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Millet cuisines, rangoli await first ladies, spouses of G20 leaders at Delhi’s Pusa campus

Millet cuisines, rangoli await first ladies, spouses of G20 leaders at Delhi's Pusa campus


Millet cuisines, rangoli await first ladies, spouses of G20 leaders at Delhi’s Pusa campus

Millets will be the flavour of the day as not just cuisines, but startups dealing with “super food”, and celebrity chefs, and an exhibition will fete the visiting first ladies and spouses of G20 leaders as they visit the sprawling Pusa campus of IARI here while their better halves discuss geopolitics.

A curated tour of the 1,200-acre Pusa-IARI campus, the cradle of the green revolution in India, has been organised on September 9 for the first ladies and spouses of the leaders attending the G20 Summit to help them learn about India’s rich agricultural heritage and taste a millet-based feast prepared by renowned celebrity chefs. A majority of G20 leaders, including US President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Japanese PM Fumio Kishida, have already confirmed their participation at the summit.

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According to official sources, the first ladies and spouses of the dignitaries will be guarded by the specially-trained men and women commandos of another paramilitary force — Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB). The first ladies and spouses of the participating heads of G20 countries have been extended a special invitation to an agriculture exhibition, said a senior government official associated with preparations. They will have a unique opportunity to savour a millet-based feast prepared live by renowned celebrity chefs, including Kunal Kapur, Ajay Chopra and Anahita Dhondy.

Joining these chefs will be two culinary experts from the ITC group — Kusha Mathur and Nikita Mehra. In the ‘Live Cooking Area’, the chefs will prepare a ‘full course meal’ with a focus on millets. From appetisers, salads, and main courses to desserts, the magic of millets will be showcased in its full glory. The special guests will also get a first-hand experience of making rangoli using millets with two distinct themes — “Harmony of Harvest” and “Unity in Sustenance”.

“The Ministry of Agriculture is adding a vibrant touch to the G20 Spouses Program at the NASC Complex with two exquisite millets based rangolis,” the official said.These artistic creations will not only showcase India’s expertise in integrated farming systems but will also highlight its significant role in bolstering global food and nutritional security. Using indigenous agricultural crafts, ancient grains, and creative flair, these installations will encapsulate India’s agricultural heritage and commitment to sustenance. The first ladies and spouses will also get a chance to interact with farmers and agri-startups to learn about India’s rich agriculture heritage, practices, and success stories.

The government has also planned a dedicated agriculture-themed excursion that will seek to acquaint the spouses with the strides taken across the vast agriculture space in India. “An integral component of the event will be an exhibition of 15 startups that through unique and innovative solutions are integrating technology to address ground-level challenges and thereby digitising agricultural practices,” the official added. The exhibition will cover the themes of ‘Climate Smart Agriculture’, ‘Innovating the Agriculture Value Chain’, ‘Revolutionizing Agri-logistics and Supply Chains’, ‘Quality Assurance for Sustainable Consumption’ and ‘Millets: Sustaining Health, Empowering Agriculture’.

The guests from G20 members are also scheduled to interact with 22 enterprising women farmers from 11 millet-producing states who are orchestrating a millet renaissance in their respective milieu. It may be mentioned that India’s resolution to declare 2023 as the International Year of Millets (IYM) was supported by 72 members of the United Nations General Assembly, providing the country with a unique opportunity to promote millets on the global stage. As a part of the exhibition an ‘Agriculture Street’ will also be on display, showcasing the agriculture value chain from Seeding to Feeding harmonising ancient agricultural practices with modern technological advancements.

The official further said the event will offer the spouses an immersive experience highlighting the remarkable diversity of Indian agriculture. It will also provide a first-hand glimpse into the transformative role of technology and innovation in shaping the future landscape of the agricultural sector. The agriculture value chain-themed stalls will display the first-hand journey of millets from the inception of seeds to the culmination of nourishing meals. “The special guests will get to know the journey of millets from farm to fork. The displays at the exhibition will offer a rare opportunity for distinguished guests to witness the integration of every step, all working in coordination to create meaningful value for end users,” the official added.

The visitors will also get a chance to interact with several Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs), which have assumed a critical function within the supply chain, ensuring the accessibility of essential inputs for farmers. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva are also among the G20 leaders who have confirmed their participation at the summit.

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