‘Gosta Festival’ starts in Raiganj

Raiganj: After Durga Puja, Kali Puja and Chhath, residents of Bandar in Raiganj of North Dinajpur district have another reason to cheer with the six-day-long Gosta festival (cow festival) beginning on Monday.

During this festival, a yatra and drama will be staged by the local performers. Folk songs like ‘Gambhira’ of Malda and ‘Kahngan’ of North Dinajpur district will be performed. In addition, the ‘Padabali Kirtan’ has been arranged that would be performed on different days.

This festival started with a grand rally in Raiganj town where residents of different wards of Raiganj municipality areas participated. The cow was not allowed in this rally following the accident during the Durga Puja Carnival rally last year. Thousands of devotees from different parts of the district participated in this rally on Monday.

Bhola Saha, the Secretary of the Bandar Gosta Utsav Committee said: “The Gosta Festival at Bandar was introduced by our respected teacher Gopal Chandra Mandal 97 years ago. He is no more, however, this festival is still observed with great fervour. Previously the residents of Bandar would participate in this rally with their cows. Animals like horses and elephants were also a part of the rally. But last year at the Durga Puja Carnival a person died in a bull attack from the rally. Since then we stopped bringing animals to the rally.”

Chaitali Ghosh Saha, the coordinator of Raiganj Municipality of the ward and a member of the Gosta Utsav Committee said: “To entertain the residents arrangements have been made for yatra, ‘Gambhira’ song, ‘Khangan’ and ‘Padabali Kirtan’ on different days. A dance and musical competition will be held too. The best performers will be awarded.”

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