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Bengal takes to art to spread awareness about coronavirus

Image courtesy: ©ABIR ROY BARMAN/

Coronavirus outbreak has shaken the world and has taken a front seat across the globe grabbing all attention. In these difficult times too there are people around us who are trying to lift our spirits and keep that smile intact. Holding on to that thing called ‘Hope’ and making things work day in and out. Following these footsteps, Kolkata and its neighbouring places are trying to brighten and lighten the mood it with music, art and gastronomy.

Musically yours- Kolkata Police

Kolkata Police has turned all musical. Apart from helping the city fight the pandemic, they have even picked up a pen to write a song. Humming on the streets of the city, the famous ‘Bela Bose’ song by Anjan Dutt sees a twist with a message to spread awareness about COVID-19. The original song sees a phone number which the cops replaced with the COVID-19 helpline number.

An initiative by Gariahat PS under the guidance of officer in-charge of the police station, inspector Soumya Banerjee, Sergeant Debjit Mukherjee and Sergeant Sourav Chakraborty penned the lyrics and sang this Bengali number.

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Image courtesy: ©Soumya Banerjee

Their creativity didn’t stop there. Wearing masks and gloves and creating the musical effect on the streets, the Rabindra Sarobar Police Station staff has given a twist to the film Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne’s song with an awareness message about COVID-19. Beyond all this, somewhere in the city one can hear “we shall overcome” being sung by men in uniform holding microphones with loudspeakers.

Covid Art

The mask making district of Bengal Dakshin Dinajpur is seeing a different sort of art these days. An initiative by the local administration, they have identified 7 locations within the districts when street art showcasing messages from COVID-19 will be displayed.

Local artist Shyam Das along with other artists have made graffiti’s across the district that sees Jamini Roy-inspired figures and famous Bengali cartoons characters like “Nonte Phonte” from Thakumar Jhuli , “Batul the Great” a superhero, spreading messages of ‘Stay Home, Stay Safe’, ‘Break the chain’ and more. The local administration says since roads are where most people venture so spreading the awareness through street paintings comes across as an effective method. The roads of Balurghat city are now almost like an open art gallery.

On a sweet note

It’s no hidden truth that Bengali’s have a sweet fixation and their meal is incomplete without that one bite of “misti”. Maybe for the same reason even Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee too has allowed sweets shops to remain open amidst lockdown. Keeping in sync with the talk of town- COVID19, Hindusthan Sweets, Jadavpur have created a “sandesh” in resemblance to virus avatar calling it the “Corona Sandesh”. This deep red colour sweet also sees some spikes, which gives it the striking resemblance to the coronavirus.

RK Paul, one of the owners of the shop, says that he has also created a slogan saying “Nai Nai Bhoi/ Hobe Hobe Joy/ Coronar hobey parojoy’ (There is no fear/victory is near/corona will be defeated)”. This shop, that’s located in the main campus of Jadavpur University, is giving these sweet packets for free.