DIWALI DINNER OF PENANG GUJARATI ASSOCIATION
SPEECH BY THE CHIEF MINISTER OF PENANG
AT THE DIWALI DINNER OF PENANG GUJARATI ASSOCIATION
1 NOVEMBER 2019
THE GURNEY HOTEL
Ladies & Gentlemen
It gives me great pleasure to be here on this special evening to join all of you for the Penang Gujarati Association’s Festival of Lights (Diwali) celebrations.
The Gujaratis and other North Indian communities have a very long history in Malaysia, mostly through trade and commerce even before the Malacca Sultanate; and are believed to have arrived at the shores of Penang back in the 19th Century. In the many years that the Gujarati and other North Indian communities settled here, they have proven to be a peaceful, hard-working, business-oriented community living peacefully with the other Indian communities as well as all other ethnic groups in this country.
The Gujarati community in Malaysia, and particularly in Penang has led in business and commerce and, I am told, played an important role in the development of the Indian Chamber of Commerce in Penang since its inception.
Today, many Gujaratis and other North Indians have expanded to other professions. The Penang State Government has your interests at heart, in the same manner in which we have taken care of the interests of all communities, be they large or small.
I, together with my colleagues in the State EXCO, will work with you to ensure that the Gujaratis and North Indians are at the forefront of development and progress. The State Government values your contribution to our economic development, and we look forward to working with you to transform Penang into an international and intelligent city. We can work together to make Penang cleaner, greener, safer and healthier – in short, a better state to live in, attend school, work & play in.
With the expanding economy and growth of Penang, the State is seeing many job opportunities, and many expatriates are coming to our shores. This includes many Gujarati and North Indian expatriates who have made Penang their home. We will continue with our hard work so that the State continues to flourish economically and thereby providing new jobs, especially in knowledge-based industries, so as to move up the value chain.
Finally, I would like to thank the Penang Gujarati Association, and particularly your President YBhg Dato’ Taizoon H. Tyebkhan, for the invitation so that I can celebrate the special occasion with your members, well-wishers & friends.