Vientiane (Laos), Sept.10 (ANI): India and Laos on Friday signed an agreement for cultural exchange for the years 2011-2013, which included five components to give a modern content to their over 2000-year-old civilisational ties.
Under the programme, the two sides agreed that there was a need to take the Culture Agreement signed on August 17, 1994 in New Delhi to another level to strengthen relations of friendship and mutual understanding between the two peoples
The following provisions have been included in the programme:
Both sides shall exchange publications, literature and research materials in the field of higher education.
Both sides would exchange delegation of two to three members for a period of two weeks to discuss the programme for establishment of linkages between Indian Universities and Universities in Laos. The areas of linkages may be in the field of science, engineering, social science and humanities.
Both sides shall exchange educational materials, publications and audio-visuals etc. in the field of school education.
Both sides shall exchange literature / documentation in an attempt to establish parity of degrees, diplomas and certificates etc. awarded by universities and educational institutions in the two countries.
Both sides shall encourage participation in International Book Fairs held in each other's country on commercial basis.
Both sides shall offer scholarships annually for higher studies in Universities / institutions in each other's countries, according to the capability of each side. However, the offer of scholarships from the Indian side will include two scholarships for Lao Buddhist monks to study in Indian universities / institutions.
Both sides will exchange a 3-4 member delegation to establish initial contacts with social science organizations and scholars in each country during the validity of this Programme.
Both sides shall exchange of visits by experts in health sciences for delivering lectures, study tours and training.
Both sides shall exchange materials including journals and health education materials in the areas of health education, control of communicable diseases with special reference to diarrhea diseases, tuberculosis and leprosy, essential drugs and vaccines, family welfare and immunization.
Both sides shall encourage cooperation in traditional system of medicine.
3. CULTURE AND ARTS
Both sides shall exchange dance / music troupes of up to 15-20 members for a period of up to 15 days.
Both sides shall exchange an exhibition of photographs and paintings of respective country's art and culture.
Both sides shall exchange a person for 2-3 weeks to study in the fields of cultural education in school, documentation of the arts and production of cultural resources.
Both sides shall facilitate exchange of Audio Video recordings, photographs, transparencies and publications on performing arts.
Both sides shall exchange one culture anthropologist to visit the institutions involved in social science research for a period of one month to get acquainted with the recent trend in researches in the field of social science.
The National Library, Kolkata shall exchange reading materials including microfilms, microfiches etc. with the Libraries and Institutions in Laos.
Both sides shall one or two experts / officials for exploratory visit for a period of two weeks for cementing further relations in the handicrafts sector.
Both sides shall exchange publications such as reproductions and other catalogues relating to the field of contemporary art.
India shall invite Lao side to participate in the Triennale, India, during the validity of the Programme.
Both sides shall exchange one painter, one sculptor and one graphist for a period of two to three weeks.
4. YOUTH AFFAIRS AND SPORTS
Both sides shall cooperate by way of exchange of youth delegations and sports teams for practice and participation in major tournaments on terms and conditions to be agreed upon by mutual consultations.
5. MASS MEDIABoth sides shall exchange programmes depicting various facets of life and culture in the two countries, through their respective Radio and TV organisations.
Both sides shall observe each other's National Days by putting out special Radio/TV programmes on such occasion.
Both sides shall provide facilities to visiting Radio and TV personnel in each other's country associated with the development of broadcasting/telecasting.
Both sides shall encourage exchange of two journalists each including a Government information Officer for a period not exceeding 14 days once in two years.
Both sides shall encourage exchange of acquaintance visit by officials working in the Government media for exchange of views, and reviewing performance under the CEP for further exploring fruitful cooperation and gaining experience.
Both sides shall encourage exchange for acquaintance visit by experts in the film organisations of the Government of both countries and those responsible for coordination in the Government of such organisations for exchange of views and gaining experience.
Additional plans not included would be discussed and decided through mutual consultations.
Both sides agreed to meet again in the second half of 2012. If, for any reason, the meeting has to be postponed, this programme will be valid until a new one has been agreed upon.
The general and financial provisions set out in the annexure constitute an integral part of the programme.
The agreements were inked in six originals, two each in Hindi, Lao and English languages, all the text being equally authentic.
It was agreed that in the case of divergent interpretations, the English text would prevail.
India's Ambassador to Laos Dr. Jitendra Nath Misra and Bouangeun Xaphouvong, Vice Minister for Information and Culture of Laos signed the agreements. By Praful Kumar Singh (ANI)