Saree tradtion display at Times Square, New York city
Saree tradtion display at Times Square, New York city

Saree's tradition, elegance celebrated in heart of NYC's Times Square at special global event

The iconic Times Square here was awash with varied hues and styles of sarees as hundreds of women from the Indian-American community as well as other nations showcased the timeless elegance, heritage and cultural diversity of the garment at a special event.

New York | The iconic Times Square here was awash with varied hues and styles of sarees as hundreds of women from the Indian-American community as well as other nations showcased the timeless elegance, heritage and cultural diversity of the garment at a special event.

The ‘Saree Goes Global’ event was held in the heart of Times Square Saturday, with participation from over 500 women from the Indian community as well as those from at least nine countries where the nine-yard garment is popular and much-loved, including Bangladesh, Nepal, the UK, the USA, the UAE, Uganda, Trinidad and Guyana.

Adorning colourful sarees with exquisite embellishments, embroidery, styles and fabrics, including Khadi, the women proudly showcased their collection as they waved the national flags, danced together, took pictures and shared stories about their sarees, culture and heritage.

The event, hosted by ‘British Women in Sarees’ in partnership with Uma, showcased the timeless elegance of the saree through music, dance and a vibrant Saree Walkathon.

'British Women in Sarees' is dedicated to raising awareness of the saree while supporting handloom artisans in India through global events. As an organisation, Uma focuses on empowering underprivileged girls, youth, and women through educational and cultural resources, with a global presence headquartered in New York City.

A press release here said that building on the success of global events like the ‘Royal Ascot Ladies’ Day’ and the historic ‘Saree Walkathon’ at Trafalgar Square in London, the Saree Goes Global event was not just a “celebration of cultural diversity but also a platform to support artisans in rural India, preserving traditional craftsmanship.”

President of Uma Global Dr. Rita Kakati-Shah and Chairperson of British Women in Sarees Dr. Dipti Jain highlighted the importance of the saree as a symbol of unity and the empowerment of women worldwide.

Jain, a geriatrician by profession, shared her passion for sarees and her commitment to raising awareness of this garment globally.

Kakati-Shah, a medic turned entrepreneur and philanthropist, emphasized Uma’s dedication to empowering underprivileged girls, youth, and women, both in New York City and beyond.

ᨊ On the occasion, Deputy Commissioner for International Affairs New York City, Dilip Chauhan honoured Kakati-Shah and Jain with a Proclamation on behalf of New York City Mayor Eric Adams for their work, further highlighting the significance of their contributions.

Chauhan said the vision of Kakati-Shah and Jain has “brought us together to celebrate the elegance of the saree and the unity it represents.”

“The saree not only represents beauty but also symbolises the importance of preserving traditional craftsmanship and supporting artisans worldwide. It serves as a powerful reminder of our commitment to heritage and cultural exchange,” he said.

Chauhan added that such events provide a platform for cultural exchange and underscore the strength of the global community.

“As we come together to celebrate Saree Goes Global in New York City, let us embrace the spirit of unity and collaboration. Let us celebrate our differences and find strength in our diversity,” he added.

Shruti Pandey, Consul (Political, Press, Information and Culture) at the Consulate General of India in New York highlighted that the saree transcends borders with its versatility and beauty, not just in India, but across the globe.

Dr. Jessica Sims who represented the British charity, St. George’s Society of New York, which was founded in 1770 predating the American Revolution, commented on the importance of the saree to promote cultural diversity, which is aligned with the work of St. George’s Society of New York does to support students, families and seniors from Commonwealth backgrounds in New York City.

“As the vibrant pulse of Times Square beat to the rhythm of the Saree Walkathon, participants and spectators alike embraced the spirit of unity and collaboration. In a world often divided, events like Saree Goes Global serve as a powerful reminder of the strength found in our diversity,” the release said.

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