Lord Ganesha. Image credit: Facebook Page
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Toronto, July 22 (Canadian-Media): Toronto Mayor John Tory had Joined members of Scarborough community on Saturday at the Sri Varasiththi Vinaayagar Hindu Temple Om Vin-Eye- A-Gar!'s 17th Annual Chariot Festival to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi -- one of the widely celebrated Hindu festivals in India -- on 22nd and 23rd of this month In Kennedy, at Scarborough Ontario, media reports said.
Tory had a chance to meet Arnold ChanLib, MP for Scarborough-Agincourt. Deputy Government House Leader, Soo Wong, Member of Provincial Parliament for Scarborough-Agincourt, Han Dong, MPP for Spadina, Kathleen Wynne, Leader of the Ontario Liberal Party & Premier of Ontario. Mary Ng, Member of Parliament for the diverse and dynamic riding of Markham-Thornhill.
"Real honor to have been able to be part of Sri Varasiththi Vinaayagar Hindu Temples Of Toronto 's Annual Chariot Festival with the John Tory and Kathleen Wynne. This my 4th year of attending the event. Thank you to all organizers and volunteers and very importantly my good friend Ganesan Sugumar who all worked hard to organizing this great event in Scarborough--Agincourt," said Arnold in the facebook account of John Tory.
Ganesh Chaturthi celebration started as a public event by the founder of the Maratha Dynasty Shivaji (1630-1680) in Pune. But in the year 1893, with the purpose of bringing people together, Lokmanya Tilak transformed this domestic festival into a well-organized and widely celebrated festival.
Ganesh Chaturthi, which is celebrated all over India, is concentrated in states such as Maharashtra, Goa, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, where it is celebrated with great enthusiasm.
Cultural and religious programs of Indian communities -- are organized which adds grandeur to the festival -- who instal Ganesha Idol, sing Aarti, and distribute Prasad.
But since Indians have settled all over the world, this festival has become globally recognized.
Besides India, other countries such as Canada, Australia, Singapore, Mauritius, Cambodia, Thailand, Burma, USA, UK and Fiji celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi and governments of few above mentioned countries have declared a public holiday for that day.
Celebrations in Toronto, the capital of Canada, where Indians reside in large numbers with limited resources are prearrange by numerous Marathi associations in Toronto.
Vancouver, in British Columbia, is another Canadian city in Canada, with large Indian community, that celebrates Ganesh Chaturthi with grandeur.
The faith behind the Ganesh Chaturthi celebration is that Lord Ganesha will offer his blessing and bring good fortune and prosperity to his devotees.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)