Dhaka – Hundreds of thousands of people marched in different parts of Bangladesh Friday with a call to fight communalism as they celebrate the traditional Bangla New Year 1424.
The day began with the chorus by artists of Chhayanaut cultural organization welcoming Pahela Boishakh, the first day of Bangla calendar, at the lush green of Ramna Park in the morning.
Sanjida Khatun, head of the organization, called everyone to go to the roots with the message of Bengali culture as communalism is on the rise in Bangladesh despite the official efforts to fight violent extremism, trial of the war crimes and socio-economic development.
“We got a mix reaction with the existing situation,” said the octogenarian cultural activist after the artists rendered a number of songs on the stage set under the Ramna banyan.
Khatun said we need a united struggle for independence. “We don’t need armed a struggle, we will go to the people with the message of humanity through songs, recitation, drama to achieve the liberty,” she told several thousand audience gathered at the Ramna Green.
The programme was aired live on state-run Bangladesh television and other private channels.
Chhayanaut has been organizing the Bangla New Year celebration programme for the last 50 years.
Tens of thousands of people brought out a procession styled Mangal Shobhajatra from Dhaka University’s Faculty of Fine Arts on the occasion of celebrating the Bangla New Year.
The Mangal Shobhajatra, recognized as Intangible Cultural Heritages of Humanity by UNESCO, was organized six other divisional headquarters, with the similar call to fight the evils from the society.