BY STAFF REPORTER, TORONTO:
ANOKHI MEDIA is turning 13 on August 25 and an exclusive Awards Show will be held to celebrate the success stories of South Asians from Canada, USA, UK and India. The party has some of the hottest names in the Canadian and Global media industry attending, with confirmations from noted film-maker Deepa Mehta, Chef and restaurateur Vikram Vij of Dragon’s Den fame and Jus Reign, You Tube sensation and London’s hottest singer songwriter Arjun, among others.
The brains behind this initiative is Media Mogul, savvy entrepreneur and a single mom, ANOKHI MEDIA’s CEO and President Raj Girn, a true artist at heart. She has chatted with global newsmakers and film stars, be it Aishwarya Rai, Priyanka Chopra, Nelly Fertado or Kim Kardashian, creating free flowing uncensored conversations that were to say the least, intelligent, provocative and relevant.
How did the journey begin?
“When I was growing up I had a huge dilemma about my identity”, says Girn. “I was born and raised in England, and constantly bullied for being brown. And what’s more, I felt part of both cultures, the English and South Asian, without seeing the need to pick one over another.”
“When I was 22, I got married and moved to Canada”, recollects Girn. “It was a particularly difficult time in my life as I was fighting the intense feeling of being displaced from the UK, which was everything I knew and being in Canada, a country at that time I had no desire to be in.”
Her dilemma didn’t help her marriage. “It took me five long years to get over it”, she admits. Her marriage ended after eight years of being wedded.
“Years later, after my divorce, when I was trying to bring my son up alone, I realized that my identity came from both cultures. Both were intricately interwoven into the tapestry of who I was and am, and I decided to build a community based solely on that global citizen ideology, providing a platform for others like me – the misfits and innovators.”
In 2002, Girn founded ANOKHI MEDIA, as a one-stop multimedia resource to communicate and engage with the global South Asian community. The media would have conversations from both the Eastern and Western perspective, she decided.
Her mandate, says Girn, in creating ANOKHI MEDIA was to provide a resource for people like herself, conflicted with two cultures, who didn’t have anywhere to go.
Since its establishment, ANOKHI MEDIA has grown leaps and bounds. An Annual Awards event became a part of it in 2007 and a commemorative coffee table book highlighting the success of global South Asian citizens was added to its kitty in 2015.
“Because I didn’t have any resources to help me deal with the battle of two cultures when I was growing up, I made it my life’s mission to create such a platform for likeminded misfits and innovators to have a place where they can belong and excel,” she says.
“I came from the East, reside in the west and live indelibly in both. We are a richly diverse community, which in the recent years has become one of the most dynamic contributors to global society. Over the years ANOKHI MEDIA has become North America’s favourite go-to media for all things South Asian, but it still is what I originally started it for, to celebrate the lives of all those who happily and willingly embrace their dual identity as part of their existence.”
ANOKHI MEDIA will be celebrating its 13th Anniversary Awards-Fashion-Entertainment Show on Thursday August 25, 2016, at Toronto’s hottest new entertainment complex, 11 Polson Street, Toronto, overlooking the Toronto skyline and lake. Full roster will be resident at: http://anokhimedia.com/13thanniversaryevent/.