Kohima: Australia is looking to help Nagaland develop in the agriculture and horticulture sector, the country’s Deputy Consul General Daniel Sim said on Saturday.

Australia would start its initiative with a sustainable horticulture project in Mokokchung district of the state, Sim, the deputy consul general in Kolkata, said while speaking at a session on the fourth day of the Hornbill festival.

He said the Australian consulate in Kolkata is looking to strengthen the people-to-people and cultural connections, besides developing trade and investment links with East and Northeast India.

Sim said Australia recognises the iconic and world-renowned Hornbill festival and the rich culture and heritage of the Naga people.

“It is an amazing festival and has been a huge success,” he said.

In another session, Director General of Assam Rifles Lt Gen P C Nair said the Hornbill festival is very unique and provides an opportunity to domestic and foreign tourists to witness the vibrant traditions of the various tribes.

The 17 major Naga tribes continued to enthrall the visitors on the fourth day of the festivities with their cultural performances.

As part of the festival, the Task Force for Music and Arts (TaFMA) under the Department of Youth Resources and Sports, is hosting the Hornbill Music Festival in two venues Naga Heritage Village Kisama and Regional Centre of Excellence for Music and Performing Arts (RCEMPA) in Jotsoma here.

Thirty-five bands, involving around 200 musicians, are performing at the Hornbill Music Festival, which is considered to be India’s biggest music carnival, said Advisor for TaFMA Theja Meru.

Of the 35 bands, three bands are from outside the state Dossers Urge and Soulmate from Meghalaya, and Girish and the Chronicles from Sikkim, he said.

Dossers Urge and Polar Lights will perform on Monday, while WIZ and Soulmate will perform on December 7, among others.

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