Sundeep Bhutoria

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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Archbishop of Canterbury in the City of Joy

Sunday today. Over the past three or four days I was busy preparing for the Maniktala Chaltabagan Lohapatty Durga Puja. As the Chairman of the Puja committee, I needed to be on my toes in terms of preparation, especially for the inaugural function, which, last year, was much talked about and had got a fair share of publicity in the media as well.
This evening I went to St Paul's Cathedral to attend the reception-cum-felicitation of The Archbishop of Canterbury, Reverend Rowan Williams - the principal leader of the Church of England - who is on a visit here. In terms of protocol, the Archbishop is second only to the British Royal Family.
It was a select gathering of around 100 people including the West Bengal Governor M K Narayanan, West Bengal Legislative Assembly Speaker Hashim Abdul Halim,  Central Railway Minister Mamata Bannerjee, West Bengal leader of the Opposition Partho Chatterjee, 
State Congress President Manas Bhuiyan, INTUC President Pradeep Bhattacharya, 
Union Minister of State for Urban Development Saugata Roy and others. Besides senior representatives from all the mainstream political parties, which is quite a rare gathering in the state, eminent personalities, religious heads of different communities in the state and dignitaries from different walks of life were present at the function.
I was sharing the table as the Guest-of-Honour with Mr Sanjay Wadhwani, British Deputy High Commissioner in Kolkata and Ms Sujata Sen of the British Council. 
I presented to the Archbishop a small idol of Rabindranath Tagore (picture) as we are celebrating Gurudev's 150th Birth Anniversary this year. The Archbishop liked it very much and even showed it to the robust gathering from the dais with a smile.
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