Photos: Prabir Das
The Bangla Noboborsho 1420 has brought renewed hope and promise to the lives of people. The celebration began at sunrise with raga Vairav on flute and other classical instruments at the Ramna Batamul. The melody of the raga in the backdrop of the rays of the morning sun resonated with the welcoming the Bengali New Year. Poetry recitation and songs of Liberation by various cultural groups set the mood for what lay ahead. At around 9:30, the Mongol Shobhajatra began from Charukola. The rally brought the true spirit of Bangla Noboborsho come alive. People, young and old, participated in the rally to be a part of something bigger than themselves. Boys and girls and young men and women painted their faces with colourful Shubho Noboborsho greetings. And there were vibrantly coloured masks everywhere. Masks have become an integral part of the celebration of the Noboborsho and a means to protest against social injustice. Girls and women wore flowers and garlands in their hair. The puppet show at Charukola enthralled the crowd, especially the children. Chhobir Haat, just opposite Charukola, hosted a fair selling paanta-Ilish, naru, moa, ektara, dotara, doogddogi, toys and masks. Each of these items tells a story about our rich cultural heritage. Merry-go-rounds and Ferris wheels delighted the young ones and brought out the child in grown ups. BUET, too, put on a festive mood. Cultural groups presented dance performances and plays. The participation of so many people regardless of race, gender and colour gives us hope that people are united in the assertion of their cultural identity. It has proved that efforts to create a culture of fear will not be successful. It has shown that the edifice on which this country was built is still intact. Once again, it was reaffirmed that people will embrace peace and progress and shun fear and violence.