Govt moots fund to assist ageing artistes : Soni

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New Delhi, Apr 25 (UNI) The Tourism and Culture Ministry is exploring the possibility of setting up a corpus fund to assist ageing folk and performing artistes associated with the seven zonal cultural centres in the country.

Addressing the meeting of the Parliamentary Consultative Committee attached to her ministries here today, Ms Soni said efforts are on to streamline the procedure of granting pensions to the eligible artistes so that there should be no delay in receiving such payments.

Lauding the role of the zonal cultural centers, the Minister said these centers are not only reviving and strengthening the traditional performing art forms but are also showcasing India's rich, colourful and vibrant culture world over.

Ms Soni said the performing arts are an integral part of cultural tourism. They promote ethnic and cultural identity and foster a feeling of national pride in the host community.

She said, in turn, cultural tourism leads to rejuvenation of local art and crafts, re-establishment of vanishing lifestyles, re-discovery of ethnic identity and greater involvement of communities. The Minister said to sustain interests of the youth towards the traditional performing arts efforts have to be made to make these arts forms economically sustainable.

Minister of State for Tourism and Culture Kanti Singh in her address said all States must be duly represented while showcasing the country's culture through performing arts.

The members appreciated the efforts of Ministry of Tourism and Culture to showcase India's rich heritage through cultural performances by renowned troupes in several events including India@60 in New York in September, 2007 and in Singapore, Beijing and Shanghai in the first fortnight of April, 2008.

They said all these events will help in promoting inbound tourism.

the members were of the view that efforts must be made to promote traditional art forms and artistes from remote and rural areas.

UNI SH AKJ HT1958

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