Mongol Shobhajatra is an integral part of Pohela Boishakh, the first day of Bangla New Year, celebration in Bangladesh.
The colourful annual festivities has been inscribed in Unesco's Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity at the 11th session of the Inter-governmental Committee on Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage held in Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.
Also Read- The spirit of Boishakh
In its decision
, the committee said Mongol Shobhajatra “symbolises the pride of the people of Bangladesh in their living heritage as well as their strength and courage to fight sinister forces, and their vindication of truth and justice.”
A procession featuring large colourful masks, animal-shaped life sized carnival floats and other motifs of Bangladeshi culture, Mongol Shobhajatra was the brain child of three students of Dhaka Fine Arts Institute, now the Faculty of Fine Arts at the Dhaka University – Mahabub Jamal Shamim, Moklesur Rahman and Heronmay Chanda.
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Artists were busy with the final preparations for the Mongol Shobhajatra. The photo was taken on April 10 this year Syed Zakir Hossain/Dhaka Tribune
Inspired by a similar procession that had taken place in Jessore in 1985, the trio along with their classmates and friends first brought out the procession in 1989, which over the years spread countrywide and became an integral part of Bangali culture.
Since then, the DU Fine Arts Faculty has been organising Mongol Shobhajatra every year in Dhaka, which is attended by not only the students and teachers of the university, but also thousands of people from all walks of life.