Exclusive for TIO By Zia H Rizvi, Additional Writing and Editing: Adam Rizvi
” Ramadan is a time for spiritual reflection, prayer, and community. Such an honor to host members of many faith for our Embassy Iftar Dinner. Ramzan Kareem to all!” tweeted Kenneth I Juster, Ambassador of the United States of America to India truly so, It was a wonderful evening with a lovely Iftaar dinner that was hosted by Ambassador Juster, at the landmark Roosevelt House in New Delhi. Traditionally, the US embassy hosts iftaar every year as a part of its outreach programme with the Indian community especially Muslims.
At his cordial best, Ambassador Juster who took a charge just a few months ago took the opportunity to share his experience about India. Speaking eloquently on the rich diversity of India, he had traveled extensively recently. Culture, as well as the religious diversity of India, is amazing, said the Ambassador, “I have been to mosques, temples of Hindus Sikhs s and Buddhist as well as synagogues of Jews, all coexist together and this reflects the richness of the country”. He said Ramazan was a time for spiritual reflection and for the community service and hoped such gatherings would not increase understanding but peace and prosperity across the world. Ambassador also wished Muslims Ramazan Kareem.
The Iftaar dinner was attended by members from all the communities beside various dignitaries, former bureaucrats, and Sr.Journalists.
Special arrangements were made for Muslims by the embassy for Namaz ( prayers) for those who want to pray and were fasting. Verses from Quran were recited by Qari Mohammad Miyan Mazhari, in his inimitable style
A day before on June 6-7 U.S. Ambassador to India, Hon. Kenneth I. Juster visited Lucknow, famously known as the city of Nawabs, capital of the state of Uttar Pradesh famous all over the world for its nawabi tehzeeb (mannerism), cuisine, magnificent monuments, for Shia Muslims Azadars Imambaras, Shahnajaf, Rumi Darwaza, residency, Dilkusha. Lucknow was the center of the 1857 War Of Independence before that it was the seat of a line of Nawabs who gave the city its unique identity of culture, amazing food Kebabs and biryani, Shahi Tukrey, Chikan embroidery, Zardozi, Arts Kathak Dance and much much more, peace love and harmony prevailed, during the Nawabs’ rule.
Such a pleasure to meet with Governor Ram Naik in the charming city of #Lucknow. Productive discussion on areas of cooperation to ensure a strong #USIndia relationship. #USinNorthIndia.
On his first official visit to the city, Ambassador Juster met with Governor Ram Naik and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. In addition, Dr. Ammar Rizvi welcomed the Ambassador to a
traditional dinner featuring Awadhi cuisine. Guests included representatives from Lucknow’s civil society, media circles, and academia.
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On Thursday, Ambassador Juster enjoyed a guided tour of the British Residency, led by the Archaeological Survey of India. The Ambassador also met with artisans of the SEWA women’s cooperative and admired their famous chikankari embroidery.
The day continued with discussions with U.S. business leaders, a meeting with Health Minister Sri Sidharth Nath Singh, and a working lunch with former Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.
In speaking about his visit, Ambassador Juster said, “The city of Lucknow truly symbolizes the blending of cultures in India and holds a distinct place in India’s history. The rapid development of Lucknow, paired with a deliberate preservation of the past, underscores the achievements of a city leading India into the future. I look forward to coming back.”
Juster became the 25th United States ambassador to the Republic of India on November 23, 2017, when his excellency presented his letter of credence to the President of India. Mr. Juster has 35 years of experience as a senior business executive, senior law partner, and senior government official.