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respect festival to showcase Asian culture with mela tent
As London's Sikh community celebrates the new year festival of Vaisakhi, Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London, has announced plans for a mela tent at this year's respect festival in July.
Speaking about the new addition to the anti-racist festival, which attracted 60,000 people last year, the Mayor said:
'Culture is an important way for London's different communities to learn to understand each other better, which is what the respect festival is all about. respect is for all Londoners and I hope the mela tent will encourage people from Asian communities to come along, as well as being an opportunity for other Londoners to enjoy some of what Asian culture has to offer.
'The Sikh faith places great emphasis on the principles of equality, social justice, tolerance and respect for other culture and faiths. These are all values that are vital to the development of London as a world city, so I hope to see many of you taking a stand for tolerance and equality at respect this July'
The Mayor also praised the role of the Sikh community in the life of the capital:
'London's Sikh community has made an enormous contribution to our city, its economic life, its public services and the cultural diversity that make the capital such an exciting place to be. I wish the Sikh community of London a happy Vaisakhi and every success for the coming year.'
Notes to Editors
Further details are available from: Ben McKnight on 020 7983 4071\ 07881 501 920, Catherine Mattison on 020-7983 4020\ 07957 340 795 or Rebecca Miller on 020 7983 4068\ 07810 756 170
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