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Indian Embassy holds Sarang festival to promote cultural exchange

By Sanjay Kumar

Published : Oct. 10, 2023 - 11:54

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Indian Ambassador to Korea Amit Kumar speaks at a press briefing at the Indian Embassy in Yongsan-gu, Seoul, Thursday. (Indian Embassy in Seoul) Indian Ambassador to Korea Amit Kumar speaks at a press briefing at the Indian Embassy in Yongsan-gu, Seoul, Thursday. (Indian Embassy in Seoul)

The Indian Embassy in Seoul is celebrating the ninth edition of the Sarang festival, a cultural event aimed at fostering people-to-people connections through cultural exchanges between India and Korea.

The word "sarang" holds significant meaning for both Koreans and Indians. In Korean, "sarang" means "love," while for Indians, it represents diversity and symbolizes the vibrant colors of India.

This year's Sarang festival, which kicked off Friday, has been expanded to include new elements, with celebrations taking place in multiple cities across Korea, Indian Ambassador to Korea Amit Kumar said at a press briefing.

"We are celebrating 50 years of diplomatic ties between India and Korea in 2023," said Kumar.

Since its inception in 2015, the Sarang festival has been a platform for the Indian Embassy to showcase India's rich cultural diversity through dance, drama, music, films, and cuisine.

Pamphlet showcasing schedule of Sarang festival. (Indian Embassy in Seoul) Pamphlet showcasing schedule of Sarang festival. (Indian Embassy in Seoul)

Some of the festival highlights include performances by a Bharatanatyam dance troupe, led by Vidyashree Radhakrishna. One of eight classical Indian dances, Bharatanatyam originated from the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu. The troupe will hold shows in Seoul, Busan, Nami Island in Gangwon Province, Gurye, South Jeolla Province, Gimhae, South Gyeongsang Province, and Suwon, Gyeonggi Province, until Oct. 14.

In November, the embassy will screen Indian films such as "RRR," known for its Oscar-winning song "Naatu Naatu," and organize a monthlong exhibition on Indian culture and cuisine, featuring food sampling, presentations and cooking demonstrations.

A cultural troupe from India is also set to perform Carnatic music, a classical vocal music, in December, featuring artists such as Jayanthi Kumaresh and violinist Vidwan Kumaresh.

Separately, Kumar also mentioned the meetings of Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the G7 Summit in Hiroshima, Japan, in May, and the G20 Summit in New Delhi in September, and highlighted the commitment of both leaders to enhancing cultural ties.

“Yoon and Modi in particular have underlined the need to strengthen cultural exchanges and people-to-people connectivity,” said Kumar.

“We are looking forward to the visit of the Speaker of the National Assembly to India for the P20 Summit,” he added.

The Parliament of India is to co-host the ninth G20 Parliamentary Speakers' Summit with the Inter-Parliamentary Union, a global organization of national parliaments, from Oct. 13 to 14 in New Delhi.

The festival runs through December. For more information about the festival programs, visit the Indian Embassy's website.