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The Shillong Times: Sakura Plantation Ceremony

Cheery Blossom Plantation in JH

From our Correspondent

JOWAI: A Sakura (cherry blossom) plantation ceremony organised by the state government in collaboration with the Asian Confluence, India East Centre IKOUKAI Society, Japan, Jaintia Fishing and Environment Protection Association and Dorbar Shnong Panaliar was held at Syntu Ksiar in Jowai on Wednesday.

In his address to the gathering, Toshihide Ando, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of Japan, India said that Japan has been planting cherry blossom trees in several countries and that Sakura has become a part that binds India and Japan together.

"The close cooperation has now extended from economic cooperation, defense and security to culture, people and friendship. One of the priorities is cooperation in the North East," he said.

"To further strengthen the bilateral friendship between Japan and India along with the North East in particular, an IRIS programme has been launched two years back inviting youths from the North East region to Japan in order to give them a firsthand experience of the culture and traditions of the Japanese," he said.

The programme was attended by teams from Japan led by Ando and accompanied by the former ambassador of India to Japan, Deepa G Wadhwa and other dignitaries.

About 40 saplings were planted of which 15 were cherry blossom or Sakura trees.