Sunday, December 17, 2017

Nazrul Archive to open on 20th Dec 2017

Panel in Nazrul Tirtha's Hall 3
Nazrul Tirtha Hall 3 (NT3 in short) has been specially built with a semi-oval table with chairs, small comfortable viewer gallery and a special rear row of recliner chairs. This will be used for preview of films before their release by producers. A meeting with them will be held on 20th Decemeber evening after the inauguration of the new Nazrul Archive by Minister Firhad Hakim same day at 5pm.

A write up on the Nazrul Archive as drafted by Curator (NT) is given below.

PS: Newspaper clippings are being regularly posted at
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Kazi Nazrul Islam, known as the ‘Rebel Poet’ in Bengali literature and the ‘Bulbul’ or Nightingale of Bengali Music, was one of the most colorful personalities of undivided Bengal between 1920 and 1942. His role in freeing modern Bengali poetry from an unsuccessful imitation of Rabindranath Tagore was significant. His poems, songs, novels, short stories, plays and political activities against various forms of oppression, slavery, communalism, feudalism and colonialism forced the British Government not only to ban many of his books but also to put him in prison.

Since dedicated to the memory of this remarkable and iconic Bengali poet and musician, Nazrultirtha, a project of WB HIDCO, has set up a library and an exhaustive digital archive which has been the repository of the details of the poet’s life and time and his creative world to facilitate the researchers in finding out all the details of references relevant to the poet and his activities.


The first step for making such a Resource Centre has been setting up a library on Kazi Nazrul Islam which would contain books by and on Kazi Nazrul Islam along with Bengali literature, art and music of the contemporary period.  The library can be housed in a part of the room in the 2nd floor of Nazrultirtha (room opposite to the lift). 

Digital Archive

In thousand years of Bengali music, Nazrul was perhaps the most original creative talent.  By fusing the elements of North Indian Classical Music with tradition whose basis was primarily folk and not merely because of the large number of songs that he wrote, Nazrul made Bengali music a part of the longer tradition of the music of the Indian sub-continent.  His lyrics and melody freed the Bengali music from its earlier mould.  Like modern Bengali poetry, Nazrul was a pioneer in modern Bengali music as well.  It may be mentioned here that during 1939 different recording companies in Kolkata issued a total of 1000 records, 1648 of which were Nazrul songs and the total number of his unrecorded songs is perhaps twice as much.

The digital archive with six desktops and one server will function in the same room  where the library has been set up. Initially, all the out of print books scattered in the old libraries of Kolkata and suburbs have been digitized with a camera.  The out of print books would include the first prints  of Nazrul’s own books , magazines Nazrul edited,  magazines on Nazrul,  manuscripts, notations of Nazrul’s songs along with original songs (poems),  letters written by and to Nazrul, advertisements, booklets on Nazrul’s record, photos of record labels/covers, script of dramas where Nazrul’s songs/poems have been used.,  copies of Betar Jagat, journal of All Indian Radio,  when Nazrul was an employee of All India Radio etc., Nazrul’s songs in records, cinema and radio which include photographs of the artists, singers, music composers and those who inspired Nazrul to become a great composer, the manuscript of the songs written by Nazrul and notations of Nazrul’s songs, recorded songs of Nazrul (both as a singer and a composer in the contemporary films).The archive will also have an audio visual section where all the recorded songs of Nazrul will be archived along with the information on the songs, the films by Nazrul and videographed interviews of eminent Nazrul scholars. The researchers would have an access to all such information either through internet or email with a nominal payment or they may come directly to the archive and make a search sitting in front of the desktops.

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