Jatio Kabita Parishad
(National Poetry Council)
On 1st February, 1987, Jatio Kabita Parishad (National Poetry Council of Bangladesh) was founded to organize the Jatio Kabita Utsab (National Poetry Festival) during the military regime of 1980s with the slogan of “Poetry for Breaking Chains” under the leadership of eminent poets including Sufia Kamal, Shamsur Rahman and Faiz Ahmad; and the vigorous initiative of young poets of Bangladesh. The Jatio Kabita Utsab of 1987 became a perpetual cultural journey and, in its course, it involved participation of progressive writers, journalists, painters, intellectuals as well as politicians, and played an important role in restoring democracy in the country by unifying the people of Bangladesh against the autocratic military regime of General Ershad.
From its debut in 1987, Jatio Kabita Parishad has been organizing National Poetry Festival on 1st and 2nd February every year with definitive slogans and theme songs focused on the contemporary cultural and socio-political situation of the country. In addition to poets from different corners of the country, eminent and young poets from around the world participate in this annual festival held amid much enthusiasm and fanfare. National Poetry Festival of Bangladesh is now a major annual event not only in Bangladesh but also in South-East Asia and is recognized as a unique reunion of poets from home and abroad. In that tradition, the 28th National Poetry Festival was held with the thematic slogan of “Poetry abhors Demon’s Howl” on 1st and 2nd February 2014 in Dhaka. Apart from the Festival, other activities of the National Poetry Council include poetry reading events, literary seminar and publication of a journal titled Kabita Utsab, among others. Jatio Kabita Parishad has become the leading and only national organization of the progressive poets of the country, enshrined with the spirits of the Language Movement of 1952 and Bangladesh’s War of Liberation in 1971.