Poets Remember Vajpayee and Kavis Make the Evening Special

KAVI_IN01By Sanjay Sohoni & Swapan Dhairyawan

HOUSTON: On Sunday, October 28, the Houston Chapter of the International Hindi Association organized a program paying tribute to the late Indian Prime Minister of India Atal Bihari Vajpayee at Keshav Smriti Hall in Houston. Swapan Dhairyawan was the Event Coordinator and master of ceremonies who took the audience on a journey and life of Vajpayee.  

The program started with kids from the VPSS Hindi class singing ‘Hum Honge Kaamyab’ which set the mood and tone of the program.  The song was rendered by Riti, Rhea, Arjun, Reyna, Priya, Samika, Anushka, Manav and Shrey and was taught by Sangeeta Gupte and the audience was impressed to hear them singing in chaste Hindi.  The President of the IHA Houston Chapter, Dr. K. D. Upadhyaya welcomed the audience and explained the purpose and timeline of the program.

Fatehali Chatur recited the first poem “hari hari doob par onski boonde” and narrated the similarity with examples of husband and wife relationship, much to the delight of the audience. This was followed by Dr. Sarita Mehta reciting her poems “aao phir se diya jalaye” and “geet naya gaata hu”.  The next participant was Dr. Harendra Chahar who recited an incredible poem filled with Veer Ras “hindu tan man hindu jivan” which made exemplified the greatness of the Hindu way of life.  The next poem of hope was recited by Manisha Gandhi “savera hai magar purab disha mein” which showed the soft side of mood and emotions.

Half way through, the senior community leader and accomplished businessman Ramesh Bhutada shared his experience and memories of Vajpayee.  He spoke about the strong character of Vajpayee who ran a coalition government of 22 different parties as a Prime Minister and succeeded in keeping all of them together. “So in our life we should also work in cooperation with people though we have different ideology, views and goals,” added Bhutada.  

He also said that the Keshav Smriti (located in donated space next to his business Star Pipe Products) will always keep its doors open for any such noble cause to the IHA team. This was followed by a speech by India Culture Center President Nisha Mirani who also recited a poem by Vajpayee.  She thanked IHA and audience for attending the program and spoke on mutual cooperation within the community.

Sangeeta Pasrija then recited few short poems on different moods and her recitation on ‘Babli Ki Diwali’ about the two pet dogs of Vajpayee showed altogether a different perspective of his talent and flair in poetry writing.

Swapan Dhairyawan recited Vajpayee’s  ‘Dudh me darar pad gai’ “unche parvat pe paude nahi ugte” and a new vision poem “ek naya bharat ke jisme ek naya vishwas ho”; as he very eloquently went over the life span and activities of Vajpayee from childhood, to youth, Vistarak, Pracharak, as a Parliamentarian, to an Opposition Party Leader and his role as the Prime Minister of India.

Distinguished Community Leader Arun Sharma of the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh narrated Vajpayee’s early life incident and emphasized his quality of simplicity and “ahankar rahit jivan- selfless and without ego life” to the audience. Shobendu recited the poem ‘kadam milakar chalana hoga’ and explained the background and philosophy behind this poem. Saroj Gupta gave a summary of different poems intertwined in a simple format. At the end, Upadhyaya recited Vajpayee’s famous poem ‘Than gai, than gai, maut se than gai’ to the delight of the audience which was awestruck with the expression and energy and fortitude in this poem.

IHA’s next program of is Kavita ki Shaam on December 7. Call Sanjay Sohoni at 281-943-9758