By ZAHIRA FLORES
School of Communication
University of Miami
SHANGHAI, PRC — The Shanghai World Expo 2010 boasts national pavilions that represent the stunning architecture of their individual countries.
The Asian Square was strikingly impressive with China’s colossal crimson structure, Nepal’s Kathmandu, Pakistan’s Lahore Forth replica, among others.
One such pavilion that stands out has an enormous colorful dome-like structure. This is the India Pavilion.
The India Pavilion is a huge domed structure with vegetal patterns. The structure has the largest bamboo dome in the world and spans 4,000 square meters.
The structure resembles an ancient Buddhist monument, the Sanchi Stupa, built in the Maurya Dynasty by the Indian emperor, Ashoka the Great.
“This building is special to Indian people. It is part of us,” Harman Mohnani, an Indian vendor working inside the pavilion, stated.
The lines to enter the India Pavilion seem endless. But the interior can only rival the marvelous design that makes one admire the structure from a distance.
It took about an hour and a half to finally enter the pavilion.
“I had to enter the India Pavilion. It resembled the Taj Mahal dome and was full of color,” Karen Berg, a tourist visiting from Canada, stated.
Inside is the world of India.
An arena for cultural performances is at the center of the India Pavilion. The sound of Hindu music creates the sensation of walking through the streets of New Delhi.
“Cities of Harmony” is the exhibition theme of the pavilion. It focuses on the integration of urban and rural regions through the trade of goods and services.
Visitors can embark on a walking journey of simulated Indian cities that depict ancient and present-day times.
Many foreigners and locals alike were impressed by the exhibition presented in the Indian pavilion.
Megan Novak, a British tourist who had visited India a couple years ago, was amazed by the replicas of the Indian cities.
“I loved the walking tour. It reminded me of when I was in India,” she said.
The pavilion features a restaurant and smaller food shack that offer traditional Indian delicacies. Posters of everything curry, mango juice and nan decorate the walls of the food plaza.
“I’ve never tried this mango juice before. It is great,” Adam Schneider, a Canadian tourist, raved about the delicious drink.
Inside the food shack was a long table with people on both sides enjoying the exotic Indian flavors.
There is also an extensive shopping arcade. It is jam-packed. Visitors rummage through multi-colored jewelry, Indian antiques and patterned cloths. Bargaining is accepted here too!
“Come in. Come in. Anything you want at good price,” Indian Vendor Farhan Singh said as he welcomed visitors and offered Indian arts and crafts at cheap prices.
The pavilion successfully promoted cultural preservation and exhibited many facets of Indian culture.
Chinese local, Gu Yan Ming, admired the beauty of the pavilion.
“I really like this one. I like the food and dance,” he stated.
Countries showcased their national pride through architecture, science, and technology at the Shanghai World Expo 2010. India was certainly no exception.
The Indian pavilion presented an image of greatness and unremarkable beauty to the rest of the world.