The entire lobby, entrance and the front stage of the National Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy was enlivened with the portraits of renowned journalist, writer and cultural personality, Muhammad Jahangir. The adorned bouquets and lighted candles circling the portraits evoked the physical absence of the media personality, but the soulful words and emotive expressions on Muhammad Jahangir by the eminent personalities repeatedly affirmed the vivacious presence of the deceased, who is still alive in his great deeds.
It was a truly befitting programme that was arranged to pay homage to Muhammad Jahangir, who was the chief coordinator of Nrityanchal, and took the dance organisation to a great heights. A number of Nrityanchal artistes soulfully dance to the Tagore song Tumi Robey Nirobey in remembrance of the beloved personality.
Nrityanchal director duo Shibli Muhammad and Shameem Ara Nipa expressively revisited the fond memories of Muhammad Jahangir and called the country’s towering cultural personalities on stage to pay their tributes to the media personality.
“Muhammad Jahangir was junior to me. When my affectionate younger ones pass away, I feel a sense of guilt in my heart. Back in 1969, I met Jahangir in Chittagong and I wrote a letter to Professor Munier Chowdhury, the then Chairman of the Department of Bangla, University of Dhaka. Jahangir’s scholarly acts and creativity found a congenial atmosphere to flourish, when he was admitted to the department,” said National Professor Anisuzzaman. “His success as a journalist is beyond question. He wrote many books on mass media and contemporary social issues. Jahangir would deeply think on society and culture. He had great love and emotion for art forms, including theatre and dance. We will uphold the love that Jahangir felt for art. He will be permanently embedded in our hearts.”
Renowned thespian Ramendu Majumdar said, “Once I said to Jahangir that if someone publishes a memorial book on me after my death, then you will, of course, edit the book. Alas! I am now to speak on him in his memorial programme!”
“Muhammad Jahangir was a man of soul. Prior to Nrityanchal, he was involved with us regarding organising an international film festival, named the Film for Friendship. Not only had that he brought out a fantastic souvenir for the festival. He knew how to appreciate positivity. He would inspire me to write. When one of my write-ups on the Boston International Film festival was published in Prothom Alo, he praised me immensely. Jahangir bhai had a great thirst for diverse knowledge. Wherever he is, I pray to the Almighty, to keep him in eternal peace,” said legendary actor Sarah Begum Kabori.
Renowned thespian Ataur Rahman said, “Birth is a matter of celebration for every person. I think, death, in a sense, is a matter of celebration as well. I would like to celebrate Jahangir’s good deeds that he has left for us.” Eminent artist and cultural personality, Mustafa Monwar echoed the same spirit that Ataur Rahman expressed. He quoted Rabindranath Tagore and hinted that soil can eat up a person’s physique, but it cannot swallow up a person’s creativity. “Muhammad Jahangir will be ever remembered and alive in his good deeds,” said Mustafa Monwar.
Eminent singer Sadi Muhammad was at an emotive loss, and could not utter any words in his tribute. He paid a musical tribute to the great personality, rendering a choral Tagore song Tomar Ashim-e along with his fellow singers of Rabirag.
Professor Abdullah Abu Sayeed, founder of Bishwa Sahitya Kendra, Mamunur Rashid, renowned theatre personality, and one of Muhammad Jahangir’s friends, Chinmoy Mutsuddi shared their fond memories on him. Later, the family members of Muhammad Jahangir took the stage and the deceased’s sibling Muhammad Ibrahim and Rehana Akhter, wife of Muhammad Jahangir, spoke at the programme. The soulful rendition of songs, together with dance presentations by the artistes of Nrityachal, kept the magnanimity of the programme till the very end. Dance presentation with the Tagore song Jokhon Porbe Na Mor Payer Chinho wrapped up the wonderful memorial programme.