My new found German friends


It is a new experience for me—my two German friends. Recently, there was a marriage ceremony in my family, that of my nephew, who is on a post-doctoral research in America, soon to move to Canada. I am not writing this article to narrate the marriage ceremony-main, for, by the time of my age this has become a stale repetition of what I have seen over hundred times, including my own. My nephew, here the groom, is a high achiever, and has internationally well placed friends. But my article is meant for his two German friends—Simon Hustler and his mother, aged 31 and 63, who amongst others, attended the wedding. This German Mother- son duo took the centre stage of attraction, by their involvement and participation; they studied the minutest part of our traditional rituals and took part in it wherever possible. They are strangers to our culture, but their desperateness to be part of it/ grapple it, provided us a lot of mirth and enjoyment. Although, there were other three Portuguese girls as invitees, they were not able to attract public gaze as they did not take part in the ceremony actively.

I won’t forget the friendship established between us. In the marriage ceremony, there was a great attendance of invitees; these two foreigners won the heart of all. Simon is a research scientist, in a German institute, his mother was a practising doctor. I had endless talk with him. I am basically a curious man, which my age of 68 has not been able to deem. Out of my curiosity, I asked them a lot of question. Communication was not difficult as Simon’s English was very good for our standard while his mother, an assistant to a dentist, did not know English. Simon told me that after completion of his schooling years, he did job for two years; then he went back to studies for 3 years; again to work for a restaurant for one year, after that he is now on a research. All these jobs in between, was to finance his world tour. … While my nephew who was being married, was finishing his research, Simon joined the research in his institute, thus they became friends. His topics of research, as I understood, is on mitochondria, which is the power house of a human cell. This sort of taking breaks in studies, to go for job for earning money, is not possible in our Indian system, had it been so, our people would find opportunities to continue studies. I understand this would enrich the individual, similarly the nation. Providing maximum opportunities to students by the Govt, only strengthen the nation. A nation is great because its people has greatly achieved education.

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While writing this article, mother and son duo, after completion of their attendance in marriage ceremony, moved to Darjeeling, and then they will go to Assam, all for travelling. They have a healthy habit of travelling; in his young age of 31, he already travelled Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Morocco, rest I do not remember. As he said, everywhere he mixes with local people intimately, to study their culture. I asked him to write a book on travelling recording his experiences. People will like it. I shall be first to buy the book.

In the course of four days they have won our heart,  I have understood again that human being from any part of the world is capable of same emotions, which is a great hope and have all the potential to  save the mankind in spite of many animosities. The complete marriage ceremony has been widely photographed by professional photographer; add to this scores captured by mobile phone of various denominations. Their mingling with us, and memories, have been recorded in the photographs. Un-knowingly, these two foreigners have become our family members. I learnt a lot from them, some of which will help me shape our Youngers.

 

VIJAYA SANMILANI AT MILAN MANCHA-2018 .


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yesterday I attended the Vijaya sanmilani of Milan Mancha at the Kalpataru club house adjacent to MIG cricket club in Bandra East. The venue, strategically located for the convenience of members to attend, was arranged by Renu Swamy couple, like they had done  last year. It was a compact 4 -hours happy gathering of the members of Milon mancha, primarily, it was a cultural meet exchanging good wishes after Durga puja, followed by song, dance, drama etc where children also participated in a major way. There were many artists from many fields to perform–mentioning there name individually will eat up all the space here, naturally that is not my intention here in the interest of brevity. only a few of those present actually performed because of paucity of time. Rudra Mondal rightly said many of our artist-members are so popular that they alone can carry a program single handed whole night successfully.  Not to be surprised, many are nationally  known, one is even PADMA SHREE awarded. Some of our artists  often give international performances. Do you want to be on-board next time? if you are of like mind and have innovative idea on travelling, you are very much welcome, in fact, MM is long in search for you, please contact Sri Rudra Mondal at Milon Mancha…………………………………… Program started at 6.00pm, and I left after dinner at 11.00 pm.

 

Primarily credit  goes to Rudra Mondal and Sharmistha, they created the platform Of MM wherein they pulled in, such accomplished artists from all fields. This platform is gradually becoming the centre-stage, of all like-minded cultured Bengalees in Mumbai. I am grateful to Shivaji Sanyal–actor, poet, writer, model, author, a multi-disciplinary man, who referred me here, but for whom I could not have made accessed to this bunch of wonderful, and magnificent set of people.

With the lasting impression I returned home at around 1.00 am in the night. LONG LIVE MILON MANCHA!!!!!!

Continue reading “VIJAYA SANMILANI AT MILAN MANCHA-2018 .”

MY RAINY-VISIT TO LONAVLA


We in the JAJABAR GROUP, comprise a small number  of like minded people, visited Lonavla to celebrate monsoon, from 18.08.2018 morning  to 19.08.2018 evening. There were many new faces –old, young and children, who are still studying or just waiting a launch of their promising career ahead, as a reward of their hard work. They were determined people and full of energy to enjoy monsoon with their abundant energy.  Seeing children enjoying in front of us, the elders, is satisfying.

We were twenty in number, our group was led by Sri Mangal Chowdhury and Debasis Saha–they made all the arrangement of our food and lodging  in advance, and were in charge, in conducting the whole tour. Sri Abhijit Sengupta and and his wife Sudeshna, are my new discovery, they are gentle man and woman, made our team enjoy the tour better.

We travelled to Lonavla, by train from Dadar. Some of our members, reached there in their own vehicles, but most of us caught The Deccan Queen, at 7-00 am, from Dadar. At around  9.30 am, reached Lonavla, from there we reached NUSI lodge of Bombay port trust.  Food and lodging provided to us was at unbelievably low price. Our stay was cosy and comfortable, and this helped us to enjoy Lonavla to the most.  During our stay , weather was cold due incessant downpour of rain; heavy cloud enveloped us; with this wind was blowing hard. A comfortable accommodation, with all necessary paraphernalia, our tour would not have been so comfortable.

After reaching Lonavla, we were led to our rooms. Then we took lunch; soon after, made for tiger point. Earlier occasions also, I visited the same place. But this time it was different; a heavy rain, constant high speed wind and a heavy cloud looking as dense fog, made the whole surroundings invisible, virtually was unable to come out of our vehicle. To make the matters worse, I was overpowered with a strong headache. Still, I ventured out, but strong pelting of rain dissuaded me to go far away from our vehicle, I rushed back to our vehicle and took shelter inside the vehicle, inside the car I was shivering to the bones. Here umbrella do not work, one or two of us tried to defy the nature with their umbrella, and paid the price —strong  wind either broke theirs, or blown it away.

Due to heavy rainy weather, we could not stay there for very  long time. Yet there were difficulties, and a sense of adventure with it. On our way back, we visited Durga Mandir. Rain and wind, continued, pursued us there also. After staying there for an hour, we made wayback  to our lodge. Then, we enjoyed hot tea and snacks in the lodge. The cold weather, chilly wind made the warmth of afternoon snacks, more enjoyable. In evening, all of us met in a meeting place, and shared our experiences excitedly. Here topics of discussion , were endless; as there were many new faces, they brought in many anecdotes from their life, to make the discussion lively.  I found a new friend in Abhijit Sengupta, an electrical engineer, working with solar energy; true to my nature, I made endless query with him on solar energy. He replied to all those patiently and knowledgeably, added to my knowledge.

We had a good dinner in the night. Our women members are full of artistic qualities. They sang, danced, and made the evening interesting, and unforgettable.

Next morning, we left for Narayani Mandir in Lonavla. It is very spacious place. All of we believers visited the idols, took prasadam, and saught the blessings of God. Naturally, there were unbelievers as well, who were not so eager to seek the blessings of God.This was an occasion that I tried to measure myself whether I am a believers or non-believers. Actually, I could not decide. Often in the past, with lot of energy I took part in intellectual debate over whether God exists or not; soon after I fell on the feet of God to save me from danger–real or imagined.  Here we had two octogenarians, who did not believe in God, and he has deep conviction in his belief, which at this age generally not seen, because at this position of life people starts softening.

But, unlike this very  old and strong man, I do not have a strong heart, mine is made of weak material. To be an atheist, one has to have a strong conviction, which I find in very few.  Here a look at  Jyoti Basu, a great communist leader, is worth. As a communist in red shirt, he has to be; he was an atheist, but his wife, was overwhelmingly theist, whole day she would worship goddess Kali–may be a part of her duty went to make amends for her husband as per his instruction. This is hypocrisy. Similarly must be the case of all atheist. About me, I admit that I am a weak soul, for my survival I need the support of God, so I always seek his/ her blessings. At Narayani Mandir, I prayed to God to keep the whole mankind and me, safe and sound. Did God listen to me?–only future will tell.

Then we had our meals as prasadam at Narayani mandir, soon after left for Dadar, and from there by train reached home at around 6.00pm. With a sweet memory we came back home. Thanks to JAJABAR, MANGAL CHOWDHURY AND DEBASIS SAHA.

I have given the account of my journey above.  More information about the journey can be had from photographs taken by our mobile phones, which are published in this post. Here we had the requirement of ace photographers like Sri Rudra Mondal, and  Sil da of Milon Mancha. They use expensive cameras, and other special requirements for photography, between them they have by this time taken several lakhs photographs.

But now look at our photographs below with our mobile phones. Although our photographs are not so rich in qualities but will give you a great account of our tour. Photographs will give an idea of what happened in our tour which we enjoyed a lot. Thanks for reading it.

MILON MANCHA ON A WHEEL–LAST STOP JAIPUR



Milon Mancha, has just completed a week’s tour of Rajasthan. As usual, they have done the tour quite effectively. Touring with MM, is a different experience. A  great leadership, excellent team work , understanding members, leaves a lasting experience. Moreover, the tour is done unlike the tour operators, at a minimum possible cost and time, without compromising comfort. Tours are financed strictly on a cost sharing basis.

It was a one week tour, visiting places of interest in Jaipur. For full account of the tour, you may look it up MM’s main face book page. Here, only some random photos of the tour, taken by their two professional photographers–Amalendu Sil and Rudra Mondal, are given to just give an idea as to how was the tour.

Those who have not toured with them, for them making an idea of tour will be difficult. During tour, you may get a bonus also for which you do not pay. Its members are not ordinary people, they are special people because they are singers, actors, recitationists, poets, writers, models, playwrights, theater activists. Most of them are well known people of Mumbai. Naturally, when you are in company with them during the tour, your time spent becomes very entertaining and unforgettable–only because they are all special people….

 


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Milon Mancha’s visit to Khargar, Navi Mumbai.


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WHILE OUR HOST TURNED A GHOST!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

 

Milon Mancha knows the art of travelling, creating pleasure and  happy experiences for its members. A constant research goes on in the mind of its leaders to create pleasure for its members within available resources. Those are travelling, and holding cultural functions/events.Tours are conducted for long, medium and short duration throughout the year. When none of it can be conducted immediately, at the least, a visit to a member’s place in group, is an option. Such a thing happened on 21.7.2018, a saturday.  This time a group of 15 members of MM, visited the home of  Kakali and  Biman Bose in  Navi Mumbai, a place with an abundant nature.

 

 

Biman Bose, although a Bengali, he is a local man. He is  an artist,  actor, writer, dramatist, and a social worker. As we know, a  successful artist understands people’ mind, and this makes him an excellent communicator. Without using a word, he can tell you a big story. He can create fun and  laughter without notice, and almost out of nothing and instantly. When you come back home, his words and actions rings in your mind……   A play written by him, will be staged in MARATHA SAHITYA MANDIR , Navi Mumbai, in the evening of 5th August, all of us invited.

 

 

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He owns a flat in a picturesque tower in the midst of nature surrounded by high hills which presents beautiful water falls in this rainy season. See the pictures in the post where members are enjoying rainy season. Members also sang, dined to their heart’s content in their spacious 14th floor residential flat. Their loving pet dog –nick named Puchi,  gave the members of MM a happy time.

Next day evening, members of MM left for home with a happy memory. LONG LIVE MILON MANCHA !!! DO YOU WANT TO JOIN MILON MANCHA’S TRIP NEXT TIME??? If in the affirmative, you are welcome.

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Bhraman ADDA of Milon Mancha on 14th July, 2018.


On 14th of July, after a month’s stay in Kolkata, me and my wife –while in kolkata was restless for it, attended the Bhraman adda  in the mini and unique home auditorium, of Milon Mancha. There were nearly 70 members who was in the meet. It was a pure adda, but not without a serious streak in it.

It was a meet continued for compact three hours, full of talk, song, dance and sharing experiences, and carefully prepared home food brought in by the enthusiastic members–there are luckily many.  Those of the readers who are interested in details of the adda they will be disappointed for I wont carry the details of what happened in the adda, here. They may click into Milon Mancha’s Bhraman adda in face book page. I shall deal with only a few major items which impressed me most.

First, Rudra Mondal, reviewed elaborately the travels done so far, their focus on the many aspects of travelling. As he said, anybody is not included in the travelling group of MM ; in brief, as a member one must be accommodative and understanding, of least complaining nature, they must enjoy themselves and help other to enjoy the tours equally. Not only this , if possible, they may bring new ideas to explore new places. Their focus is not on tradition bound tour operator-type leisure trip,or honeymoon tours, those have to be of exploring and educative type.

Many spoke their experience in their own way. The particular one by Biman Bose impressed me most. He is a theater actor. His speech took everybody to splits. He has shown us how without speaking, only by gestures alone, one can communicate to the mass with ease. He was appreciative, critical, supportive, and created a lot of fun. I have turned into his admirer.

 

Shri Rudra Mondal and his wife, Sharmistha provide the perfect leadership to ease everybody. Sharmista Made, as always. everybody feel important. Shivaji Sanyal, poet,spoke of an incident during their trip to Hampi, there was one seat less in the Bus, Sharmistha continuously used a stool for her seat in spite of many others offering their seat to her. A perfect leadership requires perfect sacrifice. Look at the photographs in this post, you can catch the mood of the members throughout. This is a memory we will cherish for a long time to come. Even since coming back home, we are looking at the photographs and discussing those pleasurable moments endlessly. I believe many of you doing the same.

 

It was a compact three hours full of performances of various items. An item I cannot forget, ringing in my mind endlessly, is the a medly dance to medley tune, in an uncomfortably short space of a home auditorium. I liked it very much, I was fully absorbed in it. The work is creative indeed. I request you to click and enjoy the the video of the dance, given below —

 

The dance sequence was rhythmic, made me sway side to side, desired it never ended. It was akin to a feeling I had during reading a poem of ‘palanquin bearers’ by the poet Sarojini Naidu, which I give below–

Lightly, O lightly we bear her along,
She sways like a flower in the wind of our song;
She skims like a bird on the foam of a stream,
She floats like a laugh from the lips of a dream.
Gaily, O gaily we glide and we sing,
We bear her along like a pearl on a string.

Softly, O softly we bear her along,
She hangs like a star in the dew of our song;
She springs like a beam on the brow of the tide,
She falls like a tear from the eyes of a bride.
Lightly, O lightly we glide and we sing,
We bear her along like a pearl on a string.

 

—-THE END–

A visit to Kanheri cave by Milon Mancha, in a rain soaked day


In this month of July, people in Mumbai enjoy a heavy rain .  In such a time, the favourite  monsoon beauty spot is Kanheri Caves located  in the National Park, Borivili , not far off from my home, only 5km .   It is a Buddhist rock-cut caves, believed to be the largest on the Konkan coast, were chiseled out of basaltic rock between the first and ninth centuries AD. Tiny spartan cells with only a plinth as the sleeping  area are embedded into the rock face. There is a main congregation hall with the stupa.  After the first showers of the rainy season when all gleams, fresh and washed, it becomes a dreamy place to visit.

 

 

Milon Mancha knows best how to extract the tourists potential of a place for its  disciplined team of tourists, MM took its members on a one-day trip to Kanheri cave on 08.07.2018.

If you are new to MM, it is good to know that MM conducts its all programs—tours/ cultural event -any, on a no-profit basis or better to say that on a cost sharing basis. MM always welcomes new travel ideas, towards seeing unexplored areas and new experiences at a less cost–if you have one, write to him.

I am not writing more fearing that you might get bored with the long account, better see the tourists in action, in the rain, in the forest, in the beautiful photographs taken by Sri Rudra Mondal and Amalendu Sil. In many cases, photographs of rainy tourists, may drive you to unconsciously run for your umbrella, be on your guard !!!!!

[ Don’t forget to visit MM page in face book, you will get their details of all past tours. Those beautiful pictures will take away your depression and blues if you ever drift into -God forbid, those human malaise]. Thanks for reading.

LAST, BUT BY NO MEANS LEAST, I HAVE A REQUEST TO TO ALL OF YOU THAT IF YOU HAVE ANY NEW IDEA ON TOURS AND TRAVELS, PLEASE SHARE IT WITH MM. MM IS IN SEARCH OF INNOVATIVE IDEAS TO COVER ALL VIRGIN PLACES WITH TOURIST POTENTIAL AT MINIMUM COST, TIME AND ENERGY. THANK YOU ALL.
Continue reading “A visit to Kanheri cave by Milon Mancha, in a rain soaked day”

VISITING BELUR MATH–110TH TIME


I have visited Belur Math so may times that I fail to keep count of.  Actually,  I was brought up In Bally, Howrah, the adjacent village, on the side of Ganges. Most of the time I used to spend time in the Ganges, rest of the time would be spent wandering about Belur Math, Dakshineswar, least of time on books. Holding my mother’s hand tight , I would go to the charitable  dispensary of the Math to take treatment for fever, stomach ache, cough and cold that one suffers in childhood. Those days the surroundings of the temple , was not smart like today. Often I visited, inside of the walled Math, without understanding the significance of those. Yesterday, again I visited. This time read all the notice boards describing the reason as to why various memorials have come up. These are very significant. The difference of my present visit, with the past is that now I understand the importance of  all the spots in the Math  area.

I have plucked a few leaves of the Bel tree, under which, Swami Vivekananda would relax, near which his earthly remains were consigned later. Now, a memorial stands there.These leaves will be treasured possession for me.  Mentally, these leaves carry me forward , through a long period of lost time to the feet of Swami Vivekananda, and drop me there. Similar feeling I had when I collected and possessed the leaves of Bodhi tree of Gaya, under this Bhagan Budhha achieved salvation.

I saw the memorials–one after other,  under which earthly remains after cremations are preserved–Sri Ramakrishna, Swami Vivekananda, Sarada Devi, and their seven disciples. Memorials of living room of Vivekananda also exists. In olden days when I visited I would regard those as simple structures and finish off the round in a few minutes, this time , matured with age and information, those memorials have become live to me, I felt in great communion with God, a feeling of direct touch.

Now, I understand, I was brought up in a sacred place , on the side of the Ganges, in a stone’s throw distance of Dakshineswar, Belur math, Tarakeswar, Jairambati–all sacred places which  people of the world die to visit. Moreover, my place is sacred because–GANGAR PASCHIM KUL VARANASI SAMATUL.

 

Gongotri and Gomukh


This video is about visiting Gongotri and Gomukh. Original link was forwarded by Milon Mancha. I watched the video in a spell bound manner. It caused a desire in me to travel those places. Actually not Gongroti alone, I want to visit many many  places, but now a days I fear whether I shall be able to take the strain of travelling, also whether for me others also will suffer, this will become embarassing for me. But this video aroused my interest to visit Gomukh, aroused  some religious interests in me. From tomorrow I shall work on it. Very shortly, I will make it known to all my friends.

RATHJATRA OF MAHESH


 

Of course, Rathyatra is due yet, it is due on 14th july, but as I have come home, I wanted to visit the site to see  at least how it is preparing for the great event. Within 5 km from my home, the famous Mahesh is situated, I am lucky.  At Mahesh, rathayatra is the second biggest in the world and the oldest and biggest in Bengal. Most surprisingly, I have not seen ISKON followers to come here while they are in hordes in Mayapur, Puri etc places. Any of the readers knowing it, may please inform me.

I visited Mahesh and saw the structure of Chariot. I saw carpenters are working hard at it doing many replacements, and painting preparing for the great day!!!. All around, local  people are going about doing there daily chores. They are seen to be nonchalant, yet these very people will be over active in the day of Rathyatra, there will be footfalls of several lakhs in connection with the festival.

Traders from everywhere will come to sell their wares in the fair, this will continue for a month taking count of soja and ulto Rath . I have a great memory of it–that in my college days during the this Rath festival I would be found mostly here, not at home. The visit to the place, with my wife, stoked those memories of the past, me narrating all my heroic deeds to her, of my golden days. I will tell all but before that see the following photos to know how is Mahesh now——

 

 

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NB–One of my friend  on reading my article above, called me to say that in my article there is no mention of the deity Jagannath. I checked it to admit that it was true, actually my mind was occupied with the arrangement of the festival, not the puja itself or the deities.

As for me, I am a great believer of God, and I feel his existence in a very subtle way in and around me, but I am not of a ritualistic type; hardly, I spend five minutes for my puja, recite Gayatri Mantra, during and after my daily bathing. It takes even less than five minutes. My strength is that I am a pious man in my daily living from hour to hour, minutes to minutes. I am honest, I love people, my actions do not harm others—on the contrary, without bearing any extra burden, monitory or otherwise, if  I can help others , I will do. But one thing is certain , without being a hypocrite, I am reluctant to sacrifice a lot for others, of course, if in small amount, I wont mind.

On the contrary, I have seen innumerable people who are dishonest to the core, in every sense of the term, they resort to puja for hours together , pay donation to temple God, feed the poor spending a great fortune , make a public  show of their ill gotten wealth, and given half a chance, they humiliate others. All their ‘good deeds’ are well advertised. Actually, through their deeds they make a deal with the God, believing that all their bad deeds will be expunged.

I believe in God, live by good deeds and values. I do not donate, I do not sacrifice. Through my good deeds I am protected by God. I hardly give 5 minutes to God. I live in God, God lives in me, his existence is palpable to me. Therefore, while I wrote above article I thought of the chariot, carpenter, people around and their life, and not of the deities. Therefore, I did not write. …….. IF I PRAY TO GOD, I SAY THAT KEEP EVERYBODY IN THE WORLD HAPPY, AND I AM AUTOMATICALLY HAPPY JUST BEING ONE OF THEM. If you have come up to this, thank you  for reading.

A tour to Dakhineswar


This temple is located just across the river, from my residence, hardly an hour’s journey . I have long association with it from childhood, every cell of my body, is filled with mother Kali. At the minimum every fortnight I would visit the temple to seek the blessing of the goddess, and most of the occasions, offered puja to the deity . It was a habit with me. I never failed to get the blessings of Goddess whenever I asked, or ask for. The wide surroundings, including the riverside  made a good sight-seeing for tourists. Further, there was, and is, a ferry service to take you to Belur Math. Now a days the present Govt, constructed a jetty–much into the river to get the right depth of water, to board, and de-board the launches employed in the service.

But I have a lament here that the freedom of the tourists, is no more there. Everywhere security guards carrying weapons, controlling your movement. You can not carry mobile phones into the temple area, so I could not take photos from inside. But in spite of every difficulty, I wont blame them, rather cooperate in their difficult job of protecting the temple from the terrorists. Really, the threat of terrorism, has changed the country, has seriously affected our life. On the day of visit, there were fewer tourists than usual.

Pray to goddess to protect all of us from this terrorist menace, and save the country, and all the people living in it.

Shri Chanchal Roy the Pantomimist


Pantomime is a kind of solo performance in which the performer conveys the story through gestures, facial expressions and body language without any dialogue. It is an independent performing art. The origin of pantomime may be traced back to ancient Greece and Rome where it used to be a solo performance. Pantomime developed in England in the 18th century. The early pantomime would be by a lone performer, and lasting for a few minutes. The pantomimist would wear black tights and his face would be painted white. The subject matter was usually slight and mainly of entertaining nature. Though generally entertaining, some of these pantomimes touched upon serious subjects.

It is a powerful medium to educate people in a fun filled environment. Using this art form in an intelligent way, we can reform the society, in making it free from political illiteracy, superstitions, diseases, and any other social ills. It is true that leftists towards the end of its 34 years rule did much damage to education, industry of West Bengal, but initially, they did many good things in 60s/70s, like raising general political consciousness, and for the first time, making people aware of their rights and vocal on it. There used to be dramas enacted on every street corners in the evenings, on political themes, and on a larger scale , there would be jatras like ‘ vietnam’ by Utpal Dutta, the net effect was tremendous—a leftist wave swayed people of West Bengal, especially, those in the middle and working class. The net result was that soon after leftists came to power, and ruled for 34 years. SUCH IS THE POWER OF THEATRE. Pantomine, is also a form of theatre, and can be employed to reform the society.

Pantomime can be employed to change the present society, for, its colorful presentation will be accepted by people. Currently, terrorism, religious fanaticism, religious divide, corruption are spoiling the society from the grass root level, reform measure is to be employed as a bottom up , rather  than a top down manner. At such a juncture, pantomime, and other theatre form. will be effective because this may generate people’s movement at the bottom itself, just it was done in the seventies to inflame the leftist movement.

Here, comes the role of my friend, Shri Chanchal Roy. He is a pantomimist of great reputation in entire West Bengal. Unless  I say something about him here, his importance in the field cannot be understood. He was born on 4th January, 1948 in Kolkata. He did his Masters on theatre from Rabindra Bharati University. He is a writer also. In the seventies, he wrote a play, “AMI AAJ RATE GALAI DORI DEBO”, in which he himself and alone, played all 16 different characters in it. He is not a theatre activist only, he has multifaceted faculties—he is a singer, actor, director, elocutionist, recitationist, anchor and a writer. In both state and national level, he was many times adjudged as the best actor and director. His work has been recognized and engaged by cultural bodies of state and central Govt.  He performed as a judge in many theater competitions, both in state and national level. He continues to be a professional performer even at this age of 72. His theater activities has kept him physically fit. He has school to train young children in the art of recitation, and pantomime. On an intimate talk with him, I have the feeling that his commercial success is not commensurate with the talent he possess. I advised him to contact Milon Mancha, so that Shri Chanchal Roy, Pantomimist, may use their platform to reach out to larger audience, in my knowledge MM encourage everybody to flourish. Milon Mancha is well known in Mumbai.

I personally feel children should be taught theatre at very young age. This helps grow right personality, removes shyness, introvertness; makes bold, courageous, and independent. All of us play the role of a manager or a salesman throughout our life in any capacity we live our life, personalities groomed thus at a young age is bound to bring success in later life. Academic excellence in Indian context amounts to zero achievement if you don’t have right personality quality. I would suggest that pantomime/ theatre, may be included in the school syllabus for proper development of personality of our future citizens.

A pantomimist in action, can you name him??
A pantomimist in action, can you name him??

 

KHARDUNG LA PASS/ LADAKH/ NUBRA VALLEY.


My brother-in-law, Dolan chakraborti is an employee of Ishapur Rifles factory. Whenever he finds time in his otherwise busy schedule, he goes out on difficult trek, and travelling, at least once in a year.  In his young age, he has covered half of India. His family members accompany him, in his trek/ travelling if those are not too strenuous. Only 15 days back he had been on a tour to Ladakh, Khardungla pass and Nubra valley. Like a true traveler, he is a good photographer as well, so during the tour he took scores of photographs, some of those have been included here for your watching. He will soon come up in this page itself with his account of the tour. In the meantime,  See the photographs, enjoy and comment……………………

LISTEN, ANIRBAN SINGS FOR YOU [ …. getting blessings of the legendary singer, Sudesh wadekar]



VISIT MY E-BOOK SHOP—24×7, AT THIS LINK–https://www.amazon.in/s?marketplaceID=A21TJRUUN4KGV&me=AFBCMC1T5UFA8&merchant=AFBCMC1T5UFA8&redirect=true


IMG-20191101-WA0042Anirban chakraborty, is a professional singer in Mumbai. He has been singing to the audience of Mumbai, for  last ten years. He has been singing in hall shows, stages, and five star hotels , also in social and family occasions, to the corporates, and elites of Mumbai.

Although, he performs mainly in Mumbai city, he performs in other metropolis in India and overseas also. He visited Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Ghana ( Africa) in connection with his performance.  This apart, he sings for dubbing films, and gives voice to cartoon films. Here, he is submitting his rendition of a KUMAR SANU song in his voice. Also, a small glimpse from his usual performance  from a social gathering, is given below. Please listen to the songs, and comment in his you tube channel. If it is to your liking, you may like to share digitally with your friends, for, by this he may reach to a wider audience, the ultimate goal of any performing artist!!!!!

 

 

 

 

MY VISIT TO ISKCON AT MAYAPUR.


 

Visited ISKCON, Mayapur for two days–11.06.2018 & 12.06.2018, total cost was very minimum, only Rs 950 per head per day, but enjoyment was unlimited. On 11.6.18, Monday, me and my wife reached Nabadwip Dham Rail station at around 8.00 am in the morning, then availed a TOTO to reach ferry ghat, immediately boarded the launch. Soon after reached the other side of the Ganges, and then caught a TOTO ride to reach the main ISKCON temple. It was 9.30 am. Soon we reported at the reception counter to book accomodation and buy lunch coupon, but for this our stay would be impossible.

Mayapur is a holy city located on the banks of the Ganges river, at the point of its confluence with the Jalangi, near Nabadwip,  130 km north of Kolkata . The headquarters of ISKCON are situated in Mayapur and it is considered a holy place by a number of other traditions within Hinduism, but is of special significance to followers of Gaudiya Vaishnavism as the birthplace of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, regarded as a special incarnation of Krishna in the mood of Radha. It is visited by over a million pilgrims annually.

A main attraction in Mayapur is Srila Prabhupada’s Pushpa Samadhi Mandir, a memorial to ISKCON’s founder. The main shrine is surrounded by a museum depicting Srila Prabhupada’s life using fiberglass exhibits. In 2002, the International Society of Krishna Consciousness was planning to construct a garden in memory of George Harrison. Another imprtant place to visit is the Mayapur Chandrodaya Mandir. This temple has 3 main altars, Sri Sri Radha Madhava, Panca-tattva and Lord Narasimha Deva. These Pancha Tattva deities are the largest deities of Pancha tattva in the world. The Panca-tattva comprises Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu, Advaita Acharya, Gadadhara Pandit and Srivas Thakur.

But I did not seek much details during the tour, for, my philosophy in life is not a conventional type. I am not ritualistic type, I believe in good work, and when you are so, you don’t need to go too far to satiate HIM unlike hypocrites, you get HIS love and blessing from afar automatically.  So during this visit to Mayapur, I spent very little time before the deities, and much more time spent visiting various sites and talking with people who came for pilgrimage. I passed a substantial time enjoying the serenity of the place.

crossing the jalangi river at Mayapur.
crossing the jalangi river at Mayapur.

I usually avoid holidays to visit such tourist places, therefore avoided sunday. Eleventh June being a Monday, rush was less. Accommodation was available at Rupees 100/200 for Kutir, Rs 300/500/800 for rooms in various Bhavans built entirely for the pilgrims, and also Rs 2000 for AC rooms. We opted for Non AC rooms charging Rs 800 per day. Lunch coupons are sold at various rates which are Rs 30/70/ 150 respectively. For we two we bought coupons for Rs 150 each. We were allotted rooms in Ishodyan Bhavan in the first floor. Our room no was 1112, well lit, furnished and ventilated. From the room through the window their property extends as far as you can see, all empty land, full of greenery. Some people told me their area covers 22,000 acres, but there is no authenticity to prove that. I tried to find out their owned property in the net but I could not. If some of you know it, please inform me at 9022641876. There is a lot of free space inside the temple area, free of noise hard to get in and around our city. I enjoyed supreme bliss here in this divine loneliness.

This apart, what struck me very interesting is the kutirs, cost of rent is Rs 100/200. Festival time, and saturdays and sundays, those are full. I guess it will be interesting to stay there, in a future visit I will try those. I visited the kutirs, those are well maintained, neat and clean. Outside the main temple area, there are protected gates through which you can move to distant villages owned by the temple trust, entirely meant for foreigners. There is I am told a village inhabited by the Russians also. If I had my say I would like to make entry to that place and live here permanently.

Next important thing what a tourist is concerned with, is about the food and refreshment. Food coupons are available at a price of Rs 30/70/ 150. Items are too many, as many as, 10 items for Rs 150, and lesser for Rs 70 and 30. For Rs 150 one, it is buffet system, your food is served on a table in a AC hall, for lesser amount you have to squat on a floor, in a line, and they serve food in a trolley. Food is tasty , mostly grown in their agricultural field, by their own men. Their sannyasis, just do not pray, the learn many trades for earning. They drive TOTOs, run various shops for garments, gift items etc etc, basic requirements are provided by the temple, a share of the profit has to be donated to the temple trust.

There are sweet shops selling snacks, sweets and other refreshments at a reasonable price. Here, everything is priced, You have to pay for which you take a service, a common line in this time of market economy. The day of free khana or prasadam in a temple, is over. I personally do not have any objection. Any charity or subsidy is counterproductive.

There is puja/ arati which also we  attended. At four in the dawn, we woke up, arrived in in the main temple. Attended Bhajans and kirtan. Usually, there are presence of foreigners in this arati, but their nos appear to have gone down. I inquired the reason of lesser presence of foreigners from regular visitors, according to them, it is that there are more and more ISKCON temple have come up in America, Europe and rest of the world; therefore, what the seek here, is available at home country, therefore no necessity of visiting in hordes to Mayapur. I think, there is much more to it. Might be, due to existent threat of terrorism, foreign nationals are discouraged from visiting in this part of country where required security cannot be provided.

I enjoyed my stay in ISKCON, Mayapur. Purpose of both devotional, and holidaying. I had a mind to stay a few more days, but tremendous heat of summer, and no rain, discouraged me from continuing.