Qatar Museums (QM) has announced India as the Official Partner Nation for the 2019 Year of Culture. The announcement kick starts an exciting array of programme comprising exhibitions, festivals, competitions and events set to take place in both countries over the next 12 months.
The carefully curated programme is specially designed to promote mutual understanding, recognition and appreciation between the sovereign nations of India and Qatar, QM said in a statement Tuesday. 
Qatar India 2019 Year of Culture will invite audiences in Qatar and India to explore their cultural similarities, as well as celebrate their differences. 
"We are happy to partner with Qatar Museums for the Qatar India 2019 Year of Culture and look forward to organising a number of cultural events during the course of the year, in a manner that effectively showcases the deep cultural roots and people-to-people links between India and Qatar over the years," Indian ambassador P Kumaran said. 
"These events will cover a wide range of activities including dance performances, musical presentations, film festivals, painting and photography exhibitions, food festivals, fashion shows, calligraphy exhibitions, textiles exhibitions and yoga. As part of this process, the embassy will be working closely with Indian community organisations in Qatar."
Ahmad al-Namla, acting CEO at QM said: “We are thrilled to confirm India as our partner nation for the Year of Culture 2019 and look forward to working with a range of leading institutions to deliver the incredible programmes that we have planned. Culture is one of the most effective tools for bringing people closer together and we look forward to our Year of Culture 2019 to celebrate the similarities and differences between our countries through widespread participation and engagement both in Qatar and India.”
Qatar Airways Group chief executive Akbar al-Baker said: “We are delighted to be the official airline partner of the Qatar India 2019 Year of Culture. We firmly believe that culture is a powerful, unifying tool that can bridge gaps and bring people from different communities and societies together. We look forward to celebrating this significant cultural collaboration that will bring people from both sovereign nations together, especially in the fields of art, music, sports and heritage.”
The Qatar India 2019 logo reflects how festivals are at the heart of people’s lives in India. In fact, the numerous and varied festivals that are held throughout the year offer a unique way of seeing Indian culture at its best. The Devanagari font, one of the most popular fonts for writing Hindi, is combined with Arabic to create a harmonious blend of the two scripts.
Some of the key events to look forward to in India include ‘The Monsoon Wedding The Musical, scheduled to take place this month in New Delhi, and a contemporary Art Qatar Exhibition - a landmark exhibition showcasing Qatar’s rapid social and urban transformation through the eyes of talented emerging artists from the country.
In Qatar, residents and visitors will be able to enjoy the Year of Culture experience at the Doha International Book Fair 2019 where India will be the Guest of Honour. Other highlights include an exhibition by Raqs Media Collective, which makes contemporary art, edits books and curates exhibitions, and a ‘Festival of India’ event that will feature a range of visual arts and performances such as classical dance and music (both Indian and Western), as well as cinema and theatre. 
The focus for most of the programmes of Qatar India 2019 Year of Culture will be on exploring and celebrating cultural, artistic and educational exchanges between the two countries. The event, developed under the patronage of QM chairperson HE Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, has gone from strength to strength with each passing year and the breadth and depth of activities have continued to expand. 
Qatar India 2019, sponsored by Qatar Airways, was planned in collaboration with leading institutions in the two countries, including their embassies, Qatar's Ministry of Culture and Sport, Qatar Foundation, the National Tourism Council, the Doha Film Institute and many more.
Last year (2018) was celebrated as Qatar Russia Year of Culture.
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