The 157th birth anniversary of Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, the icon of Bengali literature, is being celebrated today in the country as elsewhere across the world.
The government and different socio-cultural organisations have chalked out elaborate programmes, including seminars, award-giving ceremonies and cultural activities, to mark the birth anniversary of the late poet.
President Md Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages on the occasion of Tagore’s birth anniversary.
The President, in his message, said Kabiguru Rabindranath is a pioneer and the brightest star of Bangla literature.
Bangla language and literature have not only been enriched with the writings of the Nobel laureate, but also the works of Tagore have become an essential element of world literature for their universal and artistic approaches, he added.
“Tagore’‘s ‘Aamar Sonar Bangla, Aami Tumai Bhalobasi’ is our national anthem, which is a symbol of unity and harmony,” the President said, adding that the works of Tagore give strength and encouragement to the nation in any crisis.
The Prime Minister, in her message, said Rabindranath is the brightest star in world literature. A diversified genius, this time-winning poet has observed the world very profoundly, which has been reflected in his poems, short stories, novels, dramas, essays, travel stories, songs and art works.
He was a poet of peace, humanity and an appreciator of eternal beauty of nature, she said.
She further said the works of Tagore inspired all during the anti-British movement and our democratic movements, including the country’s war of independence.
Tagore was the infinite source of inspiration for the Bangalees for his thought of nationalism, she said, adding that “the poet’s works touch us in our every crisis, merriment, sadness, hopes and aspirations.”
“On the 157th birth anniversary of this legendary poet, we should vow to build a happy, prosperous, modern, non-communal and peaceful world,” Sheikh Hasina said.
The Bangla Academy is set to hold a programme on Tagore’s birth anniversary in its Abdul Karim Sahitya Bisharad auditorium today.
The programme will include ‘Rabindranath Award-2018’ and a cultural programme.
The award will be given to Abul Momen for research and singer Fahim Hossain Choudhury for Rabindra Sangeet.
Shamsuzzaman Khan, director general of Bangla Academy, will deliver welcome address at the programme to be chaired by Professor Emeritus Anisuzzaman.Rabindra University Vice-chancellor Prof Biswajit Ghosh will present the keynote paper.
Former Governor of Bangladesh Bank Dr Atiur Rahman will be accorded lifetime award by private television Channel i for his research on micro economy in Tagore’s writings.
A crest and a cheque for Tk 50,000 will be handed over to Atiur Rahman at a function titled ‘Igloo-Channel-i Rabindra Mela’ at the Channel i complex in the capital today.
Various national dailies, including the daily sun, have carried special contents on Tagore marking his birth anniversary.
State run Bangladesh Television and Bangladesh Radio and other private TV channels, including NEWS24, will air special programmes on Tagore.
Bangladesh National Museum, Bangladesh Shishu Academy, Rabindra Sangeet Shilpi Sangstha and different organisations will also celebrate the day with various cultural activities.
The Dhaka University (DU) has also chalked out elaborate programmes, marking Tagore’s birth anniversary. A keynote presentation titled ‘Influence of Shilaidaha on Rabindranath’s Works’ and a cultural function will be held at DU’s Teacher Student Centre (TSC) auditorium at 5:00pm.
Prof Dr Atiur Rahman of Development Studies Department of Dhaka University will address the function as the key speaker with DU Vice-chancellor Prof Aktaruzzaman in the chair.
Besides, various programmes will be held at Kuthi Bari at Shilaidaha in Kushtia where Tagore spent vital part of his life and wrote many masterpieces there. Tagore’s birth anniversary will be celebrated in various universities and colleges across the country.
Rabindranath Tagore was born in 1861 at Jorasanko mansion in Kolkata, India. He was a poet, artist, playwright, novelist, and composer. His works reshaped Bengali literature and music in the 19th and early 20th centuries.
‘Gitanjali’ is a collection of 103 English poems of Tagore’s own English translation of his Bengali poems.
Tagore’s works were translated into English, Dutch, German, Spanish, and other European languages.