Feroza Begum (2nd from right, front row) with Bidyut Kumar Basu (far left), Imdadul Haque Milon and Shykh Seraj (far right).
Marking the 111th birth anniversary of National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam, Channel i held a daylong ‘Nazrul Mela’ yesterday at its Tejgaon office. The channel has been organising the mela since 2006. Mobile phone operator Robi was the sponsor of the event.
The programme was inaugurated at 11 am. Faridur Reza Sagor, managing director, Channel i and Impress Telefilm Ltd; Shykh Seraj, head of news and director of Channel i; Bidyut Kumar Basu, CMO, Robi; veteran Nazrul singer Sohrab Hossain; Nazrul exponent Shudhin Das; Nazrul researcher Professor Rafiqul Islam; poets Rafiq Azad and Ahad Chowdhury; eminent artists of the country including Hashem Khan, Monirul Islam, Biren Shome, Shahid Kabir and leading Nazrul singers of the country Khalid Hossain, Sadya Afreen Mallick, Dalia Nausheen, Dr. Nashid Kamal, Ferdous Ara and Dr. Leena Tapashi Khan inaugurated the fair by releasing birds. A performance by artistes of Sur Shaptak followed.
Prior to the inauguration, litterateur Imdadul Haque Milon asked a few questions on Nazrul to several guests.
Poet Rafiq Azad said, “Nazrul is the poet of unending time and space. His poetry inspired us during the Liberation War.”
Journalist and renowned Nazrul singer Sadya Afreen Mallick said that Nazrul was born in the Bangla month Jaistha, when the heat is scorching. It’s also known as Madhumash (when juicy, sweet fruits ripen). Perhaps that’s why the poet’s two significant features are rebellion and love.
“Can’t we include 10 songs of Nazrul in the school curriculum?” she proposed.
Channel i honoured legendary Nazrul singer Feroza Begum with a lifetime achievement award this year. As the veteran artiste was unwell, she couldn’t attend the event. The organisers went to her residence and handed over the award. As part of the award, Feroza Begum received a cheque for Tk 1,00,000, a crest and an uttario.
Feroza Begum is considered to be one of the pioneers who popularised Nazrul Sangeet in Bangladesh and abroad. She was married to Kamal Das Gupta, who was a renowned singer, composer and lyricist. Their sons Hamin Ahmed and Shafin Ahmed are also accomplished musicians.
Artists attending the event painted portraits of the ‘rebel poet’ and images inspired by his poetry and songs.
“I’m deeply moved by the Nazrul Sangeet ‘Pathohara Pakhi.’ My work is based on that song,” said artist Shahid Kabir.
Throughout the day, Nazrul singers Khalid Hossain, Siffat-e Manzur, Salahuddin Ahmed, Ferdous Ara, Dr. Leena Taposhi Khan, Shahid Kabir Polash, Bizon Chandra Mistry and others performed at the event while students of Agnibeena, Abbas Uddin Academy, Nazrul Institute, Music College, Bulbul Academy of Fine Arts (BAFA), Dolon Chapa Sangeet Niketon presented choruses. Kazi Arif and others recited Nazrul’s poems at the mela.
Tamanna Rahman, Sultana Haider, Aslam Sunny, Anik Basu and their troupes danced on the occasion.
Twenty well-decorated stalls were set up at the venue, some displaying Narzul’s works. There were also stalls with photographs of the poet. Rare gramophone records of Nazrul Sangeet by Muhammad Rafi, Dhiren Basu, Anup Jalota, Anjali Mukherjee, Anup Ghoshal, Shyamoli Mitra and other iconic singers were also on display.
‘Nazrul Mela’ was aired live on Channel i yesterday.