http://articles.economictimes.india...-israel-india-and-israel-diplomatic-relations TEL AVIV: Renowned artists from India will be descending in Israel to participate in a three-week-long cultural festival to commemorate twenty years of Indo-Israel diplomatic relations. The festival, scheduled between April 29 and May 25 , will showcase India's cultural dynamism, blending classical and contemporary offerings of music, theatre, dance, food, film, literature, arts and crafts. In the first Indian Festival of this scale in Israel, renowned names from various cultural spheres like Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia, Sharmila Tagore, Aditi Mangaldas, devotional sufi poetry singer Shye Ben Tzur, Zila Khan, Namita Gokhale, Reba Som, Tarun Tejpal and Urvashi Butalia will be visiting Israel, besides several other dance, theatre and visual arts group. "The idea is to bring the entirety of India, showcasing the multi-layered nature of the country, and to mainstream it into the Israeli society by choosing the platform of prestigious venues", India's Ambassador to Israel, Navtej Sarna, told a press conference here. "The fest will create shared platforms and build partnerships that endure by taking the message of India to all the sections of Israeli society. It will lead to greater understanding of each others culture, mindset and impact on all aspects of bilateral relationship", Sarna added. The festival is a fusion of India's best achievements in the contemporary and classical domains that will be displayed in Israel's three largest cities - Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Haifa. "We have enjoyed several Indian film festivals over the last few years in Israel but this is going to be something different given the diverse experience being offered. I know that it is going to be a very busy period for me and most of my friends who are enthusiastic about Indian culture", Dana, a student of Indian studies at the Hebrew University, said. More than 40,000 Israelis, mostly youngsters fresh from mandatory service in the army, visit India every year, with a lot of them spending several months in extended trips. Diplomatic relations between India and Israel were established in January 1992 by the Congress government led by Narsimha Rao. Soon after the ties were established they started to shape into a strategic partnership making progress in diverse areas with the change most prominently visible in bilateral trade that made humble beginnings at USD 200 million in the first year and registering an impressive close to USD 4 billion last year.