Doha, Qatar: Goan Essence Displayed At World Goa Day

Report by Gasper Crasto
Photos: Jerald Dsouza

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Doha, Qatar: As much as it was a day for Goans to focus, take pride and celebrate Goa’s culture, language, traditions, music, and more, the World Goa Day event at Doha Qatar turned out be an enchanting and absorbing event too.

The evening featured a cornucopia of entertainment and fun at the artistic Riyadh hall of Mercure Grand Hotel.

Colorful is the only word to describe the musical evening organized by Goan Welfare Association (GWA) on 17th November 2017 as part of their annual festivity.

GWA, under the leadership of their dynamic president, Simon D’Silva lived up to the primary objective of the Goa Day which was to unite Goans in a day of common celebration and a show of solidarity.


The theme of the event ‘Goem, Goenkar, Goenkarponn’was a nicely thought out phrase that has captured Goans all across the world.

And GWA showed the ideal essence of hosting the event to be Goans first, to build goodwill among Goans and as President Simon D’Silva rightly put it: to promote love, affection, friendship and ‘Goenkarponn’ among the community.

One of the main highlights of the evening was the theme song presented by a contingent of singers and performed by various artistes to a characteristic Goan identity of traditional costumes.

The theme provided a definitive oeuvre for a memorable evening. The singers were Joyce Mascarenhas, Natcey Barretto, Agnelo Rodrigues while artistes involved in the stunning presentation included members of the Good Shepherd choir and GWA Committee members.

Participants from Good Shepherd choir were Sandra Vaz, Jezuinha Dias, Hazel Rodrigues, Jessie Fernandes, Lizera Vaz and Rosario Dias.

The troupe was joined in action by president Simon D’Silva leading Goan characters dressed to perfection.

The characters comprised of Manuxin Fernandes, Sacra Fernandes, Seema Rodrigues, Paul Fernandes, Tina Fernandes, Tania Rodrigues, Edgar Fernandes, Olga Fernandes, Elena Noronha, Chynara and Danica Rodrigues,Pradeep Kotkar, Vincy D’Costa and Cajie Rodrigues.


Famed musical pair of Johny Araujo and Bushka D’Souza brought specially for this event from Goa, were welcomed to a warm applause. They reciprocated in grand style providing the jam-packed gathering with a world of rocking Goan music and songs.

Johny and Bushka’s performance and presentation can be easily rated as one of the best seen among Goans in recent times – their splendid combination in singing and music wove sheer magic.

Qatar’s Agnelo Rodrigues and Joyce Mascarenhas had a delightful session of music and song too that was enjoyed by everyone.


DJ Glorio Fernandes provided two sessions of scintillating music of sound waves catering to the new generation.

Kuwait-based Gasper Crasto was Master Compere of the event. He was at his best creating ripples, goose bumps and amusement with his interactions with the crowd right from the start.

Gasper was simple, informative, humorous and in control of the event throughout.


There were other amazing performances by individual artistes as well.

Camilo Colaco, John De Sa and Vincy D’Costa sang to great applause.

While Qatar based Goan artistes performed with ease and precision, visiting artistes from Dubai and Kuwait were eyebrow raisers, not to be left behind.

Well-known Dubai-based star singer Manuxin Fernandes sang two popular oldies that brought cheer and sweet memories of Goa to the cheerful faces around.

Esparansa and Gasper Crasto sang two outstanding duets – one on Goa, other on ‘fashion’ which were well applauded.

Complementing the interpretive depth of the event was Kuwait’s popular Music Maestro Succor de Melo with a solo performance on box guitar that touched the chords of everyone’s heart.


In an attractively decorated booth, items of Goan culture and traditions were on display to mark the event. The friendly crowd that attended relished every moment of the event taking ‘selfies’ and family portraits of the wonderful backdrop.

Ghumott, the heartbeat of Goans beating worldwide was one of the items on exhibit among other notable artefacts.


Carmo Santos, A Chairman of Goan Cultural Centre – Kuwait, was chief guest at the function.

Known as the ‘Airlift’ man for the help he rendered to thousands of Goans during Iraqi Invasion of Kuwait, Mr. Carmo was all praise for Goan Welfare Association (GWA) for the well-organized event.

In his speech, Carmo wished GWA all success in taking up future events for the Goan community of Qatar.


Another dynamic Goan from Kuwait, Agnello A.S. Fernandes, was the Guest of Honor.

Agnello, a Sr. Vice President of Gulf Custody Company, applauded GWA and its team in his speech.

Later in a statement on social media Agnello wrote, “Hats off to President Simon D’Silva and team. The event was flawless, reaching beyond expectations and setting a threshold that GWA should strive to maintain in future. Continue the great efforts in bringing Goans together.”


Special invitees present at the event included Mr. Habib Nabi, General Secretary of Indian Sports Centre under the ageis of Embassy of India; Prasad Shirodkar – CEO of Shirodkar Insurance & Investment, Goa (LIC).

Other dignitaries present included Selvaraj Arochiam and Anand Castelino.

Nancy D’Silva, the first lady of GWA, was all smiles among the invitees, guests and patrons.


Rev Fr .Selvaraj Arockiam, former Parish Priest of Our Lady of Rosary Church, Doha, one of the greatest priests ever to have served in Doha, much admired for his humility and simplicity, was felicitated during a special ceremony.

Simon D’Silva presented Fr. Selvaraj with a special artefact momento as a token of love and affection from the Goan community.

Fr.Selvaraj was all emotional by the honor. In his speech, he thanked the Goan community for the kind gesture while wishing GWA well in future.

Carmo Santos and Agnello Fernandes, respected Chief Guest and Guest of Honor were also honored for their presence at the event.

A number of artistes and deserving GWA members were also felicitated which included Johny Araujo and Bushka, Agnelo Rodrigues and Joyce Mascarenhas, Esparansa & Gasper Crasto, John De Sa, Manuxin Fernandes, Vincy D’Costa, Camilo Colaco and the Good Shepherd Choir including DJ Glorio.


Speaking his heart during the presentation ceremony, stylish GWA President Simon D’Silva acknowledged the support of sponsors and well-wishers in organizing the historic event.

Simon said, “I am overwhelmed by the tremendous support rendered to me by the GWA Committee, well-wishers and sponsors to turn the World Goa Day – 2017 into a global event.”

“We hope to continue enriching Goan culture, language and traditions in Qatar with the assistance of every Goan living here,” concluded the soft spoken President.


Main sponsor of the event was Shirodkar Insurance and Investment, LIC – Goa, and the co-sponsor was Qatar Business Directory and other sponsors were Westar Watches, Video Home – LG, Country Club, Doha Marriott Hotel, Radisson Blu, Mercure Grand Hotel, Milton Pimenta, Joaquim Pinto, Keiron Rodrigues and Joaquim Rodrigues. Media partners were Gulf Times, and

Event management was done by ORBIT Events and Marketing.


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