At the Ahmedabad Management Association (AMA) on Thursday, a song written in Gujarati and Japanese will play for Abe. The song “Kem Chho, Konnichiwa” will be sung by 18 schoolchildren. Kem Chho in Gujarati means “how are you”. Konnichiwa is the welcome greeting in Japanese. The song was written with the help of Indo-Japan Friendship Association president Mukesh Patel.
Bullet train ice-cream
One of the highlights of Shinzo Abe’s state visit is the laying of the foundation for India’s first bullet train. Akie Abe will get to sink her teeth into a bullet train. How? She will be served a bullet train ice cream at the Ahmedabad Management Association. “We will also serve fafda-jalebi, methi na gota and biryani. Our popular chana bhatura will also be on the menu. We have planned a few exotic desserts and then we will treat her to the bullet train ice cream which we have especially designed for her,” said the general manager of Havmor, V Mukherjee. The length of the train made of ice cream will be two feet. There will be black currant and green tea flavours to try out.
Akie Abe will open an Origami Mahotsav at the AMA. Two and three-dimensional Origami work of children will be displayed on the campus. Around 120 students from 30 schools took part in the competition on September 9. “There are seven winners who will receive gifts from Tokyo by Akie. She has got prizes from Tokyo. One of the children, Darsh Soni, has one arm. This specially gifted 10-year-old has done the origami with one hand. He will make a speech on behalf of all the winners,” Patel said.
Abe is also scheduled to visit the Sabarmati riverfront and the Blind People’s Association. She will meet 10 students who were part of an Indo-Japan exchange programme between Gujarat University and Otemon Gakuin University of Osaka. A trip to the Calico Museum of Textiles and Shrujan, a shop that specialises in Kutchhi embroidery is also on the cards.
Welcome by monks
A team of 40 Buddhist monks from across the country welcomed Shinzo and Akie Abe at the Ahmedabad airport on Wednesday. The monks chanted sutras and presented traditional white khatas (silk stole) to the Japanese guests and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “They are mostly from the Northeast, including Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Assam. Some are also from Bodhgaya and Nagpur. The formation of the team was designed by the event managing team of the state government,” said Sangha Kaya Foundation trustee Kiran Chawda.
The Buddhist monks are in Gujarat also ahead of the second International Buddhist Conference or the Bodhi Saptah, scheduled at Mahatma Mandir in Gandhinagar, from September 17 to 23.
Modi, Abe enjoy dinner
It had hosted Mahatma Gandhi in 1917, On Wednesday, the House of MG in the old city area hosted Prime Minister Modi, his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe and his wife Akie for dinner.The dinner menu included salads, Gujarati thaali, Japanese cuisine and dessert items. The Gujarati thaali consisted of palak jamun, rasaawala bateka, undhiyu, bharela parwar, bhindi kaadhi, Gujarati dal, khichdi, steamed rice with dry fruits, phoolka roti, bajri thepla and Puri.
The Japanese cuisine consisted of katsu curry, ginger soya dafu, eggplant akamiso and miso yaki Uudon. For dessert the two leaders had saffron jalebi, trio of ice cream (mango, fig and kesar pista) and petit fours (date balls).
“While the Gujarati food was prepared by our chefs, the MEA had arranged a chef from the Taj to prepare Japanese delicacies. Everything was vegetarian – the Japanese guests loved Gujarati food,” said Abhay Mangaldas, owner and descendant of Sheth Mangaldas Girdhardas Parekh, from whom the property gets its name.