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Slice of South Africa in Shillong show

- Huge footfall at carnival; Proteas, Thais, Lankans, Bangladeshis, Pakistanis, Nepalis at fair
The brother-sister duo of Lyton Sicelo Moyo and Helen Dineo Supine at the fair in Shillong on Tuesday. Picture by UB Photos

Shillong, Dec. 3: South Africa has come to town. For the first time ever!

The African nation is part of the eighth International Shillong Shopping Carnival, 2013, an initiative started by the Industries and Trade Fair Association of Assam (ITFAA) with support of National Jute Board, ministry of textiles, the central government and the Meghalaya government. The fete will be held at Madan Iew Rynghep, Laitumkhrah, in the heart of this capital city.

The carnival was officially launched on November 29 and will conclude on December 12.

Apart from representatives from countries like Thailand, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal, South Africa is participating for the first time in any fair in Meghalaya, ITFAA secretary Rajeev Das said.

The brother-sister duo of Lyton Sicelo Moyo and Helen Dineo Supine, who have come from Johannesburg, are spellbound by the beauty of the city.

“This is our first visit to Meghalaya and we are awestruck by the beauty and weather,” said Helen. At 19.7 degrees Celsius and the advent of Christmas, Shillong is indeed the place to be in at present.

Lyton and Helen’s stall, Lungisani Doingz Craft, has become the cynosure of attraction in the carnival with the exquisite array of traditional and artificial jewellery from South Africa.

The Thailand Pavilion is housing 20 reputed companies while Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Nepal are displaying and selling exquisite products from their countries, varying from jewellery, household goods, handicraft, onyx and others.

With the city in the grip of the Yuletide spirit, Christmas trees and sparkling stars of Bethlehem have been put on sale while two-wheelers as gifts and mouth-watering food are also part of the carnival.

Apart from the foreign delegates, Das said participants from across the country have also opened stalls and are attracting huge crowd since November 29.

The National Jute Board pavilion, with more than 15 entrepreneurs from different parts of the country, is another big draw in the fair, Das said.

Stating that the crowd participation has been vigorous thus far, he said that the footfall was nearly 7,000 today.