Tomorrow is the last day of Bangla calendar year 1423. The day will be celebrated as Chaitra Sangkranti across the country.
Bangladesh Shilpokala Academy and different cultural groups and social organizations will celebrate Chaitra Sangkranti through different programmes prior to the beginning of the New Year 1424.
President of Sammilito Sangskritik Jote Golam Quddus said the people of the country got the benefits of different development activities implemented by the present government in 1423.
"The country is witnessing a remarkable progress in different areas of development as well as cultural arena," he said.
Bangladesh is now a role model both at home and abroad and it became the same due to initiatives of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Quddus added.
Noted litterateur Rashid Haider said the members of Hindu community observe Chaitra Sangkranti through different types of puja (warship).
The Hindu business people organize Charak Puja on this occasion and folk fairs are held in rural areas marking Chaitra Sangkranti.
Marking the end of the Bengali year, Shilpakala Academy will organize a Chaitra Sangkranti function on its premises which will begin at 4 pm. The programmes include 'Puthi Path', dance, 'Pala Gan' and Gambhira.
Bangladesh Group Theatre Federation will hold Chaitra Sangkranti functions at Jatiya Natyashala at 6.30 pm where eminent cultural personalities will join.
The function includes music, dance, recitation and Pitha Utsab and stalls of decorative clay goods.
Meanwhile, the nation is set to welcome the Bengali New Year-1423 through traditional Pahela Baishakh celebrations on Friday.
Thousands of people are expected to join the Nabo Barsho fanfare across the country on the first day of the New Year.
Various programmes, including like musical functions, colourful marches and Baishakhi fairs will be held in the capital city and other cities, while the business community, especially in rural areas, will open their traditional 'Halkhata' to welcome the Bengali New year.
Authorities have made arrangements to ensure foolproof security across the country on the occasion.
According to historical records, celebrations of Pahela Baishakh, the first day of the Bangla Calendar Year, started from Emperor Akbar's reign when it was customary to clear up all dues on the last day of the Bengali month of Chaitra with businessmen opening 'halkhata' or new book of accounts in their shops.
On the next day, or the first day of the New Year, landlords used to entertain their tenants with sweets. Village fairs and related festivities were other visible features of the day.
In course of time, the occasion became part of domestic and social life, and turned into a day of merriment with distribution of homemade special foods among the guests as well as near and dear ones.
Various agricultural products, traditional handicrafts, toys, cosmetics, as well as different food and sweet items are sold in the Baishakhi fairs.
These fairs also provide entertainment, with singers and dancers staging jatra (traditional plays), pala gan, kobigan, jarigan, gambhira gan, gazir gan and alkap gan. They present folk songs as well as Baul, marfati, murshidi and bhatiali songs.
According to history, under the Mughals, agricultural taxes were collected according to the Hijri calendar. However, as the Hijri calendar is a lunar calendar, it does not coincide with the harvest.
As a result, farmers were hard-pressed to pay taxes in off-season and to streamline tax collection and emperor Akbar ordered a reform of the calendar that starts with the celebrations of the Pahela Baishakh.
New year's festivities are closely linked with rural life in Bengal. In villages, towns and cities, traders and businessmen will close their old account books and open 'halkhata'.