In order to promote the country’s rich and diverse culture in foreign countries, the Indian Council for Cultural Relations has embarked on a massive plan to double its network of cultural centres across the globe from the current 24 in the next two years.

As part of the plan, the ICCR, an arm of the Ministry of External Affairs, is set to open its cultural centres in Dhaka, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur and Tanzania before the end of this year.

“The idea behind the opening of cultural centres in foreign countries is to conceptualise our cultural diplomacy.

Through the cultural centres, we will be able to foster and strengthen people—to—people contact between India and other countries,” ICCR Director-General Virendra Gupta said.

Besides South Asia, the ICCR also plans to open centres in the United States, Mexico, Brazil, Columbia, France and in west African countries to promote Indian culture in the countries. At present, ICCR has 24 centres in 21 countries.

Mr. Gupta told PTI that his endeavour was to open a culture centre in Pakistan. “I am not saying that we will open a cultural centre in Pakistan tomorrow. We hope to see a cultural centre in Islamabad in the next few years,” he said.

“The ICCR opened its cultural centres in Bangkok and Tokyo last month. We plan to increase the network of centres to 50 by the next two years,” he said.