December 23, 2015
We are reviving folk art of Bengal: WB CM at Lok Sanskriti Utsav
Biswa Bangla Lok Sanskriti Utsav for promoting folk artists was inaugurated today by West Bengal Chief Minister Ms Mamata Banerjee. The festival will continue till 1 January. A special floating stage has been set up at Lal Dighi near Writers’ Buildings for the event.
Two venues have been selected for holding the festival, namely Princep Ghat (4 PM – 8 PM daily) and Lal Dighi (3 PM – 6 PM daily).
Lok Prasar Prakalpa
Under the Lok Prasar scheme, folk artists are enrolled by the government, following which they perform at government programmes for publicising development works.
Folk artists receive a retainership fee of Rs 1,000, and in addition an opportunity for four performances, with Rs 1,000 paid for each. This means there is provision for a folk artist to receive at least Rs 5,000 a month.
Some popular folk dances of Bengal are Chhau, Natua, Raibeshi, Brita, Gambhira, Lathi, Santhal and Tusu, and there are around 50,000 enrolled folk artists.
Highlights of WB CM’s speech:
- I welcome all the folk artists who have come here today from across the State and other countries.
- Folk artists are our pride but have been neglected in the past.
- We have registered 50000 folk artists under Lok Prasar Prakalpa. I am proud we are using folk artists for govt advertisements.
- We are giving financial stipends to folk artists every month and they are performing at our functions.
- The folk culture and heritage of Bengal was slowly dying but we are taking initiatives to revive them.
- From jatra to handloom, we are helping revive the Bengali tradition and culture.
- This year we have developed a new concept of setting up a floating stage on Lal Dighi.
- In future we have plans to turn Lal Dighi into a cultural centre where events can take place.
- We have worked hard to improve the infrastructure in the State.
- Where there is peace, there is prosperity. Where there is progress, there is festivity.
- I extend my festive greeting to all. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all.
- Lok Utsav will be celebrated in every block of the State in future. What Bengal thinks today, the world will think tomorrow.