Gangtok: Sikkim is “Nature’s own garden”. Here International Florishow 2008 will be held from March 14 to 16 at Saramsa Garden “to showcase Sikkim, especially its floriculture and horticulture potentials, to the country and the international community to convey a message saying, “this is a State where people live peacefully in harmony with Nature”. This was said by the Chief Minister, Dr. Pawan Chamling, at a curtain raiser press conference held in the Convention Hall of the international event venue on March 12 afternoon. “Through this florishow, Sikkim and its people will be known beyond the country – to the world at large”, he said.
Dr. Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman of Planning Commision, will inaugurate the florishow in which confirmed overseas participants include those of Netherlands, Germany, France, Norway, Thailand, Taiwan, New Zealand, United States, Korea, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and total 58 participants from the country and its 17 States including Sikkim, CM informed. From within Sikkim 300 growers will display their produces, both flowers and vegetables in varieties, he added.
The sprawling venue of the show is spread over 7 acres of land with a natural surrounding of hills and greeneries and the budgeted expenditure for the international event will be Rs.19 crore, he informed. The specially made venue, with a wide range of attractions and facilities of international standard, will be a “permanent asset” of the State and a special tourist attraction as an “permanent exhibition centre where northeastern, national and international level exhibitions will be held every year, of which the government will publish a calendar”, he said.
A total prize amount of Rs.41 lakhs has been provisioned for the competitors who will be judged by a panel of floriculture and horticulture experts drawn from the country and abroad, including Mr. K. C. Pradhan of Sikkim, CM informed.
One reporter asked, “why some Bollywood celebrity is not invited instead of the Planning Commission Dy. Chairman to add to the attraction of such an international event”? CM answered, “attraction is Sikkim and its people and the development work being done here which is fastest in the world”. He further said, some people of Sikkim always think negative, say no work is being done here and funds from Centre are being misused. “So a balanced person like Dr. Ahluwalia has been invited to see for himself the work being done in the State”. Spurt of activities could be seen in finishing the preparation for the international event which is first in Sikkim and perhaps in the country. It was amazing to see how so many people are zealously doing wide ranging jobs from placement of exhibits to cleaning the venue as if under control of an unseen hand. Lens men had a field day recording the unique work culture of the people in various jobs. At least some of the visitors may like to know the management policy which made such an impressive preparation of an international event in international standard possible within a given time schedule.