Celebrating Australian culture

Australia Day reception was hosted by the Australian Consulate-General in Kolkata on February 5 at the Oberoi Grand Ballroom in presence of the chief guest Atri Bhattacharya, Principal Secretary, Consumer Affairs Department, Government of West Bengal. The theme for reception dinner was a mixture of Australian and Bengali food reflecting the rich and diverse cultures of both the countries.

While addressing the reception, The Australian Consul-General in Kolkata, Andrew Ford acknowledged the importance of Australia Day as it reflects Australia's rich 65,000 years of indigenous heritage, European foundations and modern multicultural character. He also mentioned India as very much part of modern multicultural Australia. Ford also talked about Australia's decision of opening the Consulate-General in Kolkata last year, which was a recognition of the importance of India to Australia, particularly the east and north-east of India. He further explained that the decision was made in response to Australia's Foreign Policy White Paper and India's Economic Strategy out to 2035 which places India at the forefront of their economic relations.

Ford discussed that the focus will remain on building commercial, economic and people to people links with the 13 states of east and north-east India, which is covered by both the countries. pics/ amit datta

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