Indian community thriving in Te Puke

Indian-born Lehmber Singh loves living in Te Puke.

He moved to New Zealand as a single man in 1988 before going back to India to marry his wife, only to return one year later with his new bride.

Lehmber Singh and wife Kulwinder Kaur. Photo by: Zoe Hunter.

They had their 18-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter in Te Puke – and Lehmber says he'll never leave Aotearoa.

'I love it here. My children love it here too. I don't think we're going to move anywhere.”

Lehmber's family is one of an estimated 250 Indian families living in Te Puke and Papamoa.

But what is it about the small town that's so appealing to the growing Indian community in Bay of Plenty? Lehmber says it's the kiwifruit and lifestyle.

'More people are migrating from India and settling in BOP and Te Puke because there are a lot of jobs in kiwifruit. That's why they come here because Te Puke's lifestyle is the same as Indian style.

'We live in villages in India and many belong to farming families. When we come to New Zealand it's very easy for us to settle down in kiwifruit.”

Lehmber's Indian and Sikh culture will be the talking point at Bay of Plenty Sikh Society and Tauranga Regional Multicultural Council's event – Living in Harmony – on November 27.

Sikh Society secretary Lehmber says the event aims to display Indian and Sikh cultures to other nationalities.

There'll be Indian food, a cultural presentation, music, and a demonstration of an ancient Indian martial arts called Gatka.

Western Bay of Plenty Mayor Ross Paterson and Bay of Plenty MP Todd Muller have been invited to attend the event at Te Puke Baptist Church Hall on November 27 at 7pm.

The public is invited to attend the free, non-alcohol, Living in Harmony event.


oh dear

Posted on 23-11-2014 13:07 | By Ross01

and I was under the impression that Te Puke was founded as an Irish settlement


Posted on 23-11-2014 19:30 | By BennyBenson

Does the article mention who was here first? It's about time everyone got over the who was here first drama and realised no-one owns the world or a country or a town, we are all merely here for a fleeting visit..enjoy and share.

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