Kohima, Nov 24, 2023, IANS
Kohima, Nov 24 (IANS) Nagaland is gearing up for the annual Hornbill Festival starting December 1.
After holding a review meeting on Friday, Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio said that Colombia, the US and Germany will be the country partners of the 10-day festival this year.
The Chief Minister posted on X: “Held a review meeting at Naga heritage village Kisama for the upcoming Hornbill festival. Also, inaugurated a two-day food and music festival as a prelude to Hornbill festival at Kisama.”
Rio said that with the partnerships of three countries, “we are hopeful that such tie-ups will further strengthen the ties and people-to-people contact with these countries.
“We are looking forward to hosting an American music band and participation of the US in a number of events at the 'Festival of Festivals'.
"We have always had a positive relationship with the US and through this partnership, we are hopeful that the two countries will come closer for mutual benefits and enhanced collaborations,” Rio said in a statement.
The Chief Minister said that German rock band 'ELM Tree' would perform at the Hornbill Music Festival, while the Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan, Kolkata, will screen well-known German films at the Film Festival.
“Nagaland will also host a German business delegation for a round-table with the Investment and Development Authority of Nagaland (IDAN).
"We are looking forward to another great Hornbill Festival and hope this partnership will strengthen collaboration between the two countries as we look forward to greater bilateral ties and increased people-to-people contact with Germany,” Rio added.
Meanwhile, The influential Eastern Nagaland Peoples’ Organisation (ENPO) has decided to participate in the Hornbill Festival this year.
The ENPO held an emergency meeting earlier this week in which a nine-member Eastern Nagaland Legislators’ Union (ENLU) delegation was also present.
The ENPO will also allow cultural teams to take part in the forthcoming festival.
The ENPO, the apex tribal organisation of eastern Nagaland, had boycotted the Hornbill Festival last year in protest against the non-fulfilment of their demand for a separate state -- 'Frontier Nagaland' -- for the seven Naga tribes of eastern Nagaland.
Earlier, the ENPO had announced that it has accepted the proposal of the Government of India for the formation of a Frontier Naga Territory (FNT) with legislative, executive, administrative and financial autonomy.
On an average, 70,000 to 1 lakh tourists, including foreign visitors, take part in the 10-day long Hornbill Festival. The festival is a cultural extravaganza to revive, protect and preserve the richness and uniqueness of Naga heritage.
Called 'Festival of Festivals', the Hornbill Festival named after a colourful forest bird coincides with the 61st Nagaland statehood day celebrations on December 1.
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