People across borders strengthen traditional bonds

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Itanagar, Jan 21 (UNI) In an effort to cement the traditional ties between Myanmar and India, hundreds of Myanmarese citizens thronged Nampong, the last Indian post in Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh, to participate in the three-day Pangsau Pass Winter Festival.

Even though the rains and hostile weather threatened to play spoilsport at the festival which began yesterday, it could not deter the tourists from participating in the mega tourism event.

Nampong wore a festive look as it played host to hundreds of tourists, both domestic and foreign, while more than a hundred stalls, displaying foreign goods as well as mouthwatering traditional delicacies, kept the people busy.

Scores of Myanmarese traders, who arrived from the Pangsau Pass, about 12 kms from Nampong, did brisk business as they sold traditional as well as Chinese-made goods.

Men and women, dressed in their best traditional attire, representing various communities and cultures, including three troupes from Myanmar, performed songs and dances on the inaugural day of the festival.

Speaking on the occasion, Speaker Setong Sena said the festival was organised to boost tourism in the state through the historic Stilwel Road as well as to provide a platform for all cultures and communities to come in contact with each other.

Describing the event as a festival of friendship between the two nations, Mr Sena hoped that the festivities would reduce the isolation among the tribal communities of the state as well as promote peace and harmony among both the countries.

''The festival is an attempt to highlight the cultures and cuisines of the Tangsas and other tribes of Arunachal,'' he said.

The war cry and gun shots of the Tikhaks enthralled the audience and the hunting songs of the Pangwas, which expressed their saddest thoughts, compelled listeners to recapture the bygone era of nomadic life.

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