, for and on behalf of The All-India Anglo-Indian Association, N-74, Bombay Life Building, Connaught Circus, New Delhi - 110 001 and Printed at CDC Printers (P) Ltd. Tangra Industrial Estate II, 45 Radhanath Chowdhury Road Kolkata - 700 015, West Bengal Editor - Mr. Barry O’Brien
Official Magazine of The All–India Anglo–Indian Association