Even as efforts are on to get a UN heritage tag for the iconic Kashi ghats, an initiative to bring the ‘unfocussed ghats’ into the limelight has come up. Ghat Sandhya, an amalgamation of art, dance and spirituality, held every evening at Ganga Mahal- Reeva Ghat is a step in this direction. The programme also aims at raising awareness on cleanliness and maintenance of these ghats.
A brainchild of an IAS Officer Pulkit Khare, ‘Ghat Sandhya’ began on the auspicious day of Basant Panchami (February 1). The hour-long event, which begins at 6pm daily, draws attention of almost every visitor every evening. Classical music permeates the Reeva ghat and dancers provide vivid hues of history and culture with their performances.
Speaking about the initiative, Khare, who is presently posted as chief development officer here, said, “Ghat Sandhya is aimed at bringing “unfocussed” ghats into focus so that they are also properly cleaned and maintained. Its is also an endeavour to provide a platform for budding classical dance artistes in all kinds of classical and semi classical dance forms and promoting tourism.”
In addition, the endeavour is aimed at providing a beautiful evening experience to locals and foreigners on the Ganga ghats. Khare said, “Each ghat is equally important and its fascinating beauty and history add to the composite and rich culture of the city. The artistes, who perform at Ghat Sandhya, will discuss about the history of a ghat before and after the performance every evening.”
Explaining further about the concept, Khare says, “All facets of culture must be brought to the fore and nurtured in the rich land of Kashi. There was already a beautiful platform of classical singing and instrumentation in the form of Subah-e-Banaras that takes place at Assi ghat everyday at 5am. We wanted to promote similar platforms for dance, art, theatre, and paintings at other ghats. Since Gangamahal-Reeva ghats lie adjacent to their famous counterpart ‘Assi ghat,’ artistes here will get an excellent backdrop for their dance performances. Hope, the event will bring about the desired results.” Khare said.
Khare said that a list of 100 dance classical dance performers for 100 days had been prepared. The thrust is not to repeat any of the artistes and promote local talents in various dance and art forms. This will also address the complaints that dancers and artists from the city, though appreciated globally, fail to find a permanent platform in their very own Kashi.
In addition, to add a more comprehensive look to the daily evening programme, photographers and painters interested in displaying their works have been contacted and a place on the adjoining ghat been allotted to them for the next 100 days to promote their work. It will also give tourists a ‘live’ view of the immensely rich heritage of the city. This will be followed every evening by the world renowned Ganga Arti on the adjoining Assi and Tulsi ghats to round off a fulfilling evening, Khare said.
The officer complimented his team for supporting the idea and implementing it with full energy. Ratnesh Verma, Manish Khattri, Ankita Khattri, Mala Homble, Vidhi Nager, Sunil Shukla, Krishna Mohan, Prashant and others got into action to translate this vision into reality, he said.