I am happy to extend to the readers of Weekender and the members of the Indian community in Japan my warm greetings for a happy and prosperous Diwali.

This Indian ‘Festival of Lights’ is a joyous occasion, and I welcome all the initiatives which are being undertaken in the coming weeks to celebrate Diwali in Tokyo. This year’s festivity in Yamashita Park, Yokohama will take place on 18 October, the date of the festival itself. I look forward to seeing our Japanese friends, foreign residents, and members of the Indian community there.


A Tribute to the Singhs

by Bill Hersey

One of the most exceptional couples among many in the diplomatic corps is Indian Ambassador Hemant Krishan Singh and his wonderful wife Mrinalini.

The ambassador has been a professional diplomat since 1974, and has served in high-ranking positions all over the world. His wife Mrinalini, a very special person in every way, is a talented artist who specializes in paintings of flowers.

There is not enough space to list the many accomplishments of the Singhs during their first three years and four months here, but highlights include the yearlong Festival of India, which featured dance, music, seminars and so much more to help the Japanese to better understand India. The spacious and beautiful Indian embassy was built and opened, and the residence and garden renovated under the Singhs’ guidance, and they and their staff have gone all out to further India-Japan relations. As Mrinalini, a very spiritual lady says, “We do our best, and everything is from the heart.” They love the Japanese culture and love to give, share and learn. When they have a little free time, they love to golf. The Singhs, as you can see, are truly special people.

Photo credit:

Photo courtesy of Hemant Krishan Singh