Shree Shree Badala Padma Aata Sewa Samittee is a socio-cultural organization of Assam sincerely devoting in spreading cultural unity and integrity among the people of North East based on the teachings propagated by our great Mahapurush Srimanta Sankardev and his chief disciple Shree Shree Madhabdev. Shree Badala Padma Aata (1546-1676) who was one of the chief disciples of Shree Madhabdev sent by preceptor to spread Bhakti Movement and Sattriya culture in upper Assam on his behalf. In upper Assam, Shree Badala Padma Aata established 24 (twenty-four) Sattras including Kamalabari, Badala etc. and propagated Sattriya Culture and Vaishnavite Bhakti movement amongst the people of the backward area of upper Assam.
The Sewa Samittee with the support and association of Guwahatians and the Government of Assam observed the 473th birth anniversary of Shree Shree Badala Padma Aata on 13th, 14th and 15th June, 2019 along with its 9th biennial conference at Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra and Rabindra Bhawan, Guwahati in a grand way reflecting his contribution in both socio-religious and socio-cultural spheres to the world audience. In connection of this mega event we will be going to stage all the Ankiya Plays on those days along with other cultural performances in various venues.
A Three-Day Festival to celebrate the heritage, philosophy, tradition and uniqueness of the Sattriya Culture. An excellent way of exhibiting the thoughts and principles of the great Gurus who gifted the Sattriya Culture to Assam. The main motive of which was/is to unite, to amalgamate and to liberate people across all social strata.
An enormously beautiful replica of a Sattra was stood-up. It had every detail a Sattra would have.
Like how it is in the Sattras, the first day started with the beautiful Usha Kirtan at 5 in the morning followed by Guru Ashan Pratistha and hoisting of the cultural flag by Shree Shree Janarddan Deba Goswami, Sattradhikar of Shree Shree Uttar Kamalabari Sattra, Majuli.
A gratified parade flagged off by Sjt. Naba Kumar Doley (Minister, Cultural Affairs, Govt. of Assam)
displaying the various cultural aspects of the Sattras was taken out and it was perhaps one of the most beautiful things to have happened in Guwahati that morning.
During the day, the main exhibition entrance Gate was inaugurated by Sjt. Keshab Mahanta (Minister, Water resources and Cultural Archeology and Museum, Govt. of Assam). Immediately after this was the Gayan-Bayan and Bahar Dance exhibition at the Kirtan Ghar by Shree Shree Badala Sattra, Narayanpur.
Then there started a line-up of Ankiya Bhaonas by different Sattras from all across Assam. This was inaugurated by
by Sjt. Pranjal Saikia (Veteran actor and President of Sattriya Kendra, Guwahati). The Ankiya Bhaonas showcased beautiful pieces of plays like Sore Dhora’, ‘Pimpora Gusowa’ and ‘Bhumilotowa’ Jhumura, Rajgharia Saali Nritya’ and Arjun Bhanjan Jhumura.
Since this festival was all about bringing together every ingredient that makes the real culture of a land, the presentation of Folk Culture was as important. This started at 4 in the evening and was inaugurated by Sjt. Chandra Mohan Patowari (Minister of Transport and Industries, Govt. of Assam). Such display of colours on the open stage! The audience was seen swaying with the folk beats and smiling all along. We had Bodos, the Rabhas, the Deuris, the Dimasas, the Misings, Jhumoor, Choutali and what not.
At 5 in the evening the lamp was lit by Sjt. Charan Narzary (religious Guru, Bramha Samaj) and then the ritualistic evening prayers began. This was followed by Presentation of Ankiya Bhaonas like Parijat Haran and Rukmini Haran composed by Srimanta Sankardev himself.
At 6, the evening of Cultural Shows was inaugurated by Chief Guest: Prof. Jagdish Mukhi (Hon’ble Governor of Assam) and Guest of Honour: Sjt. Piyush Hazarika (Minister of State, health, Govt. of Assam). Six very talented groups from across Assam exhibited Sattriya dance and they were joined in by Kathak Performance by Surabhi Singh Tandon from Lucknow and Ram Lila Performance by Balaji Sanskritik Vikas Samit from Ayodhya.
The day came to end with more eagerness and wait for what was in store for the next two days to come.
Day 2 commenced with Usha Kirtan at 5 in the morning and the holy morning Prasanga by Shree Shree Kamalabari Sattra, Titabor. Since ages, the Sattaras have had a vital role in maintaining the environment and ecology of the surrounding areas. Reiterating the significance of this act, there was held a small ceremony to purify and cleanse the environment and planting of trees/saplings.
At 8, Sjt.Prabhat Burabhakat, Vice-President, Shree Shree Badala Padma Aata Sewa Samittee, Assam inaugurated program of Dihanaam by the women folk and its echoes reflected the blissfulness of mornings in any Sattra.
Whilst all this was happening, at the Seminar Hall of Sangeet Natak Bhawan and discussion was being carried out about Sattriya Sanksriti – Augmentation of tradition and welcoming the present. This was inaugurated by Dr. Kandarpa Kr. Deka (Vice-Principal of Srimanta Sankardev Vishwavidyalaya) and the Chief Guest was Sjt. Siddharth Bhattacharya (Hon’ble Minister, Education, Govt of Assam)
As the day progressed, Sjt. Nitumoni Saikia (Chief Editor, Pratidin Times) inaugurated and witnessed ‘Bhojan Bihar’ a Jhumoora composed by Shree Shree Madhabdev, presented at the Arhi Kirtan Ghar by Sangeet Sattra, Guwahati.
At 11, everyone assembled at Srimanta Sankardev International Conference Hall for Book Launch and this attended by Sjt. Paramananda Rajbangshi (President, Assam Sahitya Sabha) and Sjt. Kuladhar Saiki (Director General of Police, Govt. of Assam).
Immediately after this there was held Dharmacharya Sanmelan and Shree Shree Badala Padma Aata Prize Distribution at Srimanta Sankardev International Conference Hall itself. This event was inaugurated by Shree Shree Noni Gopal Deba Goswami (Sattradhikar, Shree Shree Dakshinpat Sattra, Majuli) and the Sanchalak was the President (Shree Shree Badala Padma Aata Sewa Samittee) with Sjt Jagdish Mukhi (Hon’ble Governor of Assam) as the Chief Guest.
The day went on as a very productive one. At 2:30 in the afternoon, the meeting for Assamese Folk Cultural Sattra begun.
At 4 in the evening, we again could witness the colourful display of folk music and dance at the Open Stage. This event was inaugurated Sjt. Kamakhya Prasad Tasa (MP, Rajyasabha). We had dances from different groups of Koch Rajbongshi,, Nagaland, Mizoram, Sikkim and Meghalaya.
At 4:30, everyone could hear musical recitation of the Madbhagawat by Bhagawat Rasasindhu Sjt. Riju Pathak (President, Sangeetmay Madbhagawat Katha Prachaar Sammittee).
At 5, the lamp was lit by many dignitaries and was led by Sjt. Rajeshwar Mahapatra, Sattradhikar of Birbal Sattra, Naharkatiya. Thereafter, the director of Jawaharlal Nehru Manipuri Dance Akademi, Imphal honoured us by inaugurating the Ankiya Bhaonas. The bhaonas showcased here were composed by Srimanta Sankardev himself were presented by Dakshin Barpeta Mahapurush Shree Shree Madhabdev Sonwarani Sammittee, Shree Shree Badala Padma Aata Culture Centre, Narayanpur and Shilpi Samaj of Goalpara.
At 6, the Cultural show began with scintillating Sattriya Performances by groups from all over Assam. There was an Odissi dance performance by Jayantika, Guru Mayadhar Raut School of Odissi Dance from Delhi and the evening was concluded by Manipuri Basant Raas, Dhol Chalam and Poong Chalam by Jawaharlal Nehru Manipuri Dance Akademi from Imphal.
Yet again, leaving the audience eager and hungry for what was to come on the next which was to be the last day.
Day 3 begun with Usha Kirtan at 5 in the morning and Meditation and Pranayam, followed by the holy morning Prasanga by Shree Shree Badala Sattra, Narayanpur.
Smti. Hemaprabha Devi (Social worker and Industrialist) inaugurated the Dihanaam by the women folk.
At 10, there was a mesmerizing performance of Thiyo Naam lead by Sjt. Basistha Deba Sarma along with other Guwahati based Thiyo Naam artists.
At 11, Sjt. Pritam Saikia (Commissioner, Cutural Affairs, Assam) inaugurated the Jhumoora Performances. Luit Konwar Rudro Baruah State Sangeet Mahavidyala presented the Raas Jhumoora, originally composed by Shree Shree Madhabdev.
At 12, an exhibition was held about the local folk Culture at the Open Stage. MP, Mongoldoi, Sjt. Dilip Saikia came to inaugurate this event.
At 1 in the afternoon, Sjta. Angoorlata Deka, MLA, Batadraba inaugurated the display of Krishna Nritya by the upcoming Sattriya Nritya artists from Guwahati.
Sjt. Deepak Kr. Borthakur (Vice-Chairperson, State Innovation and Transformation Commission, Assam) inaugurated the Open Session at 1:30 in the afternoon at Srimanta Sankardev International Conference Hall. This was attended by special guests Shree Shree Bhabakanta Deba Goswami (Sattradhikar, Kamalabari Sattra, Titabor), Sjt. Basistha Beba Sarma (Burhasattriya, Barpeta Sattra), Sjt. Jitendranath Pradhani (President, Assam Sattra Mahasabha), Sjt. Munindra Narayan Deba Goswami (Saatradhikar, Belguri Sattra, Narayanpur), Sjt. Jogendra Lagassu (Sattradhikar, Changini Sattra, Bihpuriya), Sjt. Paramananda Sayengia (Chief Executive, Mising Autonomous Council), Sjt. Madhab Deuri (Chief Executive, Deuri Autonomous Council), Sjt. Kumud Kachari (Chief Executive, Thengal Kachari Autonomous Council).
At 4 in the evening, the whole environment felt holy by the musical chanting of the scared Madbhagawat by Sjt. Purushottam Upadhyay.
At 5, there was the community lighting of the lamp, which was led by Sjt. Balaram Frangsu (Religious Guru of Lakshiman Sangha, Karbianglong).
Then at the Arhi Kirtan Ghar started the Ankiya Bhaonas – Patni Prasad and Ram Bijoy, composed by Srimanta Sankardev and presented by Gosai Pukhuri, Lakhimpur and Srimanta Sankardev Vishwavidyalaya, Guwahati respectively.
The Hon’ble Governor of Nagaland, Sjt, P.V. Acharya came to inaugurate the evening Cultural Show of the last day of this festival. He inspired every person seated in the Auditorium with him spellbinding speech about how we should be proud of our own heritage, culture and tradition and remain united as a nation. He was accompanied by his wife and they both sat through the various Sattriya Performances by groups from across Assam and special performances by Amrapali group showcasing every classical dance of India, acrobatic performance by Gotipuwa Dancers from Puri, Odisha and the conclusion of the 3-day festival was called in by the flamboyant performance of Terukkuttu from Tamil Nadu.
The capital has been blessed and is grateful to the Shree Shree Badala Padma Aata Sewa Sammittee for holding this festival in this city. Such a detailed display, exhibition, presentation of the Sattriya Culture had never happened before. It fills us with pride to understand we are a part of such rich history and traditions. The foresight of the Mahapurushes is evident. Inclusion of every element of every society is the need of the time. Understanding and propagating this thought and principles of Sattriya Culture is like nurturing the oneness that binds all.