If you’ve read anything at all about BJSM, you’ll probably know at least three things: Bihar Jharkhand Sabhas are the most exciting platforms to mix / know each other in an adopted country, thousands of miles away from our homeland, Milan can be really, I mean really, enjoyable and finally these are absolutely unaffordably unavoidable.
Bihar Jharkhand Sabha Australia is different from other groups for social gathering. It is easy to start and keep it going. These Milans do not even require the services of any elected President, Secretary or Treasurer to operate. Our members themselves come forward and organise meetings periodically at public places like parks or any Community Hall …. and once it’s up, it is running.
Our network is set to escalate …..
The website has been enormously successful bringing our people together under one umbrella. It is evident from the number of page views counter on the Forum page, which has already crossed 205,000 mark so far.
As you may be aware, Bihar Jharkhand Sabha of Australia and New Zealand started in Melbourne. It has further spread in other major cities of Australia and New Zealand. Undoubtedly, it has generated significant interest among our people in Canberra, Brisbane, Sydney, Adelaide, Darwin, Perth and Auckland. While the members in Auckland meet informally every two months, the members in Canberra, Adelaide and Sydney meet three times a year, and Melbourne members are still continuing their tradition of meeting four times a year.
You would appreciate that BJSM Milans strengthen our common bond of nativity and traditions shared by all of us. It has been quite heartening to see our members’ desire to deepen this bondage through such events organised under the banner of BJSM. We hope to keep strengthening this bond through similar events and look forward to get everyone’s blessings and support for all future BJSM events.
Just like beginning of any other Association, thought of a Bihari Association was also originated at dinner parties, where Biharis were introduced to other Biharis by their common friends. Each knew more families and decided to formally organize a get together.
The Bihar Association (later renamed Bihari Sabha) existed in Melbourne by January 1994 with six members including about Sri Prem Sinha, Sri Sri SK Dutta and Alakh Jha. More families joined later, namely Parimal Prasad (now settled in USA for the last few years) and his wife Anita from Muzzaffarpur from Ranchi, Sri Rakesh Singh, Sri K.C.B Roy, Sri Anand Pandey (who is now settled in Silicon Valley, USA), Sri JP Sinha from Ranchi and late Champak Jha.
In 1995, all the above Biharis met at the Bundoora Park, it was a very exciting and memorable barbecue. The gathering made everyone enthusiastic and all left the park with a promise to continue such group gatherings. Since, the group continued to meet at regular intervals. Sri Krishna Srivastava, Sri Arun Gupta, Sri Shiv G Mishra and other members joined up to make this group larger. The number of families in the group until 2003 was around 25, it’s only in the recent years, its size has grown to more than 90 families (in Melbourne).
“Munde Munde Matirbhinna”, the growing number started to show its side effect. Diverse opinions deferred a few good initiatives by active members. Such differences are accepted and members have always tried to reach consensus on every matter. As a matter of fact, different opinions add beauty to a group. On the other hand, people from Bihar are also famous as born leaders and that yields a wider wave length of contrary opinions. After all, the Sabha is as good as its members. The community spirit is the main guiding principle, and the main reason for the group is our shared social and cultural heritage. Whenever there is a group of people, there is bound to be some differences of opinion.
The group has been successfully providing help and support to our members in need. It provides us an opportunity to see United Bihar & Jharkhand in a distant place. BJSM Milan is being held four times a year ever by energetic hosts with wonderful creative ideas. Diwali Milan is no doubt the biggest gathering with a lot of cultural programs. Swacchhand Milan, as christened by Sri Nishith Kumar, has different activities (BBQ) in parks in January every year, where Pitto, Kabaddi and other outdoor games are played enthusiastically by our participating members. Holi Milan is held around March-April and Swatantra Milan is held close to Independence Day.
Thanks to Sri Rajiv Kumar for starting the BJSM yahoo group and formalising the group list for the first time in April 2003. The activities at yahoo group were highly appreciated. Consequently, the messages on yahoo group exceeded more than 75 in March 2006. At this moment, it was becoming a bit difficult to keep track of suggestions, recommendations and concerns of all the respected members, particularly for the people who do not read mails regularly.
Proposed and encouraged by the members, Sanjay Pandey consolidated all relevant information and launched a website for more informed and formalised BJSM. The time was ripe to run a discussion forum in tree format at the BJSM site, where each member could raise a topic and other members can reply. It helped all members to access comments / suggestions of all other members at one place.
Many families living for a significant period in Canberra were not aware of their number and in most cases they did not know each other. Arrival of Sanjay Pandey from Melbourne made all the difference. Actively looking for Biharis and Jharkhandis and appropriate cooperation from Smt Padmaja Jha, Smt Varma Saloni, Alinder Sri Kumar, Smt Ragini Singh, Sri Arunabh Choudhary, Sri Awadhesh Prasad and Smt Shobha Sharma resulted in formalization of Bihar Jharkhand Sabha in Canberra.
Idea of having one Bihari group in Canberra was readily accepted and appreciated by everyone. Sri Arunah Choudhary and Smt Ragini Singh volunteered to host the first gathering at Arunabhji’s house. However, the increasing number of participants forced them to change the venue and it was decided to gather at Commonwealth Park on 9 September 2006. The members gathered on the day were delighted to see fellow expatriates and decided to meet more frequently. It was a rare occasion to see so many families from one state at one place for the first time in Canberra. It provided all the new-comers to Canberra with an opportunity for socializing and getting many friends at one place. One after one, many Milans have been organized successfully by enthusiastic members, where the founding members welcomed many new families from Bihar and Jharkhand. The Sabha has now more than 35 family members.
Recently, Diwali Milan 2009 was held at the Yerrabi District Pond Park that proved to be a pleasant Sangam (confluence) of three distinct currents in our community – those born and brought up in Australia, those who recently settled in Australia and those from Mauritius who left their motherland more than hundred years ago. It was really a memorable event and the Principal Secretary of Civil Services (Mauritius), who came to the gathering straight from the airport,also enjoyed the Milan along with our esteemed member Sri Yesdev Sharma Jeelallji, The Economic and Trade Commissioner of the Republic of Mauritius. It was a wonderful day, every moment was enjoyable and the event was full of fun. It all appeared like a big extended family gathering. The hosts thanked everyone for bringing joy in life by letting the attendees / members feel connected.
Most of the newcomers to Sydney were amazed to find out on this website that we have so many people from Bihar and Jharkhand in Sydney but no one ever got chance to see each other. Sarvashri Raj Agrawal, Pramod Kumar, Vikas Kumar and Ambupad Thakur took the initiative and arranged the Diwali Milan 2009 or say Swagat Milan on the 11th of October 2009. The hosts for this event were Raj ji – 0421 768 023 and Pramodji – 0407 273 429.
The response was overwhelming and participation of most of the members made this event a grand succcess. Shri Ranjan Raajesh agreed to be contact person for NSW Chapter. At the moment, this chapter enjoys membership of more than 75 families and more are expected. So far, this chapter has celebrated Sankranti Milan and made Tilkut available to all the participants. Recently, it witnessed the most colorful Holi Milan on 7 March, one can imagine, which was attended by more than 50 people. NSW chapter celebrated Sharad Milan on 1 August 2010 at the Kings Park and to their surprise a member from VIC Chapter, Shri Nishith Kumar was also present. As usual, the gathering greeted all new members and affirmed their support for further expansion of their group. They decided to celebrate Diwali Milan on a bigger scale and formed a committee to organise the event.
Members in Adelaide have made it also! For the first time they organized the get together for 3Fs -that is an afternoon of fun moment, food and fellowship. Kavika Karshan, who had successfully organized Holi Milan 2009 in Canberra, took initiative to host the first ever “BJSM Adelaide – Diwali Milan 2009” in the spirit of “better late than never!” on Saturday, 31st Oct 2009. Milan was also attended by a Sydney member, Shri Shekhar Kishore ji. At the moment SA Chapter has more than 15 family members.
Members are active in Adelaide. They met on 13 March to celebrate Holi and again on 18 July to celebrate Sharad Milan. Sharad Milan was planned to be outdoor but wet weather did not allow it. However, heavy rain failed to pour water on their enthusiasm and members met at the host’s residence for a decent family get together.
Now they are planning to meet in October-November for Diwali Milan. If you know anyone from Bihar – Jharkhand living in Adelaide or who recently moved to Adelaide, kindly pass on your kind words about this gathering. All are welcomed to join and make this, “MILAN” another successful one. :-))
We are pleased to inform you that Shri Sunil Sinha and Shri Neeraj Narayan have volunteered to be contact persons for QLD Chapter. At the moment they are able to contact more than 25 families in Brisbane and Gold Coast and they know there are dozens of more families in Brisbane. Our members can contribute to its success by informing their contacts in Brisbane. We hope that we will be able to set up a strong network of our people across Australia and no member will be stranger in any part of this country.
The initiative were fruitful and the families met together on 28 February to celebrate Holi Milan, the first ever in Brisbane. More than 15 people braved the bad weather and made this event a success.
Shri Neeraj Narayan can be contacted on his mobile 0437 443 887.
As far as we are aware, there are about 10-12 families from Bihar and Jharkhand in Perth. Some of the members have just arrived from overseas and have contacted our members. WA Chapter recently organised their first-ever get together, Sharad Milan, on 20 June 2010. Ten families confirmed their attendance, however,following seven founding members could attend the inaugural get together: Shri Krishna Prakash & family, Shri Anand Tripathi and Family, Shri Chandra Tripathi and family, Shri Raj Sinha, Shri Shantanu, Shri Atul and Shri Sanjeev Guptaji.
Other interested members Shri Agni Shekhar and Shri Pradeep Jha could not participate in the event. All the attending members enjoyed the event and agreed to have their next get together in the month of October. The event was well received and one of the participants commented –
“I would like to thank …. Chandrabhusan Tripathi for organising such a beautiful event for Perth residents. It was a great experience for all of us and we got a chance to know about each other. I had never been to such community event as being in Australia for Six years.”
Shri Chandra Bhushan Tripathi has kindly agreed to be contact person and he can be contacted on his mobile 0422 812 970.
No corner of Australia is uninhabitated by expatriates from Bihar and Jharkhand. There are about 9-10 families in Darwin and the members are active in cultural and community activities. Recently, our members participated in India@Mindil Beach and the photographs are uploaded in the Gallery.
Shri Ratan K Ghosh has kindly agreed to be contact person for NT Chapter. He may be contacted on his telephone 08 8927 7753.
A regular alternate-month meeting has been arranged in Auckland by expatriates from Bihar and Jharkhand. There are about 9-10 families known to the members in Auckland and a few in Christchurch. Members are keen to meet other people in Auckland and beyond. Some of the photographs from their past get together and recently held Diwali Milan in October 2010 are uploaded in the Gallery.
Ms Arati Prasad has kindly agreed to be contact person for Auckland Chapter. Mr Sanjeev Prasad is also happy to contibute in uniting all the expatriates from Bihar and Jharkhand and he can be contacted on 09265 0925 or 0212 060 641.
If you know people from Bihar or Jharkhand in New Zealand, please ask them to register on the website or call the contact persons in their locality.
Following a meeting in Auckland by expatriates from Bihar and Jharkhand, all the families (known to the members) in Christchurch are keen to meet other people in Christchurch. Shri Manish Pandey is ready to be contact person in Christchurch and his contact number is 0210 295 1308.
If you know people from Bihar or Jharkhand in Christchurch or Wellington, please ask them to register on the website or call the contact persons in their locality.
We are pleased to inform you that Bihar Jharkhand Sabha Australia has started its chapter in each State and Territory and relevant contact persons can be contacted without any obligation.
Bihar Jharkhand Sabha of Australia and New Zealand