Railway passengers will soon be greeted with Rabindrasangeet and a railway theme song,to be played at all stations across the country,as part of the 150th birth anniversary celebrations of Rabindranath Tagore.
At a meeting of the Passenger Amenities Committee on January 23,which was attended by Railway Board Chairman Vivek Sahay and other members of the board,Padmabibhushan Dwijen Mukhopadhyay had suggested that the Railways should do something to commemorate the Nobel laureate on his 150th birth anniversary. Theater-personality Bratya Basu had suggested that the Railways,the biggest employer of the country,should come up with a theme song,which will be played at all stations across the country.
The ideas were conveyed to Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee and she was very excited. She told me to chalk out the plans as soon as possible and fix the date of the next meeting to finalise the plan in Delhi, said Mukhopadhyay,who is also the vice-chairman of the Passenger Amenities Committee of the Railways. Banerjee will attend the meeting in Delhi,he added.
The idea is that one popular Rabindrasangeet,which is known more or less by all,will be translated in regional languages. I will supervise the entire process. The theme song will be a bigger affair, he added.
The name of A R Rehman is taking rounds as the composer of the theme song. Nothing has been finalised as yet. But ideally it will be a vocal and instrumental piece. Along with all the stations,it will be played inside Rajdhani Express, said Basu.
According to Mukhopadhyay,the country will be divided into four zones north,south,west and east. Lyricist Javed Akhtar has been contacted to supervise the Hindi translation of the songs for the northern and western zones. I will look after the five states of the eastern zone, Javed Akhtar said.
The songs will be ready by the end of March. However,the Railways have not yet decided about the artistes and the money to be spent on the entire project.
Only a first meeting has been held. The entire thing is in a nascent stage. We will be able to ascertain the tentative expenditure once everything,including the artiste lists,is finalised, said Chandralekha Mukherjee,Executive Director (Information and Publicity,Indian Railways).