National award-winning sound designer Debajit Changmai felicitating prominent Marathi author and filmmaker Manouj Kadaamh (left) in Mumbai

This time during Bihu celebrations in Mumbai, the Assamese community invited prominent Marathi individuals as chief guests to be part of Rongali Bihu celebrations.

“We wanted to provide a taste of Bihu to some of the prominent local Marathi individuals. We invited a author, filmmaker and dancers and celebrated Bihu making them a part of it,” Amrit Pritam, an acclaimed sound designer based in Mumbai, told The Assam Tribune.

“This is done so that they understand our culture and the message is spread through them to others.”

Amrit Pritam is the president of Gagana, a cultural organization of the Assamese People’s Association, who has been organizing Bihu and similar events of the Assamese community in Mumbai over the years.

As per the plan, they invited noted Marathi writer and filmmaker Manouj Kadaamh and a group of Marathi dancers led by Gauri Jadhav.

Mumbai Bihu 1 – The News Mill
Performance by Marathi dancers led by Gauri Jadhav

Manouj Kadaamh appreciated the initiatives taken by Gagana Mumbai and expressed his full cooperation in future, said Amrit Pritam.

“Gauri Jadhav and her troupe performed spectacular Lavani dance and received huge appreciation from the audiences,” he added.

The festival was celebrated at St John Marthoma Syrian Church’s auditorium, Mira Road on April 20 with a variety of programmes including Bihu songs, dances, Jhumur songs, Lavani dances and many more.

The organisers gifted books on Jyotiprasad Agarwala and Lachit Borphukan to the invited guests. “I think that way we can spread our message about the great Assamese individuals far and wide. They were happy to receive these books about Assamese stalwarts as gifts,” Pritam added.

Mumbai Bihu 2 – The News Mill
Assamese community women perform dance

Gagana has been organising Bihu since 2013. There have been programmes of cultural exchange. He said cultural exchange can be used as a form of creating dialogue and understanding diversity in communities to help build community relations and cohesion is a primary vision of Gagana.

Apart from that, a ladies’ group of Gagana performed a mash-up dance rich in elements of different ethnic groups of Assam.

There were also impressive performances by emerging Mumbai-based Assamese artists Rishabh Borchetia, Hriday Kashyap and Loy Baruah.

Pritam appreciated Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital of Mumbai and Jupiter Hospital of Thane for helping to conduct the event smoothly. “I must thank James Aranha for being cooperative and helping us,” Pritam mentioned.

He also thanked Barnali Sangmai, Gunin Gogoi, Hiramani Deka Rahman, Arup Gohain, Sneha Bora, Jacqueline Mech, Nilotpal Boro, Tridibjoti Bora, Madhuriya Narayan Bora, Hemanta Bhuyan, Prabhat Lahkar, Ananya Chutia, Sujit Bora and Nayanjyoti Bhuyan among others for their cooperation in organising the event. Priya Das and Juri Chaliha Laskar anchored the programme.

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