Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday stated that for every situation in her life, Rabindranath Tagore gave her constant company and it is his timeless works, songs and poems that render immense inspiration and motivation to her.
"Tagore is ageless and he is universal. His thinkings should continue to inspire us," Banerjee said referring to how she, like numerous Bengalis, "continue to be motivated by Gurudev through his songs and poems."
Inaugurating the 156th birth anniversary celebration of the Bard organised by the Information and Cultural Affairs Department, Banerjee said: "If someone tries to intimidate me, I remember Kabiguru's Chitta jetha bhoy sunyo uchho jetha shir (Where the mind is held without fear and the head is held high). When a storm approaches, I sing Jhor ke ami korbo mite Dorbo na tar vrukutite, Banerjee said before a packed audience including prominent singers.
"In moments of solitude, I again remember Jodi tor daak sune keu naa ase (Walk the path alone, if none accompanies you), and when I feel pained I remember Mone ki dwidha rekhe gele tumi, the CM said in her address. She said that Tagore is also her companion in moments of depression when she sings Sudhu tomar bani noy and Jibon jakhon sukaye jay karunadharay eso.
The Chief Minister said that without Tagore her very existence becomes meaningless. "Tagore has crossed frontiers and been embraced by the people of this world," she said.
Eminent Rabindra Sangeet exponents, including Swagatalakshmi Dasgupta, Sibaji Chattopadhyay and others, regaled the packed audience with some of the poet's songs.
Hundreds of people thronged the venue as the programme was shown on giant screens placed at convenient corners of the complex.
At Tagore's ancestral home 'Jorasanko Thakur Bari' in north Kolkata, cultural programmes started early in the morning and continued for the rest of the day. Students, attired in traditional Bengali dresses, sang and danced to the Bard's compositions.
Rabindra Jayanti was observed in Rabindra Tirtha in New Townwhere Rabindra Sangeet exponents and elocutionists took part in the programme titled Hey Chiranutan that began at 7 am.
The second session began at 5 pm. The students of Nava Nalanda School observed the birth anniversary of Tagore on Southern Avenue Boulevard. Several housing complexes also organised Rabindra Jayanti where the residents participated in various cultural events.