GUWAHATI: The 7th edition of Rongali, the four-day festival celebrating the culture, traditions and flavours of Assam and Northeast, has kicked off with a plethora of activities, exhibitions and performances, on Thursday. The festival, being held at the Khanapara Veterinary College Ground, Guwahati, features a wide range of events that are designed to promote the unique culture of the state.
One of the major attractions of the festival is the ‘Vocal For Local’ exhibition, which began Thursday evening. The exhibition is aimed at promoting local products and entrepreneurship. Another popular attraction is the art exhibition showcasing the work of local artists.
The folk stage presented a melange of cultural diversity of NER. Artistes from seven sisters and Sikkim gave display of brilliant ethnic culture of the region. The programme started with Borgeet by Dixita Konwer. The multi-cuisine food court, with wide varieties of cuisines from NER.
The ‘Good Vibes’ music stage, started at 6 pm, drew a large crowd with its line-up of popular local musicians. The musical line-up includes Protiddhoni, Aushaijya Saikia, Bishrut Saikia, Priyanka Bharali and Nilotpal Bora.
The festival, which aims to promote the creativity, entrepreneurship has already generated a lot of excitement among locals and visitors alike.
The four-day extravaganza was formally inaugurated by Assam ministers Ashok Singhal and Nandita Gorlosa in the presence of host of other dignitaries and participants from different parts of the state and the country.
Ashok Singhal, the State Minister for Housing & Urban Affairs and Irrigation said, "Guwahati is the gateway to the Northeast. We are happy that an event like Rongali is happening in Guwahati." Singhal expressed hope that Rongali will get bigger and bigger and be a major Festival of india. Mr Singhal emphasised on various developmental plans of Guwahati under the leadership of Hon’ble CM Assam Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma and opined that Guwahati will become a major hub of South East Asia.
Nandita Gorlosa, the Minister for Power, Mines & Minerals, and Cooperation, has described the atmosphere at Rongali as meeting grounds of various tribes and communities and to promote harmony. She mentioned Dima Hasao is making some special programmes in Rongali and urged people to visit the beautiful Dima Hasao district.
With support from Govt of Assam, MSME, Govt of India, NEC, the Ministry of DoNER and other agencies, Rongali is driven by North East’s biggest socio-cultural organisation, Trend MMS.
Shyam Kanu Mahanta, the man behind the festival has termed the event as hope and happiness. “This is a platform which will provide youngsters and entrepreneurs to go to the next level. This is hope. And people who come here get happiness being a part of it. So, it’s a festival of Hope and Happiness,” said Mahanta.