Hari Vasudevan : In remembrance

"In the Footsteps of Afanasii Nikitin", Expedition from Russia to India, November 2006-March 2007

This ambitious expedition, organized by the Adventurers' and Explorers' Society, New Delhi, and partly supported by the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, was the brainchild of Professor Hari Vasudevan, and was planned and led by him in all its aspects. It developed out of Hari’s longstanding interest in the epic 15th-century journey of the first major Russian traveller to India, Afanasii Nikitin. More than 500 years after Nikitin set out from his hometown, Tver, outside Moscow for India, and left his travel journal to be rediscovered and republished in different phases, this 14-member Indian group led by Hari set out to revisit the places of his voyage, exploring past legacies as well as contemporary business, commercial and cultural ties between Russia and India. The expedition by road, ship and air, moved along the old route from Russia through Eurasia, across Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Iran, retracing Nikitin’s journey to the kingdoms of Bidar and Vijaynagar in southern India. The expedition team had people from different backgrounds: a film crew consisting of Rajesh Jhala, Bani Dhillon and Sajji John; a still photographer, Ashok Dilwali; an energy expert and travel writer, Sudha Mahalingam; a journalist, Sunrita Sen; a geopolitics expert, Ramakant Dwivedi; a dancer and cultural ambassador, Sharmistha Mukherjee; and the organizer of the expedition, Phalguni Matilal. The photographs here are all taken by Sunrita Sen. A documentary film that was made of this expedition is featured in the video section of this website. 

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