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There are few things more colourful and artistic than an Indian festival, and so it proved this week as Lulu Hypermarket celebrated the nation’s Republic Day with a series of events and fairs at its various locations.
The celebration of crafts, cuisine and fashion of India, under the banner of ‘The Ultimate India Fest’, was highlighted by seven award-winning craftsmen from India showcasing their heritage and skills.
The crafts included the fantastic Sanjhi paper-cutting decorative work, miniature paintings, leather traditional handmade jutti footwear, tie-and-die fabric work, block printed fabric and Rajasthani lac bangles.
The paper cutting in particular was stunning, with numerous designs of trees, plants and deities created by the hand of the marvellously-moustached Ram Soni.
The Rajasthan resident said: “I’ve been creating these since I was a young boy.
“I find so much peace in art, and that’s why I like creating images of nature and animals.
“My mother used to create pieces like these, so I learned from her and decided to dedicate my life to it.”
Another excited craftsman, Avaz Mohammed, was selling bangles of many different colours and sizes. Each piece can create as long as two hours to make, and many visitors waited patiently to snap them up.
The Ambassador of India to Bahrain, Alok Kumar Sinha, inaugurated the festival at Galleria Mall supported by a dance performance from Bollywood Steps and the children of the Bharathi Association. Furthermore, a fashion show, in which the ladies and children of the Punjabis United of Bahrain walked the ramp in Lulu’s designer Indian garments, was staged to an appreciative audience.
Regional director of Lulu Hypermarket, Juzer Rupawala, said: “We are proud to join the Indian community in such productive and interesting ways to celebrate an important historic national milestone.
“From fascinating crafts to India’s regional food and community participation at all levels, we were honoured with the enthusiastic participation and the opportunity to sow the seeds for the future by recognising the talent and genius of the children in the community as well.”
The craftsmen flew home from the Hidd store yesterday but the Ultimate India Fest continues, in association with Jet Airways, until Sunday. There’s a free Taj Holidays raffle coupon for every BD10 spent.