Sundeep Bhutoria

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ess bee

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Saturday, September 13, 2014

Vice President in Kolkata

September 13, 2014, Kolkata: I kept busy the whole of last week. On Monday, there was a meeting in Lal Bazar as the Durga Puja is around the corner. On Tuesday I went to Jaipur and came back on Wednesday missing out on the dinner at The Park hotel hosted by Priya Paul and Sethu Vaidyanathan. Later, I heard that the dinner was quite an unusual arrangement.
I also missed the farewell party at the Lalit Great Eastern of Olga and Arthur Gerbst, the third secretary (consular & protocol), Consul General of Russia, in Kolkata. Olga and Arthur were very friendly during their stay in Kolkata not only with me but also with others. They will surely be missed in the social circles of Kolkata.
Yesterday evening I was at the Vidya Mandir to attend the inaugural ceremony of a three-day International Seminar on “Nationalistic Ideals of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad and Their Relevance in the Sub-Continent Today” to mark the 125th Birth Anniversary Celebrations of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad.
With Hashim Abdul Halim, K Rahman Khan, Md Mansur Alam and other scholars at the dinner party
My organization, The Bengal, has partnered with the Iran Society to present this event. The Hon’ble Vice President of India, Shri Hamid Ansari, was there to inaugurate the function. It was an interesting co-incident that the last time when he was in Kolkata was for a three-day function in September (21-23) 2011 to celebrate the birth centenary of Sachidananda Vatsayan Agyeya hosted by Prabha Khaitan Foundation and I had arranged for that event as well. 
With Shri Hamid Ansari, also on the dais was the Hon’ble Governor of West Bengal, Shri Keshari Nath Tripathi, Hon’ble Justice Smt Manjula Chellur, Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court, Hon’ble Justice Shri Altamas Kabir, Former Chief Justice of India.
During this three-day seminar, scholars from Hyderabad, Dhaka, Mysore, New Delhi, Lahore, Karachi and Kolkata gathered in Kolkata.
After the seminar The Bengal also hosted a dinner at The Conclave for the guests and dignitaries. I met Mr K Rehman Khan, Member of Parliament and ex-Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha, who is known to me for many years now.
With Tom Alter
Mr Khan has also served as a Cabinet Minister for Minority Affairs for the last Government. I was quite impressed with my short chat with Dr Syeda Saiyidain, Hameed from Hyderabad and who has also served as a member of the Planning Commission of India.
With Dr Syeda Saiyidain
I missed the Tom Alter play but met the man himself at the dinner. The guests were praising his act as Maulana.
I missed the play as I went to the residence of Abida Islam, the Deputy High Commissioner for Bangladesh in Kolkata, for her farewell. 
I did not spend much time there but I am planning to see her again before she leaves.
ess bee

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