An Evening of Celebrating Humanity Over Religion: Consul General of India, Houston, Anupam Ray Hosts an Iftar


Consul General of India, Anupam Ray addressing the guests during Iftar held at his residence on Wednesday, June 29.

By Vanshika Vipin

HOUSTON:  In the holy month of Ramadan when Muslims across the globe practise asceticism and observe fasts called ‘Roza’, one thing that all communities look forward to are the ‘Iftar’ dinners hosted generally by Muslim friends to break the day long fast. The Consul General of India, Houston, Anupam Ray took a step ahead and hosted an Iftar dinner at his residence on Wednesday, June 29 to spread the message of faith and humanity beyond religion.


Anupam Ray (center) with the members of the Indian Muslim community.

Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar. During the whole month, observers of Islam fast from sunrise to sunset. During the fast, no food or beverage is consumed. Followers of Islam believe that fasting helps the Muslim learn patience, modesty, and spirituality. Meals are served before sunrise, called suhoor, and after sunset, called iftar, and eaten with family or with the local community.


Special area had been dedicated for Namaaz (prayer).

To extend the secular vibes in Houston, Anupam Ray took this special initiative to host Iftar dinner at his residence and invite guests from all the communities.  The officers from the Consulate General of India greeted all the invitees who started flocking in from 7.30 pm onwards. Ray began the evening by addressing the guests who had come from Houston and Dallas.

“I would like to thank all of you for joining us for the Iftar dinner. It is a matter of great privilege for me to have members of the Muslim community of Indian origin from the Houston and Dallas area. I specially thank the representative of US Senator Charles Cornyn, the representative from the Mayor’s Office, the Congressional staffers and last but not the least the Indonesian Consul General and his wife, who have made it possible to attend the Iftar today” said Ray.


Guests enjoyed the lavish spread of dates, fruits and fruit juices to break the fast.

Elaborating further on belief in God and one faith beyond the boundaries of religion, Ray added “As the honorable Prime Minister. Mr. Modi said in his historic address to Congress earlier this month, the only holy-book of the Government of India is the Constitution of India. It allows us the fundamental right of the freedom of religion. India in that context is the most liberal country in the world. It is the home to two religions -Hinduism and Buddhism. Christians, Muslims and Jews have inhabited the country since centuries. On this occasion of Iftar, I want to remind my Muslim brothers and sisters that we value you and respect what you have added to our heritage” .


The vast and delicious food spread was catered by Sathish Rao of Udipi Cafe, along with exotic desserts.

The ambience and the arrangements were perfect for Iftar merriment. A special area had been dedicated to reading Namaaz (prayer) before people broke the Roza (fast).  On the other side, there were tables laden with a lavish spread of dates, fruits and fruit juices to break the fast. Typically Muslims break their fast by eating dates before beginning the iftar meal. Immediately, dinner was served, with a special arrangemnet made for both vegetarians and non-vegetarians. The vast and delicious food spread was catered by Sathish Rao of Udipi Cafe. The highlight of the spread, especially for me was the succulent and flavorsome Fish curry at the Iftar dinner. For those who had sweet cravings, they could revel in five different kinds of exotic desserts.

Delicious food, good hospitality and warm host, what more could the guests ask for! The Iftar dinner at the Consul General of India’s residence was indeed a gala evening that celebrated humanity over the narrow confines of religion, a small step in restoring the faith in mankind.