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Traditional dance representing cross-cultural connection of India and Paisley

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Paisley’s cross-cultural connections took centre stage in a unique blend of traditional and fusion style dance celebrating Indian culture and heritage.

The annual Abhinaya Dance Showcase – held in Paisley for the first time in support of Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 – saw almost 80 students of all ages from the West of Scotland perform classical Indian style Bharatanatyam and contemporary dance in front of a packed audience.

Paisley 2021 Bid Director even put a spotlight on Paisley’s ambitions by lighting the traditional festival lamp for the opening ceremony of the event.
The youngest dancers from the Abhinaya Dance Academy then took to the stage, starting a fast-paced extravaganza that featured a traditional peacock dance and fusion style dance-ercise.

The event also saw 15 senior students receive Salangai Pooja, the traditional ankle bells worn by dancers that have completed formal study of Bharatanatyam.

Paisley’s Indian roots are best known through the Paisley Pattern, the town’s global brand which descended from the original kashmiri shawls, made famous by the town’s weavers.

Earlier this year the Paisley Pattern featured in the cross-cultural fashion show in Paisley Abbey in a showcase of students’ work from India and their Scottish counterparts in Glasgow Kelvin College.

And while the town’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 is retelling Paisley’s unique story of its one time place at the centre of the global textile industry, the town is also building upon its diverse cultural scene.

Councillor Mark Macmillan, chair of the Paisley 2021 Partnership Board, said: “We’ve been getting out into the community finding out what makes Paisley’s culture and discovering some unique gems showcasing the town’s past but also present and future.

“The Abhinaya show was a fantastic mix of Indian and contemporary dance styles, a perfect combination showcasing the town’s cross-cultural links.

“Paisley’s connection to India is important for the town. Our global brand – the Paisley Pattern – is a significant part of our town’s weaving heritage and instantly recognisable today.

“The iconic design, which descended from the original kashmiri shawls, made an enormous impact on the town’s economy during the 1800s, and it’s a key part of the town’s ambitious regeneration plans and the bid for UK City of Culture 2021.”

Mrs Esther Sunija Binu of Abhinaya Dance Academy said: “We were all so proud to showcase the South Asian culture and dance to the town and bringing people from multicultural backgrounds together through culture.

“On behalf of the Abhinaya Dance Academy I would like to thank everyone who has supported us to make this Dance Showcase a grand and a memorable event, especially Jean Cameron, Abhinaya’s dance students, Paisley Town Hall and the Big Lottery Fund. I also like to thank everyone for the appreciative and positive comments after the show; this will encourage students to perform at higher levels.

Credits: http://m.barrheadnews.com/

 

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India China’s Fight Over the Doklam Plateau Explained

Doklam or Donglang, is a disputed area between China and Bhutan located near their tri-junction with India

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picture from- indiaopines.com

By Ruchika Verma

  • India and China have an old history of disputes
  • This time, the dispute is regarding the Dokplam Plateau
  • The area is of strategic importance for both the nations

Disputes between India and China are not at all uncommon. The rivalry between the two nations is famous. There have been several disputes between the two on the India-China border in past, and there seems to be no stopping for these disputes in the present or future, for that matter.

India and China have a n old history of repeated disputes. zeenews.india.com
India and China have an old history of repeated disputes. zeenews.india.com

In June 2017, the world witnessed yet another dispute arising between India and China. This time the dispute was about China building a road extending to Doklam Plateau, which both nations have been fighting over for years now.

Also Read: China is likely to get involved if India disrupts $46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

History of the dispute 

Doklam or Donglang (in Chinese), is a disputed area between China and Bhutan located near their tri-junction with India. India doesn’t directly claim the area but supports Bhutan’s claims on it.

India fits into the picture, as this plateau is an important area for India. Not only is Bhutan one of the biggest allies of India; China gaining access over the Doklam Plateau will also endanger India’s borders, making them vulnerable to attacks.

Dopkam plateau is an important area near India, China and Bhutan's borders.
Dopkam plateau is an important area near India, China and Bhutan’s borders.

Apart from the hostile history of the two nations, the Doklam Plateau is also important for India to maintain its control over a land corridor that connects to its remote northeastern States. China building a road through Doklam surely threatens that control.

A complete timeline of what happened in the recent Doklam Standoff 

On 16 June 2017, Chinese troops with construction vehicles and excavators began extending an existing road southward on the Doklam plateau, near India’s border. It was Bhutan which raised the alarm for India.

On 18 June 2017, India responded by sending around 270 Indian troops, with weapons and two bulldozers to evict the Chinese troops from Doklam.

On 29 June 2017, Bhutan protested against the construction of a road in the disputed territory.  According to the Bhutanese government, China attempted to extend a road in an area which is shared both Bhutan and India, along with China.

Between 30 June 2017 and 5 July 2017, China released multiple statements justifying their claim over the Doklam plateau. They cited reasons as to why the Doklam standoff wasn’t really needed. And how China has not intruded into India’s territory to incite the standoff.

On 19th July 2017, China asked India again to withdraw its troops from the Doklam. On 24th July 2017,  Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, in his statement, asked India to withdraw and behave themselves to maintain peace.

India and China seem to never agree when it comes to their borders. BBC
India and China seem to never agree when it comes to their borders. BBC

Also Read: Why India Must Counter China’s High-Altitude Land Grab?

What followed till 16th August 2017 was China constantly alleging India of trying to create trouble. They accused India of trying to disturb the peace and not withdrawing the troops, even after repeated reminders. They also accused India of bullying.

India, however, kept quiet during the whole fiasco, only releasing a statement regarding their stand and position at the Doklam standoff.

On 28 August 2017, India and China finally announced that they had agreed to pull their troops back from the Doklam standoff. The withdrawal was completed on that very day.

On 7 September 2017, many media reports claimed that both nation’s troops have not left the site completely. They were still patrolling the area, simply having moved 150 meters away from their previous position.

On 9 October 2017, China announced that it is ready to maintain peace with India at the frontiers. India reacted in affirmative, the peace was established when Indian Defence Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman’s visited Nathu La.

The issue between the two nations may rise again. Pixabay
The issue between the two nations may rise again. Pixabay

The Doklam issue, for now, is resolved. However, given the history of disputes between India and China, it won’t be a surprise if the issue resurfaces again in near future.