Visiting Dubai Expo 2020? Here’s why the Indian pavilion is a must visit

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November 01, 2021 9:15 PM

Financial Express Online recently visited the Indian pavilion, and here’s why we think the pavilion is worth a visit.

It is at night when the look of the Indian pavilion is complete. (Image: Expo 2020 Dubai)

Expo 2020: The Expo 2020 is underway in Dubai, and India’s pavilion at the Expo is among the biggest displays. It was inaugurated by Union Minister Piyush Goyal, and it highlights the areas where India is either a global leader or emerging as one. Sitting at the Opportunity district inside the Expo, surrounded by Israel on one side and Japan on the other is India’s relatively sober pavilion. At daytime, the pavilion is pretty simple on the outside, with blocks of rectangles making up the building which displays the specialties of India. With “India” written on top of one side of the pavilion, and “Bharat” written in Devanagari script on the other, from the first glance at the entrance, the diversity that India offers is clear for visitors to see. The entrance to the pavilion is framed by “welcome” written in different regional languages of India, and the Tricolour completes the outer look.

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However, it is at night when the look of the Indian pavilion is complete. The rectanglular blocks that make up the pavilion’s building are lined with screens on all sides and they rotate on their axis. These screens light up at night in a beautiful play of colours.

The entrance to the pavilion is framed by “welcome” written in different regional languages of India, and the Tricolour completes the outer look. (Image: Bulbul Dhawan/Financial Express Online)

Financial Express Online recently visited the Indian pavilion, and here’s why we think the pavilion is worth a visit.

Upon entering, people are plunged into the darkness. The Indian pavilion spans across four floors and each floor (except the top one) has two wings. People enter through the A wing and exit via the B wing.

Compared to other pavilions, the Indian pavilion is simple, and to some, it can seem very basic as well. But it manages to display multiple layers that the country has. Upon entering, people come face to face with the three sectors where India either leads or is performing well – space, Yoga as well as the herbs which help it lead in alternative medicine.

The pavilion aims to put forth the rich culture that India has, to attract tourists, as well as the increasing industrial opportunities it offers, in a bid to get investors. In fact, the pavilion has a place where startups can hold meetings with investors to pitch their ideas. So far, at least two space startups have been able to sign MoUs during the Expo 2020.

The main attraction of the pavilion, however, is the A wing of the first floor of the pavilion. With all the sides lined up with floor to ceiling screens, the floor cannot be described as anything other than a blast of colours. The screens display everything that India is about – from its diverse traditions to its love for films, from the different art forms it offers to the joyous celebration of various festivals. It is a surreal experience.

Apart from this, to truly display the diversity that the country has to offer, the Indian pavilion keeps the focus on one state and one industrial sector at a time. The B wing of the pavilion focuses on these. One of the floors focuses on the state or UT that has been decided on, and the other displays India’s achievements and potential in the industry or sector in focus. When a particular state is in focus, traditional artists from that state are sent out to the pavilion to perform their signature dance and music at regular intervals to further the traditional art forms of the country among visitors.

Completing the pavilion is a miniature version of the Statue of Unity, and the depiction of the ghats along the River Ganga.

Outside the pavilion is an innovation bus in which two Indian startups display their innovations at any given time, in a display of the strongly emerging startup culture in the country.

Completing the pavilion is a miniature version of the Statue of Unity. (Image: Bulbul Dhawan/Financial Express Online)

All in all, the Indian pavilion can seem bare and basic as compared to some of the very lavish and extravagant pavilions that have been put up. But it seems that it is that simplicity that India wants to convey to the visitors. The setup is rife with technology, with each display on the ground floor having an iPad which can smart scan any aspect of the display to give more details about it, and with the first floor name plates having QR codes that can be scanned by any smartphone for more details. The second floor also has personal kiosks with special mini videos created for different aspects of India like biodiversity and tourism that viewers can see.

The Indian pavilion’s theme, very evidently, is India itself. The simplicity of India elegantly encompasses the multi-cultural layers of cuisines, languages, clothing and beliefs, and this culture seems to be displayed in all its layered glory at the pavilion.

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