NEW YORK (TIP): The Indian Consulate held a reception to celebrate Hanukkah, the eight-day Jewish celebration. Hanukkah also known as Chanukah commemorates the rededication during the second century B.C. of the Second Temple in Jerusalem, where according to legend Jews had risen up against their Greek-Syrian oppressors in the Maccabean Revolt. Hanukkah, which means “dedication” in Hebrew, begins on the 25th of Kislev on the Hebrew calendar and usually falls in November or December. Often called the Festival of Lights, the holiday is celebrated with the lighting of the menorah, traditional foods, games and gifts.

The American Jewish Committee put together the event which was supported by Foundation for Ethnic Understanding. Speaking on the occasion, Consul General of India in New York, Ambassador Prabhu Dayal spoke of his friendly relationship with Jewish community in New York said this relationship had “grown from strength to strength”. Ambassador Dayal said that it was 20 years ago, in 1992, that India and Israel had established diplomatic relationship and over the years the relationship has grown and today Israel happens to be a India’s major partner in trade and military supplies.

In fact, Israel is India’s second biggest arms supplier after Russia. He wished the Jewish community all happiness and prosperity on the auspicious occasion, Rabbi Marc Schneier led the prayers and the lighting of the menorah. Others to join him were the Israeli Deputy Consul General Shlomi Kofman, AJC Directors Patty Friedman Marcus and Nissim B. Reuben. India’s Consul General Ambassador Prabhu Dayal and his wife Mrs. Chandini Dayal also lighted the Menorah. The Jewish community that had turned up in strength was joined by a couple of Indian Americans who conveyed their greetings to the Jewish community.

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