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Sunday, October 3, 2021

Dubai Expio 2020 opens .............. Ulagam Sutrum Valiban !!

Murugan,  an Indian scientist discovers  how to store a part of the energy unleashed from lightning. He reports this at a Hong Kong scientists' conference. He subsequently announces that he will not reveal his discovery, since the world is at the brink of World War III and his research may be used for destructive purposes. Another scientist, Bairavan, claims Murugan is falsely claiming that his research is successful. Murugan thus conducts a demonstration and destroys the vital research notes, which upsets other scientists. Bairavan offers $100 million to persuade him to sell the research to a foreign country, which Murugan refuses.  .. guess what !!

Expo 2020 is a World Expo, currently hosted by Dubai in the United Arab Emirates from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022. Originally scheduled for 20 October 2020 to 10 April 2021, it was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite being postponed, organizers kept the name Expo 2020 for marketing and branding purposes. It is the first time that a World Exposition has been postponed to a later date rather than cancelled. The Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) general assembly in Paris named Dubai as the host in  2013.

The India Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai reflects India’s commitment to the philosophy of लोका: समस्ता: सुखिनो भवन्तु (Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu), which means, “May everyone, in the whole world, be happy.”  The India Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai is one of the biggest platforms that offers a golden opportunity to showcase India to the world and project the country as the next hub for growth and innovation. Nestled at the Al Fosan Park adjacent to the ‘Opportunity’ district of the Expo 2020 Dubai, India Pavilion is created on the theme of “Openness. Opportunity. Growth."

Under this, the pavilion is focussing on 11 primary themes - Climate and Biodiversity, Space, Urban and Rural Development, Tolerance and Inclusivity, Golden Jubilee, Knowledge and Learning, Travel and Connectivity, Global Goals, Health and Wellness, Food Agriculture and Livelihoods, and Water, each having a dedicated zone all underneath one gigantic roof. The vastness of the theme allows visitors to explore and experience India’s strengths and achievements in all its glory.  India’s outreach has become all the more imperative with the country starting to negotiate a comprehensive trade deal with the UAE last month. “The UAE is the gateway to all of Africa and many other parts of the world. The UAE also has a huge Indian diaspora and a huge market in products such as textiles, gems and jewelry, leather footwear, and processed food products, all of which are labour oriented and give jobs to Indians. They will provide economic opportunities to startups. It will be a partnership that will be win-win for both countries,"  Mr Piyush Goyal said.

Expos are not new .. .. .. in our school days, have heard about - Expo '70   a world's fair held in Suita, Osaka Prefecture, Japan between March 15 and September 13, 1970. Its theme was "Progress and Harmony for Mankind." In Japanese, Expo '70 is often referred to as Osaka Banpaku and was the first world's fair held in Japan.

The Expo was designed by Japanese architect Kenzo Tange, assisted by 12 other Japanese architects.  The Expo attracted international attention for the extent to which unusual artworks and designs by Japanese avant-garde artists were incorporated into the overall plan and individual national and corporate pavilions.  The most famous of these artworks is artist Tarō Okamoto's iconic Tower of the Sun, which still remains on the site today.   330 hectares in the Senri Hills outside Osaka had been earmarked for the site and a Theme Committee under the chairmanship of Seiji Kaya was formed.  

Two main principles informed the master plan. The first was the idea that the wisdom of all the peoples of the world would come together in this place and stimulate ideas; the second was that it would be less of an exposition and more of a festival. The designers thought that unlike previous expositions they wished to produce a central, unifying, Festival Plaza where people could meet and socialise. They called this the Symbol Zone and covered it and the themed pavilions with a giant space frame roof.

A famous MGR film ‘Ulagam Sutrum Valiban’  (Globetrotting Youngster) released in  directed and co-produced by MG Ramachandran had MGR, Chandrakala, Manjula and Latha and others. The storyline was  around a scientist who discovers an energy harnessing formula, and seeks to keep his research from being abused by a rival scientist. The movie became  a major box office success, running for over 200 days in theatres. Ramachandran won the Filmfare Special Award for Excellent Production Values.  It was tobe the 2nd film directed by MGR – and was  co-produced by Rama  Veerappan.  The climax scene was shot at Expo '70 

With regards – S. Sampathkumar


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