IndoPak Donates to Akshaya Patra Foundation

Featuring student performances and authentic Indian cuisine, both Indopak charity dinners were an immense success, not only in educating Phillips Academy students about Indian culture, but also by raising a large sum of money for charity. The evening began with traditional Indian appetizers, papar and samosas. While students, faculty and parents munched on the delicious snacks, they admired the South Asian inspired decorations that gave the Underwood room a taste of India. “The decorations symbolized different parts of the Indian culture such as the sari hanging at the front of the room, which is the traditional attire for women in India. The incense and the garlands hanging on the door were also supposed to give the room an Indian-type atmosphere,” said Misha Hooda ’14. Rohan Malhotra ’11 started the student performances by playing an original piece on the tabla drum, which is an authentic instrument frequently used in North India. The song featured common Indian rhythms and provided the audience with an introduction to the world of Indian music. The strong and deep sound of the tabla drum reverberated while the audience enjoyed their main course of Chicken Tikka and Pallak Paneer. The next performance featured sisters Supriya Jain ’12 and Saloni Jain ’13 in a Bollywood dance that followed the style of Indian blockbuster film routines. They danced to a popular Indian song with an accompaniment by Malhotra on the drums, giving the piece a traditional flair. Midway throughout the performance, the music lowered and Malhotra performed a drum solo to which the dancers performed a more classical version of dance. “I really liked the dance because it was really fluid. It was a different type of dance that I have never seen before. It showed a lot of emotion and the dancers were always happy and gave a welcoming sense by smiling at you,” said Katie Williams ’14. After the performances, the guests enjoyed a delicious dessert, homemade mango ice cream. While the audience appreciated the dessert, Meera Bhan ’14 gave a speech about Indopak’s accomplishments. She explained that the funds raised would be going to the Akshaya Patra Foundation, a non-profit NGO that feeds underprivileged schoolchildren in India. Bhan surprised the audience when she said that $11.50 feeds a child in India for an entire year. The Indopak charity dinner helped educate students on Indian culture and the lives of children in India. With lively student performances and a delicious Indian dinner, the event was truly worth attending.