SAARC Literary Festival on South Asian Novel – 2013 concludes successfully

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Introduction
In keeping with the SAARC Agenda for culture which envisages the diversity in culture needs to be acknowledged as varied experiences are reflected in the richness of cultural expression, the SAARC Cultural Centre organized a 3-day Literary Festival in Bhutan. The Festival was an open forum for writers as well as literary critics to discuss the current status of South Asian Novel and to indulge in exploring the unique cultural tapestry of the South Asian novel. It included presentations, book reviews, lectures, discussions and book reading sessions.
The SAARC Literary Festival, on the theme ‘Traversing the Cultural Contours through South Asian Novel’, was held at the SAARC Forestry Centre, Taba, Thimphu Bhutan from 18 to 21 December 2013. Delegates from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Sri Lanka participated in the Literary Festival.
The Director of SAARC Cultural Centre hosted the Welcome Dinner on 18 December 2013 at Hotel Phuntsho Pelri. Dr. Sanjay Garg, the Convenor of the Literary Festival, welcomed the Delegates. After the introduction by the Delegates, Mr. Syed Shamsul Haq of Bangladesh made an introductory presentation.
Inaugural Session was held on the morning of 19 December 2013 with the patronage of HE Lyonpo Damcho Dorji, Honourable Minister for Home and Cultural Affairs. The Festival stated with the Marchang Ceremony that was performed by reverend monks to obtain the blessings of the deities for the event.
Welcome address was delivered by the Convenor of the Literary Festival and Deputy Director (Research) of the SAARC Cultural Centre, Dr. Sanjay Garg. In his address, Dr. Garg outlined various initiatives taken by the SAARC Cultural Centre so far for promoting the literature of the region. He gave a background of the launching of the annual Literary Festivals, which are conceived as a platform for the authors, writers, poets and others engaged in the field of literary creation in the region, which will also bring together other stakeholders such as publishers, film-makers, translators, animators, etc. who serve as a vehicle for the dissemination of literary works.
Then the Chief Guest, His Excellency Lyonpo Damcho Dorji, Honourable Minister for Home and Cultural Affairs to addressed the gathering. The Honorable Minister warmly welcomed the Delegates to Bhutan’s capital city, Thimphu. In his address the Honorable Minister remarked, Culture and novels are synonymous in the sense that without culture there can be no novel. Novels reflect our imagination and our sensitivity toward the human condition and the whole society itself.  Novels embody the unspoken thoughts of their writers, and are the direct reflections of experiences, emotions, and outlook that have deep roots in – and also echo- the socio-cultural setting to which the writers belong. He elaborated the need to safeguard novels in South Asia as it is a linguistically diverse, with multiple ethnic groups, cultures, religions, castes and colours, and this diversity also finds reflection in the region’s literary heritage.
The Keynote Address was delivered by Mr. G.L.W. Samarasinghe, one of the most eminent Sinhala authors in Sri Lanka who has authored more than 50 books, including 8 novels, 20 translations and 4 social reviews. Mr. Samarasinghe’s Keynote address focused on the historical development of Literature in South Asia and the need to safeguard its rich heritage.
Country Panels
The Literary Festival included four Country Panels, namely, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Sri Lanka. In the country panels each delegation presented the historical developments and current status of literature in their respective countries.
Participants and moderators for the respective country panels were;
Bangladesh
Prof. Syed Manzoorul Islam, Ms. Selina Hossain and Mir Jahurul Islam presented on the country situation of novels in Bangladesh. The session was moderated by Dr. Pratibha Ray (India)
Bhutan
Mr. Kuenga Tenzin; Ms. Tanni Bose and Dr. Karma Phuntsho were the panellists of the Bhutan Country Panel. The Panel was moderated by Mir Jahurul Islam (Bangladesh)
India
Shri Govind Mishra; Dr. Pratibha Ray; and Sri C. Radhakrishnan were the panelists for the India Country Panel. The session was moderated by Mr. Daya Dissanayake (Sri Lanka)
Sri Lanka
Dr. Sunil Wijesiriwardena; Mr. S. A. Udayan; Mr. Daya Dissanayake; Prof. Rohan Gunaratna; Mr. Piyal Kariyawasam participated in the Sri Lanka Country Panel. The session was moderated by Prof. Syed Manzoorul Islam (Bangladesh)
Reading Sessions
Authors were given an opportunity to read excerpts from their novels and to discuss their writing styles during the Reading Sessions. There were three reading sessions. Ten authors were given the opportunity to present their work. The three reading sessions were chaired by Mr. Harka Gurung (Bhutan), Shri Govind Mishra (India), and Dr. Karma Phuntsho respectively.
Lectures
The Literary Festival also included three lectures
1. ‘Creating South Asian Harmony Through Literature,’ by Prof. Rohan Gunaratna, Sri Lanka;
2. ‘Women Writers Contribution in SAARC Countries’ by Ms. Sumithra Rahubaddhe, and
3. ‘Editing and Publishing Novels in South Asia’ by Mr. Vijitha Yapa, Chairperson, Sri Lanka Publishers Association.
Round Table and Plenary Session
The Round Table and the Plenary Session was Co-Chaired by Dr. Sanjay Garg and Mr. Harka Gurung. The session discussed the current issues related to development of literature in South Asia and developed recommendations to protect and promote South Asian Literature.
Field Visit
On 20 December 2013, a half day field visit was organized to the Textile Museum of Bhutan, the Buddha Point and to the Memorial Chorten in Thimphu, Bhutan.
Valedictory Session
Dasho (Dr.) Pema Thinley, Vice Chancellor, Royal University of Bhutan graced the occasion as the Chief Guest of the Valedictory Session
The Concluding Remarks were made by Dasho Harka Gurung, Director, National Library and Archives, Royal Government of Bhutan. In his remarks, Dasho Gurung mentioned, it was certainly heartening to see that the 4-Day SAARC Literary Festival 2013 concluded with a positive note and impressive conclusion and recommendations. He pinned down high hopes from the galaxy of writers who gathered here for a common cause and purpose and who were determined to realize the objectives for which this festival had been organized.
The Vote of Thanks was delivered by Mr. Karma Wangchuck who thanked each and every individual who was part of organizing the SAARC Literary Festival 2013.
  • Photos – Will be Available Soon
  • Highlights on Media

SAARC International Conference on Development of Archives in South Asia: ‘The Future of Archives and Archives of the Future’ Concludes Successfully

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SAARC Cultural Centre is pleased to announce the successful conclusion of the SAARC International Conference on Development of Archives in South Asia: ‘The Future of Archives and Archives of the Future’ and its associated activity, An Exhibition of Historical Documents and Archival Photographs.

The Conference, which had paper reading sessions and round table discussions, was held from 3-5 December 2013 at the Department of National Archives, No. 7, Philip Gunawardena Mawatha, Colombo 7, Sri Lanka. It was attended by over 100 participants, from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, the USA and the UK.

The conference was convened with a view to providing a platform to the key stakeholders in the field of archives and records management in the region to assess their preparedness, share their challenges and problems, showcase their achievements, voice their concerns and learn from the experts for effectively managing their existing and future collections over the long-term.
Inaugural Session   Click here for picture
The conference was inaugurated by Hon. Dr. Jagath Balasuriya, Minister of National Heritage, Government of Sri Lanka. The Welcome Address was delivered by Mr. G. L. W. Samarasinghe, Director, SAARC Cultural Centre. Mr. G.P.S.H. de Silva, Former Director, Department of National Archives, Sri Lanka delivered the Keynote Address while Ms. Soundarie David Rodrigo, Deputy Director-Programme, SAARC Cultural Centre proposed the Vote of Thanks.

Academic Sessions
A total of sixteen research papers were presented in seven academic sessions spread over three days (3-5 December 2013). The sessions were along the following themes:

  • Introductory Session (1 Session),
  • Country Reports (3 Sessions),
  • Digital Preservation of Conventional Archives: Democratising and Privileging (1 Session),
  • Future of the Conventional Archives (including paper, film and sound) in Digital Age (1 Session), and
  • Digital Archives: Emerging Trends (1 Session)

Round Table
Two Round Tables on ‘Managing Digital Records: Rhetoric vis-à-vis Practice’ and ‘Access to Archives in Information Age: Risks and Responsibilities, User Management, and Right to Privacy’ were held and were led by Dr. James Nye (Digital South Asia Library, USA) and Ms. Geetanjali Ranawaka (National Intellectual Property Office, Sri Lanka) respectively.
The Plenary Session   Click here for picture
At the conclusion of the Academic Sessions, a Plenary Session was held on 5 December 2013 as a closed-door event with the participation of all Resource Persons and Chair Persons of the Academic Sessions. It was jointly chaired by Dr. Sanjay Garg (Deputy Director-Research, SAARC Cultural Centre and Convener of the Conference) and Dr. C. Saroja Wettasinghe (Director, Department of National Archives, Sri Lanka and Co-Convener of the Conference). The Plenary Committee perused all the Feedback forms received from the participants of the Conference and summarised the main suggestions emerging out of the deliberations and prepared a document laying out a road-map in the form of recommendations for the SAARC Member States. The recommendations will be forwarded to all SAARC Member States.
Valedictory Session   Click here for pictures
The Valedictory Session of the conference was held on 5 December 2013 at the auditorium, Department of National Archives, Sri Lanka and was attended by the participants of the conference. Mr. G.L.W. Samarasinghe, Director, SAARC Cultural Centre distributed certificates and mementos to all participants and Special Invitees of the Conference. A Cultural Show and Farewell Dinner was hosted by the Director, SAARC Cultural Centre at Ape Gama, Battaramulla.
Post-Conference Tour   Click here for the pictures
A full day post-conference tour was organized for the participants of the conference to Galle on 6 December 2013.

Galle is the Southern capital of Sri Lanka and is declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is blessed with natural beauty that has found expression in the form of a magnificent coastal belt expanding from Hikkaduwa to Unawatuna and also houses colonial remnants such as the world famous Galle Fort and the St. Mary’s Cathedral.

Commencing the day’s activities, participants visited the Maritime Archaeology Museum and Maritime Museum. They were served morning tea at the Maritime Museum. This was followed by a visit to the Galle National Museum, Martin Wickramasinghe Folklore Museum and a visit to Koggala beach. The Martin Wickramasinghe Trust generously hosted the lunch for the delegates.

A Special Interactive Session was arranged with Hon. Kumari Balasooriya, Governor, Southern Province, in an informal setting at the Governor’s Residence. This was followed by a visit to the historical Galle Fort. The transport for the post-conference tour was facilitated by the Travel Partner of the conference: Aitken Spence Travels (Pvt.) Ltd.
Associated Activity- The Archives and the SAARC: An Exhibition of Historical Documents and Archival Photographs
As an associated activity of the conference, an Exhibition of digital prints of historical documents and photographs of archival value in South Asia was mounted at the Conference venue and was inaugurated by Hon. Dr. Jagath Balasuriya, Minister of National Heritage, Government of Sri Lanka and the chief guest of the event. The exhibition will be on public view till 14 December 2013.

 

SAARC Cultural Centre Marks the 6th International Archives Day (June 9)

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June 9 is the International Archives Day.

A decision to celebrate 9th of June as the International Archives Day was taken by the International Council on Archives (ICA) in its Annual General Meeting in November 2007. This date also marks the establishment of the ICA in 1948 under the auspices of the UNESCO.

Mandated to preserve and promote the cultural cooperation amongst  the people of South Asia, the SAARC Cultural Centre, rededicates itself to the conservation and optimal utilization of the rich documentary heritage of South Asia. The Centre is also pleased to announce that in collaboration with the Department of National Archives, Sri Lanka, it will be organizing the SAARC International Conference on the Development of Archives in South Asia (Colombo, 9-11 October 2013). (Please await more details to be posted on our website soon).

On the occasion of the 6th International Archives Day, the SAARC Cultural Centre also affirms its support to the Universal Declaration on Archives which was adopted by the 36th Session of the General Conference of UNESCO on 10th November 2011. The Declaration is an important step in improving understanding and awareness of archives among the general public and key decision-makers. It is a powerful, succinct statement of the relevance of archives in modern society.It:

  • DEFINES archives to include all recorded decisions, actions and memories in all formats including paper, digital, and audio visual;
  • RECOGNISES the uniqueness of archives in the way they provide authentic evidence of human actions;
  • EMPHASISES the key role of archives in ensuring administrative transparency and democratic accountability; supporting democracy and human rights, and preserving collective social memory.
  • EXPLAINS the role of archivists as skilled professionals who care for archives and provide access to them;
  • HIGHLIGHTS the key requirements for good archival management.
You can also show your support for the Universal Declaration on Archives by ‘signing’ the online register either as an individual or on behalf of an institution, organisation or association at the website of the International Council on Archives (ICA):

Contemporary Short Stories of the SAARC Region, 2012 and Poems from the SAARC Region, 2012 launched

 

Two annual anthologies of the SAARC Cultural Centre, Contemporary Short Stories of the SAARC Region, 2012 and Poems from the SAARC Region 2012 were launched on 16 September on the sidelines of the Colombo International Book Fair, 2013 under the patronage of the Secretary to the Prime Minister, Mr. S. Amarasekara. Other special invitees who graced the occasion were; Mr. M. Ramachandran, the Director, Indian Cultural Centre, Colombo, and Mr. Vijitha Yapa, Chairman and Managing Diirector, Vijitha Yapa Book Shop.

In his welcome address, the Director, SAARC Cultural Centre, Sri Lanka, Mr. G.L.W .Samarasinghe mentioned that selection of short stories and poems has been a daunting task given the diverse linguistic landscape of the South Asian region. The works selected however are best  representative of all the SAARC Member States; Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

Mr. M. Ramachandran, Director, Indian Cultural Centre, Colombo in his address mentioned that the works fittingly capture the rich lingo-cultural diversity of South Asian neighbors

The role played by Vijitha Yapa Publishers in bringing out the two Anthologies is commendable and the limited canvass available for the South Asian literati for apt exposition of their thoughts led the Vijitha Yapa Publishers to come forward to be the joint-publishers of the anthologies for the second consecutive year.  Vijitha Yapa Publications hope to see more and more works of Sinhala and Tamil translations on the ensuing anthologies.

The Chief Guest Mr. S. Amarasinghe, in his address mentioned that South Asia has a literary tradition that resembles so well and that they are hardly distinguishable. He thanked the SAARC Cultural Centre and Vijitha Yapa Publishers for their joint effort at a time when the cost of printing has dwindled and as a result has become a challenging task.

The two anthologies are available for sale at Vijitha Yapa bookshops. http://www.vijithayapa.com/

 

   

  

Book Launch – Contemporary Short Stories of the SAARC Region, 2012 and Poems from the SAARC Region, 2012

 

book_launch Contemporary Short Stories of the SAARC Region, 2012 and Poems from the SAARC Region, 2012, the annual Anthologies of the SAARC Cultural Centre will be launched on 16 September 2013 at 12.30 pm at the Colombo International Book Fair, Book Launch Hall, (in front of Sirimavo Bandaranaike Exhibition Exhibition Hall) BMICH, Colombo 07. The twin-publications aim to promote contemporary regional literature and to make it accessible to a wider audience.

All are Welcome

 

SAARC Capacity Building Workshop on Management Systems of World Heritage Sites in South Asia Concludes Successfully

 

SAARC Cultural Centre is pleased to announce the successful conclusion of the SAARC Capacity Building Workshop on Management Systems of World Heritage Sites in South Asia. The Workshop which had lectures, discussions and case studies on existing management systems relating to the World Heritage Sites, was held from 26-31 August 2013 at the Islamabad Hotel, Islamabad, Pakistan. The workshop was attended by over 30 participants, all of whom were mid/senior level professionals from South Asian countries.

The workshop was convened with a view to promote conservation and management of World Heritage Sites in South Asia through capacity building amongst professionals involved in Heritage Sites Management and to transmit them to future generations in accordance with the Article 4 of the World Heritage Convention.

Inaugural Session
The workshop was inaugurated by Mr. Muhammad Bilal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Government of Pakistan. The Welcome Address was delivered by Mr. G. L. W. Samarasinghe, Director, SAARC Cultural Centre. Dr. Fazal Dad Kakar, Director General, Department of Archaeology and Museums, Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Government of Pakistan delivered the Keynote Address while Ms. Nirekha De Silva, Research Officer, SAARC Cultural Centre proposed the Vote of Thanks.

Academic Sessions
A total of six Academic Sessions were conducted for the purpose of sharing of practical knowledge along the following themes:

  • Country Presentations,
  • Management Requirements of the World Heritage Sites,
  • World Heritage, Tourism and Sustainable Development, and
  • Management Effectiveness

The sessions included lectures, presentations, group discussions, group work and critical feedback sessions.

Round Table
Three Round Tables on ‘Acceptable Management System of World Heritage Sites in South Asia’, ‘Management Plan for the World Heritage Sites’ and ‘Effective Methods for Improving Management Systems’ were held and were led by Mr. Muhammad Habibullah Khan Kattak (Pakistan), Mr. Jayatissa Herath (Sri Lanka) and Mr. Mahmood Akhtar Cheema (Pakistan) respectively.
Field Trip
A Field Trip to the World Heritage Site of Taxila Valley was organized on 28 August 2013.

Taxila is an important archaeological site in Rawalpindi, (Punjab) Pakistan that was in ancient times positioned at the crossroads of three great trade routes from Eastern India, Western Asia and Central Asia. It was an early centre of learning dating back to the 5th century BCE. The site is home to numerous ancient Buddhist monuments.
The Plenary Session
At the conclusion of the Academic Sessions, a Plenary Session was held on 31 August 2013 as a closed door event with the participation of all Resource Persons and Chair Persons of the Academic Sessions. It was chaired by Dr. Fazal Dad Kakar. The Plenary Committee summarized the main suggestions emerging out of the deliberations and prepared a document laying out a road-map in the form of recommendations for the SAARC Member States. Recommendations covered a wide array of areas including administration, legal, research, capacity building, finance and technology which would be sent to the Member States for guidance and implementation.

Valedictory Session
The Valedictory Session of the workshop was held at the picturesque location of Hotel Monal at the Margalla hills, Islamabad. Mr. Muhammad Azam, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Government of Pakistan, graced the occasion as the Chief Guest and distributed certificates and mementos to all participants of the workshop. The event was also attended by other dignitaries and distinguished invitees from Pakistan.

SAARC Film Festival 2013

SAARC FILM FESTIVAL concludes with INDIAN Feature Film “Paan Singh Tomar” bagging the title “Best Feature Film 2013, and “Cost of Climate Change” from Bhutan, bagging the trophy for best Documentary.

The SAARC Cultural Centre successfully concluded the Third SAARC Film Festival on the 31st of May 2013, with an Awards Ceremony. The Film Festival commenced on the 26th of May, and screened films from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Feature and Documentary Films were screened.

The Film Festival is yet another SAARC Cultural Initiative, which aims to provide a platform for exchange of ideas and points of view from Film Directors of the Region. The SAARC Region has produced some films with a standard of excellence. The SAARC Film Festival focused on promoting some of the best films featured in 2010 – 2012 from all Member States. A call for 2 feature films and 2 short films from each SAARC Member State was made and nominations were received from 7 countries.   A panel of International Jury Members from Singapore, Russia and Iran adjudicated at this festival and an award was made to the Best Feature Film in the region for the year 2013. A Silver and Bronze medal was also awarded to the feature film category. A trophy for the Best Documentary, Best Director, Actor and Actress were also awarded.  Films were screened free of charge to the general public at the National Film Corporation Cinema Hall from the 25th – 31st May 2013.

The Awards Ceremony was held under the distinguished patronage of Hon Minister Dhilan Perera, Minister of Foreign Employment, Promotion and Welfare.  In addition to the Film Festival, a very successful workshop was also held with eminent speaker Dr D.B Nihalsinghe as keynote speaker. All visiting Film Directors and adjudicators were also taken on a field tour to the National Telecinema Park in Sri Lanka.

The Best Feature Film was awarded to India – “Paan Singh Tomar” for its fascinating plot and strong direction that imaginatively combines the sports and action genre within the background of post- colonial India” For “capturing the human drama of a difficult subject with emotional impact” “Cost of Climate Change” from Bhutan was awarded the Best Documentary.  A list of other awards is listed below.  The SAARC Cultural Centre hopes to have many such festivals in the future in order to promote feature and documentary films in the region.

SAARC Research Projects – MID-TERM REVIEW MEETING 2013

 

A Meeting of the Research Review Committee of the SAARC Cultural Centre was held on 2-3 May 2013 at the Sigiriya Village Hotel, Sigiriya to review the progress of research by the Research Fellows engaged in two research projects launched by the SAARC Cultural Centre, viz. ‘Diminishing Cultures of South Asia’ and ‘Diasporic Cultures of South Asia during 18th to 20th Centuries’.

The Research Review Committee comprised eminent scholars and experts:

  1. Mr. G. L. W. Samarasinghe (Director, SAARC Cultural Centre): Chairperson
  2. Dr. Sanjay Garg (Deputy Director – Research, SAARC Cultural Centre): Convenor
  3. Prof. Nimal De Silva (Director, National Trust, Sri Lanka): Member
  4. Prof. Shantha K. Hennayake (Deputy Vice Chancellor, University of Peradeniya): Member
  5. Ambassador H. M. G. S. Palihakkara (Former, Foreign Secretary,
    Sri Lanka): Member
  6. Dr. Sinharaja Tammita-Delgoda (Eminent Historian): Member

The objectives of this Review Meeting were to assess the progress of research work and to give constructive feedback to the researchers so that they are able to fulfil the objectives of the research project and are able to prepare their reports in a publishable format.
The following Research Fellows presented their progress reports at the meeting:

Diminishing Cultures of South Asia (2011-12)

# Name Title of the Proposal
Sri Lanka
1 Prof. Kalinga Tudor Silva Opportunities and Challenges for Traditional Arts and Crafts in Three Depressed Caste Communities in the Central Province in Sri Lanka.

Diasporic Cultures of South Asia During 18th to 20th Centuries (2012-13)

# Name Title of the Proposal
Bhutan
1 Ms. Sonam Yuodon and Ms. Tshering Choki Tibetan Diaspora in Bhutan and its historical dynamics
India
2 Dr. M. Waseem Raja Assessing South Asian Diaspora during Twentieth Century; A Case Study of Bhojpuri speaking people in Eastern India
3 Dr. Amit Kumar Mishra You are what you eat: Gustatory Negotiations and Articulations of Identities in Indian Diaspora in London (UK)
Maldives
4 Ms. Aishath Shafina and Mr. Midhath Abdul Rasheed Conceptualizing Diaspora: Interconnectedness of ‘home’ and ‘host’ culture
Pakistan
5 Prof. Minhaj ul Hassan A Socio-Cultural Profile of Pakistani Diaspora in Hong Kong
Sri Lanka
6 Mr. Sanmugeswaran Pathmanesan Temple Culture, Religious Practice and Cultural Circulation: An Anthropological Study of Three Selected Temples among the Indian Tamil Diasporic Communities in Sri Lanka
7 Dr. Upul Priyankara Lekamge Integrated Cultural Identities: Malays In Sri Lanka

The Research Review Committee expressed its satisfaction on the progress made by the Research Fellows and commended the laudable contribution being made by the SAARC Cultural Centre, towards building up a research platform for serious academic intercourse for the benefit of the scholars of the region.

SAARC Artists’ Camp and Exhibition of Paintings 2013

 

Over the last two years the SAARC Cultural Centre has created the space for Artists from the SAARC Region to gather together and put forward their creative expressions on canvass at the SAARC Artist Camp held in 2011 and 2012 in Colombo, Sri Lanka. This year, artists from the region are called to the beautiful islands of the Maldives, where they will exhibit their paintings as well as paint on site. Against the scenic background of the Maldive Islands, artists would be given an opportunity to mingle, and create over a period of four days.

The upcoming Artist camp in Maldives will give young artists from the region an opportunity to showcase their works and interact with other artists on themes such as  “Futuristic Visions” “Tropical Paradise” and the “Need for change”. Parallel to the camp there will also be an exhibition of paintings by the nominated artists participating at the artist camp at the National Art Gallery, Maldives.

The following are the main Objectives:

  1. To create a forum for artists to share ideas and views and to compare similarities and dissimilarities pertaining to art forms in the SAARC Region.
  2. To give young artists of the region an opportunity to exhibit their paintings under the common bond they share as artists from the SAARC region at a common location.
  3. To give artists of the region to explore the Maldives, a group of beautiful islands in South Asia, and give them an opportunity to paint amidst the picturesque and peaceful backdrop, which will be an inspiration to produce excellent works of art.
  4. To enable artists of the region to interact with each other.
  5. To give the general public an opportunity to work and watch the work of artists from the region.

The Artist Camp will be held for 4 days, in an island, nearby Male the capital, at Kudos Bandos Islands from the 25th – 28th of March 2013.
Nominations are now called for, through the respective Cultural Ministries in the SAARC Member States.
All the general public of Maldives and tourists visiting the islands are warmly welcome to the Artists Camp to observe and learn from the great artists/painters work on site.

Commemorating SAARC Charter Day – Essay Competition for Children

 

The SAARC celebrates its Charter day on the 8th of December, and to commemorate this day, the SAARC Cultural Centre will be organizing an Essay competition for children from schools in the country. This competition is organized for all children Ordinary level upwards (Ages 16 and above)

The topics given are as follows:

1) Role of SAARC in the future
2) How can the SAARC countries make use of their distinct culture for their development?

Children are advised to choose any one of the above topics with a word limit of 1500 words. All entries should reach the SAARC Cultural Centre on or before the 28th of November 2012, entries could be posted or delivered to No 224 Bauddhaloka,Mawatha Colombo 07 or emailed to saarc-scc@sltnet.lk. Late entries will not be accepted.

All entries should clearly indicate the below details.

  1. Name of the student
  2. Age
  3. School Name
  4. Contact details of the student and school

We strongly encourage all schools to enter this essay Competition which is an effort to promote the strong cultural bonds we share in the region. Cash prizes for the first three places will be awarded, together with 10 honorable mentions.

The Award Ceremony will take place on the 8th of December 2012 in Colombo.
The Essay Competition for Children is an attempt to promote the SAARC Region, which is rich in culture and tradition.
If you require any further information, please feel free to contact Mr. RasmiMoosa (Email: mmrasmymoosa@yahoo.com, Mobile: 0773475552)