Shillong, Nov 29 (UNI) The Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), the cultural arm of the Union External Affairs Ministry, will set up its regional office here to promote cultural exchange programmes in the region, a senior Meghalaya government official here today said.
''This is a positive step and it will open the cultural window of the state and the region as a whole to the world,'' state Chief Secretary Ranjan Chatterjee told UNI.
Mr Chatterjee said the ICCR would be operational in the state by early next year.
Presently, there are eight ICCR regional centres at Chandigarh, Lucknow, Jaipur, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore and Kolkata.
The ICCR's proposal assumed significance in the wake of the ''Look East Policy'' for better economic ties with South East Asian countries, even as it was considering the idea of setting up offices in prominent cities, including Bangkok, Dhaka, Kabul, Beijing and Tokyo.
The ICCR promotes communion of cultures and creative dialogue with other nations. To facilitate this interaction with world cultures, the Council has strived to articulate and demonstrate the diversity and richness of the Indian culture across globe.
The Council prides itself on being the pre-eminent instrument of cultural diplomacy and the sponsor of intellectual exchanges between India and partner countries. It is the Council's resolve to continue to symbolise India's great cultural and educational efflorescence in the years to come.