| Artistes present a cultural programme at Bihar Divas in Patna on Saturday. Picture by Nagendra Kumar Singh |
Patna, March 22: Kuchipudi exponents Guru Jayarama Rao and Vanashree Rao performed at the opening of Bihar Divas today even as this year’s celebrations started on a low-key note.
This year, Bihar Divas — celebration of the state’s foundation day — has not been organised on a large scale because of the model code of conduct in place for the general elections.
Unlike the last two years when Gandhi Maidan was the venue for the state extravaganza, this time, cultural events have been organised at SK Memorial Hall, Rabindra Bhavan and Premchand Rangshala.
Events on the first day were organised at SK Memorial Hall. Chief secretary Ashok Kumar Sinha inaugurated the event by lighting the traditional lamp. The celebrations started with the Bihar rajya geet (state anthem), prarthana (state prayer) and Bihar gaurav gaan. Performances by Kuchipudi maestro Guru Jayarama Rao and Vanashree Rao followed.
Sinha said: “Bihar was carved out of Bengal 102 years ago and we started celebrating Bihar Divas a couple of years ago. On this auspicious occasion, I would like to make an appeal to the people to contribute to the development of the state in every possible way.”
SK Memorial Hall would host the classical performances in Patna, while Rabindra Bhavan has been kept for programmes in local dialects and performances by school and college students. Premchand Rangshala would host poetry and drama events among others.
Artists, including Vishwa Mohan Bhatt and Geeta Chandran, would perform during the next two days in Patna. Dance companies, including Prince Dance Group from Odisha and Samudra Group from Kerala, would also entertain the people.
The Bihar Divas events have mostly been organised by the state education department. Amarjeet Sinha, principal secretary, education, said the foundation day celebrations were held across 73,000 primary and middle government schools across Bihar.
“The Bihar Divas celebrations this year are being held strictly according to the election’s model code of conduct. Around 2.20 crore students participated in various educational, cultural and social programmes held in around 73,000 schools across the state today,” he said.
Bihar Divas 2014 is also being held in Delhi too. The Bihar State Tourism Development Corporation has organised the Bihar Food Festival 2014 at Delhi Haat. The event, which started from Thursday, will end on March 31.
The main food court has five stalls offering people delicacies from Bihar. One stall each has been allotted to wildlife and handicraft from Bihar.