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Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra: Modi govt makes diaspora the centre of attention at this Delhi Kendra


Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra Delhi

The PBK in Delhis diplomatic zone Chanakyapuri is Indias only living museum so far and a sparkling tribute to the overseas Indian community..

NEW DELHI: Cultural diplomacy has been a distinct element of the Modi government's global outreach with Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra+ (PBK) in downtown Delhi emerging a symbol of this initiative. The PBK in Delhi's diplomatic zone Chanakyapuri is India's only living museum so far and a sparkling tribute to the overseas Indian community.

It is a monument to their migration and success captured in beautiful artwork that represents diversity of this country and diaspora+ . A living museum is a type of museum which recreates historical settings to simulate past time period, providing visitors with an experiential interpretation of history. It is a type of museum that recreates to the fullest extent conditions of a culture, natural environment or historical period.

Inaugurated last October, marking Mahatma Gandhi's birthday by PM Narendra Modi, the PBK (built on a 2.4 acre plot), is decorated with a unique blend of art - old & new - from different parts of India. These displays of sculptures, murals and fabric panels are rare examples of art forms that are almost extinct - are masterful work of craftsmen and artisans from all over India.

Curated by Masooma Rizvi, the institution showcases the original work of artisans and craftspersons from the different states of the country to give a flavour of the wide expanse of Indian art to the visiting NRIs/PIOs and local citizens alike. The centre's exhibition and library also showcase the challenges diaspora faced abroad, their achievements and contributions.

Rizvi recalls that artists and designers working with her to curate the unique Centre worked overtime to have interiors ready on time ahead of inauguration. "The success achieved in a short period of time was a matter of huge satisfaction for myself and the team," pointed out Rizvi.

The diaspora can search their roots, obtain investment advice, book domestic travel, attend events in a huge auditorium, hold business meetings in seminar rooms, enjoy a meal at a smart restaurant and even stay in one of the 24 guest rooms.

The banquet hall of PBK has a capacity to host 350 people and beauty of this hall is accentuated by murals depicting spice trade. But it is not just diaspora and Indian citizens who have access to the PBK. With diplomatic missions located nearby the diplomats can use facilities of the Centre like auditorium (having 350 seats & state-of-theart sound & light system & multiimage projection) for their events.

The event marking 70 years of Indo-Russian diplomatic relations was launched at this auditorium adorned by large panels of Madhubani painting in April. PBK also houses three conferencehalls and five multipurpose halls (decorated with art from various parts of the country) with seating capacity ranging from 20 to 65.

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