To mark the 39th death anniversary of National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam, Cultural Minister Asaduzzaman Noor laid floral wreath on his grave yesterday at the University of Dhaka. He was accompanied by Aktari Momtaz, acting secretary to the ministry of cultural affairs; Ikram Ahmed, executive director of Nazrul Institute; Md Altaf Hossain, director general of the Directorate of Anthropology; Odudul Bari Chowdhury, director of the Directorate of Archives and Libraries and Rabindra Goupe, director of Bangladesh Folk Art and Craft Foundation.
Asaduzzaman Noor said, "We have grown up with Nazrul and his songs have been stimulating our life and youth. He was an indefatigable force behind our movement for independence and sovereignty. His songs and poetry aired by the Shadhin Bangla Betar Kendra versatile skills invigorated the freedom fighters including the farmers and fishermen by reaching out to them at their very doorsteps in remote villages. Nazrul was a liberal and secularist and the ongoing progress of this country towards a moderate nation pioneered by Bangabandhu can only be finalised if the beliefs of Nazrul are practiced by heart."
Nazrul Institute and Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) jointly arranged a cultural programme titled 'Nazurl Puroskhar Prodan 2015 O Sanskritik Anusthan' yesterday at the National Theatre Hall of BSA in the city. Liaquat Ali Lucky, director general of BSA presided over the event. Cultural Minister Asaduzzaman Noor was present as chief guest of the event. Welcome speeches of the event were delivered by Khilkhil Kazi and Ikram Ahmed. Professor Emeritus Rafiqul Islam was the keynote speaker at the event. The event was emceed by poet Rezauddin Stalin and Khondokar Farhana Rahman. After the discussion Nazrul songs were rendered by a number of noted Nazrul exponents including Khalid Hossain, Fatima Tuz Zohra, Khairul Anam Shakil, Yasmin Mushtari, Yakub Ali Khan, Sujit Mostofa and Chonda Chakraborty. Recitation of Nazrul poems were presented by Jayanta Chattopadhyay, Laila Afroz, Sima Islam and Dr Shahadat Hossain Nipu. Group songs were performed by students from BSA and Nazrul Institute.
Khilkhil Kazi urged the government to take necessary steps so that international personalities can pay tributes to the poet on his birth and death anniversaries.
Apart from the cultural minister people from many other different backgrounds also paid tribute to the tomb of Kazi Nazrul. They include Vice-Chancellor of DU AAMS Arefin Siddique, Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Haque, Dr Asaduzzaman Ripon on behalf of BNP and members of other political, socio-cultural organizations and hundreds of Nazrul's fans and well-wishers.
A seminar on rebel poet Kazi Nazrul Islam was held yesterday at Bangla Academy's Poet Shamsur Rahman seminar hall. The seminar titled 'Bhobishotter Nazrul' was presided over by Professor Emeritus Rafiqul Islam. Shamsuzzaman Khan, director general of Bangla Academy delivered the welcome speech at the event while Professor Zulfiqar Matin delivered the keynote speech.
Authority of the University of Dhaka (DU) had also chalked out various programmes in observance of the day. After placing floral wreaths the university arranged a memorial meeting chaired by AAMS Arefin Siddique . Arefin Siddique said that, "Poet Nazrul's literary works have enriched our Bengli culture and civilization and have armed us against communal forces aptly." Another memorial meeting organised by Nazrul Research Centre was held at the TSC area of DU.
Kazi Nazrul Islam (1899-1976) national poet of Bangladesh is called the 'rebel poet' for his brave resistance to all forms of repression. His poetry, with its vibrant rhythms and iconoclastic themes, forms a striking contrast to Rabindranath Tagore's poetry. Though he had great regard and admiration for the older poets and writers, he did not imitate any poet or writer, even not Rabindranath, though it was a fashion of the day.
Through literature, journalism and political activism, Nazrul fought against foreign rule, communalism, imperialism, fundamentalism and exploitation. In response, the British colonial government proscribed his books and newspapers and put him behind bars. Through his written Rajbandir Jabanbandi (A political prisoner's deposition) and his 40-day hunger strike, Nazrul protested against the harassment. In support of him, Rabindranath dedicated one of his books to him.
Nazrul used subjects and vocabulary never used in Bangla poetry before. He became immensely popular for portraying in his poems contemporary political and social phenomenon. Some fundamental conflicts of human civilisation also formed the themes of his poems. He used Sanskrit and Arabic metres as easily as he did traditional Bangla ones. He was aware of history, both ancient and contemporary, of his own country and of the world outside.
Nazrul nourished almost all the streams of Bangla songs and established them on the solid foundation of north Indian classical music. Through a wide variety of themes and tunes Nazrul truly turned Bangla songs into modern music.
Nazrul was born on May 24, 1899 in the village of Churulia in Burdwan, west Bengal. His father, Kazi Fakir Ahmed, was the imam of a mosque and the caretaker of a mausoleum. After his father's death in 1908, Nazrul took up his father's job and served as a Muazzin of the mosque. He passed the lower primary examination from his village Maktab, from which he received the primary understanding of Islam he would go on to develop in his writings.
In 1910, Nazrul returned to school but left after a short while to work as a cook for a Christian railway guard and later for a tea stall at Asansol, thus justifying his nickname 'Dukhu Mia'.
Nazrul joined the 49 Bengal Regiment for three years and was posted in Karachi. Nazrul learnt Persian there, started writing for famous publications and practised music and literature with other like-minded soldiers.