Astana: Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre in Astana has been organizing various activities to strengthen ties between the two countries through Indian culture and Traditions.

Central Asia is a region rich in history with a blend of identities and ethnicities, diversity of scenery and culture. Amidst the shimmering mountains, highlands, lakes, ancient cities, and taller buildings, one thing that stands out for Kazakhstan nationals is the love for Indian Culture and traditions.

Established in the year 1994, the major objective of the cultural centre is to facilitate cultural activities and academic cooperation that strengthen India's age-old collaboration between India and Kazakhstan. Through its activities, the centre intends to enhance the people-to-people connect between the two countries. India also provides scholarships in various disciplines under the ICCR Scholarship programmes for students from Kazakhstan.

"Around 200 Kazakhstan nationals come and do activities here. We want to connect with the people here in Kazakhstan and make them aware of Indian culture and Traditions", said the Director of the cultural centre in Astana, Sanjay Vedi.

Kazakhstan nationals attend regular classes in Indian dance and music and practice yoga which has been an integral part of ancient Indian cultural heritage.

"I love singing Hindi songs and am very fond of Indian culture and tradition. I would want to learn more Hindi", said one Kazakhstan national who practices Hindi singing in the centre.

"I have an admiration towards Indian instruments like tabla and I like dancing to Indian classical songs", said another Kazakhstan national.

The relationship between India and Kazakhstan is ancient and historical going back more than 2000 years. There has been a constant and regular flow of trade in goods and more importantly, the exchange of ideas and cultural influences.

The flow of Buddhism from India to Central Asia and Sufi ideas from Central Asia to India are two such examples.

The size of the Indian community is about 5,300 in Kazakhstan. India was one of the first countries to recognize the independence of Kazakhstan with diplomatic relations established in February 1992.