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Art Forum is set to launch: Virtually SALA Series 2021


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@artforumsf is a not for profit that strives to define and promote all art forms emerging from South Asia. Art Forum SF endeavor to present the visual, the literary, and the performing arts in their manifold versions, thus promoting a wider reach for South Asian voices.

In October 2019, Art Forum SF debuted the South Asian Literature and Art festival with grand success, at the Montalvo Arts Center’s picturesque site in Saratoga, California. The festival featured prominent experts experienced in the cultural-literary-artistic histories of South Asian countries and in different aspects of the humanities, to give talks, have exhibitions and performances, book reading, and so on for local audiences. Learn more here.

In these “uncertain times” Art Forum SF move to host the Virtually SALA Series 2021 with featured talks through the year, till it is safe to congregate in a festival setting. The first panel discussion is as follows:

Date Time: Pacific Standard Time – January 29, 2021 | 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm
Indian Standard Time – January 30, 2021 | 8:00 am to 9:00 am

Watch via Facebook LIVE 


CROSSROADS – CHINA’S ROLE IN SOUTH ASIA: Analyze and discuss China’s foreign policy and economic strategy for South Asian countries – Tibet, Nepal, Ladakh.

Panelists: Brig Ajay Talwar, Military Personnel

Mukul Sanwal, Policy Advisor

Vijay Kranti, Author, Media Educationist

Moderator: B R Deepak, Professor, and Chair, Centre for Chinese & Southeast Asian Studies Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi

“There world doesn’t feel the same, there has been a seismic shift on the geopolitical stage in South Asia to understand this better we bring experts in the field of China and politics – to discuss these changes and its impact to our lives”  said Ambika Sahay, Art Forum SF, Executive Director.

“China plays “Go” the West, with its Clausewitzian thought, plays chess. But in India, we play Rummy: we make little sequences of 3 cards and hope that we pull out the “pupploo” to solve our problems. It is time we stopped waiting for the pupploo and stood up for ourselves. Atma-nirbhar Bharat! That time has come,” said Brig Ajay Talwar, Military Personnel.

“Which values will the world converge on – those of the West or those of civilizational states in Asia, like China and India who have been living side-by-side on either side of the Himalayas for millennia sharing prosperity? Why do we see their re-emergence through the prism of Western civilization, with its colonial origin, complex global governance, international relations and diplomacy and constant wars, which has not been the global norm. As scientific and technological strength, not raw material, and markets, becomes strategic, India is well placed to be part of the global triumvirate, with China and the United States.” – Mukul Sanwal, Policy Advisor.

“India allowed China, rather supported her, to occupy Tibet in 1949-51 and thus allowed it to convert centuries old India-Tibet border into India-China border overnight. Over the past seven decades China has developed Tibet into a formidable military base and has become a serious and permanent threat to the sovereignty, territorial integrity, and economic security of not only India herself but Nepal, Bhutan and Pakistan also” – Vijay Kranti, Author, Media Educationist.

“China’s pivot to South Asia will be largely limited to its all-weather ally Pakistan, other smaller neighbours will not take sides between India and China exactly the way Southeast Asian countries do not want to choose between the US and China.” – B R Deepak, Professor and Chair, Centre for Chinese and Southeast Asian Studies.


Brig Ajay Talwar: An alumnus of Mayo College, Ajmer, Brig Ajay Talwar was commissioned into the MECH INF Regiment. He was the Defense Attaché at the Embassy of India, Ankara, concurrently accredited to Syria and Lebanon. He has commanded an Armoured Brigade and has been the Deputy General Officer Commanding of the Infantry Division in Ladakh. He has seen operational service in Nagaland, Jammu, and Kashmir and the 2006 War in Lebanon.
Mukul Sanwal: Served in various policy positions in the Indian government, including industry, agriculture, and the environment. He represented the Indian government at the Rio Conference in 1992 as a lead negotiator for the Climate Change treaty. He joined the U.N in 1993 as a policy adviser to the Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme and later to the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. He retired in 2007 and is now associated with think-tanks in India and China. He has a Master’s in Public Administration from Harvard University.
Vijay Kranti: An expert on China and Tibet affairs, he is an author, traveler, photographer, media educationist, a former staffer of the BBC World, Deutsche Welle (German), and Radio Voice of America. Between 2003 and 2010, Kranti traveled incognito on a tourist visa deep into Tibet and China on eight separate occasions. Equipped with his camera, he captured vivid details of Chinese suppression of Tibetan people, arts, culture, and religion besides their military infrastructure development and India’s borders. While doing so, he narrowly survived the scrutiny of suspicious Chinese authorities on many occasions. He has penned about a dozen books.
B R Deepak: B R Deepak is a Professor and Chair at the Centre for Chinese and Southeast Asian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.  He was trained in Chinese history and India-China relations at the Peking University and Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing, at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, and University of Edinburgh, UK. He has been the Nehru and Asia Fellow at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing. Dr. Deepak’s portfolio comprises numerous noteworthy publications, including Chinese Poetry: 1100 BC to 1400 AD (2011), for which he was awarded the 2011 Special Book Prize of China. He writes ” Eye on China” column for The Sunday Guardian Live.
Media Mayor Inc.

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