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Hello Bengal!

Hello Bengal!
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Heralding the onset of spring, a bouquet of crafts, culture and cuisine of Bengal will be on offer for visitors to 'Banga Utsav' at Dilli Haat, INA. The 10-day exposition, organized by the Office of the Resident Commissioner, West Bengal, with support from the Departments of Tourism, Micro and Small Scale Enterprises and Textiles, Backward Classes Welfare and Disaster Management of West Bengal, is to be inaugurated this evening by Monika S. Garg, Joint Secretary, Union Ministry of Textiles, in the gracious presence of Bhaskar Khulbe, Additional Chief Secretary and Principal Resident Commissioner, Government of West Bengal.

Some of the highlights of the event include the display and sale of fine handloom products, beautiful sarees and exquisite handicrafts items, geographical Indication-registered products such as Nakshi kantha  (traditional embroidered apparel) and Shantiniketan leather goods, hill crafts from Darjeeling and kantha stitch umbrellas from Jalpaiguri, terracotta and bamboo costume jewellery,  jute and jute diversified products, world famous clay models of Ghurni, Nadia, stalls of West Bengal Tourism, Agri-Marketing Department and Disaster Management Department and more.

There are also stalls serving mouth-watering Bengal street food at the venue, so make sure you try out the best of what the state has to offer. Oxford Book Store is a participant in this event and they will be dishing out their concept refreshments in the Cha Bar lounge.

Craftspersons from Darjeeling are participating as first entrants to the festival showcasing their creativity and art. As always, conscious effort has been made to promote use of golden fibre jute. A collaboration with Jute Manufactures Development Corporation has been made to achieve this objective. Also worth mentioning is a novel experiment of Disaster Management Department in their IEC campaign through the 'Bauls' (the wandering mendicants) in providing disaster risk reduction education. A troupe from Burdwan will depict these efforts during the currency of the festival.

Backward Classes Welfare Department’s lead role in supporting the tribal folk artistes from Murshidabad and Purulia through specially designed safety net will be evident during ‘Chhau’ and ‘Raibenshe’ performances.

While a classical dance performance by Delhi-based danseuse Smita Chakraborty will mark the inaugural day, special cultural soirées will also be organized during the fair at Dilli Haat on 16, 21, 22 and 23 Feb, with Sarod recital, Kathak dance, Chhau and Raibenshe folk dances, modern Bengali songs and folk music of Bengal to create an ambience of celebration, colour and rhythm. A special attraction will be Chhau dance by Jodharam Kumar and troupe from Shiv Shakti Chhow Dance Academy, Purulia, on 22 and 23 Feb. The group, which performed at the First Prize-winning West Bengal tableau during the Republic Day Parade-2014, was recently honoured with 'Sangeet Samman' by the Government of West Bengal.

WHEN: On till 23 February
WHERE: Dilli Haat, INA
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