Address of Mr Denis E. Alipov, Minister-Counsellor of the Embassy of Russia in India, at the Celebrations of Nicholas Roerich’s Birthday (IRMT, Naggar, Himachal Pradesh, October 9, 2011)

Thursday, 13 October 2011 04:07

Honoured guests,

Dear inhabitants of Naggar,

My friends and colleagues,

I feel very privileged and happy to welcome you at our joint celebrations. They continue the glorious tradition that has been founded and become universally acclaimed in the recent years. Just some six months ago the flourishing spring of the Kullu Valley saw the previous Roerich festival. And it is now that the crops are gathered, and the spirit of the coming fall, has filled the thin air, we are also getting together once again to mark birthday anniversary of maharishi Nicholas Roerich, the man who unites us with invisible bonds.

Residents of Kullu Valley and people coming from other parts of Himachal Pradesh, as well as representatives of Roerich Societies from Russia, Brazil, Estonia, Italy and USA and other countries assembled today in this Green Theatre under century-old Deodars. We are about to enjoy the bright and colourful program with participation of Russian and Brazilian groups and performance by the students of Helena Roerich Arts College.

You would ask me, perhaps, what is the magical force which attracts us - representatives of different nations, speaking various languages and living in different countries to this secluded cosy house in this silent valley. I’ll tell you: it is the force of art and aspiration for the beauty in all its manifestations. It is eternal quest for spiritual correlation and pillars, which bring people closer to each other and unite them, independently of their race, age and faith. It is in this supreme unity that glorious dreams, lofty ideas and highest aspirations of Nicholas Roerich and his family are being realized.

India provided the Roerichs with new opportunities to manifest their natural talents.  Bharatmata saw Nicholas Roerich creating his masterpieces that glorify the sacred Great Himalayas. The God-blessed Kullu Valley witnessed the major and most important scientific, literary and philosophical works of the Roerichs. Thanks to the joint efforts of the International Roerich Memorial Trust and the Russian Embassy they have been published in English. We want that the moral light of spirituality and vast knowledge accumulated by this great Russian family shine over remotest corners of their second Motherland, belonging to the ever growing number of citizens of this country. Having this idea in mind the Russian Embassy decided to launch a large scale campaign to translate Nicholas, Helena and Svyatoslav Roerich works into Hindi. Various universities of New Delhi will lend us their hand in this endeavour. Undertaking this initiative we respond to one of the core ideas of Nicholas Roerich who wrote: “India’s heart is reaching for the infinite Russia. The great Indian magnet is attracting Russian hearts. How joyful it is to see vitality in Indo-Russian ties… There exists beauty in the Indian-Russian magnet.”

We are happy that today we can feel our complicity to the course of preservation and multiplying the Roerich family cultural heritage. It is a matter of great satisfaction for all of us that the only unique play written by Nicholas Roerich called ‘Miloserdie’ (‘Mercy’) has been published by the Russian Embassy with the financial assistance of ‘Sistema’ company towards these festivities. The set of the museum house photos will also see the light of day for the first time ever. Besides this we are presenting today a special reprint edition of the 50-years old bestseller ‘Kulu: The End of the Habitable World’. The publication of this book which contains a special chapter about Naggar and Roerich family was also initiated by the Russian Embassy. We continue thus a very important mission which has found its manifestation in the curriculum of the state schools in Himachal Pradesh. I refer to the recent publishing of high school manual in Hindi which allows students to get themselves acquainted with Roerich legacy starting from the school level.

Speaking before you on this memorable occasion, I can not but mention another pleasant and long awaited news: two months ago the Supreme Court of India has put an end to legal disputes over Svyatoslav Roerich and his wife Devika Rani heritage, the ‘Tataguni’ estate in Bangalore. The property was transferred under the control of the Karnataka state and the local Roerich Memorial Trust. This important event bears truly international significance and will allow to fulfil our long cherished dream to establish a Museum there. Along with all Indians involved in the efforts to preserve the Roerich heritage, we are planning to unite the two museums in Naggar and Bangalore in order to efficiently coordinate and manage their activities.

Finally, I would like to sincerely thank the curator of the Roerich museum Alena Adamkova and all the estate stuff for their constructive labour, which brings prosperity to this place, which keeps on changing for the better each time we visit it. We see a lot: the commencement of the construction work of the first building which will accommodate the future International Academy of Arts; the revival of the ‘Urusvati’ Himalayan Institute project. An increasing number of kids are coming for the Helena Roerich Art College classes. New people get involved and participate in the activities organised during our Roerich holidays and festivals.

I would like to thank you all, dear friends, for your understanding and support, for your comprehensive assistance which helps to transform this beautiful estate into a unique spiritual seat, a world-class cultural centre of enlightment and knowledge. Without you we would not have achieved even a fraction of it all.

I am strongly convinced that working together we will manage to prepare in the proper way to the forthcoming grand 20th IRMT anniversary. The Russian Federation and its Embassy will continue to work towards these goals.

So let us join hands and continue to work together for the benefit of our lofty ideals, do our best to preserve the priceless Roerich’s heritage. Let us give a new life to the dreams and aspirations that were nurtured and implemented by the outstanding Russians on the great Indian soil

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