NSW Chapter

Hindu Council has been very active in NSW from its inceptions. Its featured activity is celebration of Diwali event every year which is attended by over 20,000 people every year. Here is a list of some of the main activities of the NSW Chapter of Hindu Council of Australia.

  • Deepavali festival with burning of Ravan effigy
  • Deepavali in suburbs
  • Holi celebration in suburbs
  • Janmashtami in suburbs
  • Hindu Chaplaincy in hospitals
  • Hindu benovolent fund to provide financial help to people in distress
  • Participation in Youth Parliament of World’s Religion
  • Karma Kitchen to feed homeless people
  • Interfaith activities
  • International Yoga Day
  • International Women’s Day

NSW Chapter – Recent Activities

ANZAC Jawan Memorial Service to be held on 13th April

By: Ashwani Jain.

A team of Hindu Council of Australia consisting of State President Jay Raman, State Secretary Ashwani Jain and Director Ashwani Sharma along with Parveen Gupta  met Hornsby Council Mayor Hon Philip Ruddock today.

From left to Right : Ashwani Sharma Director, Hornsby Council Mayor Hon Philip Ruddock, Jay Raman NSW President, Parveen Gupta, Ashwani Jain NSW Secretary.

The team discussed annual ANZAC service to be performed at ANZAC Jawan Cenotaph that was erected by Hindu Council of Australia with help from MP Julian Leeser to commemorate services of Indian origin servicemen who had joined Australian forces during the World Wars.

Hornsby Council Mayor Hon Philip Ruddock

In the meeting it was decided that an ANZAC day service will be held at ANZAC Jawan Cenotaph. The service will be held on 13th April 2019 between 1 to 3 pm.

13/04/2019-NSW ANZAC Day Service at Cenotaph, Cherrybrook

For further information contact : nswsecretary@hinducouncil.com.au


ANZAC JAWAN Cenotaph Memorial dedicated to Indian Soldiers

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Teaching Hinduism in NSW public schools is in full swing

By: Madya Lila.

We are now half way through Term 1 and all of our classes have started. We are currently working with seven schools to deliver SRE programs: Burwood Girls, Sydney Boys, Sydney Girls, North Sydney Boys, Macarthur Girls, Evans, Fort Street.

Most of these schools only have SRE programs for Year 7, but two of them (Burwood and Fort Street) combine Years 7-10 into one class. Evans has an interesting SRE program format consisting of one hour per year level per school term. They run a full day seminar once a term where each year level has one hour of SRE instruction.

The feedback we’ve received from the teachers has been positive. Students are enjoying the classes, especially the stories and the Bhagavad Gita study. Because of the young age of many of the students, we also try to include craft and quizzes whenever possible. There are some constraints such as schools not allowing the use of paints in the classroom and sometimes the teachers do not get to spend a full 30 minutes with the students because they arrive late, etc. But all in all, it has been a very positive experience so far.

All of the teachers are really enjoying being able to share a little of their knowledge and passion for Hinduism.

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Before you cast your vote in NSW this weekend meet some of the Indian candidates

Before you cast your democratic right to choose next government of NSW, we would like to introduce to you, candidates of Indian background who have in the past supported Hindu cause. We had asked both major parties to send us list of candidates of Indian origin giving their name, seat and a message for the community.  The names of the candidates are listed in alphabetic order and include candidates from all parties who responded to our request for information and confirmed that they are of Indian origin.


Arun Chandrala – Labor Candidate for NSW Legilative Council/Upper House

Mrs Aruna Chandrala is the first Indian origin woman Labor Candidate for Legislative Council of NSW. Aruna migrated to Australia in 1986 and ever since she always voluntarily worked for the community and chaired several cultural, immigrant, women, temple and subcontinent associations. She served two terms asPresident of the United India Associations and three terms as President of Sydney Telugu Association.She has served as committee member for Helensburgh Hindu Temple and conducted various HinduCultural events, including bringing World Telugu Meet to Australia. Aruna is instrumental instarting and conducting the yearly Ganesh Festival held at Parramatta foreshore.  She presented Bhagavad Gita to NSW Parliament and organised Diwali and other Hindu festivals.  Community and migrant issues are always at Aruna’s heart and she believes in “only a life living for others, is a life worthwhile”.


Charishma Kaliyanda – Labor Candidate for Holsworthy

Charishma grew up, lives and works locally. She knows the pressures faced by her community – from cuts to local health services to overcrowded schools, maintenance backlogs and a lack of investment in local infrastructure. Charishma understands our community and wants to make it an even better place to live, work and raise a family. As a Councillor on Liverpool City Council and a long time advocate for our community.

Charishma will: • Invest in schools and hospitals, instead of splurging $2.2B on stadiums; • Properly fund our our local schools and TAFEs; • Reduce hospital wait times caused by the Liberal Government’s cuts to local health services; • Ease cost of living pressures on our community by putting downward pressure on electricity prices; Connect with Charishma Facebook: charishmakaliyandalabor Twitter: Ckaliyanda Website: www.charishmakaliyanda.com.au/ Email: Charishma.Kaliyanda@nswlabor.org.au


Hon Daniel Mookhey MLC – Labor Candidate for NSW Legilative Council/Upper House

Daniel Mookhey was elected on 6 May 2015 to a seat in NSW Legislative Council (Upper House).

The son of Indian migrants, Daniel was the first MP to be sworn into an Australian Parliament on the Hindu religious text The Bhagavad Gita.

Prior to entering the Parliament Daniel held senior roles in the Australian Council of Trade Unions. Daniel is a formidable campaigner and this passion has translated into his performances in the Parliament, exposing waste and incompetence in the Berejiklian led Government. Daniel has been a passionate advocate for the people of NSW, especially in rural and regional communities. He will continue to hold this Government to account and stand up for workers’ rights. Daniel is a firm believer that Government should be funding schools and hospitals, before stadiums. He is also a firm believer in climate change and supports NSW Labor’s commitment to Free Tafe courses if elected.


Ms Durga Owen – Labour Candidate for Seven Hills

A local who understands us. Durga Owen is a solicitor, part time teacher at the Western Sydney University and a mum. She lives locally with her husband Michael and their three boys. She attended Arthur Phillip High School where she was School Captain and earned her law degree at Western Sydney University. That is why Durga will stand up for our area in Parliament and make sure we are heard. Durga will fight for the local community.

As part of Labor’s team, Durga is supporting the campaign to mandate nurse to patient ratios to ensure better patient care and to fix under-staffing problems which have plagued the public health system under the Liberals. She cares that our area gets its fair share of funding for schools, hospitals and TAFE.


Pallavi Sinha – Liberal Candidate for NSW Legilative Council/Upper House

Pallavi Sinha is a Lawyer, Academic & AFR & Westpac 100 Women of Influence. Born in Auburn hospital, Pallavi has been working hard for numerous years on various issues. Pallavi is the only candidate from Indian background who has been given a ticket to the NSW Upper House/Legislative Council in the NSW State election on 23 March 2019. Anyone ANYWHERE IN NSW who is registered to vote can vote for Pallavi Sinha. In 2018, she was recognised as a Rising Star at the Hindu Council Gargi awards. Recently, she spoke at the Hindu Council Gargi awards. She has also attended & spoken in the past at several Hindu Council events including a Forum on Domestic Violence


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Hindu Karma Kitchen honored as finalist for Australia Day

By: Sai Paravastu.

Karma Kitchen is a project of Hindu Council of Australia to feed the homeless. Every Saturday, volunteers cook and serve food to homeless people in Alfred Park, Parramatta.

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Hare Krishna Community and Cultural Centre coming up

His Divine Grace A C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

(Founder Acharya: International Society for Krishna Consciousness)

 Hare Krishna Community and Cultural Centre coming up!

The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), more popularly known as the “Hare Krishnas”, has announced a new temple and cultural centre to be built in Vineyard (near Windsor), approximately 50 km northwest of Sydney CBD. The construction project is expected to be completed by 2022 and will be known as the Hare Krishna Community and Cultural Centre (HKCCC). The centre will house a cultural, social and community hall, ideal for cultural performances like dance, music, dramas, weddings, conferences and festive functions. There will also be a pure vegetarian restaurant serving delicious world famous Hare Krishna cuisine. The full size commercial kitchen will serve as an outlet for Hare Krishna Food for Life program, the world’s largest vegetarian charity, serving free, nutritious vegetarian meals to the public.

In addition, there will be a 12rooms guest house for giving visitors the opportunity for enjoying a spiritual retreat on weekends and holidays.

It is anticipated that the local community will benefit from a variety of community programs such as food charity, yoga retreats, spiritual counselling and Sunday school for the kids, along with the celebration of myriads of festivals in the Vedic tradition. The main attraction of the centre will of course be the temple with its glamorous Deities Sri Sri Radha Govinda, Sri Sri Sita Ram Lakshman and Hanuman and Sri SriGauraNitai and of course founder Acharya His Divine Grace A C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada!

Often we ask ourselves about a need for a temple if God is present everywhere. While it is accepted that God is omnipresent, the temple acts as a spiritual haven amidst a world full of material entanglements and sensory pleasures. The temple and the HKCCC in this case, will provide a sanctuary for those who are seeking something more in this mundane life. It will help the patrons achieve devotee association, which is one of the key avenues for awakening our dormant love of God, love for Krishna.

The Founder Acharya of ISKCON, His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda strongly advocated the construction of temples throughout the modern world. His purpose was to make mankind realise that they are eternal parts and parcels of the Supreme Lord, and that our true home is not here, but the spiritual world. By practicing a simple life devoid of lust and greed, and chanting the holy names of the Lord, Srila Prabhupāda showed the world how one can find true and eternal happiness in the love of God. By having temples and Krishna centres embedded in our modern society, Srila Prabhupāda has given us a priceless benediction – a transcendental place in this material world to seek out the spiritual truth and further advance our journey back home – back to Godhead.

Right now there is a great opportunity for everyone to get involved and support the construction of this new centre. Either through donation of funds or helping in-kind, it is said that constructing a temple is an extraordinary activity that purifies one’s self and sets him or her steadily on the spiritual path of devotion or Bhakti. To find out more, please contact HG Vijay Gopikesh Das on 0410 076 030 or by email vijayjps1@iskcon.com.au.

Chant and Be Happy …

 Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare

Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare


180 Falcon St

North Sydney NSW 2060


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Hindu Symbols vandalized during Nyepi religious celebrations in East Java

Translation from Indonesian to English of Jelang Nyepi, Tiga Ornamen Simbol Umat Hindu Dirusak Orang tak Dikenal by Google Translate.

“LUMAJANG – The tranquility of the Tenggerese Hindus in Lumajang, East Java is disturbed ahead of the Nyepi celebration. There was destruction of three religious symbols in the form of patmasari or ornaments on the edge of the road. Now, the police are still investigating this case.

The police line was installed at the location of the destruction of Hindu religious symbols in Argosari Village, Senduro District. Three ornaments which are usually used as a reminder place for YME installed on every corner of the village road, were damaged by unknown people.

Ismail, Argosari Village Chief, explained, it was not yet known when the ornaments were damaged.

“But from some residents’ information, it was alleged that the building was damaged on Tuesday morning,” Ismail said.

The destruction of the symbol of the Hindu religion worship received serious attention from Thoriqul Haq, Regent of Lumajang. He went directly to the location to find out the chronology and the scene.”


Read the original article in Indonesian language at Jelang Nyepi, Tiga Ornamen Simbol Umat Hindu Dirusak Orang tak Dikenal 


The Hindus in Bali are strongly religious. All ages, except babies seem to be wholeheartedly bound to the observance of the prayer. Women wear kebaya and have their hair twisted while men appear in white with udang (traditional headdress) on their head. They will march under golden yellow sunshades which are meant for ritual ceremonies.


Tawur Kesanga, a ritual procession on the eve of Nyepi, celebrated a day before. The children carry flame torches, that lit bonfires to symbolically burn ogoh ogoh monster evil spirits.

One day before Nyepi, there is the Tawur Kasanga ceremony. The ceremony is held in every place of the island, from the front yard through the city pura. Every house has merajan to adorn with Panca Warna offerings. Sanggah cucuk of bamboo cane are positioned against the door to display colorful gifts of sacrifice, such as ā€˜ketupatā€™ (cooked rice in square of coconut leaves), tumpeng (cone rice), chicken and other food, and rice wine, liquor, and water presented under the bamboo.

The last day of the year includes processions of Bhuta (demons, above), followed by Nyepi, the festival of silence.

According to Wikipedia, Nyepi is a Balinese “Day of Silence” that is commemorated every Isakawarsa (Saka new year) according to the Balinese calendar (in 2019, it falls on March 7). It is a Hindu celebration mainly celebrated in Bali, Indonesia and in East Java.

Many Hindus in South Asia observe the same day as new year. For example, the Hindus of Maharashtra term the same festival, observed on the same day, Gudi Padwa (Marathi: गुढी पाडवा). The Sindhis, people from Sindh, celebrate the same day as Cheti Chand, which is the beginning of their calendar year. Manipuris also celebrate their New Year as Sajibu Nongma Panba on the same day. The Hindus of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka also celebrate their new year on the same day as Ugadi.



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Australians celebrate Maha Shivratri in Sydney

By: Anmol Puri.

Art of Living in Sydney celebrated Mahashivratri with a soulful satsang at Dundas Community Centre followed by home cooked vegetarian dinner which also catered for those who were fasting. More than 60 people attended the satsang and were blissed by the soulful bhajans (devotional chanting) sung by Art of Living singers accompanied by guitar and djembe players. The energy was so high that many could not help getting up and dancing and moving to the melodious music. Satsang was followed by a short pooja and meditation. The event was attended by followers of Art of Living devotees from all cultures, religions and countries joined as they always do for Art of Living events.

Mahashivratri is a special festival for all spiritual seekers as it is believed that on this night, Shiva (which is pure consciousness) comes in contact with Prakriti (manifest physical world) which is a great occasion for us to go deep within. Most temples in Australia had put up a special program going until midnight for devotees to pray to Lord Shiva on this important day.

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The Unconventional Groom

Author: Jiten Damudre.

The sight of Shiva riding a bull, his mount Nandi, smeared in ashes, bedecked with a garland of skulls, smoking a pot, and a mere tiger skin as a loin cloth for his wedding, left Parvati’s parents Himavat and Mena in a state of shock and embarrassment.

Mena – Parvati’s mother, was in such a state of panic, that she fainted; while her father, the King of Himalayan ranges Himavat stood dumb-struck. Not in their wildest imagination, would they have imagined such a wedding, where their bridegroom Shiva, would have been dressed unconventionally. To add to his surprise, Shiva was accompanied by dogs, ghosts and various other beings from the crematorium, along with Vishnu and Lakshmi, Brahma and Saraswati, Narad, Indra and Indrani and other gods and goddesses. All these beings are Shiva’s companions, His friends and followers.

Parvati quickly rushed to her parent’s rescue. She wasn’t shocked at all; in fact, she seemed perfectly okay and smiled whilst looking at Shiva, who was chuckling! Maybe he was trying to elicit a reaction from Parvati but He failed – or perhaps realised that He was caught; Parvati did not fall for his trick. This was a love marriage, where the girl had gone against the wishes of her parents to marry a man who was not only considered an outcast, but also showed no interest in material accumulation, or engagement with the world. Parvati by Her own devotion and perseverance, not only won Shiva’s heart but convinced Him to marry Her in a traditional way in the norm of the world. Parvati in a non-verbal way communicates with Shiva, saying: “You have shown everyone how disengaged you are with the world; that caste, status, and material gains don’t matter, neither does flesh (human body), for it has to die someday, hence constantly reminding the world by smearing yourself with the ashes from the crematorium.”

Statue of Shiva in the lotus position at Murudeshwar

The soul is the one that makes the journey across time, hence keeping company with ghosts and the outcasts whom the world doesn’t see, or refuses to see. I understand it all Shiva, but the world doesn’t, so, shed this form. Shiva then, takes a form of Kalyansundra (Kalyan=wedding, sundara=beautiful), He dresses in fine silk and gold, His fair skin is as radiant as a camphor (karpurgauram), He is bedecked in a beautiful fragrant garland, He adorns a crescent moon on His beautiful gold crown. He is now called Somasundara (Soma=Moon, Sundara=beautiful). His companions are dressed in fine linens too! Brahma is the presiding Priest at the wedding and Vishnu presents Himself as Parvati’s brother giving away His sister, Parvati’s hand in marriage to Shiva. The celestial wedding is thus accomplished.

Oleograph by Raja Ravi Varma depicting a Shiva-centric Panchayatana. A bearded Shiva sits in the centre with his wife Parvati and their infant son Ganesha; surrounded by (clockwise from left upper corner) Ganesha, Devi, Vishnu and Surya. Shiva’s mount is the bull Nandi below Shiva. (Wikipedia)

Much like Shiva’s wedding there are many who face similar issues before being married. Much like Parvati one of the couple or both need to be dedicated and respectful to each other. Many like Shiva might face various struggles of casteism or financial status or societal status. Many are judged for the company they keep, and most shall are judged for the way they appear. All of us forget that appearances are an illusion that may change. Much like Shiva, who is smeared in ashes and dressed in a loin cloth, all of them have an innate ability to become Somasundara. Parvati was aware of the man that She was marrying. She married Him for love, leaving Her palaces and comforts behind. Her new home is going to be Kailash, the Mountain which is rough and wild,yet safe and secure, where there is no predator or prey, each of them have outgrown their hunger in all aspects of physical, mental and social existence.

Meanwhile, while you are researching and seeking your own help, here are couple of things that you could do to help convince your parents of your inter-caste love:

* Speak to your parents at correct moment, avoid when situations are tense.
* Speak your heart out, talk about qualities you admire in your partner, what made you fall in love.
* Quote various successful intercaste marriages which are successful.
* Seek support from your cousins, friends or other family members when you are discussing your marriage.
* Suggest your parents to meet your partner, try not to be judgemental and decide without any pressure.
* Mention to your parent in your conversations, about your awareness regarding various challenges and sacrifices you might have to make to make your marriage successful.

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Sydney pays homage to 44 CRPF fallen in Pulwama Kashmir, India

Over a thousand Indians from all backgrounds gathered in Sydney today to pay their last respects to 44 Indian brave soldiers who died at the hand of religious fanatics. The incident took place in Pulwama, Kashmir, India when a suicide bomber rammed his explosive laden vehicle in to a bus transporting a convoy of Police.

Julia Finn, MP Consoling the community. Tony Issa and Reena Jethi listening.

The meeting was also attended by various MPs and Councillors of Australian politics from both sides. ex-MP Tony Issa representing MP David Elliot, Minister of Counter Terrorism assured the Indian community of his government’s support in this hour of grief. MP Julia Finn expressed her condolences and told how she had come face to face with the effects of terrorism during her visit just after Mumbai terror attack. Others including MP Jeff Lee, and Councillors Reena Jethi, Krishna, Sameer Pandey, Maninder Singh and Suman Saha also consoled the Indian community.

Indian community in Sydney being addressed by MP Tony Issa on behalf of David Elliot, Minister for Counter Terrorism

It is ironic that this condolence meeting was held in Jubille Park, Parramatta where President of India had inaugurated a statue of Mahatama Gandhi only a few months ago. The meeting was jointly organized by 34 different Indian and Hindu organizations in Sydney.

Speaking on the occasion, organizer, Ramya implored Australians to wake up and recognize terrorism as what it is, an anti of everything that the western societies stand for. It is anti democracy, anti humanity and anti peace. India has been  victim of religious fanatic terrorism for 960 years. India had been pleading with the world that terrorism that is directed towards India is not an only an Indian problem but is going to be a problem for the entire world. Alas, the world woke up only after 9/11 and other incidents in Europe and other western nations.

Paying their homage to the fallen CRPF by Indians and MP Jeff Lee in the queue

He asked Australian law makers to ensure that their parliament and institutes are not used by evil forces disguised as Non Government Organizations and radical ideologies disguised as rouge nations. There is no room to give respectability to terrorism.

All present paid their last respects by offering flowers to the brave fighters who lost their lives, .



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Paada Yatra Walk to temples 19th April

By: Sai Paravastu.

LETSGIVEHOPE along with Hindu Council of Australia has been organising Walk to Temple event called PAADA YATRA, with approvals from relevant authorities and local councils.This is strictly a devotional, non-profit endeavor to promote tradition and culture to pass on the legacy to our future generations. It is a FREE event open to all the members of community in general to participate and enjoy walk with friends and family.

Event Timing: 19th April 2019, 5:30 AM for 6:00 AM Start
Event starts at Sri Murugan Temple, Westmead
Contact us walk2temple@gmail.com or www.facebook.com/pada.yatra
Paada Yatra is on FRIDAY, 19th APRIL and as always have 3 walks (short and full)

1. Sydney Murugan Temple, Mays Hill to Shrdi Sai Mandir, Strathfield
2. Shirdi Sai Mandir Sydney to Sri Venkateswara Temple, Helensburgh
3. Full walk from Sydney Murugan Temple, Mays Hill to Sri Venkateshwara Temple, Helensburgh

Click here to Register

@Walk to Temple


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