West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today said 'Nazrul Tirtha' and 'Rabindra Tirtha' will become hubs of cultural exchange between West Bengal and Bangladesh.
After inaugurating 'Nazrul Tirtha', a cultural and educational centre dedicated to the rebel poet in New Town, she said it will soon become the "talk-of-the-town".
"Let Nazrul Tirtha become the meeting ground of various cultures and communities. Together with Rabindra Tirtha, it will become hub of cultural exchange between West Bengal and Bangladesh," Banerjee said.
The occasion marked the 115th birth anniversary of Kazi Nazrul Islam, who is the national poet of Bangladesh.
A complete educational and research centre on Nazrul, the architectural style of the Nazrul Academy is similar to the aesthetic European-style heritage buildings.
It will have an archive, an audio-visual arena, a library, a reading room and a research centre besides a display area for the poet's works.
Banerjee said they will collaborate with Bangladesh on research projects on Nazrul.
"Icons like Kazi Nazrul or Rabindranath Tagoren cannot be slotted as minority or majority icons. They are icons of all Bengalis. Some people have started a whisper campaign saying Nazrul is a minority icon. This is appalling," she said.
"Kazi Nazrul Islam has always talked of communal harmony. He taught us not to discriminate between people," the CM said.
During the function she also announced that the Rabindra Sadan complex will be developed as a 'Sanskriti Tirtha' and a 2500-seater auditorium will be developed over there.