New Zealand Current Affairs - 2019

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‘Namaste Pacific’ Cultural Event held in New Delhi

A cultural event called ‘Namaste Pacific’ to showcase in India the culture of Pacific countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and Fiji was held in New Delhi. The event was jointly organized by High Commissions of Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and Fiji.

Key Highlights of Event

Participants: Event saw participation of members of diplomatic community, government officials, business leaders, and cultural personalities.

International Solar Alliance and Pollinate Energy based in India, Nepal, and Australia and solar lanterns from Barefoot College in Rajasthan were also showcased at event.

Cuisine: Among the cuisine showcased at the event, a curated menu included Fiji’s national drink ‘Kava’ and dishes slow-cooked in an earth oven using heated rocks in a pit oven specially dug for purpose at New Zealand High Commission.

Traditional masks and artefacts from Papua New Guinea as well as Pacific Green furniture and other products from Fiji were also displayed.

Artist: A multi-award-winning R&B and soul artist from New Zealand named Aaradhna, performed with her band. She is part Indian and part Samoan and has to her credit four individual albums.

Significance

Cultural events hold importance as they encourage people to people links between India and countries in Pacific region which receive a boost through an event like Namaste Pacific.

Why India? India being highly respected among pacific country and as it is becoming an important country in Pacific region, it is appropriate to celebrate Pacific culture in India. Such event is an example of things that unite the countries of Indo-Pacific.

Deepa Malik wins New Zealand PM’s Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship

Rio Paralympics silver medallist Deepa Malik was named as the recipient of the New Zealand Prime Minister’s Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship for 2019 in recognition of her inspiring achievements. Deepa Malik had won the silver medal in shot put event in Rio in 2016.

The citation states that the Deepa Malik exemplifies two values that make a great sportsperson: courage and a can-do attitude. Deepa is an inspiring achiever who can confidently and proudly carry forward our message of inclusivity and the pursuit of excellence.

Deepa Malik will be undertaking a series of visits to Paralympic sporting organisations, and engage with Kiwi athletes, students and the media as well as New Zealand’s significant Indian Diaspora community. Deepa Malik will promote cultural as well the people-to-people relationship between India and New Zealand.

New Zealand Prime Minister’s Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship

The Fellowship Program is running since 2008 aims to strengthen the relationship between India and New Zealand by showcasing the different aspects of the warm friendship between the two countries. The fellowship aims to strengthen the ties between India and New Zealand.

Sir Edmund Hillary

Sir Edmund Percival Hillary was a New Zealand mountaineer, explorer and Philanthropist. Hillary and Nepalese Sherpa mountaineer Tenzing Norgay became the first climbers confirmed to have reached the summit of Mount Everest on 29 May 1953. They were part of the ninth British expedition to Everest, led by John Hunt.

Sir Edmund Hillary served as New Zealand’s High Commissioner to India and Bangladesh and concurrently as Ambassador to Nepal from 1985 to 1988.