Indian Immigration Monument should be sited at Highbury

Dear Editor,

There has been some controversy about the appropriate location for the Indian Immigration Memorial Monument which the Indian Government has already kindly donated to Guyana. So far an attempt has been made to locate the said monument at Palmyra, which surprised and disappointed many, including yours truly and such luminaries like the iconic Mr Yesu Persaud and other Guyanese descendants of Indian immigrants.

There is no obvious or historical, or moral or sensible justification for siting the monument at Palmyra. On the other hand there is a clear rationale for locating the monument at Highbury. It is historically incontrovertible that the first Indian immigrants arrived at Highbury on the East Bank of the Berbice River; it is also common knowledge that while there have never been any anniversary celebrations of the arrival of Indian immigrants in Guyana at Palmyra, there have been unfailing annual celebrations at Highbury attended by Guyana’s presidents and ministers, India’s High Commissioners, scholars, dignitaries and rank and file Guyanese in large numbers for the longest while.

While the access public road on the East Bank of Berbice has not been of the best recently, the Guyana Government is on record as being determined to upgrade the said road soon so that access is not a consideration; as a matter of fact it has never been a deterrent as can be gauged from the annually increasing numbers that have faithfully attended the celebrations so far.

Now, it is noted that the Government of Guyana has recently taken the decision to allow the Indian Government, through its High Commission in Guyana, to finally decide on the location of the Indian Immigration Memorial Monument, which they have already generously delivered to Guyana. Therefore, I wish to take this opportunity to appeal to the High Commissioner of India, to please decide on the existing Highbury site as the preferred location for the monument. I have every reason to believe that practically all Guyanese will welcome such a decision.

Yours faithfully,

Nowrang Persaud

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