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Tributes flow on Tagore’s 146th birthday
KOLKATA, May 9:
The release of a cassette of Rabindranath Tagore’s songs in Santhali, the publication of a braille version of his complete works, prabhat pheris and Rabindrasangeet recitals marked the 146th birthday of the noted poet in West Bengal today.

Calcutta University unveiled a statue of the the poet in its campus in the morning. It is the first statue of Tagore that is set up at the university premises. Deliberating on the long association of the poet with the university, vice chancellor, CU, Prof Asis Kumar Banerjee said the statue is reminiscent of the occasion when the poet delivered Kamala lecture at the university. Tagore had been a full time professor in the university and a Fellow since the university’s inception in 1857.
Barkha Soren, a resident of Santiniketan, the university town founded by Tagore, released a collection of Rabindrasangeet which he has sung in Santhali as a tribute to the poet whose works pervade every aspect of life in Bengal.
“I wanted to convey the spirit of Gurudev’s works to Santhali-speaking people. This is my dream come true,” said Soren, trained by noted Rabindrasangeet exponent Gora Sarbadhikary.
Hindi versions of Rabindrasangeet had hit the market in the early 1990s.
In a separate function, IT Mr Minister Debesh Das handed a bralle version of “Rabindra Rachanabali”, Tagore’s complete works comprising nearly one lakh pages, to the State Central Library and 40 schools for the visually impaired.

The NGO Aamra founded by actor Mithun Chakraborty installed a 12.6-foot bronze statue of Tagore at Rabindra Sarovar in south Kolkata.
Speaking on the occasion, Urban Development Minister Mr Ashoke Bhattacharya said the state government will take up a Rs 50-crore comprehensive rejuvenation programme at the Sarovar.
The theme of the rejuvenation would be “Prem, Puja, Prakriti” (Love, Worship, Nature) in keeping with the heads under which the literary works of Tagore are classified, he said.
All roads led to Tagore’s ancestral house at Jorasanko in north Kolkata, where young vocalists joined veterans since the morning in paying tribute to the Nobel laureate. The programme was telecast live by Doordarshan.
A large number of people attended a recital of Tagore’s songs at Rabindrasadan that was organised by the state government.
Similar recitals were held at Bidhannagar Mela grounds at Salt Lake and the Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre of the Central government.
Posted On : 10-5-2007
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