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India Nite showcases vibrant Indian culture

A colorful, energetic exhibition of Indian culture took the stage on Sunday evening for the annual India Nite, hosted by Colorado State University’s Indian Students Association. The event took place at the Lincoln Center in Fort Collins and featured free food and admission for the community.

Occupational therapy masters student, Tanya Benjamin, sings as part of a group for India Nite. India Nite highlights Indian culture with music, dress, and food. (Photo Credit: Megan Fischer)
Occupational therapy masters student, Tanya Benjamin, sings as part of a group for India Nite. India Nite highlights Indian culture with music, dress, and food. (Photo Credit: Megan Fischer)

Members of the Indian Students Association participated in 19 different performances ranging from bands to singing duets and high energy dancing, showcasing the extensive entertainment styles present in India.

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According to ISA, the group’s purpose is to act as a representative body for all Indian students at Colorado State University. Its primary aim is to promote awareness of Indian customs and interests among the international community and on campus.

According to Jewel Crasta, the general secretary for the ISA, the ISA was established in 1990, and has been hosting India Nite for 12 years. This year, it was funded by ASCSU.  Gradually, the ISA is growing in numbers, with over 300 members this year.

“[India Nite is] a cultural event that displays the richness and diversity of the Indian culture,” Crasta said. “This event has been the face of Indian Students Association at CSU.”

A dancer in the performances and graduate of Colorado State, Amol Kitwadkar, started dancing for India Nite in 2012, and thoroughly enjoys the event.

“India Nite is the best time of the year,” Kitwadkar said.

Tanya Benjamin, an occupational therapy major and member of ISA, explained that preparing for India Nite is no easy undertaking.

“It takes time to practice [for India Nite]” Benjamin said.

In addition to India Nite on Sunday, the ISA performed a flash mob dance on campus last Friday to promote the event on Sunday.

For many attendees, it was their first time attending India Nite, and the food was a enjoyed by all.

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“Tonight is my first time here, and I have enjoyed the food and the chance to meet so many people,” said Aparajita Shivkumar, a computer information systems major.

According to Crasta, the ISA was expecting a large crowd, and Sunday’s crowd was no exception. The enthusiastic audience were receptive to the performers, and many came to support friends and family.

“My roommate is singing [in the performances], so I came to listen to him,” said Dhinesh Muralidharan, a computer information system major. “I like the songs and dance, and especially the food.”

With a cultural spectacle that engaged the senses, India Nite continues to bring a dose of Indian culture to the Fort Collins community.

Collegian Reporter Clarissa Davies can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @DaviesClarissa

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