Kohima (Nagaland) [India] Dec 8 (ANI): Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday hailed the rich culture and civilisation of Nagaland while inaugurating the state’s famous annual Hornbill festival. The festival, which began on December 1, will continue till December 10.
“The spectacular Hornbill festival showcases the rich ancient culture and civilisation of the people of Nagaland,” he said while conveying his greetings to the people of the state for Nagaland’s Statehood Day too, which coincides with the beginning of Hornbill festival on December 1.
“In Hornbill festival, I get a glimpse of the Indian spirit of happy, peaceful, coexistence of the multiplicity. I attended the hornbill last year too and got so overwhelmed by its celebration that I couldn’t stop myself from attending it this year too,” the Home Minister said.
Union Home Minister also reiterated that the Central government is determined to build and improve connectivity and engagement with South-East Asia.
Earlier, Home Minister Singh was accorded a warm welcome in a traditional manner by Nagaland Chief Minister Nephiu Rio.
The most awaited cultural extravaganza-Hornbill festival-is underway at Kohima’s Kisama Heritage village. During 10 days of the festival, different Naga tribes gather in large numbers to celebrate the Hornbill festival.
The Hornbill festival is named after the bird, Hornbill which has a major significance in the folklore, songs, and dance of the tribes.
As many as 63,032 visitors with 780 foreigners, 8,241 domestic tourists and 54,011 local have visited the picturesque venue so far. The footfall of tourists is expected to swell in the coming days of the festival. Over 600 artists are performing during the 10-day long festival.
Sharing his experience, Kaustav, one of the visitors to the festival, said, “I have come here with regard to my fieldwork for Ph.D. study. I am happy that my visit just coincided with the Hornbill festival. It is a rare opportunity for me to see Nagaland’s tribal culture and customs so closely.”
Apart from showcasing a melange of cultural displays under one roof, Hornbill festival has put Nagaland on the world tourism map, leading to a significant increase in foreign tourists, visiting the festival every year.