Dhamaal Trump Bids Modi Halo re Halo at the Houston Diwali Mela


Photos: Stage: Meedu Photogrpahy; Promenade: G Photo & Asit Patel, Video: CreativeTecnik Photo. More photos coming soon to HoustonDiwali.com and www.facebook.com/HoustonDiwali.

SUGAR LAND: Neither Hurricane Harvey nor unusual Heat Wave could keep the crowds away from enjoying another amazing Houston Diwali Mela graced by Dhamaal Trump & Narendra “Masala” Modi on Saturday, October 7, at the Skeeters Stadium. Masala Radio and STAR PLUS presented HOUSTON DIWALI MELA along with the all-new Texans Energy, featuring Neeraj Shridhar live in concert by Xfinity.  Crowds flocked like bees to the Britannia grand bazaar booths and tables filled with the latest in Diwali goods, from hand-painted Henna Candles, to long gowns, choli sets and kurtis, to gorgeous purses and jewelry and ever-popular sarees.  Karya Properties presented opening acts of all-kid dances, and Kids Rides like the merry-go-round and giant castle inflatables.  Alings Indo Chinese presented the most talked about performance of the evening, an incredible fire-filled musical of Bahubali with LED-lit winged dancing apsaras, shapely bellydancers, toned male dancers fighting evil villains, adept lead Kiron Kumar, and the lovely princess Tina Bose appearing from a magical fire cage with an unscathed baby prince Surya Kumar.  The incredibly cute smiling infant Surya placed his foot on the head of army captain, all bowed acknowledging their allegiance and the audience erupted in a standing ovation.  Emcee Sunil Thakkar echoed the sentiments of all present as he exclaimed it was the most incredible production he has seen on stage ever.  Three hours of nonstop stage entertainment climaxed with Kohinoor fireworks that sparkled like their exclusive diamonds. Record giveaways included 3000 Happy Diwali t-shirts and 500 cricket bats by NYL Amir Dodhiya and $25000 gift cards and 1 Business Class Ticket to India by TravelGuzs.

Masala-in-6Guests were first welcomed by a dancing Ganesha, majestic against a backdrop of purple, rani pink and gold, then dazzled by glittering Ramji Rangoli contest entries cascading from 18’ above, and finally hit with WOW factor of Houston Maharashtra Mandal parade of drummers and dancers, including our Masala Radio Jockey Rashmi Joshi.  A living Statue of Laxmi along with beautiful chania-choli clad Apsaras offered traditional tilak greeting.  For several years now, Chef Nirman presented freshly prepared Mumbai Street Foods – like his famous Raj Kachori – from Chowpatty Express and Nirmanz Food Boutique, along with freshly prepared mouthwatering dishes from Rice & Spice, Vishala Restaurant and Madhuram Mirch Masala.  Newcomers were similarly besieged with their novelty items: Biryani Grill biryanis, Gayatri Bhavan dosas, Flying Idlis fiery idlis & incredible peanut sauce, and Bombay Pizza Express paneer kati rolls and vada pav.

Masala-in-1Xfinity by Comcast presented Neeraj Shridhar who doled out hit after hit including “Love Mera Hit Hit, Bhool Bhulaiya, Twist, Character Dheela, and Tum Hi Ho Bandu.” Henna Shah added backup vocals also along with Ashka Contractor dazzling dances on the Keemat sponsored Bharat Darsan dugout performances.   Shridhar joked that he almost lost track of lyrics while mesmerized by the Bollywood Shake Beauty Pageant Contestants dancing around him.

Masala-in-5Demand was high to perform at Diwali Mela, and the scheduled maxed out with over a dozen performances representing the best of the best in Semi-Classical, Folk, and of course Bollywood, in order of appearance: Bollywood Lil Shakers, Htown Lil Pathakaz, Kathak Nritya Kala Kendra, Kajal Desai Dance & Wellness, Bollywood Shake, Bollywood Dancing Stars, Htown Divas, Houston Jannat, Arya Dance Academy Kids, Rhythm India, Dance with Dolly, Arya Dance Academy, and the Infused Performing Arts Magical Fire Extravaganza.  

Masala-in-4Rangoli judges were challenged to pick just one or two winners from dozens of entries featuring Ramayan scenes, from Hanuman, son of the Wind God, to colored rice and mixed dals kaleidoscopes; ultimately judges split the $1001 Ramji Law Group prize money between 1st Place Winner Chetna Vyas (Hanuman), 12-year old Siddharth Wani, and 3rd place tied with Rupali Rane and Purvi Sheth.

Masala-in-3Hindus of Greater Houston led a soul-stirring Maha Arti of 5000 LED lights, along with an equal number of cell phone lights, led by Title, Platinum (mentioned previously, and Gold Sponsors George Willy & Associates, Harvest Green, Keemat Grocers, One Step Diagnostic, and Silver Sponsors Brij & Sunita Agarwal, Govind & Renu Agarwal, Fiesta, Perry Homes, Deep Foods, Exclusive Furniture, India Jewelers, Jugal & Raj Malani, Medinet, My Tax Filer, and Tea India.  

Masala-in-2Indeed, it took a village of Masala Event Managers, Sponsors, Volunteers and Vendors to put together one of the Indian community’s signature events. Masala Radio would like to thank its dream management Masala Crew:  Office: Rinku, Devangi, Bhavisha, Carlos, Sonali & Jamila.  Event: Dhaval, Mayur, Ninad, Nimi, (RJ) Ina, Lauhael, Ankit, Vinay, (RJ) Iman, Sahil & Harshin. Stage: (RJ) Preanka, (RJ) Dilip, (RJ) Rajoo, Mehran, Sunny, DJ Zee, Ashka & Krupa.  Greeters: Nazakat, Simran & Priyanshi.  Radio: Priya, Vinay K & Pankti.

Organizers Sunil & Sandhya Thakkar request feedback at events@masalaradio.com and look forward to new concepts for Diwali 2018.  Halo Re Halo!