High-level political and business delegations from India will visit Qatar later this year, Indian ambassador Sanjiv Arora said yesterday.
The chief guest at a function organised by the Indian Cultural Centre (ICC) to celebrate the 67th Independence Day of India, the envoy was addressing community members at Al Rayyan Theatre in Souq Waqif.
A cultural extravaganza organised on the occasion featured performances by various organisations affiliated to the ICC. Hassan Mohamed al-Mohannadi, head of media relations at Qatar Olympic Committee, was the guest of honour.
Speaking on the occasion, ambassador Arora acknowledged and thanked the patronage given by HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, HH the Father Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani and the Qatar government to the Indian community.
“India and Qatar have very long and historic relationship,” he said.
He said the multifaceted and growing relationship would blossom into many more sectors under the leadership of HH the Emir.
Al-Mohannadi said the Indian community in Qatar had been active from a long time. “The Indian community is deep rooted in Qatar. The community members have contributed a lot for the development of Qatar. The role played by the community is greatly appreciated by the Qatari people and the government,” he said.
ICC president Tarun Kumar Basu welcomed the gathering and detailed ICC’s activities. He explained that the ICC, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, had held three major programmes with the help of the affiliated organisations. There was an Indian community festival, an Indian inter-school dance competition as well as an Indian community sports festival.
He also said that the next Indian cultural festival would be held at the Museum of Islamic Art.
During the event, the Qatar toppers of the Central Board of Secondary Education higher secondary school examinations were honoured. Syeda Razia Haider from MES Indian School in science stream and Anagha Gopakumar from DPS Modern Indian School in commerce stream received mementos from the ambassador. A souvenir was released at the function to mark the occasion.
Patriotic songs, skits and a variety of classical dances performed by budding artistes from different socio-cultural forums and students from Indian schools were the major attractions of the programme. The event highlighted the rich and varied heritage of India and its traditional art forms.
Viswakalavedi, an organisation of artists from India, had presented a wooden artefact to the ICC which was unveiled on the occasion by the ambassador. The artefact was prepared by 12 artists working for months. The sculpture was placed at the back of the stage as the backdrop for the evening’s programmes.
Affliated forums of ICC such as Bangya Parishad, Gujarati Samaj, TRAQ, Karnataka Sanga, Telugu Kala Samithi, Sanskriti Utkalika and Bhavans Public School presented programmes. Performances by students of Indian Cultural Centre was one of the key attractions.
The function was attended by a large number of community members and officials of Indian Community Benevolent Forum, Indian Business and Professional Network and representatives of various organisations affiliated to the ICC.