Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) is organising the 25th edition of Elephanta Festival, which will be held on March 15-16, 2014 at the world-renowned Elephanta Caves (a World Heritage Site) and at the Gateway of India. The major events and performances will organised at the second venue. Started in 1989, the Elephanta Festival is one of the most prominent festivals in Mumbai celebrated to promote tourism and culture in the city.
Jagdish Patil, managing director, MTDC, said, “We are very happy to complete a silver jubilee of the Elephanta festival. This year we are thinking to organise day activities at the caves and the cultural programmes will be held at the Gateway of India. We have organised several contests like the painting competition and sculpture-making contest, which has got good response over the years. We have also arranged for a Heritage Walk, which is a guided tour by renowned archeologist Suraj Pandit.”
This year the festival has many national and international artists who will be performing at the Gateway of India. Artists like Tejaswini Lonar, Indian classical dancer and actress; Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia, Indian classical flautist; Kavita Seth, Sufi vocalist; international artists like George Brooks, saxophonist; Gwyneth Wentick, harpist will showcase their talent.
Tejaswini Lonari, Indian classical dancer and actress, said, “I feel very honoured that I have got a chance to perform in such a prestigious festival. We should have many such festivals to promote our culture and tradition. The festival also is a huge platform for artists to showcase their talent.”
This year the main sponsors of the festival will be Bank of Baroda and Dena Bank. Krishna Guha, executive director, Dena Bank, said, “We are very happy to be associated with MTDC for the Elephanta Festival. Maharashtra is a state which is culturally and traditionally very rich, we need to protect our culture. This year the festival will be celebrated on a very grand scale. There is no entry fee for the event, so we expect a overwhelming response. This is a part of our CSR activity.”