A Charming Sudanese Performance of a Bollywood Indian Song
By Mekki ELMOGRABI
Press Writer on African Affairs
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“ITEC Day” was really Indo-Sudan Day in Khartoum. When the Sudanese student Hadel Diab was singing a charming Bollywood song, I remembered having a very nice discussion with an Indian diplomat about what it takes to develop the film and entertainment industry in Sudan with an experience from India. I am pretty sure that Sudanese music has a wider audience and a larger market in an area including more than 15 African countries in the Sahel region and the Horn of Africa.
Most of the participants at the event were graduates of the program of India Technical Education Courses (ITEC). Four people and I were sitting at a table at the Rotana Salam Hotel; their fields were architecture, IT business, accounting, and academic consulting.
They told me about their memories in India during the wonderful ITEC training program. Not only the educational and professional experience they have gained through the program but how proud they are of their in-depth knowledge of the Indian model of economic and cultural success.
On the podium, four smart Sudanese professionals presented their experiences in the ITEC project during their visit and stay in India.
As Africans, we should strive for better and stronger India-Africa relations, and make comprehensive integration and cooperation with India a strategic goal of Africa. In the new wave of global competition for Africa, we should choose Africa’s allies and friends, rather than let the international conflicts determine for us.
Every year on February 17, Khartoum witnesses the celebration of India Technical Education Courses (ITEC) day. We thank India for its help and support to Africa. In the event I attended, the example of Sudan ITEC experts provided good facts and figures.
India has more than 100,000 Sudanese graduates, of whom nearly 40% are pharmacists, and India offers more than 250 ITEC fully-funded scholarships each year. In addition, there are nearly 100 scholarship places under ICCR. There are currently more than 60 Sudanese who are Ph.D. Holders from Indian universities.
ITEC courses range from solar technology to management to IT and cybersecurity. Not only that, there are forensics courses and even defense-related in-depth subjects.
The chief guest of the event organized by the Indian Embassy in Khartoum, was Dr. Siddig Bushra Al Fadil, Director General, Ministry of Higher Education. Other prominent figures in attendance have represented the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Finance, as well as representatives of the Sudanese media and private sector.
In his speech, the chief guest affirmed the remarkable development of bilateral relations between India and Sudan. Dr. Siddig also acknowledged India’s contribution in various areas including capacity building and suggested more interaction in education and culture.
I suggest that the documentary on ‘ITEC’ and ‘India-Africa Partnership for Progress’ that screened during the event should be broadcasted on national Sudanese TV and also with interviews with the Sudanese professionals who presented their experiences in ITEC during their visit and stay in India.