Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

September 12, 2013

India Day pays a visit to Andover

By Dustin Luca

---- — It was smooth sailing for India Day after the hallmark Boston event had to postpone and relocate to the Collins Center for the Performing Arts at Andover High School this past Sunday.

But that doesn’t mean the India Association of Greater Boston will be making Andover the permanent home for its annual cultural event celebrating India’s independence from British colonial rule.

Mohan Dali, a co-director of the India Association of Greater Boston, said while Sunday’s attendance was larger than his group expected, with about 4,000 people stopping by over the course of the four-hour event, the 1,200-seat Collins Center and adjoining high school cafeteria ultimately proved limiting for his group.

India Day, which has been held on the Esplanade in Boston for years, has grown over time to attract crowds of upwards of 10,000 people. But when escalating security costs following the Boston Marathon bombings became prohibitive, the association was forced to seek a new venue this year.

The group was drawn to the Collins Center for its convenient location, given the event attracts crowds from across New England. But the smaller venue resulted in a lot less activity than the group typically sees, Dali said.

“We didn’t expect much of a crowd there. We got more than what we expected,” Dali said. “It went very well.”

The Andover Police Department had four detail officers stationed at the high school for the event. Lt. Eddie Guy said there were no issues, including no trouble with traffic. “Everything seemed to go off without a hitch,” he said.