'Pahela Baishakh' Bengali New year festival | Coursera Community
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'Pahela Baishakh' Bengali New year festival


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I am Debasish Paul. I am Mentor at 'Understanding Plants - part I: What a Plant Knows'. I am doing my Masters in Horticulture at Hajee Mohammad Danesh Science and Technology University, Dinajpur, Bangladesh. Here I am going to present Bangladesh's 'Bangla New year Festival', which is called 'Pahela Baishakh'. I have presented this topic in slides.
Slideshare Link: https://www.slideshare.net/Debasish0013/pahela-baishakh


Find out more about Cultural Connection Week and view other people’s posts about their cultures here.

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Great work!

The Bangla New year Festival; which marks the first day on the Bangla calendar, but does it represent any other important events in the culture or environment: like for planting season or something else?

Very colorful celebration; I would love to see this in person. I am sure it's a lot of fun.

Thanks for sharing Debasish.
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In March, April, May time period, 'Kal-Baishakhi Storm' occurs. With this rainfall and storm Bengali people were used to plant 'Aus Rice'. Now 'Aus Rice' is not popular. Instead of 'Aus Rice' we plant 'Boro Rice'. Our major rice yield is obtained from 'Boro Rice.
In other hand, Seasonal Fruits like Mango, Jackfruit, Litchi etc start to ripe. You can smell the ripening of seasonal fruits.
You can say it is the beginning of every festivals in our culture.
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Wonderful. Thanks for sharing. What strikes me, is that the people walk between and around the floats/wagons. In parades we have here in the Netherlands, the public looks from the side of the road. The parade is regarded as something to look at, a spectacle. So, the meaning for the public might be very different.
A part of the village works for months, preparing the statues, and covering them in flowers at the last moment. (Yes, nearly all the colours that you see are flowers.)

Here is a film https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j40hBNU1HfU
Someone talks about what floats were the most beautiful. They can be seen
0:20 min:sec from the start,
2:00 min:sec from the start, and
3:50 min:sec from the start is the winner in 2016, called 'Hannibal'.
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Otto Stam, Thank you for sharing this amazing video. This is amazing. I have never seen such a amazing parade like this.
You are right, parades supposed to be looked at from the side of the road. But in Bangladesh, people from everywhere join this rally or parade when they see this coming. It has a hidden welcoming message to join.This rally "Mangal Shovajatra" was declared an intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO in 2016. Every year we celebrate our Bengali new year with this parade.
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Lovely slides Debashish, thanks for sharing, the colorful look itself makes it so much beautiful.
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Thank you Namrata.
@Debasish , this looks so beautiful! Everyone is dressed in such vivid colors and looks so happy.
Is there a significance to why certain animals are used?
Thanks so much for sharing this with us.
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Thank you @Judith. In this festival, various animal art works can be seen.
Royal bengal tiger is the main one. It is our National animal and it rules in Bengali forests for centuries.
You can see colorful owls everywhere. Owl is related with the Goddess of fortune and wealth in Hindu religion. So, Owl is used as a symbol of fortune and wealth in our life.
Elephant, horses were common in our Bengali forests and used by ancient people of Bengal. Now a days they are very rare.
Various presentation from "Isops's fairy tale Stories" can also be seen.
You can also see some artwork of fish. It is Hilsa fish. It can only be found in Padma River of Bengal. There is another theme here. There are many rivers in our country. Our people used to take meal with fish and rice for centuries. Fish represents our aquatic assets and diet.
In short, in this Mangal Shova jatra rally we try to present what we are.
Thank you, @Debasish . I wondered about all those beautiful owls. The artwork that goes into this is incredible. Do people use the same figures each year or do they always create new ones?
I like that you honor and appreciate fish too . It seems as if almost everyone attends this festival, which is such a wonderful way to bring people together.
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Hello @Debasish,
Wow! it's really awesome, i like the colors, i feel they inspire happiness and charm. It's interesting the fact of symbols that denominate the chosen animals, thanks for sharing that slides, amazing!.
It is good to know that the tradition stays so alive and that the days arrive come with prosperity.

Regards.
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Every year theme is always the same but the decoration changes, @Judith. I hope some day you will come to Bangladesh and enjoy this cultural program with us.
Regards.
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Thank you @Luis Gerardo Ayala B. . I am glad you liked it.
Warm Regards.
@Debasish , thank you for answering my questions. If the decorations change every year, this must be so much work to put together. Does it take many months of work to create?
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Yes, @Judith. It takes time. Main preparation starts one month from the final day. They try to focus various Bengali Culture in this program.
@Debasish you are so patient a d wonderful about answering all my questions. Thank you so much.
When I look at the pictures, it seems like so many people are a part of this. Do most people participate or is this just a small representation of people?
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You are welcome @Judith. Most of the pictures are from Dhaka. It is the main rally arranged by Fine Arts students of Dhaka University. But the whole country also celebrates. Infact different academic, government or non government organization arrange this programs in their own way to celebrate.
We can also see fairs all around the country. Here people sell toys, pots, vases, pitchers etc made from clay or wood, hair ribbon, colorful glass Hand bracelets, loom Sarees etc. Now a days because of modernization we can see modern fair in Pohela Boishakh festival where people sell household products, cloths, cosmetics, jewellery even electronics. People like it and enjoy buying them.
Afterall, this is the first day of Bengali month and we like to celebrate.

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