Guwahati: Anyone who has lived in the north-east of India will tell you how cherry blossoms usher in winters in the most beautiful way.
Meghalaya capital Shillong turned into a live painting with beautiful shades of pinks and purples as the much-awaited Cherry Blossom festival made its comeback.
Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma grace the ceremony as the chief guest along with Japanese Ambassador to India, Satoshi Suzuki and his missus and other delegates from the Japan Embassy in India, Chief Secretary Rebecca Suchiang, among other dignitaries.
The pink cherry tree adds some colour to the wintery atmosphere and pink petals that fall off, end up forming a carpet on streets. It’s a breathtaking sight and there’s nothing better than celebrating this beauty as a festival.
The Cherry Blossom Festival is back this year after being cancelled due to the pandemic outbreak last year.
Addressing the gathering, Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma lauded the Tourism and Forest department for their initiative and organising the Cherry Blossom Festival. The CM mentioned that this programme is part of a series of celebrations as the state will celebrate its 50 years of statehood on January 2022.
Speaking about the Shillong Literary Festival, CM Sangma said “We really hope that in the coming years, this festival should become a calendar event, an annual event for writers and authors from different parts of the country as well as the world and of course we will try our best to improve on it every make it more inclusive and more innovative as we go along”. “Festival like these promotes different aspects of the state’s art, culture, music and literature” added CM. Sangma said that the youth of the state is a bank of talent and such festivals gives opportunity for them to come together, interact and showcase their talents.
CM Sangma in his speech thank the Japanese Ambassador and Japan for their developmental initiatives in the State. Lauded about the culture and scenic beauty of Japan. “Japanese has a beautiful culture, the Japanese culture has also been an impact towards their governance.. that’s what led to where they are today”.
“If you talk to any Japanese individually, they’ll tell you how they value the assets of the government as if it’s their own..they respected government assets as if it’s their own and this is something I really hope that our nation and especially our region and our state and our citizens of Shillong would learn” added CM.
CM Sangma hope that the bond between the two nations (Japan and India) will grow from strength to strength so more developmental projects can be initiated in the country and in the State too.
The festival which is celebrated every year to mark the unique autumn flowering of the Himalayan cherry blossom will see a plethora of activities such as live music gigs, stalls showcasing the cuisine, wine, arts and craft of the region etc.
During the Festival people will get indulged in rock concerts, traditional folk music, dance performances, unplugged western music from all the northeastern states.
The festival which will be on till November 27 is underway in two venues–Ward’s Lake and the Polo Ground.
Besides the local bands, the festival will also feature international artists.
The first day of the festival will see a performance by ‘Carl & The Reda Mafia,’ a Dubai-based band. On the second day of the event, a South Korean girl trio called ‘Pixy’ will perform, while on the third day, Thailand pop artist ‘Pyra’ and ‘Mari Ferrari (EDM-Portugal)’ will perform.
A variety of events, including painting, photography, graffiti, and singing, will be held at the two locations to promote youth and bring forth hidden abilities.