The 161st birth anniversary of Biswakabi Rabindranath Tagore, who reshaped Bengali literature and music as well as arts of Indian subcontinent with contextual modernism, is being observed today (Sunday).
On the occasion of the birth anniversary of Rabindranath, President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages, paying rich tributes to the great poet.
The government has taken up elaborate programmes to celebrate the 161st birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore at national level on May 8 in a befitting manner.
On the 25th of Baishakh in 1268 Bengali calendar, Rabindranath, the fountainhead of Bengali wisdom, was born at Jorasanko in Kolkata.
Nobody had influenced the minds of so many Bengali-speaking people before or after him. His influence has been compared, by many, to William Shakespeare in the English-speaking world.
This year, the main programme will be arranged at Shilaidaha Rabindra Kuthibari in Kumarkhali Upazila of Kushtia district with the theme ‘Crisis of Humanity and Rabindranath’.
Apart from Shilaidaha Kuthibari and the capital Dhaka, local administrations will arrange different programmes at Shahjadpur in Sirajganj and Patisar in Naogaon and Dakkhindihi and Pithavog in Khulna, the places where Rabindranath had memories, to celebrate the 161st birth anniversary of the great poet.
Marking the day, Rabindramela, discussions and cultural functions will also be arranged.
Bangladesh Television and other private television channels and Bangladesh Betar will air special programmes highlighting the life and works of Rabindranath.
The youngest of 13 surviving children, Tagore, nicknamed ‘Rabi’, was born to a Brahma family of Debendranath Tagore and Sarada Devi at Jorasanko in Kolkata.
Rabindranath’s novels, short stories, songs, dance-dramas and essays always speak about political and personal life of people.
Gitanjali (Song Offerings), Gora (Fair-Faced) and Ghare-Baire (The Home and the World) are his best-known works and his verse, short stories and novels were acclaimed-or panned-for their lyricism, colloquialism, naturalism and unnatural contemplation.
Author of Gitanjali, profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, Rabindranath became the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913.
Sometimes referred to as “the Bard of Bengal”, Tagore’s poetic songs were viewed as spiritual and mercurial.
His compositions were chosen by two nations as national anthems: Bangladesh’s Amar Sonar Bangla and India’s Jana Gana Mana. The Sri Lankan national anthem was inspired by his work.
The legendary poet breathed his last at his paternal residence in Kolkata on Sraban 22 of Bangla year 1348 (August 7, 1941).