On 16 May, 2012, HE Mr. Ajai Malhotra, Ambassador of India to the Russian Federation, released the book “Death in Maharashtra: Imagination, Perception, Expression”, compiled, translated and edited by Dr. Irina Glushkova, an eminent Indologist and Marathi language expert at the Centre for Indian Studies, Institute of Oriental Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences.
The evening began with the lighting of the lamp by Ambassador Ajai Malhotra, Dr. Irina Glushkova, Prof. Vyacheslav Belokrenitsky, Deputy Director, Institute of Oriental Studies, Mr. A P Anshuman, Director, Jawaharlal Nehru Cultural Centre, Moscow, and Mr. Mikhail M Amirdzhanov, of SUN Group. This was followed by a Kathak Dance presentation “Swarchanda” by Russian students of Kathak at the Jawaharlal Nehru Cultural Centre, Moscow.
In his opening remarks, Ambassador Malhotra expressed happiness over the release of the book, which would enable the Russian people to better know about various aspects of Maharashtra. He shared that this important State of India was number one in India in terms of its contribution to the Indian economy, second in population terms, third in territory, with Marathi being the fourth most widely spoken language in India. He also drew attention to the impact of Mumbai and Bollywood, as well as other interesting facets of Maharashtra. Ambassador Malhotra recalled the contribution of prominent Marathas in diverse fields, including Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Sant Tukaram, the poet Eknath and others, also recalling his own association with Mumbai, Pune, Kolhapur and other cities of Maharashtra.
Ambassador Malhotra opined that while the title of the book referred to ‘death’, it in fact used that as a reference point to focus on various aspects of life in Maharashtra. He noted that the book release was being held in the context of the celebration of the 65th anniversary of diplomatic relations between India and Russia and recalled that the first Russian Consulate in India had opened in Bombay (now Mumbai) in 1900. He lauded the efforts of Dr. Glushkova in bringing out the book of 814 pages, containing diverse contributions by many scholars from Russia, India and several other countries.
Prof. Vyacheslav Belokrenitsky, Mr. Mikhail M Amirdzhanov and Mr. Naren Apte, Director, Business Development, STORK Holding, also spoke on the occasion and congratulated Dr. Irina Glushkova on the release of her book at the Embassy of India, Moscow, and praised its contents.
In her concluding remarks, Dr. Glushkova shared her association with various scholars in India, Russia and other countries who are connected with India. She highlighted the numerous facets of the book, which sought to give the reader snapshots of Maharashtra viewed from different angles. She thanked Ambassador Malhotra for releasing her book at the Embassy of India. She also thanked all those who helped her in bringing out this book. Some of the students who had helped Dr. Glushkova in compiling and translating parts of the book, thereafter recited poems and prose from it.The evening concluded with a reception hosted by Ambassador Ajai Malhotra.