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10-day Hornbill Festival, showcasing traditional and diverse cultures, culminates in Nagaland


Kohima, Dec 10 (IANS) The 24th edition of the 10-day Hornbill Festival culminated on Sunday with a grand colourful closing ceremony in Nagaland’s Naga heritage village, Kisama.US Consul General Melinda Pavek expressed her happiness to be part of the Hornbill Festival which also marks the 75th anniversary of one of the world’s most groundbreaking global pledges – the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which enshrined the inalienable rights that everyone is entitled to as a human being.She also said that this declaration remains an aspiration in many ways, and our efforts to live up to its full potential are inherent in our values, as people, as communities, as tribes, and as nations as festivals like this one, with the 17 major Naga tribes represented together in partnership, are a way of preserving the unique cultures that make this state special.She noted that this festival may be one of the first in India and the northeast region that included representatives from US Tribal Nations, and she believes that it won’t be the last.British Deputy High Commissioner Andrew Fleming, in his address at the closing ceremony, said that the UK is very keen to engage more deeply with Nagaland not just culturally but in different sectors including horticulture, healthcare, skills training and education.He acknowledged the huge potential that Nagaland has in tourism.State Tourism and Higher Education Minister Temjen Imna Along, in his closing remarks, said that over the past nine days, they had witnessed a remarkable coming together of diverse communities each representing a unique facade of Nagaland’s tribes, government bodies, NGOs, artists and entrepreneurs to wave a beautiful picture of cultural richness and share the essence of Naga heritage with the world.Along also remarked that the envisioning of the Hornbill Festival for the Nagas resonates with the celebration of faithfulness and unity and called on the visitors to take back the message of unity among the Nagas.The 10th day of the cultural extravaganza witnessed various tribes of Nagaland coming together in a dance, presented by the Department of Art and Culture with the theme “Cultural Connect”.Over 1.20 lakh visitors, including around 2,000 international tourists, visited Kisama, about 12 km from Kohima, during the past nine days to witness the Hornbill Festival, which is dubbed as the “Festival of Festivals” and also pays tribute to the great Hornbill, a bird revered by the Naga people for its alertness and grandeur.–IANSsc/vd

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