May 30th is Indian Arrival Day, a public holiday here in Trinidad and Tobago. Indian Arrival Day commemorates the arrival of the first East Indian labourers to our shores.
From the National Library Website:
Indian Arrival Day, celebrated on 30th May, commemorates the arrival of the first Indian Indentured labourers from India to Trinidad, in May 1845, on the ship Fatel Razack. The Fatel Razack brought not only a new labour force to assist in the economic development of Trinidad, but also a new people with a new culture.
While this momentous event has been celebrated among the East Indian community in Trinidad and Tobago for many years, it was not until 1994 that it was made an official public holiday. It was called Arrival Day. In 1995, it was re-named Indian Arrival Day. On 30th May each year, Indian Arrival Day commemorates this momentous event by staging a re-enactment of the arrival of the Fatel Razack at various beaches throughout Trinidad and Tobago. There is also music and dance, and outstanding members of the community are honoured for their contributions to society.
Since its establishment in Trinidad, Indian Arrival Day has given rise to similar celebrations in Guyana, Jamaica, Britain, the United States, Canada, and Australia.
To commemorate it this year I’ll be making the following:
• Trinidad Saheena with chadon beni (cilantro) chutney
• Channa Katte
• Pre-bought dhalpuri (or some butter naan from the tandoori place down the road…)
• Kheer (Indian Rice Pudding)
For More Information on Trinidad’s Indian Arrival Day:
Want more East Indian recipes? Check out the East Indian section of Veni Mangé – The Trinigourmet Amazon bookstore!