By A Staff Reporter
London March 1: The India-UK Year of Culture got off to a grand start in London with a dash of glamor and glitz. Hogging the limelight in the Buckingham Palace were Indian actors Kamal Hassan and Suresh Gopi.
Suresh Gopi and Kamal Hassan were part of an Indian delegation led by union finance minister Arun Jaitley. Indian diplomats and the place officials arranged for a brief meeting between the queen and the actors.
Queen Elizabeth II even commented on Suresh Gopi's saffron suit during a brief interaction, the actor said.
The queen asked Suresh Gopi which constituency he represented in Parliament. When the actor said he was a nominated member, the queen asked if he was a member of the “Senate”.
She spoke to him again during the dinner, Suresh Gopi said.
The delegation represented India in the cultural festival that kicked off a year-long celebration to highlight the cultural ties between the United Kingdom and India.
The delegation was accompanied by Indian diplomats including Y.K. Sinha, the high commissioner in London.
On a separate event, the two actors Kamal Hassan and Suresh Gopi were given reception at the Indian High Commission in London too. Community members received the stars and shared some good moments with each other. The event was made possible with the support of T Haridas alongwith staff from the Indian High Commission London. Councillor Manju Shahul-Hameed, Councillor Tom Aditya, Councillor Philip Abraham, MAUK secretary Sreejith Sreedharan, UUKMA representatives, representatives from London Sports League attended the event.
The United Kingdom was represented by a delegation led by Preeti Patel, the minister in charge of international development in the Theresa May cabinet. The function was attended by 220 people. The 70th year of India’s independence is being marked as an India-UK Year of Culture to further the friendship and cooperation between the two countries in various sectors.