OBSERVING KAZI NAZRUL ISLAM’S 37TH DEATH ANNIVERSARY
Nazrul becoming occasional
Experts blame authorities concernedZiaul Hasan
Nazrul experts accuse both government and private organisations in the country for making the creations of the national poet occasional and to be performed on programmes marking the birth and death anniversary of Kazi Nazrul Islam.
They also blame these organisations for not undertaking comprehensive programmes to meet the challenges brought by the satellite culture, which has put spell on the young generations.
The Nazrul exponents accuse that the decline is a result of moral degradation of the youth, created due to a void of the practice of the traditional culture on a large scale like it has happened in many countries across the globe.
They also blame the local satellite channels for blindly following the foreign channels.
‘We are going through a void in traditional cultural practices in every sphere of life and Nazrul is no exception to the trend,’ said noted Nazrul researcher professor Rafiqul Islam.
‘Once upon a time, the creations of Nazrul and other maestros of Bangla literature were used to be practiced and performed throughout the year in radio TV and educational institutes. Following the introduction of the satellite culture in the country, classic Bangla music is hardly aired. Even the students these days perform foreign music in their annual cultural shows,’ eminent Nazrul researcher professor Rafiqul Islam told New Age.
His observations have been found true while talking to students of different government and private organisations. New Age found apathy amongst the young generation towards the national poet’s creations.
‘I seldom listen to the music of Kazi Nazrul Islam. It is not that I don’t like his music but the fact is that I just don’t get the interest to listen to them,’ said Shanta, a BBA student of University of Liberal Arts, told New Age.
Rashedul Islam Rashed, a HSC student of Dhaka College, on the other hand, said, ‘I don’t get time to listen to Nazrul songs as I have so many other options.’
While Ananta, a student of Maple Leaf school, said that he does not feel comfortable listening to Nazrul songs.
Despite the authorities of the educational institutes claiming that they promote traditional cultural practices, the exponents are not convinced with such claims.
Rather, they accuse every sector for behaving irresponsible. The successive government has not done anything meaningful in the past three decades and the private sectors are after commercial benefits, they observe.
‘Everyone is responsible for the fall. The government does not allocate funds for running motivational programmes to draw interests of the young generation to traditional cultural practice. Media is particularly to be blamed for not giving Nazrul the deserved place in their routine programmes,’ seasoned Nazrul singer Khalid Hossain said.
Supplementing Hossain, Nazrul scholar and singer Mustafa Zaman Abbasi said both Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy and Nazrul Institute also organise eye wash routine programmes during the birth and death anniversaries of Nazrul and other exponents. ‘We have over 20 television channels. But, how many programmes in these channels are on Nazrul? I get calls from these channels to present Nazrul songs on his death or birth anniversary programmes. They have made the national poet’s creations occasional,’ Abbasi said.
Media representatives also admit that they don’t air regular programmes on Nazrul or Tagore even though they realise that regular airing of such programmes on mass media could promote the traditional culture practice amongst the young generation.
‘All the private television channels are commercial organizations, so they are largely dependent on the advertisements of multinational companies. And these companies want to invest more on popular programmes,’ media personality Nawazish Ali Khan, who is also the advisor of programme section of ATN Bangla, told New Age.
Representatives of the production houses also said that they do not release many albums on Nazrul songs, considering those are not that profitable projects.
The responsible government organisation Nazrul Institute, however, claims that it is running promotional programmes with limited funds.
‘We have already released about 50 albums of Nazrul songs by different artistes; moreover, since 2010, we are arranging national Nazrul Conference in divisional cities. The conference includes discussion sessions and presentation of Nazrul songs,’ Rashid Haider, the executive director of the institute, told New Age.
‘As far I believe, Nazrul songs have not lost its popularity, rather the acceptance of this genre has increased as we are getting many youngsters interested to learn his songs,’ Rashid claimed.
Eminent Nazrul singer Khairul Anam Shakil, who is also the general secretary of Chhayanaut, however, expresses his optimism. ‘I have seen in other countries that the young generation is highly attracted to western music. However, the craze doesn’t last long and the youngsters come back to tradition,’ Shakil said.
To draw interest of the young generations, the experts call for undertaking comprehensive programmes by both the government and private sectors to popularise wonderful creations of the national poet.
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The poetry of Kazi Nazrul Islam (1899-1976) is the golden treasure of Bangla literature. The nation has honoured him by conferring the status of the national poet and several other state honours such as Ekushey Padak. Full story
It might not be common knowledge that Kazi Nazrul Islam was the first Bengali Muslim film director in the sub-continent. He jointly directed Dhrubo, released in 1934 with Satyendra Nath Dey. In the film based on Girish Chandra Ghosh’s story Bhakta... Full story