By Dr. Syed Ahmed for TwoCircles.net,
Imphal: The 2-Day Indo-Bangla International Poets Meet-2013, organized by Sahitya Thoupang Lup in association with Department of Art and Culture, Manipur State Kala Akademi, Manipur Jagoi Marup, Sahitya Seva Samiti, Macha Chanu, Liberty Theatre and Library and Information Centre, Kakching, concluded at Imphal on July 14, 2013.
The concluding day of the meet, held at J.N. Manipur Dance Academy Auditorium, at Imphal, was graced by poet and lyricist B. Jayantakumar Sharma, Renowned theatre personality and poet Ratan Thiyam and poets from Bangladesh – Rabiul Husain, Dr. Mustafa Majid, Md. Enayet Ali and A.K. Sheram – as Presidium members.
At the outset, Kulamani Singh read out the poems of some of the celebrated poets of Manipur, namely Kh. Chaoba, Dr. Kamal, Hijam Anganghal, E. Nilakanta, Shri Biren in Bangla translation.
Tongbram Kumarjit read out some of poems of prominent poets of Bangla, namely Nazarul Islam, Shamsur Rahman, Nirmalendu Goon, Mahadev Saha, Dilwar in Manipuri translation. Kumarjit also read out a poem dedicated to Irom Chanu Sharmila, titled Aidi houjik Manipurdani, written by Dilwar in Bangla.
It was followed by the reading of poems by the Presidium members – B. Jayantakumar Sharma, Ratan Thiyam, Rabiul Husain, Dr. Mustafa Majid, Md. Enayet Ali and A.K. Sheram.
Rabiul Hussain is an architect, poet, short story writer and a cultural activist. He has published numerous works, including 7 books of poetry, 3 books of short-stories and a novel. He has been honoured with many awards for poetry, namely Bangla Academy Award (2009), Kobitalap Literary Award (2011) and Kobita Porishod Award (2012). At present he is working as Chief Architect and Director of Shahidullah and Associates Ltd. He is also serving as President of International Film Critic Association of Bangladesh. He is also a member of Banglabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahaman Memorial Trust and Trustee, Liberation War Museum, Dhaka.
Ratan Thiyam reading poems
Md. Enayet Ali, retired bank officer, is also a poet, singer and lyricist from Sylhet. He has so far published 2 books of poetry and a book of lyrics. He is also the editor of the literary journal, Shobdoshilan.
Dr. Mustafa Majid, General Manager of Bangladesh Bank (Central bank of Bangladesh), is a renowned poet and researcher. He has penned 9 books of verse, which included Kushumito Panchadhasi (Sweet-Sixteen Flower, 1993), Pushpa-Patrey Nilakantha (Blue Necked Shiva in Flowers in Leaves, 1999), Mao Zedong Poems (2002), Janajudher Convoy (The Convoy of People’s War, 2004), Diary of a Nepalese Guerrilla (2007), Meghowati Suyurnayumi (Shadow Golden Land, 1991), etc. He has written 2 biographies on General Ataul Gani Osmani, C-in-C of Bangladesh Liberation War (1994), and on Hans Christain Anderson, the celebrated fairy tale writer. He has also published numerous books on the aborigines of Bangladesh and on social analysis.
A.K. Sheram, retired General Manager of a bank, is a poet, novelist, short-story and a prose writer. A Manipuri settled in Habigonj District of Bangladesh (The few Manipuris, both Meities and Muslims, now settled in Bangladesh are the descendants of those who fled from Manipur in the wake of the Burmese occupation of Manipur valley from 1815-19). His published works include Basanta Kunnipalgi Leirang (a collection of poems, 1982), Nongoubi (a collection of Manipuri short-stories, 2001), Meira Paibi (novel, 2011), etc. He is the editor of literary journals, Meira and Pratham Diner Surjya. He has been honoured with numerous awards, which include Sunamoni Memorial Award (Sylhet, 1994), Shaitya Bhusan by Assam Manipuri Sahitya Parishad (Silchar, 2003) and Hijam Irabot Memorial International Award (Imphal, 2011). He is also associated with numerous literary bodies. He is the founder President of Bangladesh Manipuri Sahitya Sangsad.
Enayat Hasan Malik reading poems
Few more poets, namely S. Bhanumati Devi and Thangjam Ibopishak from Manipur, and Sanaton Hamom, Khairom Indrajit, Yumlembam Ibomcha, Maisnam Rajesh from Bangladesh also read out poems.
The meet concluded with the staging of Rabindranath Tagore’s Kabuliwallah, a ballet performed by Manipuri Jagoi Marup.
The first day of the meet was held on July 13, 2013 at the Auditorium of Library and Information Centre, Kaching, in Thoubal District.
A scene from Kabuliwallah
Stating the purpose of organizing the meet, Covenor of Organizing Committee Saratchand Thiyam said, “We are living in a global village; however we seem to be living far away from one another if we don’t have the chance to meet. It is important that we meet and interact. People of Bangladesh love their mother tongue and the nation is proud for gifting the International Mother Language Day (Feb. 21). But the vast ocean of Bengali literature and the deep sea of Manipuri literature are yet to meet. Manipuri is a very old and potentially rich language rich language. We are hopeful that it will have its own status among the classical languages of India. And it is encouraging to learn that Manipuris living in Bangladesh are trying to elevate Manipuri literature at their best level. Besides this, they are trying to introduce it to the Bangla literature. Indeed they have become a flyover which connects Bangla and Manipuri literature. It is only through such meetings that we can appreciate the vivacious natures of Manipuri and Bangle literature. The meet is organized to materialize this.”