The week-long ‘Modhu Mela’, an annual festival marking the birth anniversary of the pioneer of Bengali sonnets poet Michael Modhusudan Dutta, will begin at his birth place in Sagardari of Keshabpur upazila on Jan 22. Marking the poet’s 195th birth anniversary, the festival will feature discussions, exhibition and cultural programmes.
This year, Jatra (a form of Bengali folk-theatre) will not be displayed to observe the fair in a beautiful environment. The decision was taken at a preparatory meeting to celebrate the “Modhu Mela 2019” on Monday (Jan 7), local media reports said.
Widely considered as one of the greatest poets in Bangla literature and a pioneer of Bangla sonnets, Madhusudan was born at Sagardari village on Jan 25, 1824. He was educated at Hindu College in Kolkata and later converted to Christianity from Hinduism. He pioneered Bangla drama. His famous work Meghnad Bodh Kabya, is a tragic epic. It consists of nine cantos and is exceptional in Bengali literature both in terms of style and content. He also wrote poems about the sorrows and afflictions of love as spoken by women.
Modhusudan’s genius and appeal was in his willingness to break from the past without abandoning it. His work ushered in the modern age for Bangla literature. He used the exceptional blank verse style in Bangla poetry.
He passed away at Kolkata General Hospital on Jun 29, 1873.