Mumbai: The Jerusalem-Mumbai festival, a day-long cultural festival hosted on the grounds of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, was opened on Saturday by the Maharashtra Minister of Cultural Affairs Amit Deshmukh and Consul General of Israel in Mumbai Ya’akov Finkelstein.
The festival, part of a project, has been held in cities around the world including Prague and Moscow. Mumbai is the first city in Asia to host the event.
Addressing the attendees, Fenkenstein said that the festival will help bring the two cities closer, that are both multicultural and melting-pots.
Deshmukh said India and Israel are both ancient civilizations and in India, Jewish people were never persecuted and have lived in the city for more than 2000 years. “In Marathi Jewish people are called Shanivar Teli, Teli because most of them are in the oil-pressing business and Shanivar because they take rest on Saturdays. Jews have enriched Marathi language and culture,” he said. He added that Jews like David Sassoon have built important monuments and buildings like the David Sassoon library and Sassoon Hospital, to name a few. “We hope to have a Mumbai-Jerusalem festival in Jerusalem soon,” he said, to the cheer of audience.
The festival will see artists performing in the day-long festival on Sunday from 10 am to 10 pm. The Jerusalem-Mumbai festival is being organized by the Jerusalem municipality in partnership with the Consulate General of Israel in Mumbai and the Federation of India-Israel Chamber of Commerce.