A Celebration of Unity | The Daily Star

A Celebration of Unity

Pahela Baishakh represents the ushering in of another year in the Bangla Calendar. This day is of particular significance as it brings together not only Bangalis, but all the various communities and ethnic groups who call Bangladesh their home. It is a celebration that signifies religious harmony, tolerance and the advent of the Bangla New Year is one that culminates in carnivals, cultural programmes, rallies and food festivals.

This year we take our readers on a journey of discovering the roots of the festival that brings together the cultural diversity of the land as a bulwark against forces that seek to divide us. The essence of Pahela Baishakh is that it reinforces our power of tolerance against the bigotry that has raised its ugly head in this land of peaceful co-existence amongst communities belonging to different faiths. Pahela Baishakh has its roots in the days of the Mughal Empire and even today the underlying message remains essentially unchanged: bringing together people under the fabric of secularism as opposed to communalism and highlighting all the traditions and folklore that transcend religion, binding us all to the soil and its fruits.

We wish all our readers Shubho Noboborsho!

Mahfuz Anam

Editor & Publisher