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PATNA: Grand festivities are in store for Patnaites on the occasion of Bihar Diwas celebrations set to begin on March 22. These will kick off year-long celebrations that will culminate in 2012 Bihar Diwas centenary functions.

The three-day cultural extravaganza at Gandhi Maidan promises to be a musical treat with pure Bihari regional flavour, including Maithili, Bhojpuri, Magahi and Angika folk songs apart from classical songs, ‘qawwalis’ and kavi sammelans.

‘Holi songs from Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthani folk song and Chhau dance of West Bengal, all will add colour to the celebrations planned with a focus on reviving Bihari `asmita'( glory) and establishing the brand ‘Bihar’.

‘Bihar Gaan’, the state song to be sung for the first time at Gandhi Maidan, is being selected from amongst 1800 entries by a three-poet committee, Anjani Kumar Singh, principal secretary, HRD, informed TOI.

Renowned artistes including Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma, Pandit Birju Maharaj, Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia, Anup Jalota, Chhanu Lal Mishra and Sharda Sinha have been invited to regale the audience at various programmes scheduled to take place at Gandhi Maidan, S K Memorial Hall, planetarium, Rabindra Bhawan, Bharatiya Nritya Kala Mandir, LN Mishra Institute and Kalidas Rangalaya.

Artists specially known for their knowledge of local Bihari art and folk stories (lok katha) will showcase their talent, which will be properly documented. Various faces of Bihar’s heritage depicted in paintings and sculptures being made by artists of national fame at the College of Arts and Crafts here will be put on display at the Gandhi Maidan, only to be later displayed at important government buildings, said Singh.

An exclusive exhibition of archives related to establishment of Bihar will also be put up at the venue.

Keeping the interest of sports and book lovers in mind, a national-level volleyball championship and a book fair starting March 21 has been planned at Gandhi Maidan. An air show at Moinul Haq stadium will be a major attraction for which Air force has already been contacted, said the official.

In course of the year-long celebration that will culminate in 2012 Bihar Diwas centenary celebration, a cleanliness drive will be taken up at all the villages, which will be overseen by the panchayati raj department. At the district level, sports activities and marathons will be organised, apart from felicitating the freedom fighters belonging to the district. Street plays, kavi sammelans and mega health camps will also be held.

In universities and colleges, the VCs and principals will initiate programmes to commemorate the 100th foundation day of Bihar with the help of NSS volunteers. The HRD department is also making available funds for school-level programmes.

All the important buildings and heritage sites will be lighted on the occasion.

Other departments like public relations department will showcase achievements of past five years through a mobile exhibition, film festival and documentaries based on Bihar. Environment and forest department will put up a photo exhibition. A national-level bal natya mahotsav (child play festival) will be held at Kalidas Rangalaya.

The festivity will be taken to Delhi as well where cultural programmes and handicrafts fair, with stalls serving Bihari cuisine, will be organised in areas with good Bihari population.

(Source:   http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-03-12/patna/28683123_1_bihar-diwas-bihar-gaan-celebrations)

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