The Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr Mark Okraku Mantey has underscored the need for Ghana to leverage the bilateral relationship it has with India to transform the Tourism, Arts and Culture sector.
The two countries, Mr Mantey noted had a common culture which was embedded in its music, dance, fashion among others, hence, leveraging on each other’s strength in such areas would aid in their development.
Mr Mantey was speaking at the “Diwali Mela Festival” of the Indians held at the residence of the Indian High Commissioner to Ghana, Mr Sugandh Rajaram, on Saturday.
In attendance at the festival of the Indian Community in Ghana was the President of the National House of Chiefs, Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi II, members of the Ministry of Tourism, Art and Culture and the Executive Director of the National Commission on Culture, Mrs Janet Edna Nyame.
“India and Ghana have something in common. The Ghanaians have passion for music, dance and passion, the same way as Indians have passion for music, dance and passion”, Mr Mantey said.
He therefore stressed the need for a stronger collaboration between the two countries saying “the first quarter of next year, I am personally visiting India as a tourist, come back, come pick my people in the film industry with the help of the High Commissioner so we can begin to have talks on collaboration in the film industry.”
Addressing the Indian Community in Ghana, Mr Rajaram, noted that it was not only important to celebrate the political independence of India but also its socio-cultural heritage since it formed the bedrock of the country’s democracy.
Additionally, he said “the Indian culture has always been vibrant, keeping in tandem with the modernity and contemporariness between societies. It is transforming from generations to generations.”
On his part, Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi II, lauded the people of Indian for upholding the value of peace and tolerance despite its large population of 1.3 billion with diverse ethnic groups and cultures since attaining independence.
Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi II further, called for an intensified corporation and interaction between Ghana as well as other developing countries and countries from the Southern part of the world for national development.
Diwali celebrates the victory of Good over Evil, Light over Darkness, Bliss over Ignorance and Immorality over Death. The festival has a major religious significance for people not only in India, but also Indian communities around the world.
Its celebration was marked with the display of rich Indian culture through music and dance, arts, variety of Indian dishes and snacks by a number of food stalls, as well as non-food stalls including dresses, Banking and Mortgage services and Indian small entrepreneurs.