Saturday, August 17, 2019 | ePaper

Happy Bangla New Year

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Ramisa Maliha Bhuiyan :
ahela Boishakh is the first day of Bangla New Year. The day is a public holiday. This day has a special significance for us as it is a part of Banglee culture and tradition. On this day, the whole Bangladesh and Kolkata are in a festive mood. Business people open new books of account which is known as Halkhata. Pahela Boishakh comes every year with great joy and delight. People greet each - other by saying ‘Shuvo Noboborsho 1426.’ It is held on the 1st day of the Bangla New Year and the Banglees were looking forward to welcome the year through this celebration.The day inspires people to start life with renewed hopes and inspirations.
One of the most colourful Pahela Boishakh events of the day is held in Dhaka. Moreover, Pahela Boishakh marks new beginnings for all creatures of Mother Earth. Pahela Boishakh is yet another reason to celebrate life in all its Technicolour glory! The celebration starts at dawn by the beautiful performance of Chhayanat with Rabindranath Tagore’s song Esho Hey Boishakh under the banyan tree at Ramna. In similar fashion loved people also come to join the colourful procession, the biggest carnival of the country organised by the Faculty of Fine Arts (Charukala) of Dhaka University. People carry colourful masks and sculptures and join the procession bursting with joy and spirit.
Naturally red and white roost the rules when it comes colours to wear for Pahela Boishakh celebrations. If contrasting colours is not your cup of tea, how about choosing one colour instead. On its own, red is a fabulous hue as is white. Women wear white saree with red border in contrast men wear punjabi-pajama. These are the signature attires of our Bangladeshi culture. Girls beautify their appearances by colourful flowers and children draw paintings in their faces. The busy roads of the city become crowded with the thousands of people, walking, eating and greeting each other.
The Boishakhi fair has become an inseparable part of Pahela Boishakh tradition. In cities and villages, people of all ages crowd around Boishakhi fair. Different stalls are put up to display various toys, show pieces, fancy items etc. Similarly, the ferries wheel is the major attraction of such a fair. People of all age love to ride on a ferries wheel. Beautiful handmade masks and traditional handicrafts are sold. Likewise, people celebrate their love for Bengali culture by eating traditional foods such as Panta Bhat (rice soaked in water) with green chillies, onion and fried Hilsha fish. Traditional pitha, batasha, muri-murki brings back rural flavour in our mouth. Songs are performed by sufi and folk singers. Puppet shows and magic amuse and entertain people.
On the contrary, the love and fondness for burnt clay is still deeply embedded. The burnt colour of clay that reddish orange tint, the mesmerising black glint on flower pots, table ware, jewellery, decorative pieces etc - are hard to resist. Be it a fancy Boishakh lunch or even a ladies shutki only lunch, I love bringing out the terracotta crockery and arranging a lavish deshi spread. In addition to this, I never polish my earthen flower pots because I love the green moss growth on them, I just love serving food in earthen dinner wares and most importantly I love sipping hot chai from a matir bhaar.
Before end, I just want to mention that whatever your choice may be, don't forget to accessories with fresh flowers, glass bangles, tip and a happy cheery attitude!
Furthermore Pahela Boishakh is very colourful day which connect us with our roots, our culture and our tradition. Yet, April is April and it fills our heart with glee. The festive teaches us to end a year and begin a new one in a style that is our own identity. Enjoy the offerings of Pahela Boishakh. Shuvo Noboborsho to all.

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