Built in the heart of the city, the first Women’s College of India, Bethune College stands in pride as one of the oldest institutions of culture and heritage of the city. This institution holds one of the oldest and most diversified fairs of Kolkata, ‘Anondomela’.
‘Anondomela’ is a meet for one and all. Started in the year 1995, ‘Anondomela’ was formerly known as ‘Bethune College Sammelani’. It was under the guidance of Miss Wright, the then Principal, Mrs. Roma Chatterjee, the then Secretary and also an alumni of Arts, batch of 1960 and Dr. Meenakshi Sinha, an alumni of Department of Bengali, 1960- the concept of this meet was idealised. While this meet had started on a note to drive away ennui, it slowly grew to be a large part of the college’s annual events. This meet not only involves all the effective and available alumni members of the college, but also provides a scope to the freelancers in and around the city to put forward their work.
Anondomela 2015 housed a number of freelancers under its wide shade of support. Technically speaking, the entire meet may be divided into five broad sections, viz, eatables, clothes, ornaments, books and crafts.
The eatables’ section mainly had jams, jellies, pickles and ‘papad’ made by the freelancers. Few of the counters had the very famous ‘peethe’s of our state, ‘luchi’, ‘ghoogni’, and ‘aloor dom’, the famous potato curry of Bengal. This section very efficiently and effectively managed to arouse our olfactory senses and our taste buds.
The clothes’ section highlighted many of the handloom styles of Bengal like ‘Kantha Stitch’, ‘Bandni’ etc, ‘Kalamkari’ and also many woollen items. ‘Dokra’, ‘Kundan’, oxidised metal and many more beaded jewellery graced the ornaments’ section.
The section of the books could be further divided into science, fiction and devotional. Few of the notable books were ‘Rabindranath er Jibonsmriti’, ‘Ahalya’, ‘Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar’, ‘Works of Albert Einstein’, etc. Lastly, the most attractive section of the meet was the crafts’ section. This section included beaded bags, soft toys, wall hangings, photoframes, greeting cards, candles, wax idols and many more handmade goods.
Anondomela 2015 stepped on the 20 year mark this year. The convenors of this meet look foropportunities to promote and help the freelancers rather than fishing around for profit. After a grand success of a whole 20 years, the main bodies are thinking of new ideas and initiatives to be involved, to make this meet a far cry, so that it can reach out to as many people as possible.