New ICC Board Elections Mark the Start of a New Year of Events

The Board of Directors and Trustees of the India Culture Center after the elections for vacant positions on Sunday, December 3 at India House.

By Jawahar Malhotra

HOUSTON: As the year comes to an end, another ritual of the closing month drew the members of the India Culture Center together to hold its annual elections this past Sunday, December 2 at India House. Outside, on a crisp, sunny day, the grounds of the center off West Bellfort were filled with players from a soccer league that has rented the sprawling facility for a league playoff for the past two weeks and the parking lot filled up with spectators and athletes.

Inside the center which has become the focal point and pride of the Indian community, ICC President Nisha Mirani gave a rundown of the close of another year of events under its belt, from those the organization had organized alone like its flagship Indian Republic Day event and the Indian Independence Day festival, to those it had participated in as a co-organizer and those it was a collaborator and had lent its name as a supporter.

After she had rattled off the list of achievements, Mirani paused for impact at the latest event which had not been on its radar until only a couple of weeks ago but of which the 45 year-old organization was most proud of. Brought to the ICC by one of its former Directors, President and Trustee Dr. Raj Bhalla, the event marked the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak, the founder of the Sikh faith. The simple but reverent event was held at India House the night before, December 1 (see page XX).

After she had finished, Swapan Dhairyawan, another former Director, President and Trustee offered a summary of the audited accounts of the year performed by his accounting firm, MDA Associates. A brief discussion ensued about the future goals and plans for the ICC.

The elections of the 8 vacant seats on the ICC Board were conducted by the Election Commissioners Sam Merchant and this reporter. Only two people had sent in their nominations: Hemant Patel and Namish Sheth in absenteeism, both past Directors.

The remainder were solicited from the floor and 6 more people were nominated and approved by voice vote. They were Dr. Raj Bhalla for a one year position and the remaining 6 for two year terms: Dr. Sarita Mehta, a new Director; Sapna Shah, a former Director; Lachmann Das, a former President, Trustee and Director; Kiran Shah, a past Director and Sai Rajkonda, a new Director.

With the conclusion of the elections, the newly constituted ICC Board held its first general body meeting. Elections for 3 Trustees and the Executive Committee will be held in early January. The ICC will hold its first flagship event of 2019, the Indian Republic Day celebration on Sunday, January 27 at the Stafford Civic Centre of Cash Road.