Kolkata: West Bengal, along with the rest of India, dedicated Tuesday to mellifluous songs, captivating poems and stirring plays as the Bengali community across the country celebrated the birth anniversary of world poet and Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also paid her tribute to the bard by posting a pic on Twitter handles dedicated to Tagore.
কবিগুরু রবীন্দ্রনাথ ঠাকুরের জন্মদিবসে শ্রদ্ধাঞ্জলি
— Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) May 9, 2017
A very popular tradition is to hold a procession early in the morning, where women clad in sarees and men in dhoti kurtas, sings Tagore’s songs and performs skits on road. Celebrations commence a day before his birthday, as students in schools and colleges, dress themselves up in traditional sarees and kurtas and participate in ‘Rabindra Jayanti’ celebration.
Tagore was a Bengali polymath who reshaped his region’s literature and music. He authored the Gitanjali and its “profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verses”. Tagore became the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913.
He modernised Bengali art by spurning rigid classical forms and resisting linguistic strictures. His novels, stories, songs, dance-dramas, and essays dealt in topics ranging from political and personal.
Gitanjali (Song Offerings), Gora (Fair-Faced), and Ghare-Baire (The Home and the World) are some of his best-known works, and his verse, short stories, and novels were acclaimed for their lyricism, colloquialism, naturalism, and unnatural contemplation. His compositions were chosen by two nations as national anthems: India’s ‘Jana Gana Mana’ and Bangladesh’s ‘Amar Shonar Bangla’.