SHILLONG, Nov 25 - The Bolivian Ambassador to India, Jorge Cardenas on Friday laid the foundation stone of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Memorial Herbal Garden at Wah Suri, Khongdong Wah Deeng Rot, near Pynursla, reports PTI.
The Ambassador, who was on a three-day visit to the State, pointed out the similarities that the indigenous people of Bolivia share with those of Meghalaya.
Speaking at the function, the Ambassador acknowledged that these hills indeed share stark similarities with his country in terms of rich culture, rich tradition and rich nature.
�I feel at home!� he exclaimed amid loud applause of all those present at the function. Cardenas said that 60 per cent of Bolivians are indigenous people �with Evo Morales, the President of Bolivia himself being indigenous.�
Further touching on similarities, he said like matrilineal Meghalaya, Bolivia too holds women in high esteem. This reality is corroborated by the fact that more than 50 per cent of the representatives to the Bolivian Parliament are women, he said.
The Herbal Garden was conceptualised by the traditional Chiefs, Clan and Village elders to pay tribute to Dr Kalam, former President of India, who breathed his last at Shillong on July 27 this year.
Fifteen acres of land was donated for the purpose of the Garden that would house multiple varieties of traditional herbs and medicines.
Newmai News adds: Cardenas has urged the people of the NE to shed their colonial mindset so that they can reach the level of developed countries.
Cardenas, during the tour of Meghalaya, called upon the Vice Chancellor of North Eastern Hill University, Prof KS Srivastava and also interacted with the senior faculty, Deans of Schools, officials and students of the university.
Pointing out the similarities between his country and the Northeastern States, Cardenas said that both have abundant natural resources, cultural make-up and rich biodiversity hotspots.
He spoke of how the indigenous population which accounts for 60 per cent of the total population took control of their own resources to raise the country�s GDP while at the same time reducing poverty from 42 per cent to 18 per cent.
The Bolivian Ambassador emphasised on the important role of education and the need to give back to the people the knowledge gained. �That is my message � to interact and spread the word,� he said.