A weeklong annual festival titled ‘Madhu Mela’, that marks the birth anniversary of great poet and originator of Bangla sonnets Michael Madhusudan Dutta, is underway at the poet’s birthplace Sagardari of Keshabpur upazila in Jashore.
Earlier, State Minister of LGRD and Cooperatives Swapan Bhattacharya inaugurated the fair on Tuesday as the chief guest where Sheikh Afil Uddin MP, Mej Gen (Retd) Prof Dr M Nasir Uddin MP, Kazi Nabil Ahamed MP, Ranojit Kumar Roy MP and Ismat Ara Sadique MP were present as special guests.Meanwhile, different cultural organisations in association with district and upazila administration have arranged various programmes on the occasion. The fair will continue till January 28.
Marking the poet’s 195th birth anniversary that falls on January 25, the festival will feature discussions, exhibition and cultural programmes.
This year, Jatra (a form of Bengali folk-theatre) will not be arranged for the sake of observing the fair in a healthy environment.
Earlier, President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages marking the birth anniversary of the poet. Widely considered as one of the greatest poets in Bangla literature and a pioneer of Bangla sonnets, Madhusudan was born at Sagardari village on January 25, 1824. He was educated at Hindu College in Kolkata and later converted to Christianity from Hinduism. He pioneered Bangla drama. His famous Meghnadh Bodh, a seminal work in Bangla literature, is a modern rendition of the heroic epic Ramayana.
Madhusudan’s genius and appeal was in his willingness to break from the past without abandoning it. His work ushered in the modern age for Bangla literature. He used the exceptional blank verse style in Bangla poetry.
The poet passed away at Kolkata General Hospital on June 29, 1873 and was buried there atPark Street. —UNB