Decorating Goddess Durga

The prominence of the worship of Durga dates back to a time in history that can best be described as the hoary past often considered to be similar in nature to the gradual development of mother and nature worship across the globe. The ornamentation is evolving through the ages. There were mainly two kinds of embellishments or saaj that used to be made then – sholar saaj and daker saaj. But nothing remains forever. Now, Durga idols are decorated with colourful sarees and ornaments. Continue reading Decorating Goddess Durga

World Humanitarian Day | 19 August

Each year, World Humanitarian Day (August 19) focuses on a theme, bringing together partners from across the humanitarian system to advocate for the survival, well-being and dignity of people affected by crises, and for the safety and security of aid workers. This year, the highlight is on the immediate human cost of the climate crisis by pressuring world leaders to take meaningful climate action for the world’s most vulnerable people. Continue reading World Humanitarian Day | 19 August

Bahurupi | Dying Folk Culture of Bengal

A Bahurupi is a street performer, dressed up in various characters in different times and it is considered one of the ancient professions. For most performances, there is a story structured into the persona of the performer himself within his make-up, costume and role. Historically, these bohurupis would dress up as Hindu gods, goddesses, or mythical characters like Ram, Shiva, Kali, and so on and perform in front of Kings and zamindars. My first encounter with a bahurupi happened through one such immensely popular literary work titled Srikanta by ‘Katha shilpi’ Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay. Continue reading Bahurupi | Dying Folk Culture of Bengal

Hate Speech Isn’t Freedom of Expression

Hate speech is a menace to democratic values, social stability and peace. As a matter of principle, hate speech must be confronted at every turn and be tackled in order to prevent armed conflict, crimes and terrorism, end violence against women and other serious violations of human rights, and promote peaceful, inclusive and just societies. Free speech is sacred to any democratic society. Hateful statements, from a legal perspective, can be classified as opinions. However, the sometimes painful bite of unfettered speech leads many to ask two perfectly logical questions: At what cost? And for what pain? Continue reading Hate Speech Isn’t Freedom of Expression

Trip Down the Memory Lane | Judhajit & Tania

Turning a boy into a man is one of the hardest things a parent can do. As I look back across the years, so many pictures flash on the memory screen that just as I begin to see one clearly, another slides in, blotting out the first, itself to be pushed aside by the next and the next and the next. Sometimes, I wish I could just rewind back to the old days and press pause… just for a little while.
Congratulations on your wedding, dear son! It is not an easy road, but with each other, marriage will be the best thing you’ve ever done. Continue reading Trip Down the Memory Lane | Judhajit & Tania

Celebration | Holi Festival, Baghdad

Holi is considered one of the most revered and celebrated festivals of India and it is celebrated in almost every part of the country. It is also sometimes called the “festival of love” as on this day people get to unite together forgetting all resentments and all types of bad feelings towards each other. Holi was celebrated in Baghdad this year at the Embassy of India with colours, food, and game. Continue reading Celebration | Holi Festival, Baghdad

The Tricolour is unfurled on Republic Day and not hoisted

Today, India is celebrating its 73rd Republic Day and the unfurling of the tricolour flag, parades, and cultural functions are held across the country. The hoisting of a flag signifies the country was freed after a span of colonial domination. The unfurling of the tricolour signifies that as a flag of a free country, it cannot stay hung at a lower height, but is held high above. On the 26th of January the tricolour is unfurled, that is, the flag stays high up at the tip of the flag pole (not at the middle or lower height of the pole) folded, and is spread out with the pull of the rope. Continue reading The Tricolour is unfurled on Republic Day and not hoisted

Celebrate International Mother Language Day

Languages are disappearing: a worldwide shared interest and commitment is needed to help them survive. Languages disappear when their speakers do! This can happen due to internal factors, such as when a community has a negative attitude towards its own language and does not maintain or protect it from extinction, or due to external factors, such as when a government pursues a policy for a ‘lingua franca’. Let us all celebrate today the International Mother Language Day and promote linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism every day. Continue reading Celebrate International Mother Language Day