Speech By Chief Minister of Penang
Vasakhi Festival 2017 @ Vasakhi Open House 2017
On 22 April 2017, 7.00pm
I am very delighted to be with all of you for this joyous and glorious celebration, the Vasakhi Festival 2017.
What started out as a small celebration by the Sikh Community in Penang many years ago has now grown to be an important state level event. This is the 15th year the State Level Vasakhi Open House. I would like to congratulate the Sikh Community of Penang at large as well as the Persatuan Wadda Gurdwara Sahib Penang under the able leadership of Dato’ Balvinder Singh for making this event a success.
The State Government has always supported such efforts in order to enable the various ethnic groups to organize such events, so as to foster greater unity amongst Penangites whilst preserving and promoting the rich cultural heritage of Penang.
Diversity is a great source of pride, a great source of creativity and if used as a uniting force it can transform into a source of economic prosperity. Penang must remain competitive and for that we need a highly productive and performing society. Not one that is divided by extremism, racism, intolerance and incompetence but united by universal values of mutual respect, peace, justice, freedom, integrity, human dignity and democracy.
Despite being a small community the Sikhs have contributed much towards the political, social and economical development of this nation. Our former National Chairman, Karpal Singh, is one towering Malaysian. This year also marks the third anniversary of a Son of Penang, the legendary YB Karpal Singh, fondly known as the Tiger of Jelutong.
A Very Happy Vasakhi to All of You and have a wonderful evening to the sound of the Punjabi drum or what is referred to as the DHOL, bangra, giddha and martial arts performances all the way from Punjab, India as well as the delicious Punjabi food.