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Tibetans happy to hold fest in land of Gandhi
Express India[Thursday, January 17, 2008 11:59]

Ahmedabad, January 16: A five-day-long festival organised jointly by the Central Tibetan Administration and Prithiviraj, the Maharaja of Kutch, presently on in the city, aims to share the history, arts and culture of the erstwhile 'Forbidden Land', with the people of the city.

On anvil are plans to host photo exhibitions, film screenings, and talks. This apart, The Dalai Lama will also be in the city on Friday and Saturday to deliver two lectures at the IIMA and the Gujarat Vidyapeeth.

Stressing on the importance of holding the festival in the land of Mahatma Gandhi, Kesang Y Takla, Minister, department of Information and International Relations of the Central Tibetan Administration, Dharamsala said, "This is the land of Gandhi and non-violence. Even His Holiness has been greatly inspired by the teachings of Gandhi and it is significant that we are holding the festival here."

"This will help people know about our culture and heritage and also help us share the story of our non-violent struggle for our homeland with them," he said.

The festival is being organised by the Darpana Academy of Performing Arts and the Kanoria Centre for Arts. Mallika Sarabhai, co-director, Darpana Academy said, "Gujarat, more than any other place needs to reiterate the message of non-violence."

Thangka, the traditional Tibetan way of painting will be on display at the Kanoria Centre for Arts on all festival days. Thangka paintings are an intricate web of lines and colours, geometric in nature and depict the life of Buddha and other historical Buddhist images. The festival will feature some of the Thangka artists at work and a few select paintings are also availble for sale.

Visitors will also have an opportunity to sample authentic Tibetan cuisine at the Natrani Cafe at the Darpana Academy on all festival days. Besides, the Natrani amphitheatre will host a film showing a particular strand of the Tibetan saga at 8.30 pm on all festival days. Another highlight of the festival would be free medical consultations at the KCA by Dr Pema Dorjee relying on the ancient system of Tibetan medicine. Dr Dorjee said, "The Tibetan system of medicine has many similarities with Ayurveda and is especially useful in treating chronic ailments."
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