Nostalgia grips President as he visits Tagore’s art gallery


SHILLONG, India, March 10, 2018 (BSS) – President M Abdul Hamid and his family members visited the Brookside Bungalow here, where Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore had stayed in 1919.

Nostalgia gripped President Hamid, the sub-sector commander of the Mukti Bahini (freedom fighters) during the 1971 Liberation War, came here yesterday after 47 years.

Entering the building, he recited a few poems from Gitanjali in Bengali which was placed on a table.

The original handwritten verses hung on the wall.

Later, President Hamid glanced at the bed that was used by Rabi Tagore and the gallery where the paintings of art students were exhibited.

At Brookside Bungalow, Abdul Hamid also met a select group of Bangladeshi students studying here.

Tagore visited Shillong on three occasions.

He stayed at Brookside in Rilbong in 1919 in an Assam-type building which was subsequently taken over by the Meghalaya art and culture department.

The building at Brookside christened Rabindranath Tagore Art Gallery is still preserved by the department.

The Brookside bungalow, where Rabindranath Tagore stayed during his visit to Shillong in October 1919, has been renamed as the Rabindranath Art Gallery, now a centre for promotion of art and literature by the Meghalaya Government.

The poet, during his stay at Shillong, penned the classic Shesher Kabita (farewell song). Shesher Kabita is a novel by Rabindranath Tagore, widely considered a landmark in Bengali literature.

President’s spouse Rashida Khanam, secretaries concerned and other family members accompanied the President during the visit here.