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On Sunday, 17 August 2003 Janmashtami festival was celebrated in the evening at the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Sydney. The festival was also celebrated on the actual day; Wednesday, 20th August 2003 with an evening program of bhajans, speeches, drama and dance.

To mark the celebration of Janmashtami and the Golden Jubilee celebrations of BAPS Bal Mandal, many dignitaries attended the mandir on Sunday, 17 August 2003. There were representations from the Federal and local Governments together with a representation from the Indian Government.

The dignitaries who graced the occasion were: Hon Laurie Ferguson who is Federal MP for the Reid electorate, Consulate General of India Mr M. Ganapathi, Deputy Lord Mayor of Parramatta Cr. Julia Finn, and Ms Rachel Morris from the Daily Telegraph. The Consulate General of India and the Deputy Lord Mayor inaugurated the BAPS exhibition-`Understandin Hinduism'.

A very young achiever, 17-year-old Ankit Fadia, an intelligence consultant who has written books on digital security, was also present in the festival celebration.

The program started with a preview of all the Bal Mandal activities that will occur during the year long celebrations. It encompasses all aspects of our lives from an "Ideal Family" to cultural and spiritual facets; and through these, the children all over the world will launch various programs to convey this message.

A skit was enacted by the members of Sydney Kishore Mandal about a young migrant's teenage years and as a young adult. The skit showed the influence of peer pressure and how he succumb to it and without spiritual guidance went astray.

Finally, all the participants managed to get the opportunity of rocking the beautifully decorated cradle and show their devotion for Lord Krishna.

The festival concluded with mahaprasad for all.

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