Welcome message from the Consul General
France and West Bengal share strong and deeply rooted historical and cultural links. As early as 1674, Duplessis acquired a piece of land in Chandannagar on behalf of the French East India Company. In 1730 Dupleix was appointed governor of the city, during whose administration Chandannagar grew rapidly.
On a cultural level, the mutual fascination between Romain Rolland and Rabindranath Tagore in the beginning of the 20th century is a well-known fact, the two authors sharing the same universalist approach. It is also known that Satyajit Ray decided to shoot his first movie after his encounter with French director Jean Renoir, who was in Bengal to film his masterpiece “The River”.
Since then, many are the interactions between writers, visual artists or musicians from France and Bengal, nourished by a fertile and constantly renewed admiration.
Since a few years France is engaged with India in a global partnership which manifests itself in the strategic, economical, academic or cultural fields.
In this dynamic, you can be sure of my full commitment to support any initiative aiming at strengthening the relationship between France and the North-East of India, which comprises, as far as the jurisdiction of the Consulate General is concerned, a population of more than 320 millions people covering 12 states : West Bengal, Odisha, Bihar, Jharkhand, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Tripura, Nagaland, Mizoram, Meghalaya and Sikkim.
As a token of this will, a visa section has reopened in 2011 in the Consulate General, which now makes it possible for the Indian tourists, businessmen and students to apply directly in Kolkata via VFS.
Apart from the Consulate General, the Alliance Française of Bengal, thanks to its excellence in teaching French and the many cultural events it proposes, is another landmark of the French presence in the city, and we hope that your enthusiasm and participation will help develop this relationship in the future.
Hoping to meet you soon,