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South Asian diaspora films to be part of Texas film festival

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Washington: More than a dozen films focusing on issues affecting South Asians and exploring the lives and stories of the South Asian diaspora in the US will be showcased at a film festival in Texas next February.

The 2nd annual Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) South Asian Film Festival kicks off its programming from Feb 19 to 21, at locations in downtown Dallas and Plano with “Miss India America” as the opening night film.

It will screen Feb 19 at the Hoglund Foundation Theatre of the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, followed by a red carpet and cocktail reception at the T. Boone Pickens Life Then and Now Hall.

The rest of the specially-curated line-up will be showcased at the Angelika Film Centre in Plano on Feb 20 and 21, followed by panel discussions with attending filmmakers, after-parties and networking events, all taking place in Plano.

JINGO Media, a Dallas and New York based, public relations and events management firm, produces the annual festival of South Asian independent cinema in North Texas.

“In our second year, we are stepping up our game,” said JINGO Media Principal/CEO Jitin Hingorani.

Our team of curators has spent the year travelling to other South Asian film festivals around the world, including Toronto, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Goa, India, to secure the most meaningful and relevant programming for North Texas audiences.

“We are certain that our community will leave these films entertained, elated and educated.”

The festival’s opening night film is the Texas premiere of wife/husband creative team of Meera Simhan (actor/co-writer) and Ravi Kapoor’s (director/co-writer) award-winning, cross-cultural comedy “Miss India America.”

Set against the backdrop of the Indian beauty pageant world in Los Angeles, the film stars Texas native Tiya Sircar and Hannah Simone (of television series New Girl fame), along with a supporting cast of talented South Asian actors.

Produced by Megha Kadakia and Saurabh Kikani, the film “establishes an authentic tone that pays respect to Indian cultural norms, while poking gentle fun at these traditions,” according to The Hollywood Reporter.

In addition to the opening night, centrepiece and closing night films, the festival will also showcase thought-provoking, edgy shorts and documentaries, along with women’s programming, men’s programming, LGBT programming and family programming.

(Arun Kumar, IANS)

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Here’s why Wellness Tourism in India and South Asia is Trending

ndia, South Asia see a rise in wellness tourism: Experts

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Wellness Tourism
Wellness tourism is beyond regular spa and thermal treatments to incorporate lifestyle improvement practices that render holistic well-being through travel. Pixabay

BY SIDDHI JAIN

As health and holidays come to be increasingly combined in the modern tourism sector, the rise of wellness tourism in India and South Asia is a trend many are taking notice of.

“Wellness travellers look for authentic experiences and life-changing holidays, they travel with the purpose of improving health and well-being through physical, psychological, or spiritual activities in an enjoyable resort setting,” Rahul Chaudhary, Managing Director, CG Hospitality explains to IANSlife.

Wellness Tourism
The rise of wellness tourism in India and South Asia is a trend many are taking notice of. Pixabay

“Travellers are expecting these experiences to give them somewhat a new outlook towards the world or themselves. Self-care and self-love are where this concept has evolved from. In addition to the self-care focused travellers, there is a huge surge in the travellers looking for creative awakening,” he added.

Travel experts say that although a spa “allows an individual to escape from their busy schedule and to invest time in own-self, and it is an ideal place where you disconnect yourself from the world and worries,” as shared Swati Balga, Aura Spa Manager at The Park Hyderabad, many also believe that a spa experience is only the beginning of wellness tourism.

As per Vijay Sharma, General Manager, Club Med Southeast Asia, wellness tourism has gained popularity among Indians who prefer travelling slow and taking relaxing vacations.

Guests are seen indulging in a host of amazing family activities with an objective of bringing urban families together to bond over unique moments of fun and adventure. While opting for holidays, travellers are mindful of selecting resorts that also cater to internal well-being.

Wellness Tourism
Wellness tourism allows an individual to escape from their busy schedule and to invest time in own-self. Pixabay

Wellness tourism is beyond regular spa and thermal treatments to incorporate lifestyle improvement practices that render holistic well-being through travel, he added.

Why is this industry booming and how is it shaping up?

“In a steadily growing economy, where people constantly face a rapidly changing life, wellness tourism becomes even more important as it rejuvenates the body, mind, and soul through the detoxification offered by different health therapies. South Asians are embracing a life-well-lived mind-et in their �40s because they can afford it. They want to achieve and maintain the quality of not only life but a lifestyle,” Rahul Chaudhary said.

The definition of wellness tourism has certainly evolved from what it was a few years ago.

“Today, the focus is on transformational travel, something that one can take back after the holiday whether it is an everlasting memory or a good habit. Mental well-being is treated to be as important as physical wellness,” shares Neeraj Seth, Director of Marketing Communication and Public Relations at Kandima Maldives.

Also Read- Apple Sends Gift Packages to its Employees Stranded in China

Finally, how is the industry shaping up?

As per Chaudhary, the wellness idea changes almost every aspect of travel and wellness tourism that will only grow faster in the years ahead because it sits at the powerful intersection of two huge, expanding industries: the USD 2.6 trillion tourism industry and the USD 4.2 trillion wellness market.