Apna Poorvottar?Ek Utsav by Sanskar Bharati on New Year
North-east comes alive in Delhi
?We know you very well. You must come to the north-east to know and understand us.? This was the message given by the artistes of north-eastern states, during a three-day function Apna Purvottar?Ek Utsav, organised by Sanskar Bharati, a national cultural organisation, on April 8, 9 and 10 in New Delhi. The function was organised to strengthen the cultural ties between the north-east and other parts of the country and also to celebrate the Hindu New Year.
The festival was inaugurated by Shri Atal Behari Vajpayee, former Prime Minister, on April 8. Shri Mukesh Khanna, Bhishma Pitamah of Mahabharata TV serial, Shri P.A. Sangama, former Lok Sabha Speaker, famous singer Bhupen Hazarika, film actors Biju Phukan and Nipon Goswami were among the dignitaries present on the occasion.
Inaugurating the colourful event, Shri Vajpayee praised the endeavour of Sanskar Bharati to bring the north-east closer to the rest of the country. Recalling the attention paid by his government to the north-eastern states Shri Vajpayee said that a sum of Rs 500 crore was allotted for the development of the north-east by his government. Subsequently, it was felt that the north-east did not require mere budgetary help.
Shri P. A. Sangama said that people from other parts of the country should not remain ignorant about the north-east. Shri Mukesh Khanna pledged his support for such efforts. Shri Bhupen Hazarika expressed his views through his songs. The cultural programme included many folk dances of north-east. On April 8, a group of hundred artistes went to Rashtrapati Bhawan to meet President Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.
On the second day, the chief guest was Smt. Sushma Swaraj. She adorned the traditional dress of the north-east. She repeated Shri Sangma'swords and said that north-eastern states understood the country well, but the later did not understand the former. Paridhanam, a beautiful cultural programme, presented wedding costumes and traditions. Well-known actress and Rajya Sabha MP, Hema Malini was also present at the show. Shri L. K. Advani, leader of Opposition, accorded a reception to all the artistes at his residence.
The third day'sprogramme, comparatively more lively and flamboyant, was inaugurated by Shri Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, Vice Prisident of India. Shri Bhupen Hazarika and Biju Phukan were present on the third day also. Shri Shekhawat honoured some artistes from the north-east who have made notable contributions in practising and propagating Indian art and culture. He recalled his visits to the north-east and said that there were many striking similarities between the ethos of the north-east and other states of the country and the central theme remained the same. Cultural programme started with a famous dance-drama from Assam. This was followed by folk dances of other north-eastern states. The programme concluded with a superb show presented by Satyanarayan Maurya ?Baba? who sang patriotic songs and simultaneously sketched portraits of national heroes. The audiences were left mesmerised by the performance, which continued till late mid-night.