Addressing the function organised at the Golden Sip restaurant at Harrow, Nepalese ambassador to the United Kingdom, Dr Durga Bahadur Subedi spoke about how centuries-old Nepal-UK relations was evolving in the 21st century. He lauded the role being played by the ONF-UK in uniting Nepalese living abroad and expressed hope that they will continue to contribute towards the economic development of Nepal over the years.
Speaking at the programme, MP from the Labour Party of UK, Mr Barry Gardiner, appreciated the contributions of the Nepalese community in a multi-cultural Britain. Mr Gardiner, who is also shadow Secretary of State for International Trade, expressed hope that relations between the two countries will further strengthen in the days and years to come. MP Gardiner, Chairperson of the Harrow Labour Group Pamela Fitzpatrick, socialist thinker Steve Forest and GMB- affiliated rights workers wished everybody Happy New Year 2018 and congratulated the ONF on its 13th anniversary. They also lauded the ONF UK for its contributions to the Nepalese community and in promoting relations between the two countries.
Vice President of the Non-Resident Nepalese Association (NRNA) International Coordination Council Mr Kul Acharya said the NRNA has been demanding political rights for the Non-Resident Nepalese (NRNs) living abroad. He said the Association will lobby with the Government of Nepal to allow political rights to the NRNs after they live within the country for a few years.
Addressing the function, President of the ONF UK, Mr Rajendra Pudasaini, said the ONF UK was not only working as a sister organisation of the Communist Party of Nepal (UML), it was also working to unite all the Nepalese in the UK. He recalled the contributions made by the ONF UK in the pro-democracy movement in Nepal and called upon all to work unitedly to strengthen human rights, democracy, economic development and prosperity of Nepal.
Speakers including representative of the Nepalese People’s Contact Committee (NPCC) UK, Mr Bishwo Adarsha Pandit, Mr Purna Laksam of the Jana Pragatisheel Samaj UK, President of the Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) UK Mr Naresh Khapangi, Chair of the ONF UK North West Mr Arjun Chapagain congratulated the ONF UK on its 13th anniversary and expressed hope that it will continue to play constructive role among the Nepalese community in the UK.
The programme was inaugurated jointly by Ambassador Dr Subedi and ONF UK President Pudasaini by lighting an oil-fed lamp. Programme coordinator Ramji Baral welcomed all the members and guests present in the programme. To mark the 13th anniversary, ONF UK President Mr Pudasaini and Founder President Mr Ang Kaljung Lama jointly cut a cake, which was later shared among the guests and members of the organisation.
In the second phase of the function, singers Suraj Baidya and Sunil Limbu sang various songs whereas dancers including Binu Lamichhane Ghimire and Sushmita Thapa presented Nepali dances. Nepali cuisine was also offered at the end of the event.