Sundeep Bhutoria

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ess bee

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Friday, March 5, 2010

Cuba and Castro

Yesterday I got a phone call from the Cuban Ambassador in Delhi, His Excellency Miguel Angel Ramirez Ramos, who inquired whether I would be present in Kolkata for a Cuban delegation scheduled to visit the city next week. He wants me to provide some assistance and logistical support to the delegates during their stay in Kolkata. My relationship with the Cuban embassy was strengthened after I organised the Fidel Castro Photo Exhibition in Kolkata at Nandan about a year-and-half ago on behalf of Prabha Khaitan Foundation. Some rare photographs of Fidel Castro’s only visit to Kolkata about 35 years back taken by photojournalist Late Sri Satya Sen were exhibited.
That Exhibition was a first-of-its-kind in Kolkata (Pictures). But I also remember it for the chaos caused by the media as they protested the restrictions on taking pictures due to the large number of VIPs at the inaugural function. The 4-day Exhibition was opened to the public and the inaugural function attended by CM Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, Mrinal Sen, Sitaram Yechury, CPI’s Manju Majumdar, Md Salim, Biman Bose and other left representatives from different parties.
The guests praised the photos some of which they had seen for the first time. One particular picture on display at the Exhibition was that of Jyoti Basu receiving Fidel Castro at the Dum Dum airport along with Pramode Dasgupta and other party dignitaries. This photo was published by a large number of print media recently after the demise of Jyoti Basu. The same picture adorns one of the walls of my office in Kolkata (picture).
Yesterday I also had a luncheon meet with the director of India International Centre, Mrs Kavita Sharma, this was followed by a meeting with a cabinet minister and later in the evening discussed various issues with the Ambassador of Ecuador, His Excellency Carlos Abad over dinner.
ess bee

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