Works of Al Deen bring together Indian, Bangladeshi writers


Dhaka : Some prominent writers from West Bengal joined their counterparts here to pay tribute and evaluate the work of Bangladesh’s legendary dramatist-theoretician-organiser, Selim Al Deen.

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Here to receive “Dhaka Theatre Sammanona” at the ongoing six-day Selim Al Deen birth anniversary celebrations jointly organised by Dhaka Theatre and Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy, Rudraprasad Sengupta, Swatilekha Sengupta and Arun Sen evaluated Selim Al Deen’s work, the Daily Star reported Thursday.

Many journals and books are being published on Selim Al Deen in Kolkata.

A research work on Al Deen is underway at Visva Bharati University. His plays have also been included as texts at Jadavpur University and Rabindra Bharati University.

Theatre troupes in West Bengal such as Swapnasandhani are staging Al Deen’s plays in Kolkata.

Young Indian director Bishwa Roy’s documentary titled Drishye Adrishye Hridspondone on Selim Al Deen was screened at Al Deen’s ongoing birth anniversary celebration programme.

Al Deen died last year.

Radraprasad Sengupta, one of the most prominent theatre personalities in this region, said: “Playwrights like Al Deen can guide a nation at the crucial period by insightful writings. He has always highlighted the distinctive Bengali culture in an era of globalisation. I’m quite envious of his Gram Theatre concept.”

Renowned actor Swatilekha Sengupta said: “I’m really impressed by the diction and characterisation in Al Deen’s drama.”

Arun Sen, a popular Indian critic who is considered an expert on Bangladeshi literature, has written many articles and also a book on Al Deen – “Selim Al Deen Natyakarer Swadesh O Samagra”.

“Al Deen was unfamiliar to Indians even a few years back. After watching Dhaka Theatre productions at several festivals in Kolkata (including Nandikar Theatre Festival and Ganga-Padma Theatre Festival), I became fascinated with Al Deen’s work. I collected all his writings,” Sen said.

A professor in Jadavpur University’s comparative literature department, Sen has included Al Deen’s plays in the curriculum.