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New Town residents celebrate Basanta Utsav after two years

New Town residents came together after a long pandemic-induced break to celebrate Basanta Utsav

Our Bureau | Published 06.05.22, 01:26 PM

CD Block

New Town CD Block residents came together after a long pandemic-induced break to celebrate Basanta Utsav.


Anuradha Chakraborty began with Rabindrasangeet and 10-year-old Sayak Saha recited Holir diney by Prabir Gayen. Block president Bijon Das said the decision to celebrate the occasion was taken at the last minute. “For almost two years, we did not have any offline celebrations. For the Pujas last year, we had even begun rehearsals for a cultural programme but later that too got cancelled. So everyone was looking forward to this occasion,” he said.

Amalabha Dutt narrated a funny story about a poet at a recital and sang Tagore’s Etoh din je boshe chhilem. “Many say this song was written on Swami Vivekananda,” he explained.

Shreyasi Biswas danced to Ei ujjolo din, Tapas Adhikary and Shukla Dasgupta sang Jatileswar Mukhopadhyay’s Keu Bole Phalgun together. Chandrani Sanyal performed the Nazrulgeeti Brojo gopi khele Holi. Cultural convenor Sithi Kana Ghatak recited a self-composed poem Duti shalik, that she wrote a few hours before the event.

Purba Kar, the anchor for the evening, appreciated the rich talent in the block. “Before this association was formed in 2019, we used to look for events in other blocks and performed there but now we celebrate everything here,” she said.

Shatadipa Bhattacharya


Abovahika, a dance institute based in New Town’s CD Block, organised Basanta Utsav at Nazrul Tirtha.

A group of singers performed live on stage and dancers performed alongside to songs like Ore grihobasi and Aji dokhin duar khola. Among the dancers was Sumi Pal, an IT professional and her daughters Aratrika and Arumita. “I was trained in kathak but had to discontinue. When we shifted to New Town, I joined these classes with my daughters and it feels great. Previously they would learn from me if they had to perform anywhere but now they are getting a solid foundation,” said Pal.

“My daughter Smriti didn’t get to practise at home as she was having her exams and only practised at the rehearsals,” said mother Khushboo Baid, as Smriti swayed to the tunes of Phagun hawaye hawaye.

President of Abovahika, Mahua Bhattacharya Adhikari, said this institute was her dream. “I am trained in Bharatnatyam and Rabindranritya and wanted a centre to focus on classical dance forms,” said the lady who is an air traffic control officer at the airport. “During the lockdown, we had online classes but it was difficult, especially for the little ones,” she added, before dancing to songs like Dokhin hawaye jago jago and Mor bina othe.

Shatadipa Bhattacharya

Palash Prangan

Cultural group Palash Prangan celebrated Basanta Utsav at Dishari Bhavan with an informal adda interspersed with music and dance.

“It seems we are meeting after a decade,” said former chief secretary Amit Kiran Deb, declaring the event open by sprinkling palash petals on the stage. He kicked off the adda by sharing how the occasion reminded him of the homely Puja addas.

Poet and writer Ketaki Prasad Roy said he was enjoying Holi in his retired life since he had been too busy to play with colours before. Sonali Das, secretary of SOS Children’s Village, said they had skipped playing Holi this year as 11 of their children were to appear for Board examinations.

Sagarika Roy Chowdhury, wife of Goutam Roy Chowdhury of the Sabarna Roy Chowdhury family, said this year it was their turn (pala) of celebrating Doljatra after 12 years and explained the rituals they observed.

Subas Ray, secretary of Palash Prangan, recalled how members would meet in the past years to play with herbal colours. “During my childhood, however, we used to play with so many colours that it would be difficult to identify us by our face when we returned home,” he said. The adda was punctuated with music by aristes like Sutapa Dutta Bhandari singing Phagun hawaey hawaey, Reek Roy singing thumris and Susmita Nandi Sethia dancing.

Bharati Kanjilal

Last updated on 06.05.22, 01:26 PM

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