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Archive for the ‘Calcutta Festival’ Category

Tracking the flight of the Fanush (ফানুস)

November 3, 2017 10 comments

Tracking the flight of the Fanush (ফানুস)

Compilation of home made hot air balloons

Also see: My compilation on Fanush

Fanush (ফানুস, also spelt as Phanush or Phanus), paper made hot air balloon, was once the integral part of North Calcutta (Kolkata) “Babu” Culture. Today the art of Fanush making is a dying art as the new generation has shifted its attention into other sources of entertainment.

The Fanush operates in the same principle of a hot air balloon. The air inside the Fanush is heated by a cloth rag ball (locally called Luti) soaked in spirit. The Nuti is attached to the base of the Fanush.

Fanush Ajay C1

Fanush (ফানুস) at Bholanath Dham, Beadon Street, Kolkata

Probably started by the Dey family of Darjipara of North Calcutta (Kolkata) in 1912 Fanush flying was a regular activity on the late afternoon of Kali Pujo in the Darjipara and Beadon Street areas.

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Qingming (Tomb Sweeping Day), Tangra, Kolkata

April 15, 2017 7 comments

Qingming (Tomb Sweeping Day)

Tangra (New Chinatown), Kolkata

Also see: My blog post on Calcutta (Kolkata) Chinatown

Qingming or the Tomb Sweeping Day is held on the 15 th day after the spring equinox and normally falls on 5 or 6 April.

Quing Ming 1

Qingming (Tomb Sweeping) at Choong Ye Thong Cemetery, Tangra (New Chinaatown), Kolkata

On this day the Chinese pay tribute to their ancestors by cleaning the tombs and offering elaborate food spread in front of the graves. It can be considered as the Chinese version of the  All Souls’ Day.

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Fanush Making Workshop, revival of a lost art

December 16, 2016 6 comments

Fanush Making Workshop, revival of a lost art

Bholanath Dham, Beadon Street, Kolkata

Also see: My compilation on Fanush, paper made hot air balloons

In recent years Fanush (ফানুস, also spelt as Phanush or Phanus) has become an integral part of Kolkata’s Kali Puja celebrations. With the fast spreading concept of noise less Diwali, the fanush or the Chinese Lanterns have taken the night skies, of Kolkata, in large numbers.

Mentors and participants of the Fanush making workshop at Bholanath Dham

Mentors and participants of the Fanush making workshop at Bholanath Dham

In recent years several Fanush Festivals are organized in different parts of the city, where thousand of sky lanterns have taken the skies. Although the Chinese Lanterns are making a rapid progress in the skies of Kolkata, but Fanush have been an integral part of North Kolkata culture for over a century.

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Buddha Purnima Celebration at Fo Guang Shan Monastery, Kolkata

June 1, 2016 6 comments

Buddha Purnima Celebration at Fo Guang Shan Monastery

Tangra (New Chinatown) Kolkata

Also see: My blog post on Calcutta (Kolkata) Chinatown and Buddhist Temple of Kolkata (Calcutta)

It was 21 May 2016 and the world celebrated the Buddha Purnima (Purnima means full moon), which marked the birth of Lord Buddha.

Two nuns in front of the giant Buddha statue, on the occasion of Buddha Purnima, at Fo Guang Shan Monastery, Tangra, Kolkata

Two nuns in front of the giant Buddha statue, on the occasion of Buddha Purnima, at Fo Guang Shan Monastery, Tangra, Kolkata

Strangely, even according to the lunar calendar, the birth of Lord Buddha is not constant and is celebrated on different days in different countries all over Asia.

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Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival (AKLF) 2016, Literally Heritage Walk

January 13, 2016 3 comments

Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival (AKLF) 2016

Literary Heritage Walk organized by Streets of Calcutta (SOC)

The 7th edition of Apeejay Kolkata Literary Fest (AKLF) kicked off with a Literary Heritage Walk of College Street area on 10 Jan. 2016.

AKLF Literary Heritage Walk group in front of College Street Coffee House

AKLF Literary Heritage Walk group in front of College Street Coffee House

The walk was organized by the Streets of Calcutta (SOC) and I was privileged enough to lead this walk.

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Remembrance Sunday, St. John’s Church, Kolkata

December 30, 2015 10 comments

Remembrance Sunday, St. John’s Church, Kolkata

November 8, 2015

The First World War (WWI), which was the known as the Great War of 1914 – 18, ended on 11 November 1918 (11/11/18).

Remembrance Day, St. John's Church, Kolkata

Remembrance Day, St. John’s Church, Kolkata

A year later in 1919 King George V inaugurated the first commemoration of the end of the Great War of 1914 – 18.  Read more…

Sachin Mukherjee’s Fanush 2015 and a Fanush Makers get together

December 2, 2015 13 comments

Sachin Mukherjee’s Fanush 2015

Fanush Makers get together

Also see: My compilation on Fanush

Twinkle twinkle little star,

How I wonder what you are!

Up above the world so high,

Like a diamond in the sky.

The Star (Nursery Rhymes) by Jane Taylor

A star shaped fanush above the Belgachia (Milk Colony) skyline in North Kolkata

A star shaped fanush above the Belgachia (Milk Colony) skyline in North Kolkata

On the late evening of 29 November, a bright star was seen in the late afternoon sky above Belgachia (Milk Colony), in North Kolkata.

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