For the second year in a row, Chhayanaut announced that it will organize virtual programmes with Bangladesh Television (BTV) marking the traditional Pahela Baishakh instead of organizing its the traditional gathering at Ramna Batamul in the capital to welcome the Bengali 1428 calendar year, due to the ongoing second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Via a press release, the organization stated on Monday that it had initial plans to arrange and record the programme at the Ramna Park without a live audience at the dawn of April 14, or pre-record the programme before that - however, it had to revert the last year arrangement based on the recent circumstances.
“As we could not celebrate Pahela Baishakh 1427 through arranging our traditional cultural festivity under the banyan tree at Ramna Park, we had been preparing and rehearsing to organize the festivity this year without the crowd, and also we had plans to pre-record the programme if the situation restricts us to arrange on that day. Sadly, as we have been observing the recent surge of the pandemic and also as some of our artists are being infected with COVID-19 - we have decided to broadcast this year’s festivity through a special collaborative programme with Bangladesh Television (BTV) as last year,” Chhayanaut general secretary Laisa Ahmed Lisa said on the press release.
BTV, the regular broadcasting partner of Chhayanaut’s yearly New Year Celebration programme, aired the special programme on April 14 from 7 am to 8 am last year. This year's programme is also following the same schedule, she stated.
“The programme will compile and showcase some of the new and previous performances of Chhayanaut artists, and this year we are featuring performances focusing on the Golden Jubilee of our glorious Independence. Aside from BTV, Chhayanaut will also broadcast the programme on its YouTube Channel Chhayanaut Digital - Platform," Lisa added.
One of the most awaited festivities in Bangladesh, Chhayanaut and its traditional cultural extravaganza marking the Pahela Baishakh on April 14 has earned its fame as one of the grandest regular cultural celebrations in the world since its inception in 1961.
The traditional festivities in Ramna Park did not take place in 1971 during the Liberation War of Bangladesh, and 2020 marked the second year when the institution had to cancel its usual celebration due to the COVID-19 situation.