Global Tamil Conference Celebrity Speakers arrive in New Zealand

At Lower Hutt Event Centre on November 12, 2022

B H Abdul Hameed and Ezhilarasi Manavalan and Deepan Raj being received by Vai Ravindran and Yugendran Vasudevan (Photo Supplied) at Auckland International Airport on November 7, 2022 (Photo Supplied)

Malini Yugendran
Auckland, November 8, 2022

Internationally renowned Tamil broadcaster and speaker B H Abdul Hameed of Sri Lanka, Pattimandram exponent Ezhilarasi Manavalan of India and famous YouTuber Deepan Raj arrived in Auckland on Monday, November 7, 2022.

They are due in Wellington on November 12, 2022, to speak at the Inaugural World Tamil Conference, organised by the Aotearoa New Zealand Federation of Tamil Sangams (ANTS) Inc.

The one-day event is scheduled to begin at 9 am at the Lower Hutt Events Centre.

On their arrival at Auckland International Airport, they were received by Yugendran Vasudevan (a talented Singer and son of the late Celebrity Singer Malaysia Vasudevan),  ANTS Vice-President and Auckland Tamil Association President Vai Ravindran and Interior Decorator and Designer Arputha Singham.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

B H Abdul Hameed

Mr Hameed told Indian Newslink that he was delighted that his first visit to New Zealand has been in the name and cause of Tamil, his Mother Tongue and the language on which his career as a broadcaster, master of theatre and celebrated orator.

“I consider myself extremely fortunate to come to this beautiful country and be with our Tamil people. I look forward to participating in the first World Tamil Conference and meeting the people of the community here,” he said.

Forming the nexus of his professional career, Mr Hameed will speak on ‘The Architecture of Language for The Next.’

Mr Hameed is a popular Tamil announcer on Radio Ceylon (now called Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation), the oldest radio station in South Asia. He joined a band of announcers who enjoyed iconic status across South Asia.

Mr Hameed has also acted in a guest role in the 2001 Tamil film, ‘Thenali,’ starring Kamal Hassan. He is usually chosen as the Master of Ceremonies for many international Tamil functions and is a revered master of ceremonies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ezhilarasi Manavalan

Ezhilarasi Manavalan from India will tackle the infamous discourse of Women are their Worst Enemies. A world-renowned Pattimandram (debate) speaker who has shared the stage with stalwart speakers such as Suki Sivam, Mohanasundaram and many more orators, she is famous for her quick wit and sharp observational skills. She has also donned the role of a moderator in many Pattimandrams.

Deepan Raj

Deepan Raj from India will speak on the Meta-analysis of the History of the Tamil Diaspora.

He is an experienced Radio Jockey and a well-established YouTuber. His passion and unconditional love for the Tamil language made him embark on his YouTube journey in 2020.

His channel, ‘Deep Talks Tamil,’ stays true to its name and focuses primarily on in-depth talks on Tamil history, culture, literature, and much more. With his hard-hitting, factually correct and effective videos, he has earned over 800,000 subscribers to date.

Tamil Conference 2022

ANTS President Raveen Annamalai said that the Inaugural Tamil Conference 2022 will mobilise the local Tamil Sangam communities, individuals of Tamil origin and Tamil-speaking people living in New Zealand to promote Tamil heritage, language, and culture and showcase and establish a stronger connection of the community globally.

“The Tamil Conference 2022 brings together scholars, motivational speakers, opinion-makers and community leaders from various parts of the world as well as about 250 Tamil-speaking community members of Aotearoa New Zealand,” he said.

We are thrilled to be among the hosts of the Conference in Hutt City Event Center. It is a unique opportunity to perpetuate the Tamil heritage and connect the Tamil community in New Zealand to their homeland,” she said.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maori-Tamil collaboration

The Conference will see a bicultural collaboration with Māori and Tamil people.

Collaboration is the highest and most complex level of bringing about formalised organisational relationships. It entails a long-term commitment and a focus on a range of issues of wide concern. The Aotearoa New Zealand Federation of Tamil Sangams is devoted to developing long-term productive and mutually valued relationships with the Mori community, and it began this objective with a Tamil Hui in Rotorua in July 2022.

Progressing with the collaboration, the Conference 2022 will see the launch of (1) the Te Tiriti o Waitangi in Tamil, (2) a book of 101 Māori quotes translated into Tamil and (3) Maori- Tamil coin aimed at strengthening Tangata Whenua (original inhabitants) – Tauiwi (foreign) relationship.

Tamil is the oldest language in the world with its literature dating back to 100 BC.

According to World data, Tamil is spoken by more than 80 million people in Tamil Nadu, close to four million in Sri Lanka, more than one million in Malaysia, about 250,000 in Singapore, and about 300,000 each in the United States of America, United Kingdom and Canada, and more than 100,000 in Australia and Fiji, to name a few.

“In Aotearoa New Zealand, it is estimated that there are approximately 10,000 New Zealand citizens and residents of Tamil ethnicity or ancestry. New Zealand has been witnessing a steady increase in the number of Tamil people and this trend is expected to continue. The inaugural Tamil Conference is timely and will promote the connectedness of the Tamil community of New Zealand,” Mr Annamalai said.

Brent Reihana, Nga Ngaru Rautahi Māori Authority said that the initiatives that focus on the wellbeing of people, with children at the centre is ‘Mahi Rangatira’ or the work of a Chief.

“Similarly, language is at the very core of what binds a people, as do their belief systems, shared history and culture. Ensuring the longevity of these values is something Māori share and understand how these aspects bind our communities but can also add value to those around us no matter where we are in the world. Weaving this knowledge and learning systems imbues a richer understanding of the tapestry of our community. The Tamil community must be recognised internationally for continually striving to shape and be a part of a society that builds positive and meaningful relationships. A society that acknowledges that it is enriched by having each other represented in it, where we can share our knowledge, cultures, heritage and the richness that comes with it. Māori as Tangata Whenua, look forward to walking beside and supporting the Tamil people in their continued journey here in Aotearoa New Zealand,” he said.

Conference Sessions

There will be three sessions at the Tamil Conference 2022:

The Empowerment segment will feature Prabha Ravi of New Zealand who will speak on ‘Financial Literacy,’ Kokila Annamalai on ‘Gender Equality,’ Ezhilarasi Manavalan on ‘The Need for Cohesion amongst Women,’ and Dr Malini Amav on ‘Women: Real Life Heroes.’ The moderator for this session is Sheba Soundhar of New Zealand.

The Ethno-Linguistic Identity Segment will include the following Speakers: B H Abdul Hameed of Sri Lanka (The Architecture of Language for the Next Generation), M Navin (The Writing Diaspora: Tactics of Intervention, Dr Mahesh Babu (Tami: The Scientific Elixir) ns Deepen Raj (The Meta: Analysis of the History of Tamil). Karunanidhi Muthu will be the Moderator.

The Youth Identify and Social Norms Segment Speakers: Jayasutha Samuthiran (Singapore), Mathusha Paranee, Velmurugan Sellakkannu and Sunderesan Thandavan (New Zealand). Dr Kannaiyan Rabindranath will be the Moderator.

ANTS Vice-President Vai Ravindran said that Conference is free for all events. “We hope to create new contacts and engage productively with legislators, community leaders, local and foreign researchers, and Tamil youth,” he said.

For Registration, please visit www.tamilconference.co.nz.

Malini Yugendran is an Indian Newslink Reporter based in Auckland.

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