When I first met Mr. Sujan Chinoy at the Republic Day function organised at the Consul General’s residence three years ago, I first thought he is an Army Officer but after he started reading out the speech that it was established that he is our new Consul General. That was the first official function for Mr. Chinoy in Sydney. The second was a couple of days later on January 28th 2005 at the Grand Apollo in Burwood. He was mesmerized by dance performances by a girl Sanghmitra who has now found a foothold in Bollywood. And, he still remembers that high -powered dance performance. It all seems happened only yesterday. But the time flies faster than we think. Here we were all together again but this time to give him a farewell. And, this was for the first time in Sydney or may be Australia that all the popular organisations had got together and gave a combined farewell to Mr. Chinoy. May be the time was short at Mr. Chinoy’s hand and he wanted that way.
Hence, the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan Australia, Australia India Business Council,NSW (AIBC), United Indian Association (UIA) , Global Organisation of Person of Indian Origin (GOPIO) Sydney Chapters, GOPIO Australia Business Council and Federation of Australian Indian Associations (FAIA) jointly hosted the farewell dinner for the Consul General of India Sujan Chinoy at the Maharaja Haveli Restaurant, Quakers Hill on Sunday 21 December 2008.
Mr. Gambhir Watts, President Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan Australia in his opening address recalled his Mr. Chinoy’s participation in almost all Bhavan’s functions starting with Interfaith Prayer meeting 30 January 2006, India’s participation as a guest nation in the four-day long Australia National Field Days at Orange, visits to regional and outback Australia including Broken Hills, Mirwillumbah, Kyogle, Byron Bay and other places and last but not the least the Holi Mahotsav and World Culture Concert and Arts Festival.
Mr. Raj Natarajan, president of UIA remembered eloquent and impromptu speeches of Mr. Chinoy in various UIA functions including, India’s Republic Day dinner, Australia India Friendship Fair and others. He also talked about Mr. Chinoy’s inclination towards cricket and narrated some anecdotes.
Dipen Rughani, President-elect of Australia India Business Council spoke about Mr.Chinoy’s key contribution in the various events of AIBC and also in substantially increasing the business relationship between Australia and India.
Other Community leaders Vish Vishwanathan, President FAIA, Dr Virk, President GOPIO Australia Business Council, Noel Lal, Regional Vice President GOPIO, Lalli Sethuram and others expressed their memories of Hon Sujan Chinoy in their respective events. Dr Virk particularly remembered Mr. Sujan Chinoy’s frequent reference to Karam Bhumi for Australia and Janama Bhumi for India
All the participating organisations presented special mementos commemorating their gratitude to the Consul General for his guidance and support to all the Australian communities of Indian heritage.
Mr.Laurie Ferguson, Parliamentary Secretary for Multicultural Affairs and Settlement Services and Dr Stepan Kerkyasharian, Chair of Community Relations Commission for a Multicultural New South Wales recalled their association with Mr. Chinoy and his immense contribution to and love for the Indian communities and India.
Other community leaders participating in the farewell dinner included Dr Rohitas Batta, President GOPIO Sydney, Harmohan Singh Walia, President GOPIO Sydney North West, Jagdish Lodhia President GOPIO Sydney South West, Jaya Kumar Sadanand, President Sydney Mayalee Association, Dr Narasimhan Reddy, President Technocrats Association of Australia, Dr Vijay Kumar, Vice President of UIA, Dilip Chopra, Treasurer UIA and Councillor, Hornsby Shire Council, Salee Nair, CEO State Bank of India Sydney, Sujay Banarji, CEO The New India Assurance Company, Satish Vermani, CEO Bank of Baroda Sydney, Kumar Parakala, Director (Asia) KPMG, author Christopher Kremmer, Lenn Kenna, Crystal Jordan and number of other community leaders, scholars, and artists.
Mrs Vidya Chinoy received a bouquet from Mrs. Bhoji Watts. Senior Consuls from the Indian Consulate, Mr. Kidar Singh, Head of Chancery and Mr. Yadu Vansh Dayal accompanied by their spouses were among the VIPs present at the dinner.
Punjabi dances and musical items were presented with the courtesy of Dr Moninder Singh, President Punjab Council of Australia and Co owner Maharaja’s Haveli Restaurant.