As participants lined up for pre – auditions of Jubilee Arts at the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Technology, Mumbai, the sight was indeed magical… artists of all ages, in so many different areas, engaging with so many different art forms… made one think, it was a whole different world altogether. One which promised beauty and splendour and expression and a chance to view life in all it’s glory. Jubilee Arts is a new international programme established during the Diamond Jubilee year to celebrate the global Jamat's vast artistic skills and cultural traditions.

The very celebrated Humayun Conservation project in Delhi is also an expression of changing lives through preservation of art and culture.  It is indeed noteworthy that the AKTC works for heritage conservation, environmental development, cultural revival, urban improvements and socio-economic fields, but it was indeed heritage conservation that has been most instrumental in affecting all of the other areas.

One may wonder how amazing it is… that the actual impact of arts and culture on human life, global development and constantly exploding social interaction is to say the very least, immeasurable.

In India, AKTC is the national leader in conservation, having successfully undertaken the conservation of the World Heritage Site of Humayun’s Tomb as well as 40 monuments within the Humayun’s Tomb – Nizamuddin Basti and Sunder Nursery area of Delhi. The conservation of 70 monuments standing within the Qutb Shahi Tomb complex in Hyderabad is also presently underway. Both these efforts are the largest in India.

 AKDN interventions in Nizamuddin Basti range from early childhood care – with monthly growth monitoring for 700 children, improved primary education aimed at over 600 children annually, vocational training for youth and women with over 1000 youth placed in jobs and 100 women engaged in producing crafts, Health wherein over 168,000 tests have been carried out and over 200 patients access the health facility daily.

Urban improvements have ranged from garbage collection and disposal, street improvements, building community toilets accessed by 750 users daily and landscaping of neighbourhood parks.

It is not however, just contribution that art encompasses in it’s many forms… It also helps foster and express love and devotion. And it was this very love and devotion that students from pre-primary up to secondary level displayed with pebble and pot painting during the Jalsa event, recently held across all religious education centres to celebrate the oncoming of Mawlana Hazar Imam in India.

Today, as many hearts sing songs of devotion owing to the Padhramni, the year has still not ended but for one more artistic endeavour to bring the jamats together in a celebration through music that is cognisant of the spirit and significance of the Diamond Jubilee commemoration of our beloved Mawlana Hazar Imam – Jubilee Concerts.

Truly, if eternity was a book – the starting page on arts and culture and it’s impact has just begun to be written. And it would indeed be interesting to look forward to the many chapters that will shape the community and the society at large in the forthcoming years…