It was a colourful reception for President Paratibha Patil at the Indian pavilion, which has designed the world's largest bamboo dome at the Shanghai Expo 2010, where a visual treat of a collection of classical dance forms like Bharatnatyam and Kathak left her mesmerised.
"I congratulate and appreciate the Chinese government's efforts to organise this mega expo," Patil said on Sunday at the Indian pavilion themed 'Cities of Harmony'.
"In increasing modernisation, we have to plan and build our cities, so that human beings can lead better lives," she said, adding the message which is being sent here is -- living in harmony not only with people but also with nature.
The President described as unique the bamboo structure with a height of 17 metre at the Indian pavilion.
Use of these environment-friendly articles shows efforts for protection of environment and sustained development "which we are committed to" and which are important for a "pluralistic society," the President said.
At the pavilion, Patil was welcomed with a 'swagatam' piece -- a collection of all Indian classical dance forms like Bharatnatyam, Kathak and Manipuri choreographed by Maitreyee Pahari.
The Indians and Chinese designed the pavilion together, reflecting harmony between the two sides.
The huge dome structure resembled 'Sanchi Stupa', an ancient Buddhist monument, with its interiors focusing on the integration of urban and rural regions to suit expo's main theme of 'Better city and Life'. The dome linked 36 bamboo ribs, each a triangulation of nine bamboos.
The pavilion covers 4,000 square metre and its building materials are contemporary, consisting of massive solar panels, windmills, herbs and bamboo.
It features India's rich religious culture, traditional and modern technology and combination of urban and rural life.
From the Indian pavilion, Patil went to the Chinese pavilion, where she watched an eight-minute movie on the development and urbanisation of China.