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India Fest to promote India-UAE people-to-people relations

More than 30,000 people to attend three-day event at ISC from Thursday to Saturday, featuring India’s diverse culture and cuisine

  • The popular " Payyannoor Kolkali", a traditional dance from Kerala, is being performed by the troupe during tImage Credit: Abdul Rahman/Gulf News archives
  • Indian dancers perform classical dance during the inauguration of UAE India Fest Season 7, 2017 at India SociaImage Credit:
Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: An annual event celebrating India’s diverse culture and cuisine in the capital this weekend will further increase people-to-people relations between India and the UAE, the organisers said.

The eighth edition of India Fest, to be held from Thursday to Friday at the premises of the Indian Social and Cultural Centre (ISC), will go beyond offering a recreational and educational experience on India’s deep-rooted culture and heritage, Thomas John, honorary president of the ISC, told Gulf News.

“Bringing Indian expatriates of different regions and cultures under one roof, the event is also an opportunity for the Indian community to deepen their friendship with Emiratis,” he said.

John said the festival has been attracting many Emiratis in recent years. The improved India-UAE bilateral relations since the official visit of Indian Prime Minister Modi to the UAE in August 2015 and reciprocal visits of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, to India in early 2016 and as the chief guest on Indian Republic Day in January 2017 have reflected in people-to-people ties as well, he said.

“Indian Fest has been an opportunity for many Emiratis to enjoy Indian dance and music. Emiratis’ love for Bollywood is well-known,” he said. Emirati cuisine, art and cultural performances such as Khaleej dance, Ayalah dance and Tanoora will also be presented, he said.

The three-day event during the golden jubilee year of the ISC will also pay tribute to Shaikh Zayed as the UAE has declared 2018 the ‘Year of Zayed’. “Indian community, especially the ISC, is indebted to Shaikh Zayed who had given a piece of land 50 years ago to establish the ISC,” John said.

The event will also express Indian community’s support to the UAE Government’s innovative efforts to spearhead happiness and tolerance in the society, John said.

The festival will be inaugurated at 8pm on Thursday (December 14) and more than 30,000 visitors are expected in the next three days, said M.A Salam, honorary general secretary of the ISC.

A Dh10 entry ticket will be valid for three days and also make visitors eligible for the mega raffle draw for a Chevrolet Aveo car and 500 grams of gold to be held on March 29, 2018 at the end of ISC golden jubilee celebrations, said Jayachandran Nair, honorary vice-president of the ISC. A raffle draw based on the same entry tickets on Saturday, December 16, will give away 20 prizes, he said.

Held under the patronage of the Indian Embassy in Abu Dhabi and Abu Dhabi City Municipality, the event will entertain the audience with music and art performances by renowned artists from India and the UAE.

Business houses will showcase and sell their products and services ranging from ethnic clothes and jewellery to diverse Indian cuisine.


Event: India Fest -2017

Venue: Indian Social and Cultural Centre (ISC) premises at Al Mina in Abu Dhabi

Dates and time:

Thursday, December 14, 5pm to 12am

Friday, December 15, 5pm to 12am

Saturday, December 16, 5pm to 11pm

• Dh10-entry ticket is valid for three days and eligible for the mega raffle draw for Chevrolet Aveo car, 500 grams of gold and 20 other prizes.

• Over 100 artists from India and UAE will perform, in addition to international artists.

Entertainment programmes:

• Live musical programme by Bollywood singer Adithi Singh Sharma; Kavya Ajith, violinist and vocalist; Niranj Suresh, playback singer; Sonu Sebastian, specialist in water drums; Ricky Brown (DJ).

• Bollywood dances and Indian classical dance

• African drummers, dance performance by Filipino, Spanish, Russian and Samba artists

• India’s regional cultural performances by Maharashrta, Andhra and Odisha communities.

• Martial arts performances