Home > Magazine > Around Town > With thousands of people, fun and bustling Global Mela felt like “home away from home”

 

With thousands of people, fun and bustling Global Mela felt like “home away from home”

By Global Mall with Geeta Mehrotra
November 2016
With thousands of people, fun and bustling Global Mela felt like “home away from home”

 

(Left) NNKB students dance for the crowd. (Photo: Vinod Devlia)

The 15th Annual Global Mela was a major success attracting many ​thousands of community members at the Global Mall in Norcross, Georgia on Saturday and Sunday, October 8-9, 2016. The vision that led Global Mall owner, Mr. Shiv Aggarwal, to develop Global Mall 17 years ago and build a stronger community presence was highly evident at the lively Global Mela this year. This epic Mela has become the largest free carnival event for the South Asian community in the Southeast, with over 40 booth vendors from all over the region along with the 30 retail and food shops located in the Mall.

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The Aggarwal family. (Photo: Vinod Devlia)

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(Photo: Geeta Mehrotra)

The event was kicked off with a warm welcome from Mr. Shiv Aggarwal and emcee Kiran Sethi with Xtrahotdjs Entertainment. Dignitaries joined Shiv and his family in Lord Ganesh puja and a lamp lighting ceremony by Sadhana Mandir’s pundit Ved Joshi to bless the event and honor the upcoming Hindu festival, Diwali.

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia) Love in action: Mela attendees could spin the wheel for $1 to win prizes, raising money for a blanket drive for Hurricane Matthew victims. This wheel had no “bankrupt” or “lose” sections because “love in action” is win-win. (Photo: Geeta Mehrotra)

Dignitaries (above) included Consul General of India in Atlanta, Nagesh Singh; Consul D.V. Singh (Community Affairs/ RTI/ Education / Commerce); City of Norcross Councilman Craig Newton; and the Gwinnett Village CID Executive Director Marsha Bomar. Mr. Aggarwal recognized businesses that have been in the Mall for over 10 years and the media who have supported Global Mall since its beginning. He noted that “Doc” has been with him for 18 years. Consul General Singh said that Global Mela is a “home away from home” and appreciated Mr. Agrawal’s effort in promoting Indian culture.

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

Mrs. Kumud Savla, creator of Atlanta’s Indian Dance and Music Academy, Nritya Natya Kala Bharati, presented her students in two scintillating dances, and an opening Bharatnatyam piece by Sri Devi from Laasya School of Dance. Dj Bobby from XrtaHotDjs and his team heightened the mela’s ambience with foot-tapping music and the latest Bollywood chartbusters. DJ P and live dhol players, Ranvir Kohli and Jas, intensified the atmosphere playing in sync to Bollywood music and getting the crowd dancing to bhangra.

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

At the entrance of the mall, inflatable obstacle courses, slides, and a bounce house were set up for the children on the perfectly breezy October weekend. People were welcomed with the aroma of Ashiana’s delectable chat, samosas, and pav bhaji stall downstairs alongside cool and refreshing kulfis and mouthwatering pani puri served by Global Groceries. Upstairs the food court was bustling all weekend with guests waiting in lines for the Chinese Dhaba, Sri Krishna Vilas, Dawat Express, Mumbai Masala, and Curry on the Go. Global Mall and Legacy Jewels sponsored a handful of free treats and activities for children and some young-at-heart adults, including free popcorn, cotton candy, face painting, and balloon artistry.

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

On the first and second floors, booth vendors were set up along the hallways of the mall, with Indian apparel, jewelry, popular henna cones, housewares, toys, puja items, arts and handicrafts, and services such as travel, insurance, education, health and medicine, radio and TV, and nonprofits. All remained busy interacting with the throngs of visitors. It made you feel like you were on the streets of India, filled with people. Along with the fun and shopping, many visited the various temples that are in the mall.

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

Guests were greeted by the Global Mall family and volunteers at the welcome table. Every year, Global Mall and Legacy Jewels sponsor free raffle tickets and entrance gifts for all attendees. Raffles are run every hour around the clock, and attendees get a chance to win prizes sponsored by Global Mall and Global Mall tenants. On Sunday evening, the Mega Prize Raffle featured a Kindle Fire, a diamond ring, and a large flat screen TV.

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

The weekend-long cultural show presented young and talented students from Global Mall’s dance studios, Prem’s Dance Studio, and Nritya Natya Kala Bharti, and Atlanta based local artists performed a variety of dance, song, and music items. The Founder of Z Fitness, Sheila Devlia, and her students performed energetic and riveting zumba dances. Children were surprised by a captivating magic show each day followed by a kids-only raffle with fun-filled goody bags of toys and sweets and stuffed animals. New this year, the Mela team organized piñata-breaking for the kids, which got everyone involved.

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(Photo: Vinod Devlia)

This year there was not just one, but two magnificent fashion shows presented by Rahul’s Clothing Boutique and Kiian Jewelers. Shaveta Jain, the former Mrs. India International, participated, and the shows were once again a super hit, with elegant and one-of-a-kind clothing and jewelry worn by beautiful women.

 

 

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(Left) Dada Lachman Chellaram (son of Dada Chellaram who founded the Sindhi mandir Nirvuna Balik Satsang Mandal, Delhi) visited Sadhu Vaswani Center and sang Gurbani at Global Mela. The Sindhi temples or Nij Thanw are dedicated to Guru Granth Sahib and Dasam Granth Sahib, and the founder’s family has translated Gurbani into Sindhi and several other Indian languages. (Photo: Geeta Mehrotra)

Sunday evening as the crowd was leaving, the space was filled with the singing of Dada Lachman Chellaram, from Niraguna Balik, Nij Thanw, Delhi, who visited Sadhu Vaswani Center Atlanta—effectively bringing the mela to conclusion with prayers.

 

 

Website Bonus Feature

Thanks: Global Mall owner Shiv Aggarwal commented, “Global Mela is our way of thanking the community for supporting Global Mall and our Indian cultural center. I established Global Mall in order to bring the South Asian community together under one roof in a unique community center. It is my passion, my vision and my goal to make everyone aware of our rich Indian culture and heritage through such carnivals. I would like to thank all the tenants, the vendors and the raffle-prize donors. I wish to thank the media-TV Asia, India Tribune, Wownow.com, Atlanta Dunia, Desi-Express, Rashtra Darpan, Khabar, NRIPULSE, Desh Videsh, and Saathee. My special thanks to Vinod Devlia of Photography by Vinod, for his photography services in recording the entire event. The biggest thanks to the Global Mall staff and volunteers for the hard work. Thank you to the Norcross Police Department for well-deserved compliments for manning the parking lot and handling the large crowds. Finally, I would like to thank my entire family for their unbounding help and support in organizing this event. I am happy that the attendance at the Mela is increasing each year and we are able to make Global Mela the cornerstone for future events!”



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