Documentary film on Rabindranath Tagore’s East Bengal roots

Dhaka, Oct 26 (Calcutta Tube) A documentary that traces the roots of India’s Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore in then East Bengal, now Bangladesh, will be released simultaneously in both countries as part of the poet’s 150th birth anniversary celebration.

‘Bangladesh-e Rabindranath: Poth Chawatei Anondo’ will be released in Dhaka and Kolkata in December, The Daily Star reported on its website Tuesday.

‘Rabindranth’s exposure to East Bengal made him a complete poet, philosopher and a human, rather than an urbane poet of Kolkata,’ says Chanchal Khan, noted Bangladeshi singer and director of the film.

The film features places like Shilaidaha, Shahjadpur and Patisar in Bangladesh where the Tagore family had owned properties. He lived there for a long time and created some of his masterpieces.

The film has a musical score by Khan and narrated by Rokeya Prachi. The film derives its strength from the research by Ahmed Rafique, an expert on Tagore.

The documentary will have ‘historical, archival and educational value, especially for those who have little or no knowledge of Rabindranath’s enormous contribution to music, literature and rural development whilst in Bangladesh 1890-1937,’ says Khan.

It was filmed by cinematographer Janesar Osman in locations where Tagore had spent ample time.

Elements of the documentary includes nine songs by seasoned and upcoming singers. The songs were composed by Tagore while he was in Shilaidaha, Shahjadpur and Patisar.

The film also provides glimpses of a play based on one of his short stories and interviews of noted personalities.

Bhaswar Bandopadhyay and Dahlia Ahmed’s narration, as well as Asaduzzaman Noor’s recitation of ‘Sonar Tari’ make the documentary special.

Khan said he hopes to have the documentary subtitled in English for non-Bengali viewers.

1 thought on “Documentary film on Rabindranath Tagore’s East Bengal roots


    I am a Bengalee and living in Bangladesh. I was educated under the Calcutta University, Dhaka University, and several universities of the USA, including the Harvard University. My study of Rabindranath Tagore is since 1957.

    Some latest study and analysis establish the fact that there are much differences in the value of Rabindranath Tagore with Nobel Prize and Rabindranath Tagore without Nobel Prize. Your opinion may be useful in my future writings.

    My latest studies are:

    1. The detailed study on the Terrorist Movement period in Bengal, Bihar and Orissa during the last decade of the 19th century and the early 20th century;

    2. Rabindranath Tagore’s literature published during this period both in English and in Bengali;

    3. Internet literature on Rabindranath Tagore in several blogs, blog and other publications from Calcutta and Dhaka; and

    4. Some messages from the Swedish Academy.

    The subject I have referred to is important and my request is that all concerned may kindly help me in my research and studies on the subject with high seriousness.

    IMPORTANT NOTE: It is worthwhile to add in this message that Rabindranath Tagore was awarded 1913 Nobel Prize for Literature not as an Indian or as a Bengalee. He was given the prize as an “Anglo-Indian” writer. He was not introduced to the Nobel Committee. A British diplomat received the prize and it was delivered at his Calcutta residence. More interesting is that none of the Nobel Committee is reported to have even seen the book of poems entitled “Gitanjali”. Reportedly only one member of the committee saw the book. None of them knew that Tagore’s language was Bengali. Reportedly Rabindranath Tagore was not even short-listed for the Nobel Prize consideration. Logically it was a London arrangement with the Swedish Academy.

    A.B.M. Shamsud Doulah
    Dhaka, Bangladesh

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