New Delhi, Apr 25 (UNI) In what could turn out to be a major relief for ageing folk and performing artistes associated with the seven zonal cultural centres in the country, the government today said it was planning to set up a corpus fund for providing pension to them.
Addressing a meeting of the Parliamentary Consultative Committee attached to her Ministries here, Culture and Tourism Minister Ambika Soni said efforts were on to streamline the procedure of granting pensions to the eligible artistes so that there was no delay in receiving such payments.
Lauding the role of the zonal cultural centres, Ms Soni said these centres were not only reviving and strengthening the traditional performing art forms but also showcasing the country's rich, colourful and vibrant culture the world over.
''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 pointed out.
In turn, the Minister said, cultural tourism led to rejuvenation of local arts and crafts, re-establishment of vanishing lifestyles, re-discovery of ethnic identity and greater involvement of communities.
To sustain interest of the youth towards the traditional performing arts, Ms Soni said efforts had to be made to make these art 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 committee appreciated the efforts of the Ministries to showcase India's rich heritage through cultural performances by renowned troupes in several events, including India@60 in New York in September last year and in Singapore, Beijing earlier this month.
The committee members were of the view that efforts must be made to promote traditional art forms and artistes from remote and rural areas. They also wanted to explore the possibility of enhancing welfare measures for the ageing artistes.
UNI SKS HS KP1812