Ottawa, Jan 15: In a heart-warming gesture, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has wished Tamils in Canada and around the world 'Happy Pongal'.
"Tamils in Canada and around the world will gather to celebrate Thai Pongal. This festival marks the end of the harvest season and the start of the new year," he said in a message on Saturday night.
"Friends and families will come together to give thanks for a prosperous harvest and a season of good fortune. It is a time for joy, celebration, and community," Trudeau said.
Pongal is a four-day festival celebrated by Tamils.
On October 8, the Canadian Parliament passed a bill declaring January to be a Tamil Heritage Month. Trudeau pointed out that the move was aimed at recognizing the contribution made by Tamils living in Canada to the Canadian society.
Canada is home to a large number of Sri Lankan Tamils. Toronto city is often described as a mini Jaffna. It is not the first time Trudeau has extended such a gesture towards minorities from the Indian sub-continent.
Two years ago, he danced with Indians in Ottawa on the occasion of India's Independence Day.