The excitement and ethusiasm for the birth anniversary celebrations of Kazi Nazrul Islam, the national poet of Bangladesh, have been subdued this year too due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Tuesday marks the 122nd birth anniversary of the revolutionary poet, considered one of the greatest literary figures in the history of Bengali literature.
To observe the glorious day amid festivities, several government organisations and different cultural platforms have chalked out separate programmes with cultural performances and discussions based on the life and works of Nazrul.
Covid has led several organisations -- Bangladesh Nazrul Sangeet Sangstha, Kabi Nazrul Institute, Chhayanaut, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) and Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre (IGCC) -- to arrange the events virtually. Some chose to follow the traditional route.
On behalf of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs, State Minister KM Khalid placed a floral wreath on the grave of Kazi Nazrul on the Dhaka University campus in the morning. Office-bearers of Bangla Academy, Kabi Nazrul Institute, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy followed suit.
Bangladesh Television (BTV) aired a recorded programme marking the occasion. The programme was later aired by several private news channels.
Kabi Nazrul Institute arranged a discussion and cultural event in the morning, which was chaired by National Professor Rafiqul Islam, Chairman of the Kabi Nazrul Institute Trustee Board and the newly appointed Chairman of Bangla Academy.
The event took place at the seminar hall of Kabi Nazrul Institute and was joined by Khilkhil Kazi, a member of the Kabi Nazrul Institute Trustee Board and granddaughter of the poet.
The Institute will also air a documentary on the revered poet at 7 pm on its Facebook page.
An hour later, Chhayanaut will broadcast a special cultural programme, titled Shantir Joy Hok, on its YouTube channel and Facebook page, featuring its noted performers.
Similarly, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy is scheduled to stream a cultural programme live on its official Facebook page at 3 pm. Bangladesh Nazrul Sangeet Sangstha will stream a live cultural programme, titled Durjoy Moha Ahoban Tobo, on its Facebook page at 7 pm.
IGCC is set to organise a special event, titled 'Nazrul Jayanti-2021: A Humble Tribute to Kabi Kazi Nazrul Islam on his Birth Anniversary' with performances by renowned artists of India and Bangladesh. This event will be streamed live on its Facebook page at 7.30 pm.
Jatiya Kabi Kazi Nazrul Islam University (JKKNIU) in Trishal, Mymensingh, is organising a three-day virtual event to celebrate the birth anniversary of the national poet from May 25 to May 27, scheduled to be aired from its official Facebook page.
Besides, other cultural bodies are observing the day with discussions and cultural activities across the country.