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Parade to Punjabi pop, stand-up to circus — what to do in Kolkata on the Republic Day long weekend

There’s something for everyone to enjoy in venues around the city — from music concerts and a virtual marathon to the Kolkata Book Fair and more

Urvashi Bhattacharya | Published 25.01.24, 06:15 PM
Republic Day Parades to the Boi Mela and more — check out what to do and where to go over the Republic Day weekend in Kolkata

Republic Day Parades to the Boi Mela and more — check out what to do and where to go over the Republic Day weekend in Kolkata

My Kolkata

The weekend is always something everyone looks forward to after a hectic work week. But luckily, this weekend is extra special, as not only do we spend a day full of patriotism on Republic Day but we also get to relax on an extra day of the weekend. With a three-day break, My Kolkata lists several activities we can keep ourselves engrossed in.

Watch the Republic Day Parades at home

Citizens nationwide are gearing up to watch the colourful tableaus for the Republic Day Parade 2024. In Delhi, the Rajpath will be the stage for the parade, showcasing the might of the country’s military and paramilitary forces, along vibrant tableaus from around the country, as well as performances. This year, the Delhi parade, which will commence in Vijay Chowk and culminate at Kartavya Path, has a theme of ‘Viksit Bharat’ and ‘Bharat - Loktantra ki Matruka’, and will have French President Emmanuel Macron as the chief guest.


Closer to home, in Kolkata, Red Road is all decked up for the city’s Republic Day Parade. The 65-minute parade will showcase units from three forces including the army, air force and navy along with contingents from Kolkata and West Bengal’s defence and police forces, government bodies and schools.

Republic Day Parade rehearsals on Red Road

Republic Day Parade rehearsals on Red Road

Suvendu Das

When: Delhi - January 26, 9.30am onwards; Kolkata - January 26, 10am onwards

Watch on: Doordarshan will be telecasting the parades live. You can also watch the Delhi parade on the YouTube channels of Doordarshan, All India Radio, and the President of India. The Kolkata parade can be seen online on the DD Bangla YouTube Channel

Visit the Kolkata Book Fair 

Winter in Kolkata is incomplete without a trip to the International Kolkata Book Fair, the city’s Boi Mela. Publishers big and small also wait for this mega event for brisk business. What better way to spend your time than browsing through books? Fill your bags with limited edition and popular tomes and comics in English, Bengali and other languages, eat at the food stalls, catch a performance or two, and also check out the UK Pavilion, which is this year’s country in focus.

Crowds at the 47th International Kolkata Book Fair

Crowds at the 47th International Kolkata Book Fair

My Kolkata

When: Till January 31, 10am - 8pm

Where: Central Park Mela Ground, Karunamoyee, Salt Lake

Buy tickets: Entry free

Run a virtual marathon 

Imagine completing a marathon that you can conquer at your pace, in your place, and at your time! India Vision Events is hosting a Republic Day-themed running and cycling challenge, and everyone is invited! After signing up online, you can choose between the 5km, 10km, 21km, 42km, 50 km, or even the epic 100km challenge. After achieving your challenge, you can share your glorious achievement by sending your data to their WhatsApp number (+91 7828316343) and the organisers will send you a personalised trophy with your name on it along with other rewards.

On till: January 28

Sign up here

Pocket pinch: Rs 420 onwards

Groove to Punjabi pop and Punjabi Sufi music

Punjabi pop has to be one of the most fun genres India has out there. A day after Republic Day, Satinder Sartaaj will take centre stage for a three-hour concert in Topsia for Mehfil E Sartaaj. The concert is a part of his ongoing celebrations of signing with the Rukus Avenue music label. A versatile artiste, songwriter, singer, composer, and poet, Sartaaj stands at the pinnacle of his craft, serving as a true inspiration. His art delves into life’s meaning and deepest emotions that are rooted in his ancestral values and poetry. Don’t miss the opportunity to experience this Punjabi-Sufi maestro at his best.

When: January 27, 6pm

Where: Science City Auditorium, J.B.S. Haldane Avenue

Buy tickets here.

Pocket pinch: Rs 1,000 onwards

Laugh out loud with Varun Grover

Nothing like a good laugh to set the tone for the long weekend. Head over to Kala Mandir for a fun evening, as comedian Varun Grover is making his way to Kolkata as part of his India tour for his stand-up special Nothing Makes Sense. With his latest stand-up solo, the comedian — who also penned the lyrics for Raat Akeli Thi from newly released Merry Christmas will bring a new set of irreverent humour and personal anecdotes. With satirical observations and stories from his upbringing in India of the 1990s and 2000s, Nothing Makes Sense is a standup special that is not only relatable but will also have you giggling all weekend. Plus, the comedian and songwriter has offered a special discount on tickets for students.

When: January 27, 7.30pm onwards

Where: Kala Mandir, 48, Shakespeare Sarani Road

Buy tickets here

Pocket pinch: Rs 799 onwards

A dose of wellness with yoga 

Boost your teenager’s cognitive and physical health with valuable insights from Goa-based yoga teacher, wellness entrepreneur and lawyer Varuna Shunglu. A Kolkata girl, Varuna will help participants identify and address imbalances through breathwork, meditation, and yogic wisdom.

When: January 26, 11am

Where: Waypoint, 32B, Sarat Bose Road (opp Samilton Hotel)

Register: Call +91 824-0675813 to register; limited seating available

Pocket Pinch: No entry cost

Tune into some soulful Sufi music 

If you want a night to just sit back, unwind and melt into soulful music, make your way to Capella at AltAir. Delhi-based modern Sufi band Dam Saaz from Delhi will be performing live at the newly-revamped Capella, fresh after their performances in Goa and Faridabad. Enjoy the 360-degree view of the Kolkata skyline, order a glass of bubbly from the island bar and tune into their latest hits like Dum Mast Qalandar.

When: January 26, 8pm onwards

Where: Capella, AltAir, Ambuja Neotia Eco Enclave, 21st floor

Pocket pinch: Cover charge of Rs 5,000 for a table for two; additional Rs 2,500 per person

For bookings: Contact 9073927896

Dance away at a hard techno takeover

A little partying never hurt anybody, which is why Kolkata’s one8 Commune is gearing up for a hard techno scene. Internationally known DJ Samantha Togni will be present at one8 Commune to play her electronic set alongside Ana Lilia, another well-known face in the electronic music scene. The event will be opened by names like Adhox, Dibesh, Deathonetor, Josh, Mr Black, Off-Clocks and Ray3urn. Organised by The BPM Theory, the night promises rapid beats, screaming melodies and a whole lot of energy

When: January 27, 9pm onwards

Where: one8 Commune, The Golden Parkk

Buy tickets here or on WhatsApp here

Catch the circus in town 

Juggling, acrobatics, a sari act, knife thrills, shooting and fire shows and more — Kohinoor Circus promises two hours of gripping “wow” moments interspersed with some laughs by the clowns. Head there with your kid and relive your childhood.

When: On until Sunday, January 28 with shows every day at 1pm, 4pm and 7pm

Where: Patuli Circus Ground, near 45 bus stand

Buy tickets: At the venue

Pocket pinch: Rs 100, Rs 200, Rs 300 and Rs 400

Attend a tribute to the rock masters 

Someplace Else will be hosting a Tribute To The Greatest Rockstars of the 1960s and ’70s. Think of names like Jim Morrison and The Doors, Kiss, Bob Dylan and other legends. And who will be taking centre stage to cover these bands? Local band 1972 – where Nondon Bagchi is their band drummer. Sixties and ’70s rock with a Nondon Bagchi flair? Yes, please!

When: January 26, 9.30pm onwards

Where: Someplace Else, The Park Hotel, Park Street

Entry: On-spot

Spend the day shopping and more at a flea market 

Fashion, lifestyle, food, art and entertainment all in one place — the Kolkata Streetscape Carnival will have it all. With 30-plus stalls there will be home brands, food pop-ups, art and decor, and more. With the inauguration taking place at 4pm on January 26, the exhibition will kick off with events and activities for people of all ages. Organised by Chaitown Community, the event will also have an art zone, interactive activities, tattoo and tie-dye workshops, a kids’ corner and more. Live music and dance performances will also be taking place throughout the day.

When: January 26- 28, 1pm - 8pm

Where: Shibmandir Puja Prangon, Lake Temple Road, near Menoka Cinema

Entry: Free

Last updated on 25.01.24, 06:44 PM

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