The Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, brought together Hindu leaders from the West Midlands region at the Shri Venkateswara (Balaji) Temple, the largest temple in Europe, on 21 March to celebrate the festival of Holi. Given the shocking Mosque attacks in Birmingham the evening before, the Mayor’s speech focussed on the Puranic story of Holi and it’s message of good over evil.
He said: “The ancient story of Holi about Prahalad and Holika shows that goodness will always prevail over evil. It is something we must think about in the West Midlands today in the face of intolerance and threats on the Muslim faith. When I went to visit the Muslim community earlier in the day the thing they were most comforted by was the response from other faiths, and of course the Hindu faith was one of the first to condemn the attacks and provide comfort in this time of need.
“The Hindu community have made a home in the West Midlands and have not only contributed to business and the economy but also to the peaceful and tolerant society we have here in the West Midlands.
“Holi is a celebration of different colours and how they exist beautifully together. The West Midlands is made up of people of so many different ethnicities, languages, heritages and faiths and that is our beauty; it is something to be celebrated.”
The event was sponsored by Enzen UK, a knowledge-based Energy and Utility enterprise serving the Gas, Power and Water sectors. An Indian company, it has made a successful home in Solihull, UK, where it serves clients throughout the UK. Manish Jamthe, UK CEO of Enzen UK showed his appreciation to the Mayor for bringing the community together and for promoting the message of community spirit in the West Midlands.