Sri Lanka’s tribute to Bangladesh on third day of ‘Mujib Chirantan’
Day three of "Mujib Chirantan", the ten-day celebration of the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the golden jubilee of Bangladesh's independence at National Parade Square, was themed as "Jatakal Robe Padma Jamuna". The first session began with Hon'ble Prime Minister of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing the gathering as the guest of honour, at the function presided over by Bangladesh's Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey V Lavrov presented a video congratulatory message on the day. The guests were honoured with 'Mujib Chirantan' mementos, designed with the soil of Tungipara.
Students from P H Center, a government school for speech and hearing-impaired kids, presented the National Anthem in sign language. State Minister for Ministry of Cultural Affairs, K M Khalid, MP, delivered the welcome speech, followed by a keynote speech by Professor Syed Manjurul Islam on the day's theme.
The second session of the programme was adorned with performances by Lakmini Perara and artistes from Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. The excellent performance from Ceylon displayed cultural ties between the nations through the works of Rabindranath Tagore and his protégées, such as Sunil Shanta. Through their performance, they also paid tribute to the brilliant leadership of Bangabandhu and Sheikh Hasina in Bangladesh, and Mahinda Rajapaksa and Gotabhaya Rajapaksa in Sri Lanka.
Performance from Bangladesh commenced with a short film, featuring recital performances by eminent actors Asaduzzaman Noor, Jaya Ahsan and Nasir Uddin Khan. The poetic presentation sketched a historical timeline, reliving the events that led to Sheikh Mujibur Rahman being a student leader, before he emerged as the Father of the Nation. The video performance was interconnected with a folk music performance on Bangabandhu and Bangladesh, and dance drama, among other things.
Noted singer Kiran Chandra Roy commenced the musical soiree with the Nazrul song, "Padmar Dheu Re", followed by singer Chandana Mazumder performing with an array of musicians. A musical ensemble by Momotaz, Buno, Karishma Sanu Sovvota, Parvez and Shameem performed in a musical arrangement by Shayan Chowdhury Arnob, complemented with performances by the students of the Dance Department of Dhaka University, directed by Tamanna Rahman. The performances continued with the dance drama, "Mujib theke Bangabandhu", conceptualised by Gausul Alam Shaon, featuring noted dancers and choreographers Shamim Ara Nipa, Shibli Mohammad, with dancers from Nrityanchal.
In a brief video message, Sandhya Mukherjee conveyed a heartfelt message for the people of Bangladesh. Her famous song, "Bangabandhu Phire Ele Tomar Shopner Shadhin Banglay" was rendered on stage by eminent singer Sabina Yasmin. The singer also performed "Jonmo amar dhonyo holo, Shob Kota Janala Khule Daona".
The soiree concluded with performances by Joler Gaan, featuring artistes Azad Abul Kalam Pavel, Rahul Ananda, Shimu Dey, Fazlur Rahman Babu and dance performance directed by Snata Shahrin.
The author is a freelance journalist.