02 February, 2012

Iran Culture Festival begins in Islamabad

Pak-Iran strategy to highlight Islamic culture stressed

Sana Jamal
Courtesy: Google Image.

Islamabad – In a colourful inaugural ceremony, the Iranian Cultural Week started here at National Arts Gallery (NAG) of Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) on Thursday where the speakers urged for measures to initiate Pak-Iran joint strategy. The cultural festival, highlighting Iran’s development in the field of art and culture, social, economic, scientific technology, and defence, has been arranged to mark the 33rd anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution of Iran and to commemorate the Solidarity Week.

The week-long (February 2-10) festival has been jointly organised by the Cultural Consulate of the embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in collaboration with PNCA featuring photographic display of development of Iran, Persian books and publications, original handwork on wood, metal, and cloth, rugs work, recitation of Quran, and and screening of feature films.

One of the prominent features of the cultural week was collection of rare Quranic manuscripts dating back to 10th Hijri. The calligraphy of the remarkable Quranic manuscripts, preserved in glass display case, was splendidly illuminated in gold, colours and medallions. “The publications on display are the collection of Iran-Pakistan Institute of Persian Studies which strives to preserve and promote Islamic culture and Persian language” told Muhammad Abbass, representative of the Institute.

The festival was inaugurated by Ambassador of Iran Ali Raza Haghighian and Information Minister Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan. Speaking at the occasion, Iranian Ambassador Ali Raza Haghighian, stressed the need for extensive bilateral ties Pakistan and Iran to highlight Islamic culture. “Common values of Pak-Iran culture and the historical and religious links between the two brotherly states should be presented as an example to the world” he proposed.

Firdous Ashiq Awan, recalling the traditional and religious connection between Pakistan and Iran, said that “Iranian culture and heritage also reflect our own culture, justifying the common values and customs shared by the people of two neighbouring states.” She urged that “Pakistan and Iran should also coordinate a joint strategy to counter threats faced by the two nations.” Federal Minister, while announcing the joint-production of a documentary on the life of Allama Iqbal, added that initiative proposed by Iranian Ambassador would pave the way for Pak-Iran joint media production and also help highlight Islamic values.

Taqi Sadeghi, cultural counsel Iran embassy, while expressing his views, said that the culture week would strengthen solidarity and the cultural ties between two brotherly states.

The cultural festival demonstrates four different aspects of Iranian culture. One huge gallery offers glimpses of Iran as it included a large number of photographs featuring the beautiful cities of Iran. Another gallery display the books, arts and craft including handmade metal and ceramics work, embossed work, engraved work, and rugs as well as miniature art and calligraphic work by Iranian artists. While one interesting part of the festival are the screening of films including ‘Aasman Mehboob’, ‘Hazrat Yusuf’. An additional feature of the cultural week is recitation of Asma ul Husna, Naat and Durood Sharif, and Iranian traditional music with poetic verses of Allama Iqbal, praising the Prophet (p.b.u.h.).