‘Bollywood on a Boat’ – tourism promotion initiative rocks Amsterdam’s canals on King’s Day

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The Hague, April 28 (IANS) ‘Bollywood on a Boat, a novel initiative to promote tourism to India, was launched in Amsterdam on Friday, the Kings Day, the biggest national holiday of the Netherlands.

The Indian Embassy said it was a huge success with around 50,000 revellers in boats and on the banks of the Canals enjoying the performances.

The boat with the dancers and Dhol players sailed through the three main canals of Amsterdam – Herengracht, Prinsengracht and Keizersgracht covering more than 100 km for over five hours.

An initiative of the Embassy of India in The Hague in association with India Tourism and Jet Airways, the Boat was decked with banners of Incredible India and Jet Airways on the two sides and upcoming International Yoga Day celebrations on the stern. The boat evinced great interest of the crowds who were captivated by the colourful performances.

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Dancers from the Netherlands Marathi Mandal staged Dhol, Lavani, Bihu, Bhangra and Ghoomar (folk dances from different parts of India) while members of the Bollylicious Troupe showcased Bollywood dances on the boat.

The boat was flagged off in the morning by Ambassador Venu Rajamony and prominent members of Amsterdam’s Indian Community.

April 27 is celebrated as King’s Day, a national holiday in The Netherlands in honor of the birthday of King Willem-Alexander. The day is marked with nationwide parties, flea markets and concerts.

In Amsterdam the streets and canals burst with orange – the national colour – as the “Amsterdammers” enjoy the biggest street party of the year. This year the “Bollywood/Folk Dances on a Boat” was a colourful and novel addition to the canals of Amsterdam which are the most popular tourist attraction of the country.

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