By Our Staff Reporter
Mumbai, 3 Nov: Describing artists and writers as God-gifted creative individuals, Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari called upon the writers and artist fraternity to help to elevate and uplift society through their work.
The Governor was addressing the valedictory session of the first-ever ‘Artists and Writers In–Residence’ programme hosted by Raj Bhavan, Maharashtra, on Saturday. The Residency programme was curated by writer and historian Dr Vikram Sampath.
Stating that art, music and dance offer the soul much needed solace, the Governor said music and dance transcend geographical boundaries. The Governor said writing, art and music provided relief to the people during the COVID-19 pandemic period.
Taking note of the observation made by Dance choreographer Madhu Natraj that the University of Mumbai does not have a department of Dance that is an integral part of Music and Fine Art, Vice Chancellor Dr Suhas Pednekar stated that he would take steps to create a separate Department of Dance at the University shortly.
Stating that Maharashtra has had a rich and heroic history of armed struggle against British Colonialism, Dr Vikram Sampath suggested curating a Gallery dedicated to the Revolutionaries of Maharashtra inside the Raj Bhavan Underground Bunker. He said the gallery would be a tribute to the brave hearts from Maharashtra such as Vasudev Balwant Phadke, the Chaphekar brothers, Savarkar brothers, Madam Bhikaji Cama, Ganesh Vaishampayan, VB Gogate, and also the Naval Mutiny of Bombay (1946). He offered to assist the Raj Bhavan in creating such a Gallery.
Observing that Governor Koshyari had democratised Raj Bhavan by making it accessible to people from various walks of life, Dr Vikram Sampath said the Residency hosted by the Governor facilitated writers and artists to understand the cultural side of Mumbai.
Mentioning that he had created an Archive of Indian Music which is India’s first Digital Sound Archive for vintage gramophone records with 15,000 recordings, Dr Vikram Sampath announced he would donate the digital copy of the archival collection to the University of Mumbai. This, according to him, would facilitate research and provide access to scholars and artists.
Dancer-Choreographer Madhu Natraj presented a Saraswati Vandana through her dance on the occasion, while former students of the University presented a programme of devotional songs.
Mystery thriller writer Manjiri Prabhu offered to write a mystery suspense thriller based on Raj Bhavan, while creative writer and illustration artist Ranak Singh Mann offered to assist Raj Bhavan in design and digital initiatives.
The artists and writers visited the Sir JJ School of Art, University of Mumbai Department of Music, Theatre and Folk Art, Asiatic Society and also met many resource persons.