Sundeep Bhutoria

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Saturday, September 3, 2011

Van Mahotsav



Saturday, September 3, 2011 : Yesterday evening Van Mahotsav was celebrated at the State Legislative Assembly compound. The traditional Mahotsav function, slated for 2pm was shifted 5:30 pm. This suited me well and I could take the Venezuelan Ambassador Milena Santana Ramirez out for lunch.
I reached the Assembly at about 5 pm and then heard that the Assembly session was still on. So I went to the gallery and watched the last hour proceedings on this important day the addressed issues of amendments for Gorkha Bill and the historical initiative to change the name of the state – which was passed by voice vote.
By the time the session concluded it was ten minutes past six. The Van Mahotsav function started little later. 
Mamata Banerjee at the Van Mahotsav function
Girls in traditional costumes performed Van Mahotsav dance followed by Tree Planting ceremony by the Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee. MLA Debasree Roy also helped in planting the trees during the ceremony.
On the occasion, present on the dais were Industry Minister Partha Chatterjee, Government Chief Whip Sovandeb Chattopadhyay, Forest Minister Hitin Barman, Speaker of the Assembly, Biman Banerjee, Deputy Speaker, Sonali Guha, Member of Parliament, MP Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar and Secretary to the Assembly, J L Chakraborty.
Among others present in the audience were Amit Mitra, Subrata Mukherjee, Manas Bhuiya, Rachpal Singh, Mayor Sovan Chatterjee, H A Safwi and others ministers and MLAs from different parties.
Kaviguru Rabindranath Tagore had first popularised Van Mahotsav – the festival of planting trees - in Shantiniketan. The Government of India officially initiated this festival in 1950.
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