21 May 2013
May 21, 2013 Vol. 5 | Issue 100 | www.iwk.co.nz
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21 May 2013
Getting to know the
Kiwi Indian better
As the Indian Weekender kicks off its historic and momentous occasion of honouring
those in the community who have made us proud because of their achievements in our
adopted homeland, New Zealand Indians, selected at random, tell us what it means
to be a Kiwi Indian - whether their origins are Fiji, India, South Africa, Malaysia, Sri
Lanka, Pakistan, or elsewhere in the Southeast Asia region.
In New Zealand, we are all Kiwi Indians . . .
Who are Kiwi Indians? Pg 3
People have their say

At a glance
Indian Weekender milestones Pg 32
Hello! Pg 33
Meet the Indian Weekender team
Congratulations Pg 34
Well-wishers raise a toast
Jury’s out: Kiwi-Indian or Pg 38
Take the Indian Weekender quiz
Perspective Pg 39
Comments from academics,
historians and journalists
In-focus Pg 45
Shreya Gejji speaks to the
trail-blazers of generation 1.5
Past tense Pg 50
Bharath Jamnadas writes about
the Indian community’s struggle
against racism
Sepia tones Pg 47
A family looks back on their
100 years in New Zealand
Superstars and heroes Pg 54
Fiji-Indians who have made
their mark
“Despite living in India for Pg 60
over 20 years, I can never
call myself Indian.”
William Dalrymple talks to
Arwa Janjali
Food for sharing Pg 62
Recipe by Indian Weekender
columnist Ruby Dhillon
What’s inside...
Pg 47
Pg 45
21 May 2013
“While New Zealand isn’t my place of birth, it is defnitely what I consider home. Emigrating
here from the UK 34 years ago has been one of the best decisions I have made, and I’ve never
looked back. New Zealand is reminiscent of my birth country Kenya – the warmer climate, friendly
people, the emphasis on outdoor recreation, and some of the most stunning scenery the world has
to offer. It is a place that allows me to represent New Zealand at the highest level in my chosen
profession. I am a very proud Ksiwi.”

About: Born in Nairobi, Kenya, Dipak Patel has been an integral part of the New Zealand Cricket
team Black Caps since 1978, after moving to NZ from England. A stylish middle order batsman and
a right-arm off-break bowler, Mr. Patel is the fourth player in the History of World Cricket to score
200 runs and take 10 wickets in a First Class game. In 1985, he was appointed as the Head Coach/
Selector of the Auckland Cricket Association and is now serving as the New Zealand Cricket Level
3 Coach. In 2006, he was awarded the Prime Minister’s Scholarship Spin bowling and became
the only NZ cricket coach to have received this scholarship to date. He is currently the Director of
Coaching at the Howick Pakuranga Cricket Academy.
“Emigrating here
from the UK 34 years
ago has been one of
the best decisions I
have made. I am a
very proud kiwi.”
Dipak Patel |
“I am proud to call myself a Kiwi-Indian. It is a privilege to be a part of the Indian community
in New Zealand. At the same time, New Zealand has given me the opportunity to build a
successful business and contribute by generating employment as well as offer my services to the
communities – both Indian and Kiwi.”
About: Mr. Nauhria is originally from Punjab and was born in 1944 in Dharamkot village near
Moga. He graduated in Electrical Engineering from BITS, Pilani, in 1970 before migrating to New
Zealand in 1972, where he set up his own construction and property business in 1976.
He runs a construction frm (concrete and reinforcing steel) in Auckland that generates
signifcant employment. Mr. Nauhria stands at the forefront of the Indian community and is the
founder President of the Bharatiya Mandir in Auckland, set up in 1986.
Former Vice-President of Hare Krishna Mandir (ISCKON) in Auckland, Nauhria is the president
of the United Indians, the apex body of the 23 major Indian associations in that country.
“I am proud to call
myself a Kiwi-Indian”
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“I am a third generation Kiwi-Indian and proud of my heritage. As a Kiwi-Indian, I am
fortunate to have my roots in a rich culture coupled with my surrounding – the country we
call home, New Zealand. And I frmly believe that in order to be a successful Kiwi-Indian, one must
be positive and take pride in who we are. So be proud to be an Indian and be proud to be a Kiwi.”
About: Mrs. Patel is a founder, director and member of the Executive Committee of the East Tamaki
Healthcare (ETHC) Group of Companies. She currently holds a range of leadership, advisory and
governance roles involving healthcare, employment for women and other arenas. She is also an
advisor for the Counties Manukau Police.
Mrs. Patel is a Trustee of the International Swaminarayan Satsang Organisation and has
contributed immensely through her active participation in a range of community centric activities.
She was awarded a QSM for her work in the Indian Community and was also bestowed with the
‘IBA Best Businesswoman of the Year Award’ in 2011.
“I frmly believe that in
order to be a successful
Kiwi-Indian, one must
be positive and take
pride in who we are. So
be proud to be an Indian
and be proud to be a
Ranjna Patel |
Businesswoman and Community Leader
21 May 2013
21 May 2013
“Craving for fresh Bluff Oysters and Indian-Hot Dahl at the same time. Eating fresh Bluff
Oysters and Indian-Hot Dahl at the same time. Doing my own home DIY renovations and
thinking to myself that there is money to be made out of this! Taking up Paragliding as a hobby
and hoping that my parents never ever fnd out that I undertake such an activity. Having Mayor
Tim Shadbolt say to me at the NZ Citizenship Ceremony: “You’ve waited long enough to call
yourself a Kiwi!”
About: Mr. Guha is the Deputy CEO (Corporate) for the Southern Institute of Technology (SIT)
for the last 16 years. He is the Financial Architect of the Zero Fee Scheme, now in its 11
Mr. Guha is responsible for the Finance, Marketing and International areas at SIT and works
closely with the Invercargill Community Leaders to attract more new migrants to Southland.
Originally from Singapore, he arrived in New Zealand as an international student in 1984. He
holds a MBA and a B Com from Otago University and is also a Chartered Accountant. Mr. Guha
is married to Fiona Tyrie (a Southlander) and they have one daughter.
“Being Kiwi Indian
is when Mayor Tim
Shadbolt says to me
at the NZ Citizenship
Ceremony: “You’ve
waited long enough to
call yourself a Kiwi!”
Bharat Guha |
Corporate Executive
“I was born in India and raised in New Zealand. This has given me a unique ability to respect
tradition yet question everything about it. Being a Kiwi-Indian is about a mindset – it enables me
to be close to what is and then imagine what it could be. Kiwi-Indians know how to shake the status
About: Divya Dhar is a medical doctor from New Zealand. She is heading a team committed to
bringing doctor to doctor communications out of the pager era onto smartphone platforms. She is
founder of the P3 Foundation, a non-proft committed to end extreme poverty in the Asia-Pacifc
region within a generation. She wrote a policy adopted by the New Zealand government to stop
doctor emigration by repaying a doctors student loan for working in an area of workforce need. She
is currently completing a dual degree in Masters in Business Administration and Masters in Public
Administration at Wharton Business School and Harvard Kennedy School respectively. She was
awarded the title of ‘Young New Zealander of the Year’ in 2010.
“Being a Kiwi-Indian
is about a mindset – it
enables me to be close
to what is and then
imagine what it could
Divya Dhar |
Doctor and Youth Icon
21 May 2013
CALL 0800 48 28 58
21 May 2013
“After living in Aotearoa New Zealand for the past 25 years, I feel privileged to consider
myself a Kiwi. When I frst arrived here the total ethnic Indian population was probably
about 15,000 and since then the Indian population is now nearly ten folds. I respect the pioneering
Indians who arrived here in dribs and drabs since the late 18
century. Faced with hostilities and
prejudice they fought for equality and cultural respect and paved the way for others like us who
have arrived here in recent years. It is great to see that New Zealand is now committed to
multiculturalism and I have total confdence in the host community.”
About: Mr. Jamnadas is well known as the presenter, researcher, reporter and director of Asia
Downunder television series (1994 to 2011) on TVNZ (TV One). He was popular as the presenter
of a cooking segment in the programme, cooking mainly Indian dishes.
A former senior journalist and restaurateur from Fiji, he has played different roles in the
Auckland Indian community. He co-organised the annual Diwali at the Aotea Square from 1995 to
2008 and has been involved in multiple events.
Additionally, he has been a recipient of awards (Human Rights Commission) for Positive
Contribution to Cultural Diversity and Race Relation in New Zealand.
“I respect the pioneering
Indians who arrived
here in dribs and drabs
since the late 18th
century. Faced with
hostilities and prejudice
they fought for equality
and cultural respect and
paved the way for others
like us.”
Bharat Jamnadas |
Journalist & Media Personality
“Over 44 long years ago my English wife and I migrated to New Zealand considering it to be
an ideal place to bring up our young family and indeed it was so. This was a kind country with
caring and supportive people. We found, as with other migrants, New Zealand provided much luck to
those starting off with nothing as we could fnd work, build our home, raise a family and create a
fulflling life.”
About: Mr. Iqbal is a practicing lawyer and is originally from Surat, India. He has contributed to
the community in many ways, like for instance, assisting the construction of the Mahatma Gandhi
complex. Since 1972 he represents the World Muslim Congress and has supported numerous
interfaith and multicultural initiatives.
“We found, as with
other migrants, New
Zealand provided much
luck to those starting
off with nothing as we
could fnd work, build
our home and create a
fulflling life.”
Mohammed Iqbal |
Community Leader
21 May 2013
“Being a Kiwi-Indian to me is about adopting New Zealand as my home at the same time,
preserving my cultural identity as a person of Indian origin.”
About: Mr. Patel has recently been elected as the President of the New Zealand Indian Central
Association. Mr. Patel has previously served the Auckland Indian Association for 7 and he is
currently a member of both the Board of Trustees and the Executive Committee. He has also held
various other positions over the years such as the Chairperson of the entertainment committee.
Along with this, he has been a member of the Access community Radio and has organized several
Religious and cultural events at the Mahatma Gandhi Centre. He has also served as the President of
the Pt Chevalier Lions club in Auckland for the year 2011-2012.
In 2011, Harshad was awarded a Queen’s Service medal for his extensive service to the Indian
community at large in New Zealand.
“I am a product of my upbringing. The strongest infuences on me come from my Indianness and
this includes everything about family, service, hard work, respect, and spirituality. Our music,
cuisine and celebrations are an integral part of who I am.
Being a Kiwi Indian means being able to combine my Indianness with the best of Kiwi traditions
to contribute to New Zealand’s interests through everything I have done over the past 49 years I have
lived here.
My children are third generation Kiwis. Our interests are New Zealand’s interests. In every position
I have held in New Zealand I have been privileged to be able to serve and demonstrate the best of what
it means to be an Indian New Zealander.”

About: Dr Rajen is a former Associate Professor in Social Policy and Social Work from Massey
University. He was New Zealand’s Race Relations Conciliator from 1996 to 2001 and served in
2003/4 as a Member of the Residence Review Board.
He was the founding Chief Commissioner of the Families Commission from 2004 to 2008. He
became a Member of Parliament for the Labour Party at in 2008 and is the Party’s Spokesperson
for Ethnic Affairs, Spokesperson for Social Inclusion and Associate Spokesperson for Social
Development and Employment. He is the Chairman of Bank of Baroda New Zealand and a Board
Member of Friend of Fiji Health.
“...adopting New
Zealand as my home
at the same time,
preserving my cultural
identity as a person of
Indian origin.”
“In every position
I have held in New
Zealand I have been
privileged to be able to
serve and demonstrate
the best of what it
means to be an Indian
New Zealander.”
Harshad Patel |
Community Leader
Rajen Prasad |
21 May 2013
Tulja Centre 190 Stoddard Road, Mt Roskill • Ph: 09 629 3333
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21 May 2013
“Categories, however hyphenated make me uncomfortable. They pigeon-hole, stereotype and
reduce one to a set of choices. This ‘non-categorization’ I seem to advocate is no means an
attempt to white-wash difference, or to justify an abhorrent assimalist paradigm. Instead I suggest that
we think of difference not as distinct immutable categories but more as fuid psychic and physical
locations that we occupy depending on situation and circumstance. As a Kiwi-Indian flmmaker, I am
interested in representations that allow me/us to migrate from one to the other, or live in the liminal
spaces in between.”
About: Ms. Kothari is a screenwriter, producer, and academic. She writes for the flm and television
industries in New Zealand, India, and USA. Both her co-written feature flms “Firaaq” and “Apron
Strings” premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2008. She is also the
executive producer of six award-winning short flms including “Six Dollar Fifty Man” which was
shortlisted for an Academy Award in 2010 and won the special distinction award at Festival de
Cannes in France in 2009. She is also the recipient of the New Zealand Film Commission’s Writer’s
Award for 2009. She teaches Screen Production in the Department of Film, Television and Media
Studies at University of Auckland in New Zealand. Shuchi is currently working on a dramedy with
an American stand-up comedian, and hindi-language romantic comedy for UTV-Disney.
“Categories, however
hyphenated make me
uncomfortable. They
pigeon-hole, stereotype
and reduce one to a set of
Shuchi Kothari |
Screenwriter, Producer & Academic
“Meeting my NZ born Indian wife in the UK over 40 years ago was a true blessing. She
described NZ as a clean, green and a quiet country and we decided to migrate soon after
getting married. Being a qualifed Mechanical Engineer, NZ presented me with opportunities and I
was able set up the frst Computerized Numerical Work Centre in the country. My life and living in
NZ with my wife and our children has been a wonderful experience.”
About: Mr Patel owns and runs several businesses – food franchicees and property development
companies. For several decades, he has contributed to the community in several formal and informal
capacities. He was the frst Treasurer during the building of the Mahatma Gandhi Complex in
“Meeting my NZ born
Indian wife in UK over
40 years ago was a true
blessing. She described
NZ as a clean, green
and a quiet country
and we decided to
migrate soon after
getting married.”
Chandu Patel |
Businessman & Community leader
21 May 2013
“Being a Kiwi-Indian is a synergy of two cultures, mindsets, virtues and, this can lead to an
enlightened way of living. There is no doubt that the systems and environment in New Zealand
are great, however there are emerging concerns for communities which need to be addressed.
A few are: recognition of overseas qualifcations, problems with education standards and job
opportunities resulting in young people leaving the country, armed robberies which are dangerous
and distressing for everyone and minimal penalties for armed robberies. Additionally, economic
conditions aren’t right with high unemployment and crime as a logical outcome.”
About: Mr. Rahal arrived in New Zealand in the 1980s. His maternal grandfather had immigrated
in 1914. He set up a hospitality business in 1993 and for the past two decades has served the
community in different capacities. He is the Chairman of the New Zealand Helping Hand Society
Inc, an organisation that is involved in community service and support. He was appointed Justice of
Peace in 2008 and was honoured with the Queen’s Service Medal (QSM) in 2012.
“I wish I knew! I guess it’s refected in the theatre I make. That blend of Western theatrical
craft infused with Eastern favours. To be honest I try not to think too hard about that stuff. It
would make my plays very earnest and boring. It’s just me.”
About: Mr. Rajan was born in 1966 in BatuGaja, Malaysia but both his parents are from Kerala,
India. He has a BSc in Microbiology, a primary school teaching diploma and he is the frst Indian
graduate from ToiWhakaari: The New Zealand Drama School. In 1996, he formed the Indian Ink
Theatre Company with Justin Lewis. Together they have written 5 plays – Krishnan’s Dairy, The
Candlestickmaker, The Pickle King, The Dentist’s Chair and Guru of Chai. He was made a NZ Arts
Foundation Laureate in 2002 and a Member of the NZ Order of Merit in 2013.
“Being a Kiwi-Indian
is a synergy of two
cultures, mindsets,
virtues, and this can
lead to an enlightened
way of living.”
“I wish I knew! I guess
it’s reflected in the
theatre I make. To
be honest I try not to
think too hard about
that stuff. It would
make my plays very
earnest and boring.”
Davinder Rahal
Community Leader and Entrepreneur
Jacob Rajan |
Playwright & Actor
Job No / Title:
ZMAS32931 Auckland_India Weekender
26.5cm(W) x 18cm(H)
Artist / Date:
4 Colour
Jeff 14052013
Revise/ Date:
Studio / QC:
Art Director:
AC Servicing / Client:
MAS32913 Aucland_India print OL_X3.ai 15/05/2013_6PM
SL M9A67547MAY13
21 May 2013
“Born in Fiji as third generation Indian, I lost connection with my Indian culture and language.
I grew up mixing and growing up in a multicultural society. Being in New Zealand is an extension
of living in Fiji, only with more opportunities, better education and security for family.
In my experience as an Indian living in NZ, I notice Indians are divided and fragmented – Indian
or Fijian Indian. Who are we? Indian from NZ, Or Fiji or India, we are all Indians who have made
New Zealand our home. I am proud of being an Indian; I am proud of its culture of plurality and its
intrinsic attitude of tolerance. I feel patriotic towards the country I was born in, (Fiji), the country of
my heritage (India) and NZ the country I call home. I think I am very lucky to be in living in a country
which is truly multicultural.”
“To me being Kiwi-Indian is embracing and respecting the best of both cultures... it’s a gift that
we have been blessed with. This is something only very few Indians and migrants enjoy. Being a
Kiwi-Indian I accept a Kiwi lifestyle and all it has to offer, while at the same time I share our culture,
values and traditions with the people we have chosen to open the doors to their country, we now call
“I feel patriotic towards
the country I was born
in, (Fiji), the country of
my heritage (India) and
NZ the country I call
“Being a Kiwi-Indian I
accept a Kiwi lifestyle
and all it has to offer,
while at the same time I
share our culture, values
and traditions...”
Daven Naidu |
IT & Business Consultant
Mark Pinto de Menezes |

Musician & Educator
09-257 2237 021 058 9551
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“Being a Kiwi-Indian is a unique entity not to mention an absolute privilege. I get to live in what
truly is the best country in the world with the heritage of one of the most amazing cultures
around. As the diaspora from India increases in New Zealand we are fortunate that our traditions and
food travel with them for older generations and future generations to hold onto. Being a small populated
country a Kiwi-Indian community is a very small but unique ratio of what the world’s population is
made up of. And I can say I am very proud to be a part of such a select group of people.”
About: Mr. Singh came to Fiji with his parents as a new-born in 1936. In fact, he is named after
the ship (SS Ganges), aboard which he was born while at sea. In 1960, Mr. Singh came to New
Zealand and over last several years has worked tirelessly in the community. He has served on
various committees and boards in decision making positions and has been honoured with multiple
awards and accolades, including a QSM.
“It is equally an honour and responsibility to be a kiwi. You have the best of both the worlds but
you also have a dual role as an ambassador of your Indian heritage in NZ and when in India you
are a Kiwi ambassador. In our daily life, we have the opportunity to put into practice learning from both
cultures to the best outcome.”
“Being a Kiwi-Indian is
about making a place in
our adopted homeland.”
“It is a dual role as an
ambassador of your
Indian heritage in NZ
and when in India you
are a Kiwi ambassador.”
Ganges Singh
Community Leader
Sunil Kaushal |
21 May 2013
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21 May 2013
“To me it means to lead a balanced life and adopting cultures of both India and New Zealand
and respecting both countries. By being open to being a life-long learner, I look at being in this
country as an opportunity to incorporate good things from different cultures in life and living. In this
regard people living in New Zealand, like me, are especially lucky to have this opportunity and adopt
cultures of more than 100 countries. The Kiwi-Indian community is contribution in every sector in New
Zealand and I’m extremely proud of calling myself a Kiwi-Indian.”
About: Mr. Kalburgi is an experienced and resourceful businessman, research & information
services professional with a strong background in community development. Much of his work
has centered on liaising between different research and educational organizations. He believes in
putting people frst and is committed to community service.
“I grew up in multicultural Malaysia and enjoyed the variety of different cultural traditions that
I was exposed to there. Coming to New Zealand to continue my education I found a country that
has an inclusive society which is the envy of many and which serves as an example of peaceful co-
existence of people from all ethnic, cultural and faith backgrounds.
At times I have experienced individual examples of discrimination but I believe there have been
very positive changes, especially over the past decade. I am particularly impressed by the leadership
currently shown by our ethnic communities. I am proud to head the Offce of Ethnic Affairs with its
relatively small number of passionate staff and believe that my Indian heritage has been an important
factor in how I lead, provide advice on ethnic diversity issues and contribute to New Zealand’s
harmonious reputation.”

About: Mr. Singham has been the Director of the Offce of Ethnic Affairs since 2004. His career
encompasses management roles in both the private and public sector, including Chief Mediator at
the Human Rights Commission. He is from Malaysia and has lived in New Zealand for over twenty
years. He has an Honours Degree in Law from the University of Canterbury in Christchurch and a
First Class Honours Masters Degree in Law from the University of Auckland. He has a particular
interest in confict resolution, public policy and intercultural issues.
“To me being Kiwi-
Indian means to lead
a balanced life and
adopting cultures of both
India and New Zealand
and respecting both
“I am particularly
impressed by the
leadership currently
shown by our ethnic
Dr Lingappa Kalburgi
Entrepreneur & Community Worker
Mervin Singham |
Government Executive

“Being an Indian in New Zealand is a great position to be in - coming from India which is a country
old and rich in culture and values, and then settling into a very new country which is warm hearted,
clean green, honest, healthy and hard working. I am proud of the vision, courage and determination
that our grandparents had when they decided to settle here almost 100 years ago.
While we have all we could have hoped for and we enjoy life here, newspapers like the Indian
Weekender has enriched our lives by keeping us in touch with India.”
About: Mr. Bhana was educated in New Zealand and is a chemical engineer. He works in the
steel industry and was involved in the coal technology collaboration with Tata Iron and Steel,
Jamshedpur, India while working for BHP.
Over the last several years, he has been involved in community service and events in Christchurch
and Pukekohe.
“Being an Indian
in New Zealand is a
great position to be
in. I am proud of the
vision, courage and
determination that our
grandparents had when
they decided to settle here
almost 100 years ago.”
Bhiku Bhana |
Engineer and community leader
21 May 2013
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21 May 2013
“Being a kiwi Indian for me is an opportunity to bring two cultures into my life. As an immigrant
I identify myself both as Indian and New Zealander Kiwi. I understand the challenges that come
with “being different from the main stream”. For me and my family settling in NZ was positive
experience albeit a hard one in the beginning. New Zealand’s multi cultural society’s acceptance of
Indian cultures and festivals made the settlement process easier. Today I am happy to be able to
contribute to the community as a whole and to the South Asian community in particular.”
About: Ms. Venkat is the Project Manager of Shanti Niwas Charitable Trust. The trust provides social
services and support to older people of Indian and South Asian Origin and their families. She was with
the trust as a Social Worker and programme coordinator for the past 12 years before taking up the role
of the Manager. She is also a Volunteer Community Coordinator for the offce of the Seniors Citizens,
MSD and is also involved in various community organisations. Nilima was awarded Member of the
New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) in 2013 new year’s honours list.
“To be a Kiwi Indian is to have freedom. It is to be culturally and religiously diverse; and to live
in a country that offers multiple opportunities for success. Though life here was diffcult for us to
adjust to initially, today we feel like we are truly Kiwi-Indians. Being a Kiwi Indian (for me) is to be
tolerant and to make the best of those opportunities that come my way. New Zealand is where I could
realize my full potential to become a professional in the entertainment sector which is my true passion.
I would have never thought of myself living and working in this lifestyle in India and have learnt that
being a Kiwi-Indian is to be optimistic and tolerant.”
About: Mr. Iyer owns and runs the very successful CFI Events. His own brain-child, this event
management company has brought Indian music and cultural events to New Zealand for over a
decade. It promotes cultural awareness and expression through a vast range of offerings. These
have set the bar high in terms of providing clients with top-class event management and ensuring
superb quality results.
“Being a Kiwi
Indian for me is an
opportunity to bring
two cultures into my
life. As an immigrant
I identify myself both
as Indian and New
Zealander Kiwi.”
“Being a Kiwi Indian
is to be optimistic
and tolerant. It is
to be culturally and
religiously diverse.”
Nilima Venkat |
Community Worker
Ram Iyer |
Events Professional & Businessman
“Being a Kiwi born Indian means having the benefit of originating from an ethnicity
that is founded on more than 4,500 years of rich history, culture, art, literature,
science and architecture. This provides me with a uniquely informed perspective towards
an increasingly globalised world that isn’t constrained to a purely Eurocentric lens.”
About: Mr. Bhana is Auckland’s interdisciplinary artist, designer, writer and academic.
A Doctorate of Fine Arts from Elam School of Fine Arts at The University of Auckland,
Bepen has been engaging with ideas of cultural identity, cultural appropriation and cultural
hybridity since his first year at art school. The Curry Bunch was his first solo exhibition
investigating these ideas in foreign lands, held at the Auckland Arts Festival this year.
He has participated in the Govett Brewster Art Gallery’s Open Window project in New
Plymouth and was a part of Sub-Topical Heat: New Art From South Asia exhibition, the
most extensive and in-depth exhibition of art from the Subcontinent ever presented in NZ.
Mr. Bhana has been the recipient of the Ryochi Sasakawa Young Leaders Scholarship
and his current exhibition Postcards From The Edge is open at Te Tuhi Centre for the Arts
until 14 July 2013.
“Being a Kiwi born
Indian means having
the beneft of originating
from an ethnicity that is
founded on more than
4,500 years...”
Bepen Bhana |
Artist, Designer, Writer & Academic
“I see myself as a New Zealander rather than a Kiwi-Indian. If I am living in a country, it
becomes my homeland and I become a part of it. Cultural identities cease to matter.”
About: Mr. Singh is the only Indian playing for the Auckland Aces – Auckland’s home grown
cricket team. He has created a mark with his terrifc bowling in all of just four years of his career as a
professional cricketer. He represented New Zealand in 2009’s match against Zimbabwe. He admits
to having just one faming passion – cricket. And even though he doesn’t believe in restricting his
identity to being a Kiwi-Indian, his secret desire is to represent his Sikh community on the big feld.
“If I am living in a country, it becomes my
homeland and I become a part of it.”
Bhupinder Singh |
21 May 2013
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21 May 2013
“I’ve always held close to my heart my Indian heritage, and at the same time, take pride in
New Zealand. My ‘dual upbringing’ was a combination of the Indian family values and the
Kiwi service culture (my parents owned and ran a dairy). This has given me the knowledge, desire
and the ability to work with any culture and community.
I mix my love for new ideas and creativity with my work ethic and family values together and use
these to help negotiate life’s challenges. I am so grateful to my parents for allowing me to explore my
mixed culture, leading me to the many opportunities over the years.”
About: Ms. Dhiru is currently the CEO for Volunteering New Zealand, a national umbrella
charity based in Wellington. She is the chair of Inspiring Stories Trust, and on the boards of
National Council of Women New Zealand, ANGOA, Graduate Women Wellington and Women
in Leadership Aotearoa. One of New Zealand’s youngest JPs, she has been nominated for several
national awards – including as a fnalist for ‘Young New Zealander of the Year 2010’.
As New Zealand’s only BMW Foundation International Young Leaders Network delegate, she
is a shining example of leadership and vision in our Kiwi-Indian community.
“Being a Kiwi Indian in New Zealand can mean many things, from grabbing your fsh and
chips for tea from the local store to welcoming the rugby season back with the chills of winter
and cheering on the mighty All Blacks. Being a Kiwi Indian means to be a proud part of our new
society while still recognising our roots as Indians. We have integrated with other immigrants and
locals such as the Maori and the early European settlers. We befriend them, invite them into our
homes for a hearty meal and go for the annual camping outings! We adopt kiwiana, New Zealand’s
heritage as our own.”
“My ‘dual upbringing’
was a combination of
the Indian family values
and the Kiwi service
culture (my parents
owned and ran a dairy).
This has given me the
knowledge, desire and
ability to work with any
culture and community.”
“We adopt kiwiana, New
Zealand’s heritage as our
Vanisa Dhiru |
Corporate Executive
Neha Concisom |
“Being a Kiwi Indian is like being a millionaire. I became very aware of my privileged
position when I was working overseas in Asia. The people I associated with were quick to
congratulate me on my good fortune. This is a country that has offered me a promising future.
While this is true, that in New Zealand I have had very good opportunities, I would not hesitate
to say that I’ve worked harder than the man in Delhi who rides his motor scooter in all weathers
to deliver pizzas, or the kids in Mumbai who spend their days working for a few rupees instead to
gain work experience. I enjoy the best of both worlds retaining my Indian traditional values and
culture and adapting to NZ.”

About: Mr Pesara came to New Zealand 11 years ago as an international student. What started
off as a passion for organising parties at AUT, turned into a professional business of organising
and managing events. Today, his Limelight Entertainments is the No. 1 International Bollywood
Events company in Auckland. He single-handedly pursued his vision of bringing live entertainment
and international artists to New Zealand and to a diverse audience. The Company since its very
inception in 2006, has been the pioneering force in producing large format Bollywood events
across New Zealand. These events are known for their impeccable production value and delivering
measurable results to corporate partners.
“Being a
Kiwi-Indian is
like being a
Agastya Pesara |
Event Manager & Entrepreneur
“As a Kiwi-Indian and citizen, I take pride in my abilities and contributions to nation
building. I believe that celebrating differences is fundamental to feeling pride, joy and
building everlasting friendships. Through this, I believe in moving people ahead and helping them
progress– this is my core belief as a human being”.
About: Ms Pala is a member of the Ethnic Peoples Advisory Panel, Auckland Council. Her
commitment to community development and leadership is sought widely by many organisations.
She has recently been appointed to the WaterSafe Auckland Board and is a Community Resource
Panel Advisor to Child, Youth and Family in Waitakere. She is a candidate for the Henderson/
Massey local government elections.
Ann Pala
Community Worker
“Being Kiwi-Indian
is celebrating
differences and
“Kiwi Indian is “an Indian with a Kiwi touch” – what a deadly combination! A Kiwi Indian is a
blend of strong Indian values with the sophisticated Kiwi touch. Indians are known for their hard
work, intellectual stronghold and Kiwis are known for their courtesy and good manners.
If Kiwis could learn the hard work and determination to succeed from Indians, and Indian Kiwis
could learn honesty, courtesy and politeness from Kiwis, I foresee New Zealand beneftting tremendously.
“Kiwi Indian is ‘an
Indian with a Kiwi
touch’ – what a deadly
Rahul Redey |
21 May 2013
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account holders.
21 May 2013
Shaun and the
team at ABC
congratulates the
team at
Indian Weekender
on reaching
100 issues
“Being a Kiwi-Indian is a unique entity not to mention an absolute privilege. I get to live in what
truly is the best country in the world with the heritage of one of the most amazing cultures
around. As the diaspora from India increases in New Zealand we are fortunate that our traditions and
food travel with them for older generations and future generations to hold onto. Being a small populated
country a Kiwi-Indian community is a very small but unique ratio of what the world’s population is
made up of. And I can say I am very proud to be a part of such a select group of people.”
About: Mr. Mohanbhai frst began his comedy career at school entertaining his classmates.
Since those humble days he has gone on to perform all round the world in Comedy Clubs and
Festivals with his stand-up and plays. In 1998 he won Quest of the fest at the New Zealand
International Comedy Festival and went on to appear in TV’s Pulp Comedy and other TV shows
and Films which have help him become a bit of a household name in the Indian community. In
2004 he also won Best show with Rajeev Varma at the New Zealand International Comedy Festival
with the show Indian Invaders AKA From India with Love.
Mr. Mohanbhai is a regular on New Zealand’s stand up circuit and now runs a business called
Laugh Club NZ with fellow comedian Nick Rado which runs comedy nights in various bars and
Theatres around the country.
“Being a Kiwi-Indian
is a unique entity not
to mention an absolute
Tarun Mohanbhai |
“New Zealand is a beautiful, safe and peaceful country. Its education system is world-class,
modern and responsive. As an Indian living in NZ, I enjoy New Zealand’s thriving cultural life,
with a unique mix of European, Maori, Polynesian, Asian and others. One of the best things about life
in New Zealand is the number of different things you can do in your free time from relaxing at sunny
surf beaches, to getting adventurous on ski slopes.”
About: After doing his Masters in Business Administration, Mr. Rao joined the Bank of India in
1984. The bank was founded in 1906 and occupies a premier position among India’s nationalized
banks with more than 4,500 branches and over 56 million customers. It has over 50 branches at key
banking and fnancial centers viz. London, New York, Paris, Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo etc.
During the last 29 years of his career with the bank, he has worked across different parts of India
and did a stint in Paris. He was responsible for setting-up the Bank’s subsidiary in NZ.
“As an Indian living
in NZ, I enjoy New
Zealand’s thriving
cultural life, with a
unique mix of European,
Maori, Polynesian,
Asian cultures.”
Nageshwar Rao Paladugu |
21 May 2013
“NZ belongs to all ethnicities. The only difference is that Maoris came by boat, Pakehas came
by ships and the modern day immigrants including Kiwi-Indians, came by planes. As a Kiwi-
Indian, I see myself as fortunate enough to have got the roots in the greatest country in the world (India)
and living in the most peaceful country in the world (New Zealand).”
About: Mr. Khar prides himself with roots in the land of Gandhi and believes in ‘Sanatandharma’ -
Indian ethos that accept the freedom of others.
His relentless work towards empowerment of Kiwi-Indians has lead to his representation in
Parliament. As General Secretary of Central Association, he released a ‘Historical Book’ in 2009 on
early settlers. He also started the process of analytical engagement with policy makers for devising
strategies for creating equal opportunities.
Mr. Khar is a practicing civil engineer with a Masters in International Relations. He is on the
board of ‘Film and Video labelling Body’ (censor board) of New Zealand.
“NZ belongs to all
ethnicities. The only
difference is that Maoris
came by boat, Pakehas
came by ships and the
modern day immigrants
including Kiwi-Indians,
came by planes.”
Veer Khar |
Community Leader & Government Executive
“For me, being a Kiwi-Indian is integration. Where one must have the desire to embrace the
New Zealander’s way of life, yet retaining and sharing our Indian traditional beliefs, values and
customs with others for better understanding and harmony. NZ has a rich diverse population. The
diversity is apparent as every culture gets to showcase their religious festivals and it is the ‘kiwi’ way
that different ethnicities take part and enjoy the festivities, be it Diwali, Holi, Lantern Festival, Eid,
Christmas, Waitangi Day. Hence, being a Kiwi-Indian is enjoying rugby, cricket and having any excuse
for a BBQ.”
About: Mr. Prasad has been the Director of Enterprise Motor Group and Community Financial
Services Ltd. Over a span of 35 years, he has perfected his skills in Strategic Planning, Sales and
Marketing, CRM and Finance.
Two years ago, Mr. Prasad decided to give back to his community in Auckland by providing a
media platform called Humm106.2 FM. As the Managing Director of Humm106.2FM, he is proud
to have provided a voice to the Indian Community and take it to the larger ethnicities in NZ through
a medium as powerful as radio.
“For me, being a
Kiwi-Indian is about
Satyan Prasad |
Media owner & Entrepreneur
21 May 2013
“Being a Kiwi Indian makes me feel privileged. This is because I have two homes....one in NZ
and the other in India. Instead of making me feel divided, this in fact gives me more confdence
as I have merged the Kiwi simplicity with Indian business acumen.
The blend of both cultures has enabled me and my family to make the most of life; specially my
daughter who appreciates the values of Indian culture and at the same time loves the laid back NZ
lifestyle and enjoys the world renowned NZ education system.”
About: Mr. Toora is a registered fnancial advisor based in Auckland and he is passionate about
property investment opportunities. He is in favour of encouraging overseas investment in New
Zealand. Mr. Toora recently organised the New Zealand Invest 2010 in Delhi, Chandigarh &
Ludhiana in view of the ongoing bilateral FTA negotiations between India and NZ.
“I have merged the Kiwi
simplicity with Indian
business acumen.”
Sanjeev Toora |
Financial Advisor
“In becoming a Kiwi Indian one does not have to feel that one has to abandon their roots and
national pride to embrace a new home. It is about attitude, assimilation, accepting one’s way of
life and values and respecting others culture. There is nothing better than to have the opportunity to live
in a just and fair society which welcomes democracy and freedom of speech. The modern, friendly and
helpful ethnically diverse NZ society comprises of bright people with creative ideas. I am proud to
identify myself as a Kiwi Indian enjoying good health and surrounded by beauty all around.”
About: Ms. Nand has been a community volunteer for over 40 years. She is the founder member and
president of Fiji Women’s Society charitable organization and a founding member, Liaison Offcer
and Elected Spokesperson of “Fiji Women’s Support Group”. Her work spans across diverse issues
affecting the Indian community and she pioneered the Indian Cooking Show on Triangle TV, hosted
interviews and edited the “Delights of Indian” cook book.
Additionally, she has been a recipient of numerous awards including the Bharat Darshan award
on the Golden Jubilee Celebration of India’s Independence for promoting Indian Heritage and
Culture to the Indian community through media ( presented by the Indian High Commissioner
in Wellington NZ). Most recently, Ms. Nand was awarded the Kiwi Bank Local Hero award and
Queens Service Medal–for services to the Indian community. In 2011, Ms. Nand was the frst Fiji
Indian female to stand for General Election for ACT party in Mt Roskill District.
“It is about attitude,
acceptence and
respecting others’
Pratima Nand
Community Worker
“I feel really privileged and proud to be a frst generation Indian in New Zealand and I’ve beneftted
from the opportunities here. I’ve come to realize that being Indian Kiwi is contributing in a
meaningful manner while at the same time to making the most of the opportunities.
This is how I was driven to establish businesses that would give me a chance to link and reconcile
these two sides of my individuality. That is how ‘New Zealand School of Education’and ‘Kuddles In-home
Childcare and Education’were born and recently I have established ‘Travel Point’(previously ‘Panworld
Travel Centre’) – a travel business which specialises in Indian sub-continent travel.
I feel a great deal of personal satisfaction to know that my businesses have contributed to the economy,
created job opportunities, and touched the lives of aspiring students, young New Zealanders; and not just
Kiwi Indians. I came to New Zealand with empty pockets and a dream. I can proudly say that that I have
been welcomed by this country and will continue to endeavour in my vision to contribute to the growth
of New Zealand.”
About: Mr. Sethi is a qualifed Engineer. He is keenly focussed on process and methodology – a
skill he merged with a visionary approach in setting up businesses in areas of Tertiary Education,
Childcare, Travel & Tourism and recently a Winery.
“I’ve come to realize
that being Indian-Kiwi
is about contributing
to the community in a
meaningful manner
while at the same time
making the most of the
Brijesh Sethi |
“A Kiwi-Indian, according to me, is the one who is hard working, intelligent and diligent. The
one who carries his cultural identity with him along with valuing and respecting the culture of
New Zealand, so that he is assimilated and blends into the local society completely.”
“A Kiwi-Indian,
according to me, is
the one who is hard
working, intelligent and
Shashi Srivastava |
21 May 2013
21 May 2013
To the Editor and Team at the Indian Weekender
First and foremost on behalf of the Auckland Indian Associa-
tion I congratulate the ‘Indian Weekender’ for the great tri-
umph and milestone in the media world , of achieving 100 is-
The media can play a very pivotal role in society, the opinions, views and judgments
published by the media refects the image of society, as long as media remains nonaligned, unbi-
ased and impartial. ‘Indian Weekender’ has achieved the rank in our Indian Society.
The Indian Weekender has gained the reputation by reporting news, stories to people as is with-
out any falsifcation and deception from the community.
On behalf of the Auckland Indian Association I wish the ‘Indian Weekender’ every success and
best wishes for the future journey.

Ashokbhai B. Darji (Gaiwala) (MNZM, JP)
President Auckland Indian Association Inc.
The Auckland Indian Association Inc. Congratulates the Indian Weekender
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21 May 2013
“To me being a Kiwi-Indian is a privilege as I can associate myself to two different cultures. I
feel like I have two homes in the world, the country I was born in and the country I have grown
up in. Both countries are worlds apart, and I think that is what makes it such a privilege as I personally
have learnt so much from both cultures. The deep cultural, rich traditional and family values from
India, as well as the carefree, live-life-to-the-fullest attitude from New Zealand. I love that I will always
have two beautiful countries I can always call home, a privilege not granted to many.”
“I feel like I have two homes in the world, the
country I was born in and the country I have grown
up in.”
Anuja Nadkarni |
University Student
“As a Kiwi-Indian, I know that everyone here is equal and knowing this has helped me in
expressing myself fully as a musician. That has in turn fuelled my passion for my craft.
New Zealand is a beautiful country with warm people. It is so peaceful that I am inspired and I can
fnd music everyday and everywhere - in the sound of waves while sitting by the ocean, in the chirping
of birds, in the sound of wind and even in silence.
NZ has given me the opportunity to grow as a musician and it offers a conducive environment that
nurtures creativity. This has allowed me to express my feelings freely and naturally. People here have
been very supportive and the creative freedom this has allowed my music to become richer.
“Being a Kiwi-Indian is
to know that everyone
here is equal and this
has helped me in
expressing myself
fully as a musician. The
creative freedom has in
turn fuelled my passion
for my craft.”
Sibte Hassan |
Musician, Singer & Composer
“New Zealand is home to me and being a Kiwi-Indian like eating a Samosa with a flling made
from NZ potatoes. The spice is Indian and the potatoes are kiwi. It gives me a feeling that you
would get out of watching a peacock dancing and holding a cute Kiwi bird at the same time. Being a
Kiwi-Indian is certainly a double advantage as it means living a lifestyle combiniong the best of both
the worlds.”
“Being a Kiwi-Indian
is like eating a Samosa
with a flling made from
NZ potatoes. The spice is
Indian and the potatoes
are Kiwi.”
Ram Lingam |
Freelance writer
“I came to New Zealand in 2001 and as a citizen of this country, I am a New Zealander. I do
not believe in the term Kiwi- Indian. I am a proud Indian and now a proud New Zealander. By
recognizing ourselves as ‘kiwi Indian’ we segregate ourselves from main stream as New Zealanders.
This is a beautiful country, multicultural society where people from different backgrounds live and
work together.
I have studied in NZ, worked with different employers in NZ, opened multiple businesses in NZ
and currently I am working as Barrister and Solicitor here. Kiwi culture and community promote
equality which has made me more confdent in whatever I do, and made me a successful lawyer so
that today I can help the community in multiple ways.”
“I am a proud Indian
and now a proud New
Zealander. The term
Kiwi Indian is limiting
and we divide ourselves
from main stream.”
Raj Pardeep Singh |
“To me being a Kiwi-Indian means respecting the culture of Aotearoa and respecting Tangata
Whenua just as we respect Indian culture. This means celebrating and respecting NZ
National Days like ANZAC day and Waitangi day, as well as understanding their signifcance in
NZ’s history. Learning and adapting to the culture and traditions from New Zealand and sharing
our ancient culture with New Zealand, is a big part of being Kiwi-Indian. This also includes taking
an active interest in community events, local council activities, NZ politics, sports and being
friendly to neighbours. For instance, sharing our Indian food with our kiwi friends is a great way
to break the barriers and get to know each other.”

About: Mr. Darji has passionately served the local Indian community for over 35 years.This includes
fundraising for community projects and networking with other local as well as NZ ethnic societies.
He has a pan-ethnic perspective when responding to community issues and this is refected in his
attitude of respect for multiculturalism. As a business owner, he holds integrity as a core value and
frmly believes that there is a need for an inclusive Auckland that celebrates all ethnicities; which
will lead to synergy. He has worked hard to facilitate this in all areas of my life. Additionally, he
served as the President of the Auckland Multi-cultural Society from 2001-2003.
“To me being a
Kiwi-Indian means
respecting the culture
of Aotearoa and
respecting Tangata
Whenua just as we
respect Indian culture.“
Ashokbhai B. Darji (Gaiwala) |
Community leader and Businessman
21 May 2013
“For me, a Kiwi-Indian means anybody who preserves Indian values (our rich heritage and superb
family values) and is loyal to New Zealand’s great work culture, its unique bi-culturism and growing
multiculturalism. In simple words-a Kiwi at work and an Indian at home-is a true Kiwi-Indian.”
About: Ms. Bedi is a on NZICA’s wider representation community and has been a part of several
community initiatives . This merit scholar, former educationist from India and most recently an ESOL
tutor and coordinator in New Zealand always had an active interest in community service.
She uses her communication skills as well as her instinct for community service to make a positive
difference in peoples’ lives. She has been actively involved in community development projects and
her areas of work include: Race relations, interfaith dialogue, women’s empowerment, adult education,
preserving culture and environmental sustainability. She lives in Auckland with her husband, son and
“Adapting to Kiwi
culture and blending it
with the spice of Indian
traditions to create a
dynamic combination
called Kiwi-Indian best
describes my identity as
“As a Kiwi- Indian I feel
very comfort and free in
this country.”
Prakash Mani |
Event Manager
Rajesh Mudundi |
Business owner
“As a Kiwi- Indian I feel very comfort and free in this country. There are many opportunities to
learn and work with various ethnic communities in New Zealand. As a Kiwi-Indian I maintain
our Indian culture and traditions in daily life and share ideas with other local communities.”
“I lived here for 3 years and from day one, I’ve felt very comfortable. This is a great place to
connect to people from across the world. NZ gives me a nice balance between personal life and
work life – great life style and great work environment. I never have to plan for a wonderful weekend
adventurous trip – I just drive out of town to enjoy the beautiful scenic route.”
“New Zealand has not only provided my family with an identity, home and endless opportunities,
it has helped shape our ideals and aspirations to become open minded global citizens. NZ is a
special country where opportunities are equal, visions are shared and diversity is valued. As a Kiwi-
Indian businesswoman, I have been given opportunities to independently run a culturally diverse
business and such opportunities are remarkable for Indian women. As Kiwi-Indians, we are all given
the freedom to not only dream but see our dreams become a reality.”
“NZ gives me a nice
balance between
personal life and work
“As Kiwi-Indians, we are
all given the freedom to
not only dream but see
our dreams become a
Ravi Paricherla |
Technical projects Manager
Soni Mudaliar |
Business Owner
“In simple words-a Kiwi
at work and an Indian
at home-is a true Kiwi-
Nimi Bedi |
Senior Community facilitator
“Being a Kiwi Indian means immersing yourself in the diversity of the New Zealand
culture while still staying true to your roots. The range of nationalities present in
Cosmopolitan New Zealand is truly amazing. So much can be learnt if we try to understand
each other’s way of living. Lead by example and uplift the image of the Country where you
were born.”
“So much can be learnt
if we try to understand
each other’s way of
Mukesh Arora |
21 May 2013
“Being a Kiwi-Indian is a real advantage as I can personally relate to the highs and lows faced
by my clientele. The wonderful blend of two cultures is a value addition since my job is to make
qualifed teachers out of international students, coming from India and other countries. I will always
regard myself as a proud Kiwi-Indian whose ‘home away from home’ is New Zealand.”
About: Miss. Hillel was the fnalist in the reality TV show New Zealand’s Got Talent in 2012. Recently, Sony music has released the 12 year old
Wellington based school-girl’s frst album ‘With Love’. Ms. Hillel is the second of two daughters of Rabbi Brigu Hillel (not Jew) and Sigy Susan
George, both information technology professionals. The family is originally from Kottayam in Kerala, India. For as far back as she can remember,
she has been singing and Miss. Hillel is very clear about becoming a singer and nothing else. She puts in the hard work and determination towards
achieveing her goal by practicing every single day. Often, her elder sister accompanies her on the piano.

“Being a Kiwi-Indian is a step forward for me in being progressive and peace-loving. On a foreign
land, one’s values are strengthened more and one gets a platform where it is exercised. Our culture is
refected in every action.”
About: Ms. Kapoor is the Chairperson of Women’s Council GOPIO International, where she is
leading a team of empowered women of Indian origin from around the globe. She has received
the ‘New Global Indian Excellence award 2013’ for exemplary work in the domain of community
outreach and women’s empowerment in New Zealand. She has also received the ‘GIA International
Excellence Award 2013’ in honour of outstanhding performance, dedication and remarkable
contribution to Indian Community Service. She aims to create a united society in New Zealand,
which values multiculturalism.
“Being a Kiwi-Indian is
a real advantage as I can
personally relate to the
highs and lows faced by
my clientele.”
“I feel like I have a huge advantage of two different cultures. Like for
example, I grew up with three different languages. It is having the best
of both worlds.”
“Being a Kiwi-Indian is
a step forward for me in
being progressive and
Sanil Haria |
Marketing Executive
Jessie Hillel |
Suman Kapoor |
Community Worker
21 May 2013
21 May 2013
“To me, being Kiwi-Indian is making the most of the opportunities presented by this country,
while at the same time retaining the positive aspects of Indian culture. I have adopted from the
Kiwis the concept of a good work-life balance and I enjoy the great outdoors. The Indian in me has not
forgotten the value of hard work and going the extra mile. I’ve noticed that the Indians who come to NZ
with a view to settle here, get ahead quickly if they maintain their attitude of hard work and resist the
temptation of being laid-back.”
About: Mechanical Engineer by trade and MBA from Sydney University, Mr. Handa has
extensive experience in management and leadership roles in various countries across several
industries. He has expertise and understanding of international trade through his work experience
in the Middle East, Fiji, India, Australia and New Zealand.
Mr. Handa has been in the current role as Group CEO, Patton Ltd NZ for the past 15 years. Patton
Group has recently expanded their presence in Australia and has entered into new markets like
Thailand and India. He is a member of the Institute of Directors NZ and is on the board of several
companies in Australia, Thailand and India besides New Zealand.
“To me, being Kiwi-
Indian is making
the most of the
opportunities presented
by this country, while at
the same time retaining
the positive aspects of
Indian culture.”
Sameer Handa |
Corporate Executive
“Being a Kiwi-Indian has meant I can do what I love: run my own restaurants while
simultaneously enjoy my time with my family. I fnd New Zealand to be a country that promises
you a lot, welcomes you no matter where you come from and gives you a lifestyle that is second to none.
Also, I have been able to offer my children the opportunity of growing up with the best of kiwi culture
and Indian culture together.”
About: Ms. Arora is a businesswoman with a passion for hospitality and a commitment to honesty
and integrity. She was born in Chandigarh, India but also lived for a number of years in Bahrain
where she was a teacher, before making New Zealand her home.
Shivani frst visited New Zealand in 1990 with her young family but homesickness made them
return to India. A decade later NZ won over other countries like Canada and Australia as the place
to settle. Today, Ms. Arora operates several successful restaurants India Gate Restaurant in Epsom,
Auckland, Nandos in Hamilton and the latest addition of another Nandos in Epsom.
The mother of three is quite active in the community as well. She was recently interviewed
by the Department of Ethnic Affairs to be part of the Trailblazers initiative which celebrates
the success of Kiwi-Indian women and has been the guest speaker at the World Hindu Council
Forum. Additionally, she is the the Vice President of Shree Shridhi Sai Sansthan of NZ.
“I fnd New Zealand to be
a country that promises
you a lot, welcomes you
no matter where you
come from and gives you
a lifestyle that is second
to none.”
Shivani Arora |
Hotelier and Community Leader
“I’ve lived in New Zealand for only 7 years and am not entirely sure if I qualify to comment on
what ‘Kiwi-Indian’ identity specifcally means. But like any diasporic relationship, my
relationship with my adopted home New Zealand, has been one of appreciation, learning and
contribution. I wear my Indian-ness with pride, but have also embraced many kiwi-isms. Having grown
up in Goa, I’ve always had a love for the ocean and the outdoors but living in the bush in New Zealand
has made me appreciate living amongst and with nature, as opposed to ‘escaping’to it. That, in a sense
has been a fundamental change that I’ve embraced all too gladly. (Although the “four seasons in a
day” is something that could still take a bit more getting used to!)
My work in media as well as human rights, is largely based on topics on diaspora, and from around
the Asian region. Being of Indian background has perhaps helped in communicating these stories with
more of an insider’s familiarity, with a New Zealand audience. I suppose being able to comfortably
relate to two worlds is always handy both professionally and on a closer, more personal level as well.”
About: Ms. Gladding (formerly Kadambari Raghukumar) is a TV Presenter/ Director /Reporter and
works across transmedia.
“Like any diasporic
relationship, my
relationship with my
adopted home New
Zealand, has been one of
appreciation, learning
and contribution.”
Kadambari Gladding |
TV Presenter & Director
“Having lived in New Zealand for the past 13 years, I believe Kiwi Indian is about being steeped
in two radically different but vibrant cultures.
I believe I am Indian in many ways - following our traditions, upholding strong family values of respect
for all, the importance of education and the motivation to be successful fnancially and spiritually.
However, much of my conceptual thinking and approach is ‘Kiwi’ in nature - liberal and democratic
view of the world, development of individual potential and the Kiwi can-do attitude of punching above
your weight.
As a Kiwi Indian, I am proud of being part of a unique mesh of cultures that has provided me the
strong foundation to be grounded in face of any challenge. And it is certainly a privilege to preserve
our unique culture for my young son and nurture the idea of how lucky he is to be the next generation
of Kiwi-Indians.”
About: Mr. Bhandari is an ICT professional and a doting husband and father to a 7 month old boy.
“Much of my conceptual
thinking and approach
is ‘Kiwi’ in nature -
liberal and democratic
view of the world,
development of
individual potential and
the Kiwi can-do attitude.”
Sid Bhandari |
ICT Professional
21 May 2013
Indian Weekender is published by Kiwi Media Group, 98 Great South Road,
New Market and printed at Guardian Print, Ashburton
Copyright 2010. Kiwi Media Group. All Rights Reserved.
Indian Weekender Volume 5 | Issue 100
Publisher: Kiwi Media Group Limited
Managing Editor: Giri Gupta | girigupta@xtra.co.nz
Editor: Arvind Kumar | arvind@indianweekender.co.nz
Associate Editor: Shriya Chitale| shriya@indianweekender.co.nz
Chief Reporter: Arwa Janjali | arwa@indianweekender.co.nz
Chief Technical Offcer: Rohan Desouza | rohan@ indianweekender.co.nz
Design: Tanmay Desai
Advertising & Business Development Manager:
Gaurav Gupta M: 021 292 4519 l gaurav@indianweekender.co.nz
Accounts and Admin.: Farah Khan - P 520 0922 l accounts@indianweekender.co.nz
Views and comments: e-mail at: arvind@indianweekender.co.nz
Views expressed in the publication are not necessarily of the publisher and the publisher
is not responsible for advertisers’ claims as appearing in the publication
“I frmly believe that any man’s fnest hour, the greatest
fulfllment of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he
has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted
on the feld of battle - victorious.”
These simple, but famous, words by American football great Vince Lombardi
aptly sum up the emotions bubbling among the team at Indian Weekender,
your favourite local community newspaper.
For two good reasons.
First, the Indian Weekender marks the publishing of a milestone 100
since starting out from humble beginnings four years ago.
What started out as an embodied vision by two Aucklanders (or should I
say Kiwi Indians) for a need to connect the community, is today a vibrant,
pulsating medium which has reached out to more than just the local community
it has served.
For Messers Giri Gupta and Bhavdeep Dhillon, it is the realisation of a
long-time dream as the Indian Weekender cements its place in the local media
as an immensely valued publication, and even more vibrant online edition.
When the Indian Weekender was launched, the publishers made it clear that
the paper would focus on the positive aspects of life in the community, and it
has achieved more than that.
Indian Weekender has proven that it is an exemplar of all that is good in
the media community. Second, the Indian Weekender today makes an even
greater presence in the community as it inaugurates its Kiwi Indian Hall of
Fame with the naming of the institution’s first inductee.
The Hall of Fame is all about celebrating and honouring the achievements
and successes of New Zealand’s Indians, who have for more than 150 years,
have contributed generously to the development and progress of their adopted
Said Gupta: “We are very proud of these people in our community who
have secured us all an even bigger identity in the Kiwi society. The Kiwi
Indian Hall of Fame is saying to these people ‘we are proud of you’.”
The publishers - Mr Gupta and Mr Dhillon - have earned a respected place in
the publishing industry but they have done more than that. Indian Weekender
has supported a range of charities including St John Ambulance. Mr Dhillon is
also the chairman of “There’s a Better Way Foundation”, which works closely
with organisations like CYF, New Zealand Police, among others, to create
pathways of change for our youth troubled with drugs and gangs.
Their latest venture sees the launch of the Kiwi Indian Hall of Fame.
As Prime Minister John Key today honours the first inductee into the Hall
of Fame, it is expected to ingrain itself into the local community and be a
benchmark for the ultimate celebration of the successes of members of our
Through its successes, the team at Indian Weekender today finds itself on a
firmer footing, and well-positioned to meet the challenges facing the industry
of news dissemination and entertainment, and at the same time celebrate the
achievements of our people.
The 100
issue of this bold, young newspaper is dedicated to those New
Zealand Indians who toil to further the progress of their adopted homeland.
Let’s all celebrate; there’s good reason to.
- Arvind Kumar
Time to celebrate
May 21, 2013
Indian Weekender launches the Kiwi-
Indian Hall of Fame and publishes its
100th issue
January 30, 2013
Indian Weekender launches its
April 15, 2012
Indian Weekender extends its social
media presence and gets a facebook
April 16, 2010
Indian Weekender publishes its frst
anniversary issue
March 27, 2010
NZICA felicitates Indian Weekender
at their 84th AGM in Auckland
February 01, 2010
Indian Weekender launches Business
January 22, 2010
Indian Weekender holds the frst ever
engagement with the Indian High
Commissioner in Auckland
August 01, 2009
With the snappy www.iwk.co.nz
The Indian Weekender e-paper
comes to the smartphone
July 15, 2009
Readers now get a weekly newsletter
from the Indian Weekender
June 01, 2009
Indian Weekender launches its
website Indianweekender.co.nz
March 20, 2009
Indian Weekender launched
21 May 2013
Clockwise from Top left:
Arwa Janjali, Chief Reporter: Arwa has been penning community stories and compiling
Indian Weekender over the past 10 months. An avid writer and theatre enthusiast, she recently
made her debut as actor on stage and is an aspiring playwright. As a journalist by profession,
Arwa has written extensively for Indian publications. Her new found joy though is the thrill of
performing live. She loves watching and reviewing movies, and is an ardent foodie and traveller.
Arvind Kumar, Editor: Arvind has been in the media industry for more than 25 years. Arvind
has worked for major newspapers and magazines in Fiji and the Pacifc as reporter, Sub-Editor,
Chief-Sub-Editor, and Editor. In New Zealand for the past 15 years, Arvind has worked at the
New Zealand Herald, Waikato Times, NZ Rural Press and his currently Sub-Editor with Fairfax
Media NZ. Arvind is passionate about online publishing, and was instrumental - along with
Rohan deSouza – in setting up Indian Weekender online.
Giri Gupta, Publisher: Giri Gupta is an Auckland entrepreneur who has been honoured with a
Queen’s Service Medal for services to the business community. Gupta, along with co-publisher
Bhav Dhillon, is the visionary for the community newspaper that is the Indian Weekender. His
business interests include real estate, travel & tourism, hospitality and media. He is deeply
involved in the promotion of Indian culture and heritage in New Zealand and is a tireless
community worker through the Indian Weekender.
Bhav Dhillon, Publisher: Bhav, Auckland industrialist, has driven the success of the Indian
Weekender with his business acumen and zeal. His business success has been hailed by various
Government organisations over the years. He is known as a successful Kiwi businessman who
has brought repute to the Indian community and Bhav has a governance role with the India
NZ Business Council. Dhillon is also the chairman of “There’s a Better Way Foundation”,
which works closely with organisations like CYF, New Zealand Police, among others, to create
pathways of change for our youth troubled with drugs and gangs.
Tanmay Desai, Designer: Tanmay takes the credit of laying the foundation for design of Indian
Weekender. After a long sabbatical, he returned to give his creative touch to this milestone edition. Tanmay
is a full-time art director in an advertising agency in Ponsonby and has a background in graphic designing.
He also owned an animation studio and has been contributing to the creative industry in New Zealand
for over eight years. Designing is not his only love though. He does the Ceroc (French dance form), is a
‘bathroom’ singer and a hardcore fan of Indian Ocean.
Rohan deSouza, Chief Technology Offcer: Rohan has been instrumental in spearheading the strategy,
design and development for some of New Zealand’s biggest media and real estate websites including 3
News, Radio Live and Barfoot & Thompson. He is the co-founder of the Indian Weekender and is currently
a director of App La Carte an app solution company and Moa Creative a mobile app development agency.
In his spare time he loves listening to jazz and occasionally reminisces the days when he flled the drum
chair for a jazz band.
Shriya Bhagwat-Chitale, Associate Editor: Shriya has been the driving force behind the compilation
and editing of this momentous 100th issue of the Indian Weekender. Having worked in leading media
outlets in India and the United Kingdom, Shriya joined the team six months ago. Her list of achievements
includes the Laadli-National Creative Excellence Award for Social Change from the UNFPA. A keen
photographer and Femina cover-girl, Shriya enjoys reading, walks, loves dogs, is a closet fashionista,
writer and home baker.
Gaurav Gupta (Garry), Business Manager: Gaurav is the Business & marketing Manager of the paper.
He is a communications professional with extensive experience in media production, management and
marketing of media brands.Gaurav brings in the rich experience of having worked with various media
platforms: from flm to television, radio, print, on-line and social media. “Creative buff with a marketing
hat”, is how he can be best described.
Farah Khan, Accounts & Admin: Farah takes care of the administration and accounts work for the Indian
Weekender. She joimed the team three years ago after fnishing her degree in Hospitality Management.
She has a background in contact centre team management and hospitality.
Meet the Indian Weekender Team
21 May 2013
Letters of congratulations
“I would like to wish you all the best in
celebrating the 100th issue of the Indian
Weekender. This is a fantastic Milestone -
- Rt Hon John Key,
Prime Minister
21 May 2013
“Congratulations to Indian Weekender on
your 100

I really value the contribution our Indian
communities make to Auckland, now and into

- Len Brown
“I am really happy to learn
that the Indian Weekender
Newspaper is completing
four years and will be
publishing it’s 100th issue
on the 21st of May 2013.”
- Avanindra Kumar Pandey
High Commissioner
David Shearer, Leader of the
Opposition and Leader of the Labour Party
Mr. Shearer was born and raised in Auckland.
He attributes much to his overseas experience
as a young Kiwi; which he says changed his
life and perspective. “It set me on the path to
where I am today and sheeted home a belief
that if I wanted to improve people’s lives and
make a difference, then I had to step up,” he
He came to politics in 1999, having spent
two decades working for the United Na-
tions and other organisations helping people
caught up in war and confict in places such
as Iraq, Somalia, and Kosovo.
This gave him not only a broader perspec-
tive on life, but he says it taught him about
determination, resilience and pragmatism.
“These three traits along with my belief in
fairness and social justice have been pivotal
in my political career,” he says.
In 1993 he was named “New Zealander
of the Year” by the New Zealand Herald for
work in Somalia, and was awarded an M.B.E.
(Member of the British Empire) in the British
New Year Honours List. In 1994, Save the
Children awarded him their international
“Award for Gallantry” for service in areas of
His experience in managing large-scale
relief operations and negotiating in extremely
challenging situations has given him consid-
erable managerial and fnancial skills. Mr.
Shearer has worked under enormous pressure
– sometimes in life-threatening situations – to
achieve his goals and keep his promises.
Mr. Shearer was elected Labour MP for
Mt Albert in 2009, and three years later was
elected Labour Leader. He is married to
Anuschka and the couple have two wonderful
children aged 14 and 16.
21 May 2013
Mr. Kumar is the Director of the trusted and reputed fnancial services
company GFS. GFS has won numerous business awards and specializes
in a range of fnancial services including business fnancing, mortgage
and personal fnance. He believes that the customer is central to
the business and so trust and transparency is paramount. Customer
suggestions in each annual survey are taken extremely seriously.
When Mr. Kumar came to NZ over a decade ago, he had a clear focus
and skills to set-up his own business. He is a Fellow of the Financial
Services Institute of Australia and the Australian Institute & Finance
and bring the right knowledge and skills to his company. Mr. Kumar
is registered with the FMA and authorised to speak publicly on the
fnancial sector. He was Indian Weekender’s frst advertisers.
Niche Media would like to congratulate the Indian Weekender on achieving this milestone in
publication and also with its professional approach to Events and in bringing news and community
interest stories to its readership.
We wish the Indian Weekender all the best in the future and in achieving many more milestones.
Community stalwarts continue
their unwavering support
Ajay Kumar |
CEO, Global Financial Services
Martin Pouwels |
CEO, Niche Media
Sir Anand Satyanand

Chairman of the Commonwealth Foundation
Frequent reader of a number of issues, former Governor-General and now Chairman of the
Commonwealth Foundation in London, Sir Anand Satyanand, added his best wishes to the Indian
Weekender on achievement of the frst decade –“I am very happy to congratulate the paper’s
achievement.” Sir Anand Satyanand, GNZM New Zealand knights QSO KStJ is a former
lawyer, judge and ombudsman. He was the 19th Governor-General of New Zealand.
Mr. Satyanand was born and raised in Auckland to an Indo-Fijian family. His grandparents arrived
in Fiji from Andhra Pradesh, India in 1911, and were married on Nukulau Island. His father, Mutyala
Satyanand, a medical doctor, was born in Sigatoka in 1913 and arrived in New Zealand in 1927 to
attend high school. His mother Tara Tillak was a nurse from Suva. Mr. Satyanand attended Sacred
Heart College in Auckland and then moved to Dunedin to take a medical intermediate course at
the University of Otago.
“I am very happy to
congratulate the paper’s
“We wish the Indian
Weekender all the best in
the future and in achieving
many more milestones.”
“I congratulate the Indian Weekender on this
milestone 100th issue. The success is down to the
people and teams behind it.”
Over the years, the Indian Weekender made many friends from all walks of life. Here, some
of the loyal acquaintances join 100th issue celebration with their good wishes.
21 May 2013
Mere Tora

Acting Head of Mission, Fiji High Commission
Dr Richard Worth

Lawyer and Company Director
Tim Shadbolt |
Mayor, Invercargill City Council
Penelope Simmonds |
Chief Executive, Southern Institute of Technology

“I congratulate the Editor and staff of the
Indian Weekender on publishing the 100th
issue. This is indeed a major milestone that
deserves compliments from the many readers
of your paper. In publishing this historic issue
you are commended for the good work you
have been doing over the years in telling the
Indian Diaspora story in the Kiwi market. The
expansion of your readership to other parts of the
world including Fiji is testimony to the relevance
and high standard of the Indian Weekender.
Congratulations and wish you well in your
journey to the next 100th issue.”
“The infuence of Indian Weekender is widely
acknowledged. It extends beyond New Zealand.
The newspaper has without fear or favour
tackled the issues of the day. The result has been
to produce wide ranging material of interest to
Indian and non-Indian alike.
It is no mean achievement for the publishers
of Indian Weekender to have achieved this
centennial publication. That outcome refects
the contribution of a staff team which has
been committed to the pursuit of excellence in
conveying news and commentary of interest to a
substantially growing readership.
When the newspaper was launched the
publishers made it clear that the paper would
focus on the positive aspects of the life in our
communities. It has admirably succeeded in
that regarding with a wide ranging selection of
material from community activity to the delights
of Bollywood and its stars
Strident political comment has been avoided
but the newspaper has without fear or favour
tackled the issues of the day. The result has been
to produce wide ranging material of interest to
Indian and non-Indian alike.
The infuence of Indian Weekender is widely
acknowledged. It extends beyond New Zealand.
The publishers have increased the readership of
the paper with on-line editions.
The publishers - Mr Giri Gupta QSM and
Mr Bhav Dhillon - have earned a respected
place in the publishing industry but they have
done more than that. Indian Weekender has
supported a range of charities including St John
Ambulance. The latest venture sees the launch of
the Kiwi Indian Hall of Fame. Indian Weekender
is an exemplar of all that is good in the media
Dr Richard Worth is a lawyer and company
director engaged in International trade. He
is actively involved in the Indian community.
From 1999 to 2009 he was a member of the
New Zealand Parliament and in the National led
Government was a Minister of the Crown. The
principality of Monaco has appointed him its
“On behalf of Invercargill City I would like
to congratulate the Indian Weekender on their
100th Edition.
Although Councils such as ours have a
Multicultural Council established to help
minority groups, in my view the best way to
learn about a country is by sharing information,
knowledge and experience. We now live in an
age of instant communication and I am sure the
Indian Weekender plays a vital role in helping
people adapt to a new environment.”
Tim Shadbolt is a local Invercargill hero
and New Zealand icon, known for his wide-
mouthed smile, wicked sense of humour,
standing-up for a wide range of causes and
supporting the average Kiwi.
He was born in Auckland and was a
foundation pupil and prefect at Rutherford
High School. He attended Auckland University
where he majored in History. It was there that
he started his student activism and was also
the editor of Craccum magazine. After leaving
university, Tim Shadbolt started his own
concrete contracting business, managed the
family orchard and worked for community and
political causes.
Tim Shadbolt has been the Mayor of
Waitemata City and was also a Councillor
for Auckland Regional and Waitakere City
Councils. He was Mayor of Invercargill from
1993 to 1995. In 1998 he was re-elected and is
now in his sixth term as Mayor.
The Mayor has written on a wide range of
subjects - from concrete to flm making, as
well as two autobiographical books. He spent
two years as a newspaper columnist for the
Sunday News and is currently a columnist for
the Southland Times and the Southland Express
He has appeared in many radio, television and
magazine presentations. He was one of TV1’s
“Intrepid Explorers” (the episode featuring his
trip to Borneo screened in October 2004). His
trademark grin beamed out in “Dancing With
the Stars” and “7 Days” - and even down from
the big screen thanks to bit parts in “Two Little
Boys”, “The World’s Fastest Indian” and “Utu”.
Mr Shadbolt is also an experienced and
professional after-dinner speaker and, in his role
as Mayor, he attends many community related
functions and ceremonies.
“The Southern Institute of Technology (SIT)
would like to congratulate Indian Weekender on
their 100thissue. It has been good to see a local
newspaper catering for the Indian Community of
New Zealand growing so well with an emphasis
on positive news. SIT appreciates the support
that Indian Weekender provides to our Indian
International students and looks forward to a long
and mutually benefcial working relationship.”
Penelope (Penny) Simmonds is Chief
Executive of Southern Institute of Technology
(SIT), appointed in 1997. SIT has campuses in
Invercargill, Gore, Queenstown and Christchurch
as well as a successful distance learning faculty
through SIT2LRN.”
Prior to appointment as CE, Ms. Simmonds
was in a management position at SIT from 1990
– 1997. She is a Board member of New Zealand
Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics, Venture
Southland, a combined local authority economic
development group, Hockey Southland, and
Community Trust of Southland. Penny is a former
Director of the Southland Museum and Art Gallery
and former member of the Southland District
Health Board and Southland Disabilities Services.
Ms. Simmonds was a recipient of the Woolf
Fisher Fellowship in 2000 and is married with 3
daughters and farms in the Te Tipua District.
“Indian Weekender has supported a range
of charities including St John Ambulance.
The latest venture sees the launch of the
Kiwi Indian Hall of Fame..”
“We now live in an age of instant
communication and I am sure the Indian
Weekender plays a vital role in helping
people adapt to a new environment.”
“The expansion of your
readership to other parts
of the world including
Fiji is testimony to the
relevance and high
standard of the Indian
21 May 2013
So, Kiwi Indian = Indian Kiwi. Or is it?
For this milestone 100
issue, we thought why not create a little distinction between the two? Just
for the fun of it – a little test among our readers to help fnd out how much of themselves is Kiwi and
how much Indian: Are you more of a samosa or pavlova?
A bit of samosa – or thoda sa pavlova?
In the lead up to Indian Weekender’s launch just
over four years ago, we often brainstormed about
who our primary audience actually was. Though
the publication’s masthead is a dead giveaway
about who it is meant for in a general sort of a way,
we had to be mindful about appealing to some sort
of a least common denominator, so to speak.
The label ‘Indian’ is at once simple and complex
to defne, depending on the context. While trying
to defne and arrive at a collective name for Indian
Weekender’s audience we had to contend with the
complex side of ‘Indian’ – in both, the diaspora
context in general and the New Zealand-Indian
demographic reality in particular.
Most of us know the frst Indians arrived here a
little more than a century ago. They came in from
India as well as from other countries that they had
settled or sojourned in before. In the following
decades, they arrived from Fiji, Britain, South
Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Malaysia, Suriname,
Mauritius, the Caribbean states and many other
countries and territories where they had settled for
You would be correct – for the most part – if
you said these people were of Indian descent
or drawn from Indian stock. And there is no
denying that they now live in New Zealand. So
after brilliant arguments and cogently thought
out counter arguments in trying to zero in on the
most essential ingredients to defne that audience,
we arrived at “Kiwi Indian” and made it a part of
Indian Weekender’s tagline.
By no means is this defnition perfect: What
of those who came to New Zealand from Lahore,
Karachi, Chittagong or Dhaka in the days of
undivided India before August 1947? Are they
Kiwi Indians – or are they not because of latterly
drawn political boundaries? And what of those who
are fourth and ffth generation individuals who have
had little to do with India for more than a couple of
generations now – do they ft the Kiwi Indian bill
just because of this tenuous link to the past?
There are many other similar questions that
could be asked, without defnitive, convincing
“Kiwi Indian”, then, is at best a rather fuzzy
appellation that says as little or as much as anybody
would care to read into it. Really, it is left to
individuals to defne for themselves, what defnition
to invest the term with. If one were to ask the
100,000+ people of ethnic Indian descent what they
meant by “Kiwi Indian” you would probably get
as many favours of defnitions as there are people
who choose to identify with it. And each of them
would be right.
Kiwi Indian or is it Indian Kiwi?
Then there was the other thing about whether
Kiwi should come frst or Indian – should it be
Kiwi Indian or Indian Kiwi? In the United States,
people of Indian origin call themselves Indian
Americans then why did Indian Weekender choose
“Kiwi Indian” over “Indian Kiwi”? For one thing,
Indian Americans have no choice other than to call
themselves that because if they used “American
Indians” they would be confused with Native
Americans. Besides, there is some sort of precedent
in putting the original ethnicity before “American”
as in African Americans and Asian Americans.
Indian Weekender – and we in New Zealand
– had a choice: “Kiwi Indian” and “Indian Kiwi”
are equally good candidates. “Kiwi Indian” was
chosen for a simple reason: Kiwi Indian rolls off
the tongue better than Indian Kiwi – at least so we
Dev Nadkarni
Pick one alternative (a OR b) from each of these questions:
1. When at a multi-cuisine buffet –
You go for chicken tikka (if non-vegetarian) and
paneer tikka (if vegetarian)
Fish and chips
2. Your dream for your sports-loving son is to –
Win a place in the world beaten Black Caps side
Be part of the world beating All Blacks
3. You want your lovely daughter to learn –
Indian classical dancing
Ballet dancing
4. At least once in a fortnight –
You shop at an Indian grocery store
You fnd all your grocery needs at mainstream supermarkets
5. You would stay up late at night –
To watch IPL
To watch the All Blacks play in Europe
6. You spend most of your holidays –
In your country of origin
In a new country or region every time
7. You hang out most of the time with –
Friends from your ethnicity/country of origin
Mates from diverse ethnicities from different countries
8. Your favourite thirst quencher is –
A bottle of Kingfsher/ Fiji Bitter
A stubbie of a good Kiwi brew
9. Your favourite evening tipple is –
A blended/ single malt whiskey
A good Kiwi red or white wine
10. Most of your non-Indian acquaintances would assume –
You’re an expert on cricket and Bollywood
You know a thing or two about fshing and pinot noir
11. You’ve been living in NZ for a number of years –
You’re holding on to the citizenship of your country of origin
You’ve acquired NZ citizenship or intend to become a citizen when eligible

12. If you have a daughter/son looking to getting married, you would:
Register them on an Indian Matrimonial website and fnd a suitable
partner from India
Leave them to it, they’ll fgure it out eventually
We came up with these 12 questions with two alternatives each. Tick the alternative you identify with the most and calculate the result at the end.
That’ll tell you if you are a Kiwi Indian rather than an Indian Kiwi – a samosa before a pavlova or the other way round.
So, whether you’re mostly a samosa or feel like a thorough pavlova, is clear. Here is what it means:
7-12 As: You very much love Samosa | 7-12 Bs: You’ve developed a taste for Pavlova.
21 May 2013
The beginning of the Kiwi Indian identity
What does it mean to be Kiwi-Indian? If we
delve into New Zealand’s history there is
surprisingly more diversity than the familiar
images of the Indian shopkeeper. Indians
were recorded as early as 1809 in the very
north in the Bay of Islands and in 1814 in
the south at Otago. They became part of the
little known whakapapa of Māori-Indians.
The contributions Indians made to epochal
moments in New Zealand’s history have also
been hidden. Few know of Edward Peters
from Goa whose fnd initiated the 1860s
Otago gold-rush. Or that Parbhubhai Kasanji
was honoured by the union for aiding strikers’
families in the 1951 waterfront lockout.
Kiwi-Indian roots lay in late nineteenth
century Punjab and Gujarat. Brothers Phuman
and Bir Singh Gill came to New Zealand in
1890, settled and married there. Phuman
operated a confectionery business, while Bir
later joined the army as a cook. Keshaw Daji
from Gujarat arrived in New Zealand in 1902,
worked in forestry and later at the Ponsonby
Police Station.
A Kiwi-Indian identity began on the long
voyage from India to New Zealand when
shipmates from different backgrounds were
thrown together. Migrants continued to rely
upon one another in the new land but were
not isolated from other New Zealanders.
Interaction was essential for livelihoods
but also for friendship and support. Indian
women, who settled in New Zealand
mainly after World War Two, found living
conditions highly challenging. The kindness
of neighbours could make a huge difference
to how they coped and felt accepted as Kiwis.
Today Kiwi-Indians are at the fore of
the country’s economic development and
nation building. After the liberalisation of
immigration policies in the 1980s new waves
of migrants from all over India and the
reaches of the Indian diaspora, including Fiji,
changed the demographics of Kiwi-Indians.
Many new immigrants were business-people
and professionals but so too, were more
locally-born Kiwi-Indians.
Yet for decades Kiwi-Indians were
working class — whether breaking scrub in
the King Country, or on the assembly line in a
Petone factory, or working as bottle collectors
or hawkers. This labour enabled several
Kiwi-Indians to establish small businesses
and farms — such as the potato farmers at
Pukekohe and the Punjabis who ran dairy
farms. Some Kiwi-Indian enterprises had
exotic names such as the Indian Lolly Factory,
Eureka, La Boheme and The Oriental Fur
Co. Small, labour intensive and family-run
fruit and vegetable businesses were crucial in
servicing consumers in rural North Island and
in urban centres.
It’s impossible for me to say what it means
to be a Kiwi-Indian. It has been my privilege
to share in the lives of some Kiwi-Indians. I
see a very different Indian presence in New
Zealand to when I began my research in 1976.
Most Kiwi- Indians then were descended from
the early Gujarati and Punjabi settlers. They
worked very hard and went to extraordinary
lengths to reconstruct their culture. Indian
foods, spices and movies were diffcult to fnd.
Diwali was not publicly celebrated. Mandir,
masjid or gurdwara were visibly absent in New
Zealand. This would slowly change; by 1977
the Te Rapa gurdwara had opened. Around
then I attended the opening of probably New
Zealand’s frst Indian restaurant in Khyber
Pass Road in Auckland. Over thirty years
later Indian cultures are vibrantly visible in
many parts of New Zealand but they have a
unique Kiwi and Pacifc character. People
make that happen — whether the former
Governor-General Sir Anand Satyanand, or
Rocky Khan, the frst Indo-Fijian to play for
New Zealand in the rugby sevens — or the
thousands of Kiwi-Indians who are not in the
media spotlight but are the future of Aotearoa
New Zealand.
- Jacqueline Leckie is Associate Professor at
Otago University and is the author of a book
on Indian settlers in New Zealand
Jacqueline Leckie
“A Kiwi Indian identity began on
the long voyage from India to
New Zealand when shipmates
from different backgrounds were
thrown together.”
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21 May 2013
A flawless century – a bit like Sachin’s
Four-and-a-half years ago, when I was with
the National Business Review (NBR), an
acquaintance introduced me to Giri Gupta. When
I met him at his offce in Epsom, he told me he
wanted to publish a new magazine for Kiwis of
Indian origin that was different from everything
that was then available.
He explained “different” simply saying
he wanted it to be positive. He thought other
publications did a disservice to the Indian diaspora
whenever they published negative stories about
them. He wanted to stress on positivity, helping
create an enabling frame of mind for migrants to
face challenges in their adopted country.
Noble intentions, I thought. But did he have a
plan? The infrastructure to support a publication,
produce and distribute it; sell ads and bring home
the bacon – the most challenging task of all? No,
he said. And he said this: “I can’t write a single
line. That’s for people like you. And that’s why
I am talking to you. Everything else will fall in
I appreciated Giri’s resolve to pursue his
dream, which he said he had been harbouring for
a long time. But I wondered if he had carefully
thought through the intricacies and risks of
running a periodical publishing business without
ever having dabbled in it ever before.
I took it upon myself to warn him with the
persuasive aphorism I had heard from my frst
publisher-boss when I began my career in India.
It has stuck with me for three decades. “If ever
God wants to destroy you, he will appear in your
dreams and ask you to start a magazine.” When
I told this to Giri, he was unimpressed. Without
so much as batting an eyelid came his retort, “If
we work very hard with sincerity and diligence, I
think we can get God to change his mind.”
Rather poetic and very wishful, I thought. By
now, though, Giri’s infectious enthusiasm had
begun to take me in and I decided to give it a go
and come in as editor. But I still had to get round
to his solitary brief to me: being positive. Which
reminded me of an incident that happened a few
years ago.
While conducting a media training programme
for parliamentarians and senior offcials of a
prominent Pacifc Island country about a decade
ago, its prime minister rather pointedly asked me
why the “media liked to be negative.” It is not as
if nothing good happens in the world. Why is it
that there is such a preponderance of “negative
news” especially on the front pages, he asked
accompanied by vigorous assenting nods from
his cabinet colleagues.
I asked them if they had heard of the media
being compared to a watchdog. They said yes.
The watchdog barks only whenever something
is amiss, I said. With that barking everyone is
warned that something unsavoury has been
happening. Watchdogs never create a ruckus
when they are happy. They merely wag their
tails – which no one hears. The penny dropped.
Suddenly there was an appreciation in the room
of the media’s role in people’s lives.
When I related this to Giri, he agreed on the bit
about the media’s role but he said he felt a greater
responsibility for creating a media outlet that
helped migrants fnd their feet in a new country,
rise to the many new challenges they had never
faced before and inspire them to achieve a better
life for themselves and their families – the very
reason why they migrated in the frst place.
He contended that there was enough negative
reporting that was biased against migrants
and unfortunately this was amplifed in other
publications that were targeted at migrant
populations. He wanted his paper to eschew
reinforcing the migrant stereotype and create an
aura of positivity. Instead embrace positively life
in the new land, revel in its diversity and celebrate
being here.
That sounded like not just a reasonable but also
a viable point of difference. This was incorporated
into the design brief for the paper as it took shape.
It took four months of intense brain storming,
planning sessions, discussing design options and
putting production and distribution networks in
place before the publication took shape.
Giri’s vision and organisational nous was aptly
complemented with his business partner and co-
director Bhav Dhillon’s well-honed management
skills, highly innovative promotional and
marketing ideas and inspirational team leadership.
The two men were a dream team for a start up as
challenging as a niche publication in a challenging
market set to launch at the very nadir of the global
fnancial crisis.
In fact Giri’s and Bhav’s contention was that
things couldn’t have been worse than the state of
the markets and the economy then and that the
only way things could go was up. So after all that
intense planning we launched the frst issue of
Indian Weekender in March 2010, coinciding with
the Indian cricket team’s visit to New Zealand.
Its bright innovative easy-on-the-eye layout
– designed by young, gifted graphic designer
Tanmay Desai – engaging breadth of content
enhanced by quality illustrations and something-
for-everyone package made it an instant success.
Unlike other publications, Indian Weekender
featured a bevy of Indian English writers both
from here and in India to bring in ranging
The publication went from strength to strength
from the word go. In fact, in our frst anniversary
issue, we had enough milestones over the past
12 months to look like the publication had been
in existence for several years. In the frst twelve
months, Indian Weekender had its fabulously
functional website thanks to Rohan D’Souza who
came in as Chief Technical Offcer and Arvind
Kumar; it launched an iPhone version followed it
up by an iPad one and developed strong links with
a range of community organisations.
Four years and 100 issues later, Indian
Weekender is frmly established on the Kiwi
Indian frmament. Incidentally, ‘Kiwi Indian’ is a
term that Indian Weekender popularised (a story
about it appears elsewhere in this issue).
Created four years ago to celebrate the process
of assimilation in our adopted country, Indian
Weekender marks its hundredth issue with the
launch of yet another initiative to inspire us all to
achieve greater things in this country: The Kiwi
Indian Hall of Fame. Your place to recognise and
honour those from among us who have helped
make all of us proud while making a positive
difference to our lives here in New Zealand.
Congratulations, Indian Weekender, for
making this happen. And thank you all, dear
readers, for being part of the journey through the
frst 100 issues of this publication. A round of
applause to all for this fawless century.
Dev Nadkarni is Indian Weekender’s founding
There have been big hits and cheekily picked singles in Indian Weekender’s run up to this 100th issue – and like a typical
Tendulkar innings, it’s been chanceless.
A little bit of Fiji, India and Kiwi
Quite often during my travels outside Fiji, I am
asked if I am Indian. In most cases, my instant
reaction would be a slight stammer and then a
yes. Most often than not, my mind would then
quickly analyse the need to explain myself
further. This usually starts with me assessing
the other person’s reaction to my answer and
depending on how curious they are, I then come
out with out what perceive is my real identity.
Which is usually something along this line.
“In fact I am Indo-Fijian if you are asking for
my ethnicity because technically I am a fourth
generation Indian but if you are asking about my
nationality, then it’s Fijian”.
What then follows is a quick run through
of our history, mainly about the Girmit era.
How my forefathers who frst arrived in Fiji as
indentured labourers during the British Colonial
s rule to work in sugar cane felds then choosing
to stay on in their new found home after their
contract expired.
By now I would have either managed to
satisfy their curiosity to ask no further questions
or I would have generated more interest in
my ethnic background which often sees me
talking at length about being Indo-Fijian, racial
dynamics in Fiji, life in Fiji and the various
waves of migration of Indo-Fijian overseas.
But for someone of an Itaukei mother and
Indo-Fijian father, identity can be more complex
than just being labeled an Indo-Fijian.
Quite often in this part of the world, I have
been referred to as Indo-Fijian, Fijian, Pacifc
Islander and occasionally something unexpected
like Latino or even Arab. I often fnd myself
pondering the question of who is the real “Indo-
While my looks may be a dead giveaway of
my roots, my “Indianess” is something I consider
more than skin deep. Apart from my great love
for Bollywood and a passion for Indian arts, the
so called Indian culture or Indo-Fijian culture to
be politically correct and what it has evolved to
is what I am fascinated about and proud to be
a living example of. I consider myself more of
a modern indo-Fijian who is still cultured. By
cultured, I mean my own Indo-Fijian culture. A
blend of the Fijian Itaukei culture and that of
our forefathers, which is what sets us apart.
Like any diaspora, the frst Indian in Fiji learnt
to assimilate into their new home while striving
to retain their own culture. They also remained
steadfast in their religion be it Islamism,
Hinduism or Sikhism. The frst Indians practiced
their religion as part of their culture which
to large extent helped retain traditions, rites
and rituals such as Tirikutu, bhajans, wearing
sari, Indian food, celebrating festivals such
as Diwali and Eid, all these surviving years of
change and transformation that their new home
went through. Even the Itaukei community has
absorbed some of the Indian culture into their
lives. It’s not rare to spot roti and curry in most
lunch boxes in schools, even during Eid and
Diwali you would fnd the Itaukei women in
sari or salwaar kameez. The indo-Fijian home
would often make tavioka and fsh in lolo in the
weekends, or make lovo for Christmas just like
their itaukei neighbour.
So if you fnd an Indo-Fijian in Auckland,
Sydney or London, you will defnitely see
a slightly different Indian than one that has
come directly from any Indian city. We are our
own unique blend of India and Fiji that has
warped through generations making us who
we are today. Our language, even though still
colloquial sets us apart, our cuisine and kava.
Kava drinking is very common in Indo-Fijian
communities abroad has become more than
just a social get together. It has been a circle
that bonds and binds us as people of a common
background. It wouldn’t be rare to see former
Fiji residents of Indian origin sitting together at a
home in Papatoetoe reminiscing life back in Fiji,
talking about politics, the latest migrant from
Labasa who has moved in their street, who is
getting married to who’s son, who is going back
to Fiji for the Inter District Soccer Competition,
the next kriya, etc.
This unique culture is what Indo-Fijians
from Fiji take to the world. Our own version of
being Indian, which is still not far off from what,
our forefathers brought to Fiji.

Naziah Ali, is the publisher of Mai Life magazine,
a general interest magazine based out of Suva.
Naziah Ali
Dev Nadkarni
21 May 2013
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Sport and the Indian community
in New Zealand
Sport has been an important bridge connecting
the Indian community with the wider
community and has also fostered a sense of
collective identity among New Zealand Indians.
On Queen’s Birthday Weekend, Pukekohe
will host the 50th New Zealand Indian Sports
Association Hockey Tournament (popularly
known as Queen’s Birthday Tournament or
QBT). The event is likely to attract upwards of
1000 spectators and players and serves as both
a sporting tournament and a gathering point
for New Zealand Indians. The venue is an apt
illustration of the contribution of the Indian
community towards sport in New Zealand
because Pukekohe Indian Sports Club made
a signifcant fnancial contribution to funding
the hockey turf where the tournament will take
place. Moreover, the club itself is credited with
playing a major role in helping Indians engage
with the wider community, something that
was very important given the hostility Indian
immigrants earlier experienced in Pukekohe and
other parts of New Zealand.
The history of Indian sport in New Zealand
extends back nearly one hundred years. Tours
to New Zealand by Indian Hockey teams in
1926, 1935 and 1938 provided feeting moments
where Indian achievements were applauded in
the mainstream press, in contrast to the openly
racist comments often levelled against Asian
immigration. During these tours the Indian
teams were praised for their skilled play and
attracted record crowds. They also formed
links with Maori, playing a match against a
Maori team in Rotorua 1935, in exchange for
which Maori presented a shield to the Indian
Hockey Federation. These teams, especially
the legendary Dhyan Chand, also inspired the
formation of Indian Sports Clubs in Wellington
in 1935 and Christchurch and Auckland in 1936.
At this time there were only 1200 Indians in
New Zealand and many of these were young
men working very long hours for low pay.
Playing under the banner of an Indian Sports
Club allowed young Indians to mix with the then
predominantly European community while also
promoting their own identity.
After the Second World War more Indian
women came to New Zealand and sporting
exchanges became occasions when Indian
families, many of whom were of Gujarati
ancestry, could reconnect with each other. The
earliest Indian tournament, the Coronation
Tournament was held on Queen’s Birthday
Weekend in Wellington in 1953 and interest
in these tournaments, and a match by a New
Zealand Indian Team against the visiting Indian
Wanderers hockey team in 1955 stimulated
interest in forming a national Indian Sports
Association, which occurred in 1962. So far
as is known, the New Zealand Indian Sports
Association (NZISA) is unique in that it
coordinates events for a network of eight
member clubs: Christchurch, Wellington,
Central Districts, Bay of Plenty, Waikato,
Pukekohe, Auckland and North Harbour which,
in 2012 had 2101 members and 1238 active
players. Since its inception, NZISA has sought to
foster Indian sport and provide opportunities for
Indian players to progress to the highest levels.
Beginning with a match against the Wellington
Hockey Team in 1966, it has since played
against international teams (including India
on three occasions) and sent a New Zealand
Indian team to the Oceania Hockey Federation’s
Pacifc Cup in Fiji in 2008. Although hockey
is the main sport in which Indians participate,
NZISA also includes netball and soccer in its
annual tournament and also oversees an annual
golf tournament. Participation in sport has
aided recognition of the administrative ability
of Indians. Ramesh Patel, the frst Indian to
play for New Zealand in hockey, was Chief
Executive Offcer of the New Zealand Hockey
Federation for over twenty years. The New
Zealand Indian community has diversifed since
1987, Wellington now has a Punjabi Badminton
Club and a Tamil Sports Club as well as the
Wellington Indian Sports Club, but one common
element is that Indian sports clubs have enabled
Indians to enjoy each other’s company and mix
with the wider community.
Geoff Watson is senior lecturer of history at
massey University. He is author of Sporting
foundations of New Zealand Indians: A ffty
year history of the New Zealand Indian Sports
Geoff Watson
“After the Second World War more
Indian women came to New Zealand and
sporting exchanges became occasions
when Indian families got together.”
21 May 2013
Difference makes a difference
India in New Zealand
A recent poll on TV3’s current affairs show The
Vote found 76 per cent of respondents believed
New Zealand is a racist society. If that represents
the beliefs of most New Zealanders the situation
is both disturbing and unacceptable.
But I’m not convinced the poll shows Kiwis
have an inbuilt sense of superiority or intolerance
towards people newly-arrived in this country. I
believe it shows how some New Zealanders still
don’t understand what we’re doing as a society.
In Auckland, for example, people from all
walks of life have had to come to grips with huge
change in the past 10 to 15 years. The city is now
home to 186 different ethnicities.
Most of us understand and accept that New
Zealand does not have the growth rate to become
an economy of scale. We know we need to build
workforces and a wider society that will enable
us to engage more fully with major international
In order to do that, we are looking to attract
skilled and talented people from overseas. We
acknowledge that not everyone will look and
behave in the same way as everyone else and we
welcome the diversity that will bring to our daily
As a country, we need to understand that it’s
going to be difference that makes a difference.
Our ability to welcome a wide variety of
peoples, cultures, languages, faiths and beliefs
will continue to defne us as a nation and make,
or break, our chances of creating a prosperous
At the Equal Employment Opportunities
(EEO) Trust, we help employers celebrate such
diversity by promoting the recruitment and
development of people on the basis of merit. The
EEO Trust generates awareness of the business
benefts and rewards of an inclusive workplace.
Every day we see great stuff happening when
employers take on people regardless of their
ethnicity, gender, age or physical ability.
For the past 15 years the EEO Trust Work &
Life Awards have been highlighting some of the
best examples. These organisations tell powerful
and practical stories. At heart, they’re about
At the EEO Trust we share an absolute belief
that having difference at the table will enable us
all to create better understanding, develop new
points of view and come up with innovative
It will enable us to build on each individual’s
strength to build a much more creative and
sophisticated society.
As I see it, the TV3 poll highlights that
some people haven’t yet come to grips with
Auckland’s evolving cosmopolitan identity.
Some Aucklanders haven’t yet grasped the idea
that our people of 186 ethnicities can all live
together. They don’t get that by understanding
the differences between us all we will become
more tolerant both as individuals and as a
society. They don’t see the power that lies within
So beneath the polls and conversations on
racism lies an important issue. We need a much
better understanding of what this problem might
Together we have chosen a pathway to
become a multi-cultural society. We made a
conscious decision to increase the size of our
population through immigration. There was
always going to be a blending of values and
society: and that means change.
Perhaps some people are still resistant to
change. Perhaps some people didn’t fully
understand that in saying yes to the idea of
Auckland becoming an international city of
scale, we needed to set in place an immigration
policy that would lift our population signifcantly
through inviting in, and accepting, new New
Zealanders who would boost our workforce and
share their skills.
Those policies were always going to
create change. We now need to ensure our
behaviours match the opportunities that this new
environment is creating for us all.
Chair of the Equal
Employment Opportunities Trust
The Equal Employment Opportunities Trust
website provides information on seminars,
programmes, case studies, research and other
resources on a broad range of diversity issues.
More years ago than I care to dwell on, much
of my childhood was spent in a place called
Havelock North in the Hawkes Bay. Around
the place were small enclaves of old white
folks, mostly retired missionaries and civil
servants who had left India, for some reason,
in 1947.
It never occurred to me, until years later
covering an Indian cricket tour of New
Zealand, that there was any link between the
Raj and Havelock North. Or Napier, Clive,
Hastings, or Auckland, for that matter.
Better informed, I wondered why Indian
cricketers would want to play in cities named
in honour of the British heroes of India’s
colonisation and after men who crushed
India’s First War of Independence.
Plainly, the honouring of Raj heroes has
not deterred too many of the 97,000 Indians
calling New Zealand home. And the 7000 or
so Fiji Indians here, feeing the wake of four
coups, had more immediate worries than
South Asian history.
I have no memory of Indians in the
provincial New Zealand I grew up in; there
was a sense that Waikato had a lot of men
wearing turbans on dairy farms.
Punjabi and Gujarati folk, it turned out,
had been in New Zealand almost from the
beginning of the nation. In 1861, our history
says, Australian Gabriel Reid found gold in
Otago; history is silent on the fact that an
Indian, Edward “Black Peter” Peter, told him
where to look.
It wasn’t until I became a journalism
student at 18 in Wellington that I knew any
Indians at all. Those were the days of the
Colombo Plan, which bought in hundreds of
Asians for education, and so my frst Indian
came with Malaysians, Indonesians, a lot of
Sri Lankans and quite a few Indians.
For a boy from the provinces it was all a
rich mix.
For us baby boomers, the increasing
arrival of Indians signalled a happy end to the
oppression of the largely White – backed by
the “Happy” Maori from the Pa – generation
of the parents.
If there was a moment that tested it all, it
was when in the mid 1980s ethnic Indians in
Fiji briefy became the single largest racial
group. An Indian dominated government
came to power and was then overthrown by
Sitiveni Rabuka in 1987.
There were misguided editorials saying
that Indo Fijians had bought it on themselves;
that they were too clannish, unwilling to
inter-marry. Actually it was much more
complicated than that, but as a result of
Rabuka, Indo Fijians began arriving in large
numbers, mainly in Auckland.
Fiji’s record of coups ensured a steady fow
and they turned out to be great migrants for
three basic reasons; they were well motivated,
spoke English and understood the National
Provincial Rugby Competition.
Then there were all other Indians; South
African, Ugandan, Tanzanian and, of course,
Some odd things happened. By some
accounts, Auckland has become the second
largest Farsi city in the world after Mumbai.
Like most demographic trends, it can be
hard to fnger when, as some one living in the
middle of it, you noticed it happening. The
Fiji lot were easy to pick, thanks to politics,
but the arrival of Indians in much larger
numbers seemed to quietly happen.
I’ve theories for why it has happened so
quietly and without the same resistance other
migrant groups have suffering; the Dutch,
Samoans and Chinese to name a few.
It’s not to say Indians never suffered
racism here; history shows it was strong
during the mid-20th Century. And no one is
going to argue that Indians have had an easy
road here.
These days though, I sense the majority
population realises New Zealand’s population
is too small to be closed to the world.
There is some dispute about Auckland’s
Khyber Pass over whether it is named after
the feature that Lord Auckland sent the British
Army up, never to return. Others say after the
Indian Mutiny, many of the British soldiers
who fought in the Indian Mutiny came to New
Zealand and settle. Some of them, it is said,
built the road.
About the only “Indian” place name
in New Zealand not directly named after
something Indian, is Auckland’s Bombay
Hills. It’s named after a ship….
Michael Field is a senior reporter and journalist
Michael Barnett
Michael Field
“I’m not convinced the poll shows Kiwis
have an inbuilt sense of superiority or
intolerance. I believe it shows how some
New Zealanders still don’t understand
what we’re doing as a society.”
“These days though, I sense the
majority population realises
New Zealand’s population is too
small to be closed to the world.”
21 May 2013
Kiwi Indian in quakey Christchurch
AFTER having lived through three major
earthquakes and over 10,000 aftershocks
here, for me Christchurch feels like home
probably as no other place does. But that is
not all it’s about.
Yes, Christchurch is bent, busted and
battered and has a gaping emptiness for a
central city. Yes, stress is the new normal,
frustration our new companion, head banging
the cool, new strut. There are deep divisions
on what needs to be done, an ongoing outcry
over what is being done and dire predictions
from all quarters of what lies ahead.
And yes, being an Indian in Christchurch
is tough. It is, after all the most racist city in
New Zealand, or so they say.
I can attest to some of it – the skinheads
yelling abuse at you as they roar past in their
dinky Japanese rice-burners; the white trash
who believe you should allow them first dibs
at anything by the dint of them being superior
to you by their skin colour; the professional
who deliberately speaks slower because they
think you may be a little slow at grasping it;
fellow workers who realise just a little bit
too late that you are part of the team also;
the man on the street who pushes past you as
if you are invisible; the driver who doesn’t
see you at the crossing (maybe it is because I
am the same colour as the road and the white
stripes of the zebra crossing becomes an
optical illusion?).
But I don’t think it is much different in
either Auckland or Wellington. The racist
will be a racist wherever he exists; and in
most cases he won’t be aware that he is a
racist. The classical case is the Christchurch-
based white supremacist Kyle Chapman,
leader of the “white pride” Right Wing
Resistance (RWR) group. The subscription-
by-colour-white group’s slogan of sorts
“Anti-racist equals to Anti-White” probably
sums up their take on people of other colours.
In a somewhat twisted version of the reverse
psychology they would have you think they
are under threat from emigrants, especially
from Asia.
On the face of it, Kyle’s bunch have a valid
reason for promoting the supremacy of the
white people. They are losing their culture,
their heritage and their reason for being
white (probably because white is no longer
the in-colour?). It was bad enough to deal
with just the Maori before; nowadays every
Chan, Dong and Hari can be found around
every corner. You can’t stop running into
them. And every other sentence in written
English turns out to be Maori, anyway.
So, they have decided not to read any
Government literature, except the ones
needed for filling in forms for holding
rallies; they will set up their own white
base somewhere in Central Canterbury and
are actively working towards making that
happen ($21,000 raised so far and counting);
they will promote the whiteness of being; the
purity of (white?) blood and the awfulness of
otherness. It’s all in black and white.
Their base is Christchurch and they hold
a rally for white pride every year in central
Christchurch. And every year the media
runs some coverage on them (giving the
impression that skinheads, white supremacy
and neo-Nazis are thriving in Christchurch)
and shortly after everyone forgets about
them, until the next rally, or the next stunt
they cook up.
Last year, someone decided to protest
the protest and stood alone holding an ‘anti-
racism’ banner opposite the chanting white
supremacists for as long as they ‘rallied’.
Inspired by that fearless person, this year
over 150 ‘anti-racists’ (more than twice the
number of white supremacists at this year’s
rally) hurled abuse and jeers at them. Kyle’s
bunch would have been highly mortified. I
was amused.
After all, this all good fun compared to
what an Indian suffered during, and after, all
those coups in Fiji.
I used to think having some soldier
stalking after me with a gun; or driving
through Central Suva during the height of
the riots in George Speight’s coup; or being
surrounded by the mob of marchers that
ended up laying siege to the Parliament
were the highlights of my life. Before that
it was hearing the horror stories of people
having to sit naked on hot tar sealed roads
in the blazing midday sun of Fiji, or forced
at gunpoint to walk barefooted through
“millmud” piles.
Or women stripped to their underpants
and forced to wash clothes in public because
they broke the Sunday taboo.
That was all before the quakes. Talk about
a life changing event and the Canterbury
earthquakes are it. They define you, whether
you want it or not. They own you, you
have little personality left over after being
whacked by them. Your world revolves
around them: insurance, repairs, broken
things, repairs and insurance.
The 22 February earthquake killed 185,
injured hundreds and broke many and much
things, etc, etc. No-one outside Christchurch
actually wants to know about the quakes
anymore. Many Christchurchians themselves
would rather not dwell anymore more on
this – they are rebuilding, re-constituting
and looking forward to the best ‘boutique’
of everything: boutique city, boutique
stadium, boutique lives. There is optimism
in the air, and winter not far behind. There
is determination in their minds, and grit in
their eyes, mouths and noses. Christchurch is
dust, only the recent rains calming the motes
enough to offer some respite from months of
dusty helpings of everything.
So, a broken, strung-out city. And a taut
spirit. But what of it? Christchurch may
be broken, but even with its racism and
political yahoo-ness it will never reach the
depths of Fiji in cutting me apart from its
fabric. Its spirit may be bent, but it will not
be broken as in Fiji. Not while the ilk of
those 150 who jeered Kyle Chapman’s chaps
are around. Or the likes of those who made
the city and its people their very own in the
immediate aftermath of the quakes. Haters
will hate, whingers will whine – the one-
eyed Cantabrian is a breed apart: admirable,
elitist and suavely offensive.
There is a heavy touch of the forefathers
in them. But a touch of larrikin, a pinch of
gung ho and a good helping of joie de vivre
has slipped in, complicating their make-up,
condensing their convictions, compromising
(somewhat) their one-eyed take on life.
Furthermore, the Asian, Indian, African
and Islander influences are dribbling in –
as Kyle’s chappies would say – unnerving
some, enriching others, muddying the
makeup of the city.
Cantabrians are stoic in their suffering,
venomous in their vulnerability, betting on
long-held traditions to see to them through.
This used to be God’s own country for
them, but now they would rather take direct
ownership. They believe the light at the end
of the tunnel is of their own making, powered
by their own work ethics, innovation and
entrepreneurship. Coming from a country
where the dibri – the tin can kerosene candle
– lit some nights of my early life, the light
at the end of this here Christchurch tunnel
seems pretty bright to me, importune racism
and all.
Would I live elsewhere in New Zealand?
Probably, if the right atmosphere and people
can be found. That would take some looking.
After all, what do they say about that bird in
hand? Christchurch is almost like that, worth
any other two places in New Zealand. Any
Nalinesh Arun is a former Fiji journalist
now based in Christchurch
Nalinesh Arun
“I used to think having some soldier
stalking after me with a gun; or driving
through Central Suva during the height of
the riots in George Speight’s coup; or being
surrounded by the mob of marchers that
ended up laying siege to the Parliament
were the highlights of my life.”
21 May 2013
21 May 2013
The startling split personalities
Contrary to popular perception, young Indians aren’t shying away from their roots in a bid to fit into the Kiwi culture.
Instead they have found a middle ground which enables them to be ideal Indian New Zealanders with ease, writes
Shreya Gejji
For long we have been lead to believe that
New Zealand born Indians get the short end of
the stick. They’re never really Indian enough,
but they’re not quite Kiwi either. They’re
stuck in the uncomfortable in-between,
suggesting that young immigrants and
second generation Indians live in some sort
of perpetvual identity crisis. Nothing could
be further from the truth. In our increasingly
globalised world, there is an apparent trend
developing - youngsters who are now actively
seeking out their roots; a deliberate shift away
from the obsessive fascination of the West, to
a deep desire to understand the culture that
was left behind.
Meet Natasha Trilokekar. Born to
Maharashtrian parents, Trilokekar, 23, moved
here with her family from Mumbai when
she was 10 years old. Trilokekar is a highly
accomplished Bharatnatyam dancer, having
completed her Arengetram at the tender age
of 14. For this youngster, her dance has been
the anchor that keeps her frmly rooted in
her culture and tradition. “Growing up as
an Indian in Auckland has often made me
wonder where my cultural identity lies. But
my Bharatnatyam training has been integral in
developing that identity because it has given
me a tangible way to stay in touch with my
roots.” Here’s what else, she is also distinctly
Kiwi. She moved out of home after University
to fat with a few friends with the intention of
being independent. Earlier this year she got
engaged to her long-term boyfriend Damon,
a local from New Plymouth. Trilokekar has
allowed these two cultures and worlds to
co-mingle in her life with startling maturity.
“I’ve never had to choose. It hasn’t ever been
In our increasingly globalised world,
there is an apparent trend developing -
youngsters who are now actively seeking
out their roots; a deliberate shift away
from the obsessive fascination of the
West, to a deep desire to understand the
culture that was left behind.
Natasha Trilokekar
Taking Auckland into the future needs passionate and committed people to step forward for election.
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2013 Auckland Council Elections. www.voteauckland.co.nz
21 May 2013
one culture over another. I feel extremely
lucky that I have the unique opportunity to be
a Kiwi without losing out on being an Indian.
Both these cultures together defne who I am
today.” she quips.
Ditto for Siddharth Krishnamoorthy,
who spent most of his growing years in
New Zealand after his family migrated
from India. With his strong Kiwi accent,
love for sport and obsession with the great
Kiwi outdoors, Krishnamoorthy could well
be your quintessential New Zealander. Like
Trilokekar though, there is more to him than
meets the eye. “Music is my passion”, declares
the 22-year-old, adding, “My training in the
classical art form has been instrumental in
helping me understand a lot of what I know
today about Indian tradition – from religion
and mythology to popular culture”. As for the
cultural melange, he says, “It is inevitable
that the two cultures will infuence and inform
each other, and that’s not a bad thing at all. In
fact, I reckon it’s pretty great.”
If it’s performing arts for some, it’s
spirituality for others. Take Keshav Vedire
for example. Youth leader at Chinmaya
Mission New Zealand, his deep interest in
Indian spirituality and Vedantic thought is
what frst brought him to the organisation. He
is now an active leader, as well as convening
weekly spiritual classes he also leads other
youth volunteers to fundraise for the mission
through creative, positive action. Vedire, an
avid and prolifc sportsperson, who coaches
school tennis and leads indoor netball teams,
is about as Kiwi as they come. Says Vedire
“My involvement in Chinmaya Mission NZ,
has amongst other things, allowed me to
stay frmly rooted in Indian traditions whilst
remaining completely Kiwi otherwise.”
Trilokekar, Krishnamoorthy and Vedire are
not alone. In fact, they may well be amongst
the majority – shining examples of young
Kiwi-Indians who haven’t lost touch with
their cultural roots. Instead, they have found
ways to actively engage with it. For them and
many others, their quest for developing their
cultural identities has lead them to explore
and express their relationship with their roots
through a host of different platforms.
Evidently, the proverbial washerman’s dog
has evolved. He now makes sure he belongs
to both the ghar and the ghaat.
Top: Keshav Vedire; Right: Siddharth Krishnamoorthy
21 May 2013
Blast from
the past
As Indian Weekender crosses a milestone 100th by celebrating the
Kiwi-Indian identity, we take you on a historic trail of the oldest Kiwi-
Indian families in the country. Arwa Janjali speaks to one, who is set
to make its century in NZ while bringing you snapshots of the others
Phomen Singh arrived in 1890s
Copyright The Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: 1/2-199136; F
The Beginning
Phomen Singh, a Sikh, was born in the Punjab
region of India and arrived in New Zealand about
1890. He learned how to make sweets in Auckland,
then worked as a street hawker in Wellington.
While there he met Margaret Ford, an English
nurse, and they were married in 1898, shortly after
he moved to Whanganui to set up a confectionery
business. In the 1920s the family settled in
Palmerston North, where Phomen opened two
sweet shops.
Five generations and
still counting...
It just took one signature in ‘English’ for
Bhaghabhai Morrarbhai aka Bhagwanji and six
other Indians to meet the immigration requirement
for New Zealand in 1914. With no formal
education, Bhagwanji landed in Wellington solely
on the basis of the little English he had learnt
during the six months that he spent in Fiji.
Fascinatingly, migration to a country for these
men, who travelled to New Zealand from India in
cargo ships more than 100 years ago, was a matter
of instinctive choice. Like Bhagwanji, many
during that period randomly chose New Zealand
over Fiji and became the frst generation of the
oldest Indian families that came to be settled in
21 May 2013
NZ. Bhagwanji has fve generations of his family
rooted in the country today. As his granddaughter
takes us down memory lane on her rich family
history, we embark on a success story replete with
trials, tribulations, patience, courage and wonder.
“When my grandfather landed in Wellington
before the First World War, he worked as a
dishwasher in hotels and collected beer bottles
at beaches to trade for money. By 1932, he got
his three sons to settle in NZ too. Soon after the
sons were set, he returned to India,” Damayanti
Mohanbhai tells us. While hawking, selling
fruits and veggies by horse and cart and other
odd jobs were reserved for Indian migrants, Mrs
Mohanbhai’s father Jeykisan Bhagwanji was
among that rare breed who taught English in
Auckland schools – that too at the age of 18 years.
“There were shortage of teachers then. My father
also knew Maori. He sang Maori songs to the
Maori kids in class,” Mrs Mohanbhai smiles.
Her father was also among the frst Indians to
have opened up a fruit shop, in 1947. “I enjoyed
my growing up years in Wellington. There was a
peaceful existence of all cultures and no prejudice
against anyone. But when we shifted to Pakuranga
(Auckland) in the 1950s, my children started
facing racist remarks at school. They were being
called as ‘curry munchers’ by their classmates. I
think this attitude mainly sunk in after the arrival of
English migrants from Europe and other countries.
The Maoris and English born in New Zealand
always had a very open mindset,” Mrs Mohanbhai
Bhagwanji Family
Bhaghabhai Morrarbhai aka Bhagwanji (centre) with his eldest son Natwerbhai
Bhagwanji (left) and youngest son Gajanand Bhagwanji
“My father taught English
and sang Maori songs.
There was a shortage of
teachers then...”
IN CINEMAS MAY 9 Check the Classifcation /HoytsDistributionNZ
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FRIDAY 24 MAY 2013
Binnu Dhillon plays a gang leader who has a
heart problem. The doctor recommends him
to get a new heart transplant. Unable to fnd
any healthy donor in his gang, due to some
sort of a drinking or drug abuse problem
with each member of his gang, he convinces
the character played by Arya Babbar, the
protagonist of the flm, for heart donation.
Rated: (TBC)
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21 May 2013
Auckland, 1950s
Jeykisan Bhagwanji (centre) with
friends Ramanbhai Chibha (left) and
Chhotubhai Sima in 1950 Auckland
Wellington, 1940s
Jeykisan Bhagwanji in 1940 Wellington
youngest son Gajanand Bhagwanji
Recent Times
Damayanti Mohanbhai (right) with her
husband Mohanbhai Haribhai
The Waikato Farming Family
From the late 1930s many Punjabi Sikhs, who had often acquired farming experience in India, settled in
the Waikato region and took up dairy farming. This 1993 photograph shows descendants of one of these
families, working in their milking shed.
In the 1930s
Copyright Waikato Museum – Te Whare Taonga o Waikato
Photograph by David Cook
The Singh Family in Waikato
Portrait of the Singh Family
Copyright Waikato Museum – Te Whare Taonga o Waikato
Photograph by David Cook
She also reveals how many Europeans till
late 1970s were averse to the idea of selling their
dairies to Indians. But for happier memories, she
recounts the Indian wedding at Auckland Indian
Association in the 1950s. “The wedding had 100
invitees, consisting of a mix of Sikhs, Gujaratis,
Muslims and other Indian ethnicities. It was like a
get together of the entire Indian population in NZ
back then,” she says.
Survived by her husband and fve children,
Mrs Mohanbhai admits to have had a tough but
happy life. “I helped my husband run a dairy for 20
years. Thanks to my education, I could manage the
accounts. Before that, we owned a fruit shop for 24
years. In the dairy business, one had no family life.
But the struggle has paid off and my husband and I
have been happily retired for the last 14 years,” she
says with a twinkle in her eye. Also, despite being
away from homeland all their life, the Mohanbhai
family has been deeply rooted in their culture and
tradition. Belonging to the
Athia Samaj, a community
which has its origins in
Gujarat, Mrs Mohanbhai
has been wearing a saree
and traditional red glass
bangles ever since she got
married. “I am an Indian
and proud of my heritage,”
she asserts.
Even though Kiwiland
has been home for the
Mohanbhais, frequent
visits to the motherland
is an integral routine
for this Kiwi-Indian
21 May 2013
The Indian community and racism in New Zealand
During the last month there’s been a lot of talk
about racism in New Zealand. Auckland City’s
Ethnic People’s Advisory Panel organised a
conference to discuss whether racism impacted
on Auckland as a diverse city and a majority
(76%) of television viewers voted Yes, that we
are a racist country in a survey run for TV3’s
new show The Vote.
How is racism impacting on the Indian
communities living in Aotearoa New Zealand?
There has been a lot of talk about structural
racism and institutional racism but what was
it like when Indians frst started arriving here
more than 100 years ago.
Ten years ago I was at a function at
Pukekohe where the Pukekohe Indian
Association was celebrating the 50th
anniversary of their community centre, the
Nehru Hall. In her address, the town’s mayor
at that time, Heather Maloney, apologised for
the “past injustices” that the Indian community
encountered during the early days. Indians
had been settling in Pukekohe since the early
1920s to take up jobs in the market gardens.
They went on to lease land and eventually buy
properties, working hard to become nationally
recognised market gardeners. Maloney said
until recent times (late 1950s) Indians were
not allowed in the dress circles of cinemas
and most barbers would not cut their hair. No
mention was made of the apology in a report
in the Franklin County News but it did quote
the mayor as saying that the Indian community
were to be admired for the way they “overcame
the various obstacles”.
The Franklin County News was formerly
the Franklin Times, which served the Franklin
District and Pukekohe Borough. To put it
mildly, the Franklin Times was extremely
racist in its views on Indians (and the Chinese)
when they frst started to settle in the area. This
is an extract from the Franklin Times in its lead
story titled “Our Asiatics” on 18 January 1926.
“The serious danger with which civilisation
is threatened does not come from actual
savages or even from those of a higher plane,
who may be called barbarians. The peril is from
those dark-skinned races which have long ago
put on a thin veneer of semi-civilisation, but
have remained for centuries without rising any
higher- are constitutionally incapable of rising
any higher. No better example of this class of
people can be found than the Hindus. Mentally
and morally incapable of real civilisation they
many centuries ago, rose as high on the human
plane as they had it in them to rise, and have
remained stationary ever since.”
The article went on to say that the “invasion
of Asiatics” into civilised society could not
but prove an unmitigated disaster if allowed
to continue unchecked. That it upset all
living standards and socially demoralised the
existing population. That the worst was yet
to come when inter-breeding would happen
resulting in “mongrel off-spring, unable to
bear the burden of civilisation.” The article
ended with the remarks that the ruin of a few
hundred industrious farmers was a mere trife
compared to the future degradation of our race
if the peaceful penetration of these Asiatics
was not stayed.
Instances of bigotry and prejudice persisted
during these years all over New Zealand.. The
country had a White New Zealand Immigration
policy. The residents in Pukekohe were mainly
potato farmers, mostly British, who felt
threatened by the small number of Indians
who began to settle there and started leasing
land. This created economic competition for
the white farmers. Indians frst began to settle
there in dribs and drabs from as early as 1911.
They were attracted to the area as labourers
for white farmers. But following World War
1 along with the Chinese, Indians started to
lease small plots of land and grew vegetables
for sale. Hostility towards them increased.
They were constantly accused of undercutting
Europeans because they could work longer
hours, accept lower rates for pay, and maintain
a far lower standard of living than that of any
Faced with this economic competition, the
European farmers decided to form the White
New Zealand League in 1925. Supported
by the shopkeepers, the League drummed
up xenophobia about an impending Asian
invasion and the dangers of racial breeding.
It started advocating that land should not be
sold or leased to the Asians. It wanted Asian
immigration to be banned and some members
even demanded the repatriation of Asians
resident in New Zealand.
Considerable publicity was given to the
activities of the White New Zealand League.
In other issues, the local paper claimed that the
Indian migrant was a ‘pariah’ and an ‘outcast’
and a degraded species, compared to the “true”
Aryans of India. The morality and behaviour
of the small number of Indians in the area also
came under focus. The paper also once quoted
the local mayor as saying that he did not know
how it was that a “darkie” was able to make
the land produce more than a white man. Other
newspapers at the time which endorsed the
League’s aims were the Auckland Star and
New Zealand Herald.
The constant barrage of infammatory
articles kept appearing in the Franklin Times
against Indians in the 1920s. There were
some Indians who wrote letters to newspapers
regarding their opposition to the activities of
the New Zealand White League. A frequent
contributor of letters to the newspapers was
Jelal (Mick) Natali. He arrived to Auckland
in 1920 from Gujarat and could read and
write English fuently, unlike most their
fellow countrymen who made their home in
New Zealand. He wrote about discrimination
against Indians in the country arguing that
Indians were British subjects and should be
treated as such. In a letter written on 22 July
1922 in the Auckland Star he drew attention
to the treatment between the white and dark
skinned people at the Hobson Street Tepid
Baths. He complained that all except one bath
was reserved for white people. His appeal
to the City Council for equality of treatment
received scant consideration. He also wrote
many letters defending Indian’s right for
By the end of the 1920s there wasn’t much
support in terms of subscribing members for
the White New Zealand League. Despite this
on 29 May 1929 The Franklin Times believed
that the League’s infuence was greater than
that indicated by active membership. In 1937
the Registrar of Incorporated Societies struck
it off. But racism continued in Pukekohe and
other parts of the country. The New Zealand
Truth highlighted some of these incidents in
an article on 3 October 1961 called Pukekohe
‘a town with a colour bar’. It quoted a Maori
social worker as saying it was “the most
segregated-minded town he has ever been in.”
Pukekohe was referred to as the Little Rock, a
town in Southern United States where racism
was rife against African Americans.
The result of the hostilities and bigotry was
that the Indian community kept a low profle.
It also prompted them to form organisations
to fght racism and help them safeguard their
rights and privileges. The Auckland Indian
Association was formed in 1920. Many
Pukekohe residents were also members until
they formed their own association in 1937.
Prior to that there were too few members of their
community to form a body. The Wellington
Indian Association was formed in 1925 and
a County Section at Taumaranui in 1926. In
response to the activities of the White New
Zealand League, the Auckland, Wellington
and Taumaranui Associations formed the New
Zealand Central Indian Association on July 26,
1926. Among the objectives were to demand
full beneft of British justice in New Zealand,
to promote better understanding between
Indians and other New Zealanders, to monitor
laws that would affect Indians, to promote
advancement of education among the New
Zealand Indian community and to educate and
enlighten the public on matters concerning
Indians and India. Its constitution stated that
the association seek the redress of wrongs
affecting Indians in New Zealand. According
to Dr Jacqueline Leckie in her book They
Sleep Standing Up; Gujaratis in New Zealand,
“Although they were conscious of ethnic,
religious and caste difference, they identifed
collectively when faced with discrimination
by the wider New Zealand society. Indian
associations, organised according to regions
in New Zealand, were a formal channel for
assessing identity and defending Indians
against racism.”
This article is a small slice of what racism
was like for an Indian in the country in the early
days of migration, despite the small population
of Indians at that time in the country. There
were only 671 Indians recorded during the
1921 census and 987 in 1926.
Since the revision of the immigration
regulations in 1987, removing discriminatory
provisions against immigration from Asia,
Indians now form a signifcant part of the New
Zealand population. According to the census
in 2006 there were 105,000 Indians recorded.
There probably are now 140,000 Indians
resident in the country. The last census fgures
are yet to be released.
Anti-Asian hysteria was once again revived
in the 1990s and 2000s and reported almost
daily in the New Zealand media. The use of the
words “infux” and “invasion” by the media
was the same language used by the Franklin
Times in the 1920s. A politician was quoted
Bharat Jamnadas
This is only a small slice of what
racism was like for an Indian in the
country in the early days of migration,
despite the small population of
Indians at that time in the country.
Our pioneers did not have it so easy
Guest at nehru Hall Opening 15th August 1953
Photo Courtesy of Magan Ranchhod, from the book ‘Indians in Pukekohe 1918 - 2006’
by Uka Chhiba.
21 May 2013
as saying that Asian immigrants were “bringing
the third world to New Zealand.”(Sunday Star
Times, 10 November 2002).
With the growth of the Indian population have
come many challenges within the community.
Many new migrants have been unable to fnd
employment in the area of their qualifcation
and skill, resorting to such jobs as driving
taxis, working as service station attendants
and turning to labour intensive businesses
such as liquor shops, dairies, speciality shops,
takeaway food stalls and restaurants. There
are many Indians in professional occupations
and also many Indians own small and medium
enterprises in New Zealand.
The Indian community is at a stage where
they have fought for equality and cultural
respect. Despite many setbacks such as many
who are seeking good jobs, they are well
The environment that the Indian community
in Pukekohe lived in during the 1920s has
changed. We now live in a totally different
world of media and communications. The
Franklin Times was indeed a powerful tool
to spread the word of bigotry and prejudice
against the Indian community. But we now
have a media which is much more powerful. A
media which has a big role to play to make life
better in this country, for not only the Indian
community, but also for all the communities
living in New Zealand.
- Bharat Jamnadas is a former senior
journalist in Fiji and former senior reporter/
director for Asia Downunder (1994-2011).
Some families stood as shining examples of cultural integration in the wake of racism in Pukekohe.
Left: Rama Hari’s Family - Annie, Laxmi, Rama. Right: Dr Ram Dayal’s Family - Ram, Helen, Angela, Andrew, Ruth, Rebessa, Antony. Photo Courtesy from the book
‘Indians in Pukekohe 1918 - 2006’ by Uka Chhiba
21 May 2013
Reasserting identity through brick and mortar
Through constructing two large structures on
Auckland’s waterfront, students of Unitec’s
Te Hononga Māori Architecture Studio aim
to celebrate the local and specifc history,
identity and culture of Tāmaki’s mana
“We want people to participate and
visit and enjoy these installations. I feel
the experience would be just great,” says
Akshay Shah who is a part of team involved
in the project.
Looking towards the future and within the
context of a fast growing multi ethnic city,
this project provides opportunities to further
the dialogue around the ways in which the 19
Tāmaki Iwi groups reposition themselves in
terms of their kaitiaki (stewardship) roles and
begin to reassert their identity in the physical
Matariki Paparewa is one of 5 projects
that will be presented and developed within
Auckland Art Gallery’s Lab, a joint project
between the architecture and spatial design
faculties of AUT University, The University
of Auckland and UNITEC. Students, local
academics, designers and architects are
working collaboratively to develop a series
of two to three week-long interdisciplinary
design projects.
- IWK Bureau
Matariki Paparewa is a design and construct project by students of UNITEC’s
Te Hononga Māori Architecture Studio as part of the 5th Auckland Triennial Lab.
21 May 2013

5 Howe Street, Auckland
021 333 290
DISCLAIMER: Every Precaution has been taken to establish the accuracy of the material herein at the time of printing. However, no responsibility will be taken for any errors or omissions.*Either by paying
$1,000 initial deposit by Deposit Guarantee, using existing equity in your own house (conditions apply) or a 10% Cash Deposit


21 May 2013
You know you are a Fiji Indian when...
The Fiji Indian is a unique beast. Armed with a rich
cultural heritage dating back thousands of years, he
was chucked into the middle of the South Pacifc
where western civilisation was still in its infancy.
First brought into Fiji as indentured labourers
by their colonial masters in 1879, Indians served
their “girmit” of hard labour, struggled against
all odds and survived, prospered and played a
signifcant role in the progress of the island nation,
as is evident today.
Many of Fiji Indian sons and daughters went on
to make their mark in the history of the country and
Mahendra Chaudhry went on to serve as the fourth
Prime Minister of the country.
The indenture system during the “girmit” years
had two positive effects on subsequent generations.
Firstly the need for people of different castes to live
work and eat together led to an end of the caste
Another positive was the development of
a new language, known as Fiji Hindi that was
formed from different languages and dialects of
India. Thus was born the Fiji Hindi, understood
by all if Fiji Indian descent, no matter where in the
world they are. The speakers of these languages
originated from different regions in India that
supplied a lot of the indentured labourers.
For the most part, these people came from
in certain rural or village areas. The language
was further heavily enriched by the inclusion of
many Fijian and English words.
The language is now the mother tongue of
almost all Fiji Indians and is the manin language
of not only all the Fiji Indians but also of all Fijian
communities where ethnic Indians are in a majority.
Over the years, many left Fiji in search of better
living conditions and social justice and this exodus
has gained pace with the series of coups starting
in 1987.And many found have found success and
fame throughout the world – in the United States,
Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
In New Zealand, Indians of Fiji origin have
achieved some of the highest offces in the country.
• Sir Anand Satyanand became the frst person
of Fiji Indian descent to be appointed Governor-
General of New Zealand, serving for fve years
until 2012.
• Dr Rajen Prasad, former Race Relations
Conciliator in New Zealand, is currently a Labour
Party MP.
• Dr Ajit Swaran Singh is a district court judge in
• Jai Ram Reddy, former Leader of the Opposition
in Fiji, and member of the International Criminal
Tribunal for Rwanda, also lives in Auckland.
• Rocky Khan is the frst of Fiji Indian origin to don
the coveted black jersey of the All Blacks sevens
Outside New Zealand, some of the prominent
Indians of Fiji origin are:
• Lisa Singh, of Tasmania, is a senator in Australia.
• Bobby Singh is a retired American and Canadian
football guard.
• And one of the best known Fiji Indian faces in the
world is that of golfer Vijay Singh. Singh has won
numerous golfng titles around the world, mostly
on the US PGA Tour, and was the frst to topple
Tiger Woods from his No.1 perch in 2004 and
remained in the top spot for 32 weeks. These are
just some of the names which come to mind, and if
current indications are anything to go by, there will
be more names added to the list.
Arvind Kumar
Left: Bobby Singh, retired American & Canadian football guard; Right: Vijay Singh, professional golfer
21 May 2013
It’s all about making
the right connections
The key to accessing new markets
begins with the right connections.
EPIC NZ helps New Zealand
businesses tap into the international
networks and expertise of migrant
business people in New Zealand.
The Offce of Ethnic Affairs invites
you to sign up now for our EPIC
NZ 2013 Conference. This is the
leading networking conference for
New Zealand businesses to connect
with ethnic businesses and harness
potential trade opportunities.
NZ’s abundant ethnic population
offers a wealth of skills, experience
and global links. To tap into this
wealth, EPIC NZ 2013 aims to forge
connections between ethnic and
mainstream small and medium
enterprises in New Zealand.
These connections open the door
to a world of potential markets,
investment, and expertise; creating
economic and trade opportunities
for New Zealand.
Gain valuable tips from some
of the most successful Kiwi
entrepreneurs who have grown
their business by trading overseas
Hear the success stories of ethnic
people in commerce and learn
how they overcame barriers to
succeed in New Zealand
Network and connect with other
successful entrepreneurs and
business owners
24th May 2013
1pm - 5pm, followed by Cocktail
Langham Hotel, 83 Symonds St,
Auckland, New Zealand
21 May 2013
“To be a Kiwi-Indian is to have multiple sources of pride and identifcation to refer to. It means
being proud of my Indian heritage as well as having a strong and meaningful connection to the
land, environment and people here. It also means being able to understand the social practices of two
cultures and integrating the best aspects of both worlds.”
“To be a Kiwi-Indian
is to have multiple
sources of pride and
identifcation to
refer to.”
Rohan Jaduram |

Human Rights and Race Relations Advisor
“It is fairly safe to say that there is a signifcant difference between Kiwi and Indian culture.
However Indian values such as: respecting elders (particularly parents, sorry kids!) and strong
family values go a long way towards developing a good character and being a decent member of
society. New Zealanders are famous for their “do it yourself” attitude and this attitude can be applied
to many aspects of life. Having been through the New Zealand education system, I have learnt many
new things about the “kiwi way”, but have never forgotten my Indian roots thanks to my parents.”
About: Mr. Deshpande moved with his family to Auckland in July 1999, when he was just over
three years old. Presently, he is a student at Lynfeld College and has an avid interest in cricket both
as a player and a spectator.
“Having been through
the New Zealand
education system, I have
learnt many new things
about the “kiwi way”, but
have never forgotten my
Indian roots thanks to
my parents.”
Rugved Deshpande |
Youth MP and Student
Voices from the community on being Kiwi Indian
Continued from pg 3
21 May 2013
on Publishing
> Mandaps in modern, ethnic and fusion designs
> Reception stages, backdrops, foral arrangements, table and chair decor
> Sangeet, Mehndi and other religious or cultural events
> Engagement/Anniversary Parties, Bridal and Baby Showers
> Community Events
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Mob 027 476 6454
“I came here with my family when I was 11. Being taken out of a safe environment of
known people, culturally and religiously, I and my little brother Rijakjit Singh Bakshi
had our own struggles.
Being the only “Sardar” (Sikh) kids at our respective schools we had to face issues like being
allowed to keep our hair uncut to messier issues off fending off bullies. We needed to develop
balance, tough minds and strong support from our parents. Our parents were successful of
instilling in us pride for our heritage and at the same time New Zealand culture.
It was balancing two very different cultures in our daily lives. Where we maintain
our identities of our forefathers with our heads held high while being able to have a cuppa
at the beach with our jandals on.
Luckily the country we live in we can dream, aspire and achieve our very own set of goals.
“Growing up it was
about balancing two
very different cultures
in our daily lives.”
Gawan Singh |
Youth Worker
“To me, being a Kiwi-Indian living in New Zealand has meant getting opportunities to share my
culture, traditions and values with other communities, resulting in greater goodwill,
understanding, tolerance and trust between us all. At the same time, I strive to understand and
empathise with Pakeha and other local communities. We all live in a multi-cultural nation where
integration and cohesiveness is the best way to forge closer friendships and prosper. As a Kiwi-Indian,
I feel I have a duty to maintain my loyalty to this country that has accepted me and to do everything that
would make me a proud Kiwi-Indian.”
About: Based in Auckland, Ramesh Subramaniam is presently Head of South Asia for International
Banking Services at ANZ bank. He has more than 15 years experience in senior strategic roles
in banking, fnance and telecommunications industries in NZ and overseas. Ramesh is currently
pursuing a postgraduate degree at Oxford University in the UK alongside employment and is
the only New Zealander to be accepted into a masters-level programme at Oxford’s prestigious
business school this year.
Ramesh was born and raised in Singapore and moved to NZ more than 15 years ago. He and his
family enjoy the quality of life NZ offers.
“We all live in a
multi-cultural nation
where integration
and cohesiveness is
the best way to forge
closer friendships and
Ramesh Subramaniam |
21 May 2013
“A frst generation migrant always has challenges as the heart is in two places. What
really is great about being an Indian amongst the kiwis is the ability to retain my
identity while adjusting to the kiwi way of life. It gives me an opportunity to raise my kids in
an adventurous kiwi way while retaining their Indian roots.
It is great to also exchange my experience and knowledge about the diversity of India
to the average Kiwis. Auckland is a melting pot of cultures and great to see the variety of
cultures mixing in New Zealand. I am proud that New Zealand encourages people to retain
their own unique identity. So today I am equally comfortable with rugby while not forgetting
the beauty of cricket.”
“I am proud to be an Indian Kiwi! How often have you heard of that phrase? I live in
a country that believes in life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness - ‘land of the free ‘.
Being a Kiwi Indian, I feel that there is a perfect blend of both western and Indian culture
in my life. Being a Kiwi I have learnt not just about freedom but now I have an independent
approach to life, as a professional or in my personal life.”
“I am equally
comfortable with
rugby while not
forgetting the beauty
of cricket.”
“Being a Kiwi
is having an
approach to life.”
Prashant Belwalkar |

Government Executive & Theatreperson
Varun Gupta |
Chartered Accountant
“Kiwi-Indian youth bring the much needed favour to Kiwi society and we are unconditionally
respected as the qualifed and the hard-working lot. Young Kiwi-Indians are back-benchers no
more. They’re at the forefront in expressing themselves and showcasing their talent, not just in New
Zealand but on the world stage. While we’re succeeding professionally, being Kiwi-Indian for me, is
acknowledging and remembering my rich Indian heritage. It is possible to do this, especially, when I
live in a country like New Zealand, where I can celebrate a bi-cultural identity.”
“Kiwi-Indian youth
bring the much needed
favour to Kiwi society...”
Areeb Taimoori |
21 May 2013
2013 marks a milestone year for Patton as we celebrate our 90th Anniversary.
Thís ís not oníy a tíme for ceíebratíon but aíso of gratítude - gratítude to our vaíued customers who
have put theír trust ín us for aímost a century; gratítude to our busíness partners who have worked
wíth us to make our company what ít ís today; and fínaííy gratítude towards our staff who gíve of
theír best to meet the hígh standards that Patton stríves to achíeve.
Patton has changed consíderabíy ín the íast 90 years. We have gone from a smaíí company to a
much íarger enterpríse that, whííe headquartered ín New Zeaíand, aíso has offíces/manufacturíng
facííítíes ín Austraíía, Thaííand and Indía.
Thís expansíon was oníy possíbíe because of one thíng - Patton has never changed íts índívíduaíízed
servíce. You, the customer, are the centre of everythíng we do. We remaín more commítted than
ever to offeríng you a wíde range of ínnovatíve products and engíneeríng soíutíons to meet your
íncreasíngíy díversífíed needs.
That ís why Patton remaíns so energetíc - even at 90!
We hope that you wííí |oín us ín ceíebratíng thís ímportant mííestone.
To fínd out more about our hístory, píease vísít www.pattonnz.com/about-hístory
1923 - 2013

NO hidden costs, minimum call times, or sneaky charges. See skinny.co.nz/goforeign
Excludes premium rate landlines. If calling from outside NZ roaming charges apply.
See skinny.co.nz for terms and charges.
to landlines
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a w
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to friends
& family in
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buy a
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“Who will not fall in love with New Zealand. NZ is a place for people who love
nature, adventure and love to meet people from different places from around the
world. This place is like a second home for me as the maori culture is quite similar to Indian
culture. I’ve experienced true diversity here and Kiwis are friendly and trustworthy. In short
I love being Indian and a Kiwi.”
“I love being Indian and a Kiwi.”
Priya Dharshini |
Council Worker
21 May 2013
The debate that kicked off the Auckland
Writers and Readers Festival on May 15 had
‘The East’ at the centre of the word war.
A get together of acclaimed authors
from all over the world, the festival had the
likes of William Dalrymple and Anita Desai
representing the East among a string of other
Indian Weekender caught up with William
for an exclusive tête-à-tête on the very morning
he arrived in Auckland. In a freewheeling
chat at Langham Hotel, the author of The
Last Mughal, The Fall of a Dynasty, Delhi
1857 (2006) and Nine Lives: In Search of the
Sacred in Modern India (2009) spoke about
what’s kept him from becoming an ‘Indian’
despite having a longstanding “love affair”
with the country and spending all his life in
Ask him why he still fnds it diffcult to
call himself an ‘Indian’ despite living in
kurtas and cotton pyjamas and lunching on
dal/rice, he replies after a thoughtful pause,
“India has clear sets of identity. It has a very
strong ethnicity that I can’t ft into. I will
always be a Brit. The same goes for my kids.
They are born and brought up in India and can
speak and write Hindi but, they can never be
An award-winning historian and writer,
William is a Westerner who has taken
India to the world through his exploration
of the country’s rich history. “My books
have become amazingly international. Nine
Lives got translated in 40 languages, it’s
ridiculous! But while it’s true that my frst
book on India (City of Djinns) mainly catered
to international readers, I now fnd myself
explaining less and less. I assume that my
reader knows about India and is an Indian,”
he reveals.
Shifting focus from India though,
William’s current interests lie with Pakistan
and Afghanistan. “These two are the centres
of destabilisation. I am very worried about
Pakistan. It has been the casualty for all that
has been happening in Afghanistan,” he says.
His latest book Return of a King – The
Battle for Afghanistan delves into the history
of the First Anglo-Afghan War.
Read the full interview with William
Dalrymple in our next issue, dated June 7.
I can never call myself an Indian: William Dalrymple
Arwa Janjali
Ask him why he still
fnds it diffcult to call
himself an ‘Indian’
despite living in
kurtas and cotton
pyjamas and lunching
on dal/rice, he replies
after a thoughtful
pause, “India has clear
sets of identity. It has a
very strong ethnicity
that I can’t ft into”.
21 May 2013
21 May 2013
Chicken Hyderabadi
800 gm - chicken or you can take 8 thigh pieces or drumsticks
2 – big onions, chopped
5tsp - ginger paste
5tsp - garlic paste
2tsp - garam masala powder
1tsp- red chilli powder
1tsp - turmeric powder
3/4cup - cashews ground into paste
3/4cup - chopped fresh coriander
3/4cup - chopped fresh mint
Salt as per to taste
2tbsp - oil for cooking
Heat oil in a pan
Add onions and fry over medium heat until golden brown.
Add garlic and ginger paste, stir, add cashew nut paste and stir again.
Add red chilli powder, turmeric powder and fry the masala until the oil foats to
the top
Add chicken and ¼ cup of water, cover and cook on medium heat until done.
Add salt and garam masala, cover and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
Serve hot with fresh chopped coriander and mint.
Recipe by
Ruby Dhillon
21 May 2013
21 May 2013

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