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The Federation of Indian American Seniors Associations of North America (FISANA), an umbrella organization, held its first meeting of the year on Feb. 25, 2023, to elect a new leadership. The meeting was held at the Golden Era Adult Care facility in Edison, New Jersey.
Bharat Rana was elected President and Deepak Shah is the new Chairman, according to a press release from FISANA.
A lamp lighting ceremony was held where Padma Shri recipient Dr Sudhir Parikh, Dipak Shah, Bimal Joshi, Bharat Rana, Dr Mukund Thakar, and Anand Patel jointly lighted the lamp to start the meeting.
Dr. Parikh, founder and chairman of Parikh World Media thanked FISANA and Bharat Rana for inviting him and promised to help the organization grow and continue to extend his support as in past years.
Rana invited Past President Ratilal Patel to speak to the gathering. Patel gave an overview of his presidency and noted there was surplus money in the organization’s account at the end of his presidency. Treasurer Shirish Patel gave a brief account of the finances of FISANA, and the audience gave a round of applause for the surplus balance.
Chairman Shah, requested all members to give a $1/- donation every month, a total of just $12/- a year to help the organization grow.
Rana, who took over the helm of the organization, shared his vision and plans for FISANA in 2023. He highlighted the fact that while the association has close to 10,000 members, few attended actual events to show the unity of large numbers.
Rana announced the committee at large and introduced Anand Patel and Vipul Amin as members of the Board of Directors.
Dr. Thakar and Shah raised the issue of showing unity and making the effort needed to request funds from government by appeal to the Mayor of Edison and Governor of New jersey, including the need for a building / housing, dedicated to seniors.
A minimum of five thousand signatures needed to be presented by FISANA to the Mayor of Edison and Governor of New Jersey, they noted. Dharmesh Patel laid out the importance of voting in respective town / county elections reiterated the importance of unity in FISANA.
Bimal Joshi of Golden Era, and Anand Patel also spoke at the meeting, stressing the importance of greater involvement in politics, and making sure to vote in elections. They also said FISANA needed to visit the Mayor and the Governor en mass, in a show of unity to showcase how FISANA is the largest national umbrella association serving Indian American seniors.
The FISANA Chairman Shah, Dr. Thakar and his wife Ramaben were honored by the Clifton chapter of FISANA for their contribution to the organization.
The staff of Golden Era Adult Care Center extended their full support including managing a tasty lunch for the meeting.