Thai Pongal Greetings from Canada Citizenship Minister

Statement — Minister Kenney issues statement to recognize Thai Pongal

Hon Minister Jason Kenney

Ottawa, January 14, 2013 — The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, issued the following statement to recognize Thai Pongal:

“Today is one of the most popular festivals for Tamils around the world. It is widely known as the “Festival of the Tamils.”

“The Tamil festival of Thai Pongal is a thanksgiving ceremony during which Tamils express gratitude for a successful harvest. It marks the beginning of the winter solstice, when the Sun begins to move north from its southern-most position.

“Pongal refers to the “boiling over” of milk and rice during the month of Thai, the first month in the Tamil calendar. The commencement of Thai is seen as paving the way for new opportunities.

“This day of gratitude is celebrated by all those in the Tamil community around the world in the company of friends and family.
“For all Canadians, Thai Pongal provides an opportunity to reflect on the contributions that Canada’s Tamil community has made to our country’s rich and diverse heritage.

“As Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, I offer my best wishes to all those celebrating Thai Pongal.” Media Relations Communications Branch Citizenship and Immigration Canada ~ CIC-Media-Relations@cic.gc.ca

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