Markham Town Council approves a proclamation to mark Tamil Heritage Days

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Markham, Ontario

December 13, 2011 – During a regular council meeting at Markham Civic Centre, Markham Town Council proclaimed January 13, 14 and 15 as ‘Tamil Heritage Days’, effectively becoming the first Municipality in Canada to recognize Tamil Heritage Days. Markham Tamil Organization would like to thank Councillor Logan Kanapathi for his efforts over the last 2 years in moving this proclamation forward.

January is a time of harvest for farmers in countries like India and Sri Lanka. Thai Pongal is a celebration that offers thanks to the sun and cattle for a good season and abundant harvest. Thai Pongal is celebrated by members of the Tamil community all around the world, irrespective of their religion. January is also considered to be an auspicious month to celebrate weddings as farmers are often in possession of wealth due to a good harvest.

“This proclamation is very fitting since Markham is home to a large percentage of Tamil Canadians”, said Juanita Nathan of the Markham Tamil Organization. “It will also provide an opportunity for Tamil Canadians to gather, celebrate and also share the richness of the Tamil culture with their fellow Markham residents”, added Nathan.

Thai Pongal also marks the first day of January as per the Tamil calendar which is calculated based on the birth of Thiruvalluvar, a celebrated poet and philosopher by Tamils all over the world.

“Our Mayor and members of Council have always embraced the growing diversity in the Town of Markham. I’m honored and privileged to have been able to contribute to preserve the Tamil Heritage”, remarked Ward 7 Councilor Logan Kanapathi. “Today is another historical day for Tamil Canadians and Markham is the only municipality in Canada to have passed proclamation of this kind.”

“The Town of Markham has always been a leader in such initiatives and has become a role model for other municipalities”, said Neethan Shan, Chair of Tamil Heritage Coordinating Committee. “We hope that others recognize the historical and traditional value that Tamil Canadians add to the multicultural mosaic of Canada and hope that others will follow suit”, added Shan.

Markham Tamil Organization is a group that brings tens of thousands of Tamil residents in Markham together to address social, political and economic needs of the community and aims to work collectively with other communities for social change.

For Media Inquiries:
Markham Tamil Organization 905-471-8070

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