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Statement by the Prime Minister on Thai Pongal

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The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on Thai Pongal:

“This week, the Tamil community in Canada and around the world will celebrate Thai Pongal.

“During the four-day festival, family and friends usually gather to give thanks for the year’s bountiful harvest and share Pongal, a sweet rice pudding. While things will be different this year as we continue to follow public health guidelines to stop the spread of COVID-19, I know people will still find new ways to bring to life the values of peace and community at the centre of this festival.

“January also marks Tamil Heritage Month in Canada. This month, we recognize Tamil Canadians’ contributions to building a better, fairer, and more inclusive country. I encourage all Canadians to learn more about the history, resiliency, and strength of the vibrant Tamil community in Canada and around the world. Recently, we saw Tamil-Canadians from coast to coast to coast come together in solidarity to condemn the destruction of the Mullivaikkal memorial at the University of Jaffna, in Sri Lanka, and call for its reinstatement. It is a reminder for all of us that commemoration is essential for reconciliation.

“On behalf of our family, Sophie and I offer our wishes for peace and good health to everyone marking Thai Pongal, here in Canada and around the world.

Iniya Thai Pongal Nalvazhthukkal.”