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India Newsletter Embassy of India, Tel Aviv No. 55 June-August 2013

Cultural Events Commercial Events Other events Upcoming Event Book Release

Cultural Events NaanDanJain Scholarship



aanDan Jain Irrigation Company, an Indo-Israeli business venture providing innovative agriculture solutions worldwide, established two annual scholarships for Israeli nationals who have studied or practiced any form of Indian art or culture and wish to renew and enhance their learning through short courses at institutions in India or study with an Indian teacher (guru). The value of each scholarship is 10,000 New Israeli Shekels. For year 2013, the scholarships were awarded to two Israeli nationals, Mr. Yuval Cohen and Mr. Ron Cohen. Mr. Yuval Cohen started his dancing career at the Jerusalem Academy of Dance and continued his studies at Bat-Dor studios. He was a member of the Batsheva dance company. He began his studies of Odissi (a classical dance form of East India) in 2000 at the Gandharva Mahavidyalaya (Indian classical arts university) and awarded Sangeet Visharad.


Mr. Ron Cohen an exponent of Bansuri (Indian bamboo flute) started his career in Indian classical music in 1997. He is a disciple of renowned Indian musician Pandit Hari Prasad Chourasia and performed together with Pandit Chaurasia in Jerusalem. Over the years he spent long periods in Mumbai learning Indian classical music from various teachers. You can see their performances at: Yuval Cohen: hrXM&

Ron Cohen: uzzFa5pVY&


Both awardees are active in promoting Indian classical art in Israel through performing, teaching and conducting workshops on dance and music in Israel. The scholarships will support efforts and initiatives of local artists for promotion of Indian art in Israel and will strengthen people-to-people linkages between two countries. The scholarships were awarded on 27 of August by Mr. Avner Hermoni, CEO of NaanDan Jain Irrigation Company, and Ambassador of India, M. Jaideep Sarkar. Mr. Raphael Gamzou, Deputy Director General (Culture & Science) Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Amnon Ofen, Director, Naandan Jain Irrigation Company and others were present.


1. From left Amnon Ofen, Yuval Cohen, Amb. Jaideep Sarkar, Avner Hermoni, Raphael Gamzou, Yehuda Glatt and Ron Cohen at award ceremony of scholarships in the Embassy. 2. Ron Cohen 3. Yuval Cohen

Cultural Events


Hindi Diwas 2013


n 9 June, Embassy in association with Tel Aviv University celebrated "Vishva Hindi Diwas 2013" (World Hindi Day 2013) at Tel Aviv University’s campus. Amb Jaideep Sarkar praised students for their efforts to learn Hindi and complimented the faculty of Tel Aviv University, particularly Dr. Gennady Shlomper for his dedication and efforts for teaching Hindi. TAU’s students performed dramas in Hindi, based on stories of Munshi Premchand, folk tales of Akbar-Birbal and Mullah Nasreddin. The event concluded with an enthralling Santoor performance by Sanjay Kumar Sharma.



Bollywood Dance Workshop

n 27 June, as part of Tel Aviv White Night celebrations 2013, the Embassy organised a Bollywood Dance workshop at Habima Square, Tel Aviv. David Nigrekar, a well-known Indian-origin choreographer and his dance group "Namaste Israel" led this workshop. Several hundred Israelis participated with enthusiasm and danced to the rhythm and melody of popular Bollywood tunes.


Undiscovered India


n July, Embassy organized a series of workshops “Undiscovered India” every Tuesday to increase awareness about unknown and new travel destinations in India, highlighting their culture, places to be visited, etc. Israeli travel experts and guides including Nisso Kedem, Rafi Paled, Riki Cohen and Natalie Neagu led the workshops on South India, Yoga & Meditation, Women traveling in groups and North East India, respectively. These workshops were well received by Israeli audiences, who were planning their summer travel. 1. Amb. Sarkar addressing gathering during World Hindi Day 2013 at TAU. 2. Participants of Bollywood dance workshop at Habima Square. 3. Audience at Undiscovered India workshop


Cultural Events Commercial


Independence Day Celebration 2013

n 15 August, the 67th Independence Day of India was celebrated at the residence of the Ambassador of India to Israel, Mr. Jaideep Sarkar. Nearly 350 Indian nationals and persons of Indian origin participated. Amb Sarkar unfurled the national flag, and addressed the gathering. Lt. Gen I S Singha, UNDOF Force Commander and Head of Mission also attended. The colorful cultural programme featured the bamboo dance by artists of Bene Menashe community from Mizoram, Lezim folk dance of Maharashtra, Bhangra folk dance from Punjab by Indian soldiers deputed at UNDOF and patriotic songs by the Indian Chaplaincy Choir. 1


Art and Carft Workshop



n 18 August, Embassy in collaboration with Kfar Saba Municipality organized an Art and craft workshop in Kfar Saba for which Aya Bernhard was the curator. Five traditional craftsmen/artists from India, namely Avaz Mohmmad (Lac work), Sanjay Verma (Miniature Painting), Mohammad Rafiq (Hand block printing), and Waheed Ahmad (wood carving) demonstrated their craft and skills to the audience. Ratna Gandhi demonstrated her clay sculptures. Joshua Schulgasser, an Israeli national who has learnt Hindi, was much appreciated for translating the Indian artists’ explanations from Hindi to Hebrew. Craftsmen were in Israel to take part in 38th Jerusalem International Arts and Crafts Fair in Jerusalem.

1. Amb. Sarkar and Mrs. Sarkar cutting Independence Day cake. 2. Bnei Menashe community performing Bamboo Dance 3. The Art and Craft workshop in Kfar Saba.


Commercial Events Visit of India’s Minister of Communications and IT to Israel


r. Kapil Sibal, India’s Minister of Communications and IT visited Israel from 15-18 June, 2013 to promote India’s National Policy on Electronics of 2012 and seek collaboration with Israel in research, design and manufacturing in the electronics sector. He spoke at a seminar organized by the Minister Sibal with businessmen in Israel Embassy and proposed a partnership between India and Israel to manufacture Israeli innovations in India. More than 100 Israeli companies attended the seminar, which was followed by several meetings of the Indian delegation with Israeli companies to discuss possibilities of collaboration. Minister Sibal interacted with select CEOs and Presidents of Israeli IT and high-tech sector at a business event organized by the Israel-Asia Chambers of Commerce. He met the Israel Ministers of Communications; Finance and Economy to discuss G2G initiatives in these sectors. He announced that India would like to set up a joint fund with a contribution of $5 million from the Government of India for joint industrial R&D in IT and electronics.

Visit of Business Delegation from FICCI, India


29 member business delegation representing 24 companies from India visited Israel from 2731 July, 2013 under the aegis of the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The multi-sector delegation considered opportunities for collaboration in water management, agriculture, IT, homeland security and other fields. They participated in a seminar organised by the Embassy of India and the Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute, and had several B2B meetings with Israeli companies. They also visited Israeli companies and saw first-hand, Israeli technologies and capabilities in the above fields.


Tata Group Invests in Israel


ndia's largest corporate entity Tata Industries Ltd will invest up to $5 million in the Momentum Fund set-up by Ramot Technology Transfer Company at Tel Aviv University. Tata Group’s investment is a part of the $20 million that Ramot plans to raise for its Momentum Fund which will invest in ventures based on work by Tel Aviv University researchers. With this investment, Tata Group which has an annual turnover of $100 billion made its first investment in Israel. Momentum Fund operates in three sectors: engineering the exact science; healthcare; and cleantech. When it is decided to commercialize a technology which emerges from Ramot, Tata Group will have the right of first refusal.

Other Events Ambassador's visit to Ramla: A multicultural city of Israel


n August 26, Ambassador Jaideep Sarkar visted city of Ramla. Mayor of Municpality of Ramla Mr. Yoel Lavi received Ambassador and gave him a presentaion about the city, its people and its heritage. Ambassador toured to some of Ramla's landmark sites. Mayor of Ramla informed Ambassador that Ramla has a vibrant community of people of Indian origin who made significant and vital contribution in the city life, its culture and development. Mayor of Ramla Yoel Lavi with Amb. Sarkar

Maccabean team visited Israel


32 member delegation of Indian Athletes led by Samuel Marshall visited Israel to take part in 19th Maccabiah Games known as Jewish Olympics which began on 18th July in Israel. They participated under various sports- Cricket, Tennis, Badminton, Table-Tennis, Golf and Karate. Amb. Jaideep Sarkar hosted a reception for the Indian Maccabiah team in the Embassy and wished them success.

Amb. Sarkar with Indian Maccabiah team

Bansuri classes in the Embassy


ollowing the interest shown by Israeli audience during Raaga Vedika to learn Indian classical music, Embassy opened weekly classes in the Embassy during JuneJuly-August to learn the practicalities of playing the Bansuri, (Indian Bamboo flute) and basics of Indian classical music. The course was opened for beginners as well as advanced students. About 10 students registered for the course. Israeli exponents of Bansuri Ron Cohen and Ofra Avni led the course.




n 13 June, the Association of Indian Researchers & Students in Israel in collaboration with the Embassy organized a cultural evening "Tiranga� at the Weizmann Institute, Rehovot. More than 200 students participated in the event. Miho Kataoka, and her students performed Bharathanatyam dance and explained the significance of mudras, to an appreciative audience. Amb Jaideep Sarkar addressed the gathering and appreciated the students’ efforts.

Upcoming Events National Convention of Indian Jews


n September, the Indian Community in Israel is organizing the first ever national convention of Indian-Jews in Israel which brings together the Indian community in Israel on a single platform. The convention is scheduled on Monday, 23 September, 2013 in the city of Ramle and is expected to attract 2000-5000 participants. Cultural performances are expected to start at 8 in the evening with the concert of Shye Ben Tzur performing with Rajasthani Artists. Shye Ben Tzur and Rajasthani artists will perform in National Convention at 2000 on 23 September 2013 in Ramla.

Ayurveda Workshops


n October, the Embassy will organize a series of workshops on Ayurveda under the theme “AyurVedika” to promote awareness about Ayurveda as an alternative system of medicine. Four workshops will be organized in the embassy every Thursday to cover basic principles of Ayurveda, health & disease, body type diagnosis, diet & food, kitchen & home-remedies and detox & antiaging. Dr Eran Magon, Head of Ayurveda Department of Broshim Campus in Tel Aviv University and Igal Kutin, Head of Ayurveda Department in the Reidman College of Complementary Medicine will lead these workshops. For more information, please visit Embassy’s Facebook Page


Upcoming Events

Kathak Course at Bikurei Ha’itim


he Embassy of India is pleased to announce the opening of an annual course of classical Indian dance - Kathak with MS Mayala Bracha (dancer and choreographer), at the prestigious multi-disciplinary art center Bikurei Ha'Itim, Tel Aviv Haftman 6 Tel Aviv. Registration for the course has already began. The course is from October 2013 to June 2014. It takes place every Tuesday 18:00-21:00 for beginners and advanced levels. For more information please contact Tel: 03-6919510

Cultural Events in November 7-16, 2013 Two noted Indian musicians are visiting Israel in November. Mr. Abhay Sopori will play the traditional Indian string instrument, Santoor during 6-9 November 2013 in Ramla and Ashdod. Mrs. Ashwini Bhide, noted Hindustani classical singer will perform during 12-15 November 2013 in Warehouse 2 in Jaffa.

Ashwini Bhide

India Weekend at Warehouse-2, Jaffa: The Embassy in association with Israel Choreographer association (ICA) is organizing an “India weekend” from 13-16 of November at Warehouse-2 in Jaffa, Tel Aviv which would include performance of “Holi” a fusion dance by Israeli Choreographer Idan Cohen and Indian artists, an art exhibition “Wings of Shakti” on the theme of empowerment of Indian women, Bollywood dance workshops, Rangoli workshop, Yoga, Indian classical music and dance workshops for children, an Indian bazaar with henna, Indian food, saris, etc. The India weekend will also feature concerts by Ashwini Bhide, noted Hindustani classical singer. For more information, please visit Embassy’s Facebook Page IndembTelaviv 8

Abhay Sopori

Book Release


Bombay - Exploring the Jewish Urban Heritage By Shaul Sapir

ombay possesses an intense history in which it grew and developed as a city containing a variety of populations, religions, cultures and architectural styles. In the present volume, Dr. Shaul Sapir draws upon extensive research, to tell the captivating story of the Baghdadi Jewish Community in Bombay and their unique contribution to the urban landscape of the City during the latter period of the British Raj. Dr. Sapir's lively text traces the sites erected by members of the Jewish community, their history and evolution of their changes over the decades. Along with famous Jewish sites, he pays tribute to the remarkable and vibrant history of Bombay and the interesting and well-known sites and landmarks of the city. Readers are led into a rich experience of in-depth research, which will delight Indian Jewish community members, past and present, Mumbai residents, as well as all curious readers. The book will be released soon and can be bought at major book stores in Israel and through

About the author: Dr. Shaul Sapir has been teaching Historical Geography at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem since 1975 and at the David Yellin Teacher's College, where he headed the Department of Geography. On his sabbaticals he lectured at the University College, London. He has published numerous articles mainly focusing on Jerusalem through the Ages and the Land of Israel during the Modern Era.


Bombay by Shaul Sapir

Embassy Newsletter June-Aug 2013  

NaanDanJain Scholarship 2013 Visit of Kapil Sibal National Convention of Indian Jews Ayurvedika