Representatives from India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Bhutan and Nepal will be meeting in Shillong next week participate in a first ever river festival aimed at fostering connectivity, trade links and sharing of environmental issues.
The focus of the ‘NADI 2016’ is to celebrate the spirit of commonality between the Northeastern states of India and her neighbours through the 600 plus major and minor rivers surpassing political boundaries, Sabya Dutta, who heads the Asian Confluence and organiser of the event said.
Indian Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, Bangladesh’s Tourism Minister Rashed Khan Menon and Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Shariar Alam, ambassador from Bhutan and observers from Myanmar will be among the speakers at the festival to be held on July 15 and 16.
Government officials and representatives, diplomats and other stakeholders from the five countries will take part in the festival.
Stakeholders at various levels are expected to explore the possibilities of enhancing cultural viability and amplifying the creative use of riverine connectivity by catalyzing friendly trade and tourism between neighbours, Dutta told reporters.
According to an informal data shared by the Asian Confluence, 640 major and minor rivers cris-crosses in the Northeast region and its neighbours apart from the 52 rivers that flows to Bangladesh directly from the region.
The Asian Confluence Centre is an initiative aimed at initiating, stimulating and accelerating revival of the shared civilisational values between the people of India and South-East Asia to strengthen intellectual, economic, technological, political and security ties.