Kumari, Radhuni Paagol and more
Wondering what these are? These are the names of a local species of
rice, almost on the verge of extinction. Thanks to Ubinig's Noya Krishi
Andolon and Shoshyo Prabartana, you still have the opportunity to savour
their taste. Shoshyo Prabartana, situated at 2/8 Sir Syed Road, Mohammadpur
is offering various kinds of local rice produced completely without
the help of any chemical fertilisers or genetic modification. Their
huge collection includes 'Dheki chhata chaal' (manually processed),
Kumari, Digha, Biroi, Afsaya, priced between tk26 to tk28,
and Binni tk40. At the store you will also get Polau rice, Radhuni paagol,
Kalijira, Begun bichi, Shaheb Chikkon, Tulsi mala and more. Their prices
range in between tk35 to tk42.
Boishakh with Ilish-panta, has become the fad these days. At Karwan
bazaar, Hatirpool and New Market kitchen market, you will get Ilish
or Hilsha at around tk120 to tk150 per kg. The price may vary if you
get it from the local kitchen market.
oil and pickles
Pure mustard oil is hard to find these days. To feel that aroma of mustard
oil in your favourite bhorta or that hot spicy punch in your aachar,
visit Shoshyo Prabartana. 400gm of mustard oil costs tk50 and a bottle
of 800gm costs tk100. At the outlet you will also find homemade mango,
tamarind, chalta, garlic, boroi aachars (pickles) and more at tk60.
One must invest in an umbrella this season; in fact, it might turn out
to be a lifesaver on Poila Boishakh. New Market is the best place to
buy umbrellas. The suitcase and bag stores are offering various kinds.
Singapore market behind the New Market is also a great place. In both
places, the price is almost the same. The price range of manual umbrellas
in different colours varies from tk175 to tk200. The ones with an automatic
button system will cost tk375. To buy an umbrella you can also visit
Elephant Road, Mouchak Market, Baitul Mukarram and Polwel Super Market.
Prices will vary.
of summer fruits
Watermelon, the juiciest of summer fruits, is flooding the market. Their
prices range between tk35 to tk60 depending on the size. According to
doctors, wood apple is a highly nutritious fruit. In the market, one
medium sized wood apple is sold at tk12 to tk15. Other summer fruits
are slowly arriving in the market. Green mangoes are also available.
One kilo costs around tk35 to tk40.
Situated on the third floor of Aziz Super Market, Nittyo Upohar specialises
in t-shirts. They have introduced their Boishakhi collection lately.
These cool t-shirts titled Moslin, Gazir pot, Pot chitro, Madhu mala,
Mymenshingho gitika, Lokoj, Puthi, Lokoshilpo and Lakhsmi pecha are
designed by Dhrubo Esh, Anisuzzaman, Saleh Mahmud, Konok Adityo and
Shobyoshachi Hajra. Kids t-shirts will cost tk130 and adults, tk160
Obviously, you will be hanging around Ramna Botomul and the DU campus
on the day of the festival. Be sure to drink a lot of water. During
the day, you can also quench your thirst with coconut water. This highly
nutritious drink is quite cheap and abundant. One green coconut usually
costs around tk10, but on Boishakh, it will increase up to tk15. Rickshaw
vans with coconut water roam around the campus area on this day or any
other day during the summer.
Rajanigandha and more
Even though you are decked in the perfect sari, along with the perfect
ornament, the festive mood would be more or less incomplete without
the beli mala or gajra. Usually a beli mala costs tk5 and a gajra costs
around tk15, but during festivals, prices soar. Just multiply the actual
figure with 2. Flower vendors at Shahbag and Katabon have the best collection
of flowers. Rose sticks cost tk3 to tk5, and Rajanigandhas cost tk2
or tk3. Gladiolas available in various colours cost tk10 to tk12 per
stick. Gypsy costs tk10 to tk15 per bundle. Garlands made of Gaada would
cost Tk6-7. You can also buy bouquets. Their price ranges from tk50
to tk500 depending on the size and type of flowers. Again, don't forget
The sales of tube hennas soar before any occasion. Very popular among
young girls, a wide range of tube henna is available at any toiletry
shop in New Market, Gausia, and Eastern plaza. Mehendi, Rani, Madhuri,
Mumtaz, Rima, Ligion and Shehzadi are brands mostly available in the
market. Their prices range in between tk30 to tk35 per tube. Powdered
henna is also available at Aarong, priced at tk25.
However, one cannot
compare fresh henna leaves with dried and processed henna. Although
it is hard to find these days the demand is always high. Vendors of
New Market somehow manage to sell everything that a consumer might need.
If you want to adorn your hands with fresh henna, you ought to visit
New Market. You will find hawkers at the gate with a variety of items
that you haven't seen in a while including henna leaves. A bundle will
cost tk15 to tk20.
Tucked in a corner at 67, 11/A Dhanmondi, Piran is specialised on brass
ornaments. Their brass ornaments are simply elegant with an ethnic look.
The price of bangles start from tk25 and goes up to tk200. Earrings
cost around tk20 to tk100, lockets tk60 to tk200 and the price of necklaces
with earrings cost tk90 to tk350. Also checkout Bibiana's ornament section
for brass items. Their bangles cost tk100, earrings cost tk40 to tk100,
and necklaces with earrings cost tk140 to tk350. Bibiana is located
at house no 6, road no 7, Dhanmondi. Aarong currently has five outlets
in Dhaka. Check out their maaduli, haashuli and maakri. These traditional
items cost around tk195 to tk560. Don't miss the terracotta items at
Ideas and Vertical at Aziz Super Market in Shahbag. At Ideas, necklace
sets range from tk70 to tk200, bangles tk50 per piece, and bracelets
tk40. At Vertical, exclusive items designed and prepared by the students
of Fine Arts, are available. They offer earrings at tk20 to tk30, bracelets
for tk25, bangles for tk35, and necklace sets at tk50 to tk85.
Boishakh is right around the corner. This year there will be two Boishakhi
rallies. Students of Fine Arts will arrange their regular rally starting
around 8:30am. In the last few years, Charukala rally lost its original
spirit to some extent. For a change you might want to try the other
rally starting also at 8:30 from Shahid Minar. The rally titled 'Mongol
Shova Jatra' will follow Doyel chattar, Matsya bhavan, Shahbag, Elephant
road route and will end at Dhanmondi Rabindra Shorobor Moncho.
the day of Poila Boishakh, Shammilito Shanskritik Jote will arrange
their programme from 4pm at Rabindra Shorobor Moncho. Hrishij starts
their programme at 8:30am in front of Shishu Park. On 13 and 14 at
4pm, Bengal Foundation will arrange similar programmes at Wonderland,
Gulshan. At 4pm on 13, Padatik Natya Shangshad will celebrate Chaitra
Shankranti also at Dhanmondi Rabindra Shorobor Moncho and stage their
play titled 'Jalbalika'.
Ramna botomul will be the ultimate destination for merrymakers. Chayanaut
will start their usual botomul celebration at 6am. Set your date and
have a blast.
One of Lifestyle's
major tasks is to roam the city streets and catch the hip-hop in
action. As a result, come a festival and we ceremoniously ride the
bandwagon and go out to actually see whether the press releases,
sent to our desks in hundreds, are justified or not.
we literally went to all the places from sari stores in Baily Road
to exclusive boutiques in Dhanmondi, Gulshan to nearly all the city
shopping malls. It is with a lot of disappointment that we report
that most of the boutiques and stores are suffering from 'designer's
block'. We were struck by déjà vu every time we entered
a store; every design we saw reminded us of something we'd seen
The shops are
decorated all in Boishakh colours, the Boishakhi lines are all ready,
but almost all of them are lacking the 'wow' factor; their work
seems repeated and over used with nothing new to offer except for
stuff that's been done to death.
As a result,
for every designer that comes up with some fantastic fusion, there
are at least half a dozen others with half-baked ideas, heavily
'influenced', who are coming up with nothing that merits a second
Except a handful
of brand names, nothing is nouveau this Boishakh. Lifestyle recommends
those do-it-yourself sorts of attire in traditional taat and mulmuls
or just go for cotton 'kora' jamdanis, for this fun-filled but hot
and humid Pohela Boishakh.
One small wish
that we want our fashion houses to actually grant us in the coming
festivals, is to give us 'something totally new', we want them to
trash those gaudy fake jaris and botas, those over-used blocks and
try new bold ideas in gorgeous rich colours. Till then we keep our
fingers crossed and hope that we see the creative designers soon.
Raffat Binte Rashid