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Around the world in 10 days...
Indian festivals celebrated globally may help repositioning brand ‘India’

It would be an understatement and in fact a sin of sorts to just say that Durga Puja, Dusshera, Eid and Diwali [Indian religious festivals] are festive occasions for India and the sub-continent. Clearly, though the magnificent cities of Kolkata, Delhi, Mumbai and similar others grandiosely celebrate any occasion worth its time, the bigger festivals are celebrated with just about the same pomp and grandeur by large pockets of Indians across the globe too.

Interestingly, a bunch of students in Chicago organised a notable event of Durga Puja in the downtown area. Though the even was attended by only around 300 people, the related media and publicity hype that it generated out-beat some of the strongest tourism drives of the Indian Ministry of Tourism in the Chicago state. How important can a state like Chicago be, huh? Chicago’s GDP tops $475 billion as per various estimates, almost half of India’s GDP! Similarly, the Houston Durga Bari saw around 3,000 devotees assembling for the function. At the same level, the Frankfurt Sarbojanin Adi Durgotsav has been a constant since 1981. Places like Perth and Sydney, Africa, Hong Kong, China, Dubai, Malaysia, Tokyo, Britain, Mauritius, Fiji [where Diwali is a public holiday], Singapore and Jakarta also have Indians doing their tremendous mite to not only add to the religious fervour, but also ensuring that ‘mystical India, a land of snakes and elephants’, attracts many more tourists than what the Indian government could achieve in a lifetime. There clearly is a huge amount of learning. Rather than investing millions of dollars in organising events through typical event-management firms, the Indian government should necessarily have alliances with foreign based organisations set up by NRIs and people of ‘desi’ origin to have a tremendously better impact. Think about it; Diwali in Time Square!

By:- Tanaya Bose

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