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A folk dance and music Troupe from State of Jammu and Kashmir of India gave a scintillating performance on Sunday, 12 February 2017, at Al-Bustan Palace, Muscat. The Troupe has also performed in Sohar and Sur and will perform in Salalah on February 14th February 2017. The Troupe presented a rich bouquet of folk dance and Music from different regions of Jammu & Kashmir, including Sufiana music, Rouff Dance, Hafiznagma dance, Bachha nagma Dance, Dogri dance, Bhoomra Dance etc. The performance was attended by over 600 persons, including diplomats and prominent Omanis and Indians. It was graced by the presence of H.E. Mohammed Yousuf Al Zarafi, Undersecretary for Administration and Finance Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and H.E. Amb. Sheikh Hilal Marhoon Salem Al Ma’amari, Chief of West Asia Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sultanate of Oman.

The above performance was organized as a part of the first ever ‘Festival of India in Oman’ which is being organized by the Embassy of India in Muscat in cooperation with Ministry of Culture of India, from November 2016 to March 2017 in Muscat, Sohar, Sur and Salalah. As part of Festival of India, a number of cultural events have been organized, not only in Muscat but also in other cities of Oman like Salalah, Sohar and Sur. Since people of Oman are familiar with many facets of Indian culture, it has been the Embassy’s endeavor to present some lesser known facets of Indian culture with a view to highlight the diversity of Indian culture as manifested in its numerous art, music, dance, culinary and costume traditions.

Festival of India was inaugurated by Minister Responsible for Foreign Affairs, HE Yusuf bin Alawi bin Abdullah on 15th November 2016, with performance by an Indian ballet dance, presented by Hritaal Dance Troupe. That Troupe had also performed in Salalah, Sur and Suhar. The Embassy had then organized, a part of this Festival, an Indian calligraphy exhibition in Muscat which was inaugurated on 21st November 2016 in Oman Avenues Mall. It showcased India’s rich Islamic calligraphy traditions and its contribution to development of composite and diverse culture of India. Further, last month a classical music group, led by Dr.Soma Ghosh, presented a bouquet of classical, semi-classical, Sufi, folk and Bollywood songs, based on musical traditions of Benares Gharana, reflecting the historical durbar concerts, which used to be held in courts of Emperors, Sultans and Nawabs during the medieval period in India, They also performed in Salalah, Sur and Sohar and at the Republic Day Reception at the Embassy.

Jammu & Kashmir State of India is endowed with immense natural and scenic beauty, full of snow-capped mountains, waterfalls, lakes, rivers and valleys of flowers. In 17th century, Mughal Emperor Jahangir described Kashmir as the paradise on earth. Jammu and Kashmir is also a well-known tourist destination in India. It has a very rich and diverse cultural heritage. The three regions of the State – Jammu, Ladakh and Kashmir – have their own distinct, diverse and rich cultural traditions. The State also has a seven hundred years old, popular and respected Sufi tradition, which has left a deep imprint on music and dance traditions of the State.

As the last event of the festival of India, the Embassy has planned to hold an Indian Food Festival in March 2017, which will begin on 15th March 2017 and conclude on 19th March. It will delight people of Muscat with some lesser-known culinary traditions of India. It is hoped that the Festival of India in Oman will become an important milestone in development of friendly relations between the two countries and will strengthen the bonds of friendship between the people of India and Oman. It will also create awareness about the diverse and unique culture of India.




   

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