As the nation celebrated the 75th Republic Day, two Goan artists got to witness the parade on Kartavya Path in New Delhi.
Artists Gurudatta Dattaram Ventekar and Sagar Suresh Naik Mule, new to the weather in Delhi, donned sweaters and jackets, but admitted that they had the best time of their lives watching the spectacle.
In a chat with Gomantak Times Digital, from New Delhi, Sagar said, “The weather in Delhi is amazing and to witness the parade live was spectacular. It’s an honour to be a part of the celebration.”
Sagar spoke on how he was invited to the parade in New Delhi. “It was at the 84th episode of Mann ki Baat I spoke to Prime Minister Narendra Modi about my Kaavi art was revived with a new dimension. I was also invited for the 100th Mann ki Baat, where my art, in the form of mementos, was distributed to various dignitaries," he said.
"My third recognition was that Goa’s native painting technique, Kaavi, has been immortalised in a special volume of Amar Chitra Katha (children’s book) by the Union Culture Ministry as part of the Mann ki Baat series. And this is the fourth time here, at the parade,” said Sagar.
While throwing light on how he was selected Sagar said, “This invite came as a surprise. It was very exciting to know that my name had been selected. There are only two from Goa who were invited and this makes me feel extremely proud.”
Gurudatta, known for his speed painting and amazing skill in Rangoli art, is currently in Delhi with his family to experience the magic of the parade. In a quick chat he disclosed that last year he got a national award for his Rangoli art and PM Narendra Modi had mentioned his name in his 98th episode of Mann ki Baat. He was invited on the basis of his work and award.
“I cannot explain how overwhelmed I am with the motivating gesture from the Central government. I was invited there because of my engagement in Rangoli,” Gurudatta said.
He went on to explain that Rangoli has been a traditional art form and that over a span of a few years it is disappearing due to many reasons. Lamenting the past, he said, “During our childhood we used to see rangoli designs in almost all homes, especially during the festive seasons. I feel it’s our national art form and you can see it only in India.
We should pass on this art to our future generations. My plan is to make awareness about this art form to other countries as I feel this is our national art form. I want to exhibit hyper realistic rangoli art abroad too, for which I need help from our state government.”
Both Gurudatta and Sagar say they are humbled by their Delhi visit and can't wait to share their experience with friends and family in Goa.