Media Release by Senator the Hon Concetta Fierravanti-Wells

Bengali New Year Celebrations

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Social Services, Senator the Hon Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, represented the Prime Minister at the Bengali New Year celebration – Boishakhi Mela, in Sydney today.

Senator Fierravanti-Wells, who has special responsibility for Multicultural Affairs and Settlement Services, said Boishakhi Mela is not just a celebration of the New Year, it’s an expression of the cultural identity of all Australian Bengalis.

“The festival is a display of the variety, richness and colour of Bengali culture, with beautiful art, clothing and music and a wide array of Bengali foods,” Senator Fierravanti-Wells said.

“This festival has grown from humble beginnings in 1993 to this annual celebration at Sydney Olympic Park which is attended by thousands of people.

“Australians Bengalis work hard, place great importance on education and have brought valued skills and experience to our nation.

“Our country is now home to people from almost every culture and every part of the globe, and Bengalis have become a vital part of the social fabric of our community.

“Our successful Australian multicultural society is founded on a commitment to Australia, its laws and its values.

“Australians of Bengali background have worked extremely hard to maintain their cultural heritage, while at the same time embracing and contributing to the broader Australian community.

“Bengalis are renowned for their hospitality and generosity and the Boishakhi Mela festival is a great opportunity for all Australians to share in their culture,” Senator Fierravanti-Wells said.