India a cultural superpower: Karan Singh

November 9th, 2010 - 8:55 pm ICT by IANS  

Shashi Tharoor New Delhi, Nov 9 (IANS) India is “certainly” a cultural superpower, irrespective of whether or not it could transform into a global economic or political force, Karan Singh, a member of the Rajya Sabha and president of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), said Tuesday.

ICCR, which is gearing up for its 60th anniversary celebrations Nov 11, envisages a more proactive role for itself by promoting Indian culture as a diplomatic tool for better ties with other nations, he said in a statement.

“Diplomacy is like the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and the Saraswati. There is the traditional political diplomacy, the Ganga, as it were; there’s economic diplomacy, the Yamuna; and there’s the invisible Saraswati, which is cultural diplomacy,” he added.

ICCR has been engaged in the “invisible cultural diplomacy” by sponsoring intellectual exchanges between India and other countries, the statement added.

The council was formed in 1950 by independent India’s first education minister Maulana Abul Kalam Azad to promote cultural exchanges with other countries.

It will celebrate 60 years of its foundation with a two-day seminar beginning Nov 11 featuring an elite panel of speakers from India and abroad. The speakers include Shashi Tharoor, Meghnad Desai and Prof. R.P. Goldman, among others.

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