প্রিয় সুধীগণ

Message from The President

Bichitra Event Notifications 2019

Thank You! - 2019 Year Ending Message from the President of Bichitra

Dated: December 23, 2019

Dear members,

The holiday season is fast approaching and as 2019 winds down, I can't help but reflect on the past 12 months. This year was a quite a journey, filled with new adventures and memorable experiences. As we enter the holiday season, on behalf of the executive committee, I would like to thank you for volunteering your valuable time in following events organized by Bichitra throughout the year. I would have preferred to mention your name for your significant contribution to Bichitra in several occasions throughout the year, but my sincere apology for not doing so, as I'm afraid I may miss someone inadvertently!

Highlights for 2018:
  1. Poush Parbon: We started off 2019 with Poush Parbon aka Pithe Utsav in a new location at Fort Garry United Church. To our surprise, many of our members attended & contributed different kinds of delicious Pithe! It was a very positive beginning of the year indeed!
  2. Saraswati Puja: We celebrated Saraswati Puja at the Raj Pandey Hindu temple. Mr. Makhan Bal performed the Puja wonderfully to mark the 50th Saraswati Puja for Bichitra.
  3. Annual General Meeting: In March we had the Annual General Meeting where we had interactive discussion and we collectively took many insightful decisions to lead Bichitra to a futuristic way. In this AGM, we unveiled our revamped website designed by one of our dedicated members. To this date, the website had a footprint of 2069 visitors.
  4. Poila Boisakh: In Poila Boisakh we not only enjoyed good cultural program but also rejuvenated our taste buds with fish kalia along with other typical Bengali dishes. On this very special day we arranged a fundraising, first of its kind in the history of the organization, in an endeavour to do something good for the bigger community, beyond Bichitra! This initiative was not only well appreciated, but also the generosity of our members was remarkable! Many of our members matched the initial donation amount. A total of CAD 1,162 was raised and donated later to “Winnipeg Harvest”.
  5. Rabindra Nazrul Jayanti: This year we celebrated Rabindra Nazrul Jayanti with a well-structured cultural program commemorating Rabindra Nath Tagore and Kazi Nazrul Islam.
  6. Multiculturalism Day: In end of May this year, we celebrated Multiculturalism Day; where we offered stage for different nationality artists/groups to showcase their cultural side.
  7. Summer Camp: After taking a brisk break from cultural programs, we went to a beautiful ranch in Austin, Manitoba, called Circle Square Ranch Spruce Woods for summer camping. For those who joined us, they may tell you their awesome experience in this year's summer camp! The summer camp was loaded with activities like horse riding, zip lining, wall climbing - to name a few.
  8. Canada Day Celebrations: We went to Birds Hill Provincial Park to celebrate Canada Day. We enjoyed the day with magic show, face painting, Canada Day quiz, sports activity etc.
  9. Folklorama: This year we participated in Folklorama with a stall to portrait the Bengali heritage.
  10. Mahalaya & Durga puja: This year Bichitra celebrated 40th Durga Puja. In this special year, we were fortunate to have a dynamic Puja committee with a blend of yester & present years! Puja committee chair Mr. Prabal Ghosh and co-chairs Mr. Gourisankar Roy and Mr. Ashok Sarkar worked very hard to plan things & executed smoothly throughout the event. Prabal’s unique plan, dedication and assisstance and participation from the community members led us to Mahalaya program which was the first in Bichitra’s history! There couldn’t be a better way to start off the 40th Durga Puja! Under the guidance and plan of Ayan Mukerjee and with the help of other dedicated volunteers, we were able to set up a new pandal this year. We celebrated our biggest festival of Bengali culture - Durga Puja in style with lots of new initiatives including messages from several famous artists/singers from West Bengal. We had a unique and beautifully designed Durga Puja invitation card and 40th edition of our annual publication Agomoni to mark the celebration. We hosted three special dignitaries to celebrate the 40th anniversary! We were also supported by a significant number of sponsors to celebrate the event with grandeur. Bichitra also hosted a special segment at CTV Morning Live with Rahim Ladhani explaining the story behind the celebration and showcasing Bengali culture by a Dhunuchi Dance performance.
  11. Kojagari Lakshmi Puja: We had Lakshmi Puja soon after the Durga Puja at Dr. Raj Pandey Hindu Centre.
  12. Bijoya Sommeloni & Special Project: This year due to time constraints, we celebrated Bijoya Sommeloni along with our special project together on October 26th. We had dance performance from aboriginal group, Nepali group and two other African groups followed by a glamorous music event by a guest artist from India Ms. Rishita Saha.
The phenomenal success of these events could not be possible without sincere dedication, hard work and participation of enthusiastic members like you. This reflects nothing but your integrity and commitment towards building a stronger family named “Bichitra”!

It has been a great year and I am genuinely humbled by our accomplishments. We're hoping that we'll have a great next year and you'll all be part of this joy ride in 2020.

Thank you,

Pijush Majumdar
Please visit us in social media for more updates:

Message from the 2019 Durga Puja Committee Chairperson

Dated: October 2, 2019

Dear Bichitra members,

On behalf of this year’s Durga Puja Committee and Co-Chairs, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for coming out to the special Mahalaya event, which was held on last Saturday, September 28th. I commend our performers, parents, family members, instructors, choreographers, and volunteers for their hard work, dedication and outstanding efforts to create an unforgettable experience!.

I am pleased to hear many rave comments about this program from our participants, organizers, members of the audience and guests. So, congratulations to everyone involved with this event and be proud of your achievement.

I want to thank the Bichitra Executive Committee for entrusting us with the responsibility of performing this year's special Durga Puja celebrations.

Now as we are embarking on the second-phase of the celebrations, and that is to celebrating the Puja itself. I wanted to share a few puja-related updates with you:

Puja Pandal set up and Decoration of Puja Premises - Wednesday, Oct 2 and Thursday, Oct 3 – those who are interested in volunteering please join us in the 999 St Anne’s Temple by 6:30 pm on both days. This year we are having a thematic Pandal. Pandal components are built and decorated already and they are now ready to be assembled in the Temple. We are aware that this email is going out late on Oct 2, as we were busy with various Puja related activities. Your support after seeing this email will be highly appreciated!.

Procession – Friday, Oct 4 – a procession with Dhunuchi dance, Dhaak beats etc. will be held around the temple premises to mark the beginning of the Puja. Please join the procession by assembling at the temple parking lot around 7:30 pm to take part in the procession

Puja Bhog – we got an overwhelming response to our request for offering Puja Bhog! Multiple families have shown interest in offering Puja Bhog on multiple days, which is greatly appreciated. Below is a list of names who are willing to offer Puja Bhog on different days and times:

Sasthi, eve, Fri, Oct 4 Swati & Prabal Ghosh
Saptami mor, Sat, Oct Krishna & Makhan Bal; Nilima & Swadesh Das
Saptami eve, Sat, Oct 5 Jayeeta & Sandeep Ghosh; Swatilekha & Kaushik Kundu
Astami mor, Sun, Oct 6 Kalpana & Prabir Mitra; Rimi & Subir RoyChoudhury; Shruti & Ayan Mukherjee
Astami eve, Sun, Oct 6 Srabani & Dip Das; Jayeeta & Sandeep Ghosh
Nabami mor, Mon, Oct 7 Sumita Biswas
Nabami eve, Mon, Oct 7 Sikta & Pranab Debnath; Debjani & Joykrishna Sarkar

Please note that the above list does not restrict others interested in offering Puja Bhog on any of those days. In fact, they are most welcome!

If anyone wants to change their date to offer Puja Bhog or need more details regarding the Bhog preparation, please contact Prabal Ghosh, immediately by Text/WhatsApp: 204-269-3075. If I don’t hear from you, then the above list is considered final to ensure timely availability of Puja Bhog on all Puja days. Please take note of your name and assigned timing for the preparation of Puja Bhog.

Mixed Sweet Boxes – Thank you for placing your order to purchase East India Company mixed-sweet boxes for Astami morning Pushpanjali (Sun, Oct 6). Due to an overwhelming response, we have now closed accepting any more orders. We placed order for 32 boxes, which will be labelled with your names, for distribution at the prayer hall that day. Please give $10 cash to Prabal Ghosh and collect your box on Astami morning before the Puja begins.

Puja Hosting – Thank you to all our hosts this year. Names of the hosts will be announced on Puja days.

Puja Donation – Finally, yet importantly, to provide you with the best Puja and event experience that we can and entice you all to celebrate, we need your help to make our efforts go even further! No donation is too small. As in previous years, a minimum suggested donation of $150 is requested per family, excluding any additional guest(s), if possible. Donations can be made in cash or cheque payable to “Bichitra – The Bengali Association of Manitoba Inc.”. Please find us during the Puja days for making donation. Your generous donations would be greatly appreciated. You have no idea how much it means to us to have your support.

More pleasant surprises are waiting for you this year on the Puja days! Please visit Bichitra’s Facebook page for daily Puja updates and don’t forget to like the posts.

Be there to experience a memorable Durga Puja in the Temple, where we will all mix, enjoy, and eat together in full Bangaliana spirit and style.

See you soon!

Prabal Ghosh
Chairperson, Bichitra 2019 Durga Puja Committee

Special Message from the 2019 Durga Puja Committee Chairperson

Dated: August 15, 2019

Dear Bichitra members,

Ten days ago, I shared the vision of this year’s Durga Puja committee and asked to share your ideas, thoughts and suggestions for consideration in this year’s puja. I am thankful to those who already shared their ideas with us. We all want to make this year’s puja memorable, peaceful and a satisfactory event. Without everyone’s support and cooperation, this goal is not achievable.

Today, although it is somewhat late, but I wanted to take this opportunity to connect with you again on this very special day of Raksha Bandhan and Independence. It is an emotional day for all of us and very rare as these two events coincided on the same day!

The Puja committee has made some progress to date. We met with the Bichitra Executive Committee who committed to support the Puja committee in every possible way to make this year’s Puja successful.

We are working on the Puja invitation card, which will contain detail Puja schedule, but please mark your calendar for the Durga Puja days from October 4th to October 8th and Laxmi Puja on October 13th.

A detailed email will come from the Puja committee in coming days, which will contain more information regarding the Puja details and events. However, this year, we thought to engage you earlier and work together from the very beginning of this process.

The Puja committee is looking for volunteer-involvement to manage different aspects of the Puja celebrations. Below is a list of some immediate volunteer needs with their roles, responsibilities and expectations. We will be in need of other volunteers for Puja specific activities, which I will indicate in my next email. I urge you to review the list below and send me your expressions of interest for specific volunteer roles. I am requesting you to submit your names directly to me by August 23rd either via email to prabalkghosh@gmail.com or by WhatsApp/Text to 204-269-3075.

List of immediate volunteer needs:

Volunteer Role Roles and responsibilities Expectations
Event management (Requirement: 10-15 volunteers will be assigned to various roles and activities)
  • Hall set up
  • Stage set up
  • Light and Sound management
  • Greeting members (children and young adults preferred)
  • Greeting special guests
  • Childcare
  • Hall and stage setup: this opportunity is open to young adults, adults and seniors
  • Greetings: this opportunity is open to all – prefer a mixture of various age groups from children to adults and seniors
  • Childcare: this opportunity is open to young adults to seniors (the expectation is to manage children so that they remain safe and less distracting)
  • No cleaning required
  • Able to attend planning meetings in person or via phone/video on weekends/evenings (exceptions apply)
  • Volunteers will be assigned to various event days randomly
  • Ensuring light and sound systems function as required before the event begins and during the event
  • Ensuring light and sound systems are safely stored every time after the event finishes
  • Greet members and guests – develop understanding of housekeeping issues, answer queries, direct them to various needs
  • Organizing all members, guests and visitors to attain Puja and special events
  • Must be a team player
Puja Pandal and decoration of Puja premises (Requirement: 10 volunteers will be assigned to various roles and activities)
  • Pandal preparation
  • Decoration of Puja area in the temple
  • Open and store Durga Protima in the temple
  • Light and Sound management
  • Working with a team of volunteers to buy materials and accessories, build the puja pandal and assist in the transportation of pandal to the temple
  • Assemble pandal in the temple
  • Decorate the puja area in the temple
  • Able to lift light duty materials
  • Able to spend couple hours during weeknights and weekends
  • Ensuring light and sound systems function as required before the event begins and during the event
  • Ensuring light and sound systems are safely stored every time after the event finishes
  • This opportunity is open to young adults, adults and seniors
  • Must be a team player
Food server (Requirement: a minimum of 20 volunteers are needed to be assigned to various days)
  • Serving prepared food during event and Puja days
  • Enjoy serving food with a team of volunteers
  • Must be a team player
  • This opportunity is open to young adults, adults and seniors
  • Volunteers will be assigned to various event days randomly
  • Volunteers will not have to serve food on every occasion (relief will be provided either by rotating volunteers or duty assignment)

I hope you will consider taking some of the above volunteer roles and get back to me by the deadline. Your cooperation and assistance will be highly appreciated. I can assure you that you will feel good by being a part of this year’s special Puja celebrations. Let’s all work together to make it our own event.

Prabal Ghosh
Chairperson, Bichitra 2019 Durga Puja Committee

Message from the 2019 Durga Puja Committee Chairperson

Dated: August 4, 2019

Dear Bichitra members,

It is my honor and privilege to address you as the Chairperson of this year’s Durga Puja committee. This is a very special year for Bichitra, as this year marks the 40th celebration of Shree Shree Sharadiya Durga Puja. Let’s come and celebrate together what it means to be Bengali.

I thought I should connect with you at this time as the Puja committee is starting to embark on its journey. We are less than 60 days away from the Puja celebrations.

It is our hope that the Puja days could be filled with engaging and inspiring activities to celebrate our traditions and culture. Our commitment is to make this year’s Puja a grand celebration! To make it a memorable one, we need your active participation and we trust that you will get involved in ways that are meaningful to uphold the spirit of the community and the Pujo celebration.

Improving your overall satisfaction is our priority. We will review the lessons learned from the previous years’ Puja and genuinely attempt to improve our performance and conduct the Puja peacefully. The task that is given to us is not simple. Mistakes may happen as we will go through a long and winding road. I recognize that personalities, characters and management styles may differ. Please feel free to criticize and make suggestions so that we could address the problems as soon as they are generated.

Thank you for placing your trust and confidence in our abilities to make this year’s Puja an enjoyable and memorable one for all Bichitra members, guests and visitors.

Let’s get ready to enjoy the forthcoming Puja days for which we are waiting from the last year’s Maha Dashami day when we all chanted “Asche bachar, abaar habe”! The wait is almost over!!!

In the coming days, you will receive the Puja invitation containing the details of the Puja and other announcements. A call for submitting literary articles and arts had already been circulated for inclusion in our Agomoni magazine. Please conform to the deadline so that we can get the magazine published in a timely manner.

Feel free to connect with me via email at prabalkghosh@gmail.com or by WhatsApp/Text at 204-269-3075 if you have any questions / concerns, or want to share any ideas or suggestions regarding the Puja.

Looking forward to experiencing a remarkable Durga Puja this year with your presence and support!

Prabal Ghosh
Chairperson, Bichitra 2019 Durga Puja Committee