World Culture Festival 2016
Every innovation, every creative dream on this planet has happened thanks to an impossible dream. Hold on to an impossible dream and you will make it come true.
-Sri Sri Ravishankar, the man behind WCF & Founder of Art of Living.
The World Culture Festival was a dream that seemed impossible but sheer persistence and the want to showcase the world’s cultural diversity and bring people from around the globe to come together came true on the banks of the River Yamuna in New Delhi.
The three day extravaganza brought together world leaders, performers and the common man in a 1,000 acre plot in what is said to be a Olympics of culture.
3.5 million people from around the world descended on to the grounds of Mayur Vihar with over 36,000 artistes from around the world performing and showcasing their culture on what was possibly the world’s largest stage.
Opening the World Culture Festival the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi said: “India is so diverse and it has so much to contribute to the world. ‘The#WorldCultureFestival is like the Kumbh Mela of Art & Cultures!”
In today’s troubled world Sri Sri Ravi Shankar said: “People from Pakistan, Nepal, Argentina & others who have come here are giving such a strong message of Harmony to World!”
The highlight of the event was the contingent from Pakistan led by the Pakistan Peoples Party minister Sherry Rehman. In a spirited speech she said: “We as one world need to find global ways for openness and security to bring harmony. Building peace is a broad ambition that we all share as members of civil society and leaders in our own countries.
”Terrorism looms very large in public imagination. Most people don’t realize that Pakistan has been fighting one of the largest inland wars against terrorism, and it is doing so alone. Although peace is a broad global ambition that all the leaders share, it is not easy to achieve.
“They do not divide, they do not terrorise, they do not cut, and they do not create poles where people drift apart. They must not put people in boxes. Today’s event is a gathering that unites us in harmony. Cultural interventions are about the stories that we tell about each other.
“We bring the colours of our humanity to this kind of gathering and I hope that Pakistan, India and all the nations represented here today can take the world into the future of peace, prosperity, and brotherhood.”
She ended her speech with “Pakistan Zindabad” which was met with an applause from the audience. This was earlier unimaginable in India but only possible in a spirit of mutual acceptance possible at WCF.
Dignitaries from different countries including former French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin, Nepalese Deputy Prime Minister Kamal Thapa, Vice-President of Suriname Ashwin Adhin, Hakubun Shimomura, Japanese minister of sports and culture, Crown Prince of UAE, UAE’s Cultural Minister Al Nahayan, veteran freedom fighter and Nelson Mandela confidante Ahmed Kathrada, Vice-President of Suriname Michael A.S. Adhin, Olusegun Obasanjo Former President of Nigeria, Joaquim Alberto Chissano, Former President of Mozambique and Speaker of Sri Lankan Parliament Karu Jayasuriya attended the event.
Here and Now 365 has always prided itself for promoting multiculturalism and celebrating the ethnic diversity of the world.