Why do the Gorkhas celebrate Bhanu Jayanti as their cultural festival? | MorungExpress

Who is Adikavi Bhanu Bhakta Acharya for the Gorkhas of Nagaland (1814-1868)?

Jacob Sunda
Chumoukedima

The Gorkhas have lived across Nagaland for several years and are also known as some early settlers among the non-Naga communities of Nagaland. The Gorkhas have a unique, distinct and rich culture and tradition, which they preserve and protect. Nepalis/Gorkhas are known as simple and humble, yet brave people, India Gorkha is the Nepali speaking community in India, therefore, it is the duty of every Gorkhali to preserve the Nepali language as other communities preserve theirs . Gorkhas celebrate Bhanu jayanti not only to celebrate or to entertain. Adikavi Bhanu Bhakta Acharya’s birthday is observed as a cultural day by the Gorkha community. Bhanu Jayanti is famous to remember this great poet who first used Nepali script to write a Nepali poem, he also played a great role in shaping our Nepali language. Aadi Kavi Bhanu Bhakta Acharya’s birthday is celebrated by Nepalese in Nepal, India and around the world on July 13.

Bhanu Bhakta Acharya is the first poet of the Nepali language. He is very honored to have used the Nepali script for the first time to write a Nepali poem in the local dialect many years ago. Bhanubhakta has many more major literary works in Nepali.

The first poem written by Adi Kavi Bhanu Bhakta Acharya:

“He gives his life to mow the grass and earns little money,

he hopes to make a well for his people to be remembered after his death,

this haughty cane rat lives in misery,

I got nothing although I have a lot of wealth. I have made neither rest houses nor wells, all my riches are in my house.

This trimmer opened my eyes today,

my life is worth nothing if the memory of my existence fades.

Bhanu Bhakta was born into a very wealthy Brahmin family in Chundramgha, Tanahu, Nepal in 1871. His grandfather Krishna Acharya who was very well known in his time. He received an excellent education with a strong religious bent at his grandfather’s home. When Bhanu Bhakta was 22 years old, he was so influenced by an incident that it made him a poet. One day he met a grass cutter and in their conversation he discovered that the grass cutter wanted to give something to society to be remembered too after death. After listening to the response of the weed cutter, Bhanu Bhakta felt ashamed of himself. This not only sparked Bhanu Bhakta’s literary creativity, but also inspired him to do something noble. He had used Nepali script for the first time to write a Nepali poem. Bhanu Bhakta Acharya died on April 23, 1868. Nepalese literature legend Bhanu Bhakta is the one who started writing poems in Nepali so that an average Nepali can also grasp the taste of words and literature. At that time, poems and formal literature were in the Sanskrit language, in this sense there was a great need and importance of scholars who could understand and explain the Sanskrit language. It was difficult for people to understand literature and artistic expression in the simplest sense. Bhanu Bhakta simplified words and meanings and made literature accessible to everyone, a common Nepalese could grasp the literary meaning in his own language.

Today, his books have become so popular that people inside and outside Nepal, especially in rural areas, have made him a friend of happiness, sorrow, inspiration and trouble. . If one visits rural religious rites, rituals and weddings, one can find people reciting the rhythmic rhymes of the epic. Even the people in the deep forest, where they graze their cattle, continue to recite the verses in rhythm. This literary creation of Bhanu Bhakta has remained in the tongue, heart and hand of the people. And because of his noble work, Bhanu bhakta and the Nepali language have become synonymous in Nepali literature. The poet Bhanu Bhakta was not only a romantic poet but also a satirical poet. Other notable books by him are Badhu Sikshya, Bhakta Mala, Prasnottar Mala Kantipuri Nagari etc. is also popular among Nepali literati.

In memory of Bhanu Bhakta, Bhanu Jayanti is celebrated in Nepal, Darjeeling, Sikkim and other parts of India and all over the world with Nepalese society be it in Myanmar, Nepal, India , in Bhutan or elsewhere. Bhanu Bhakta is not only a poet but also a master of the Nepali language and the rhythm of Bhanu Bhakta is still alive in all Nepali languages. Bhanu Bhakta Acharya is considered as Aadi Kabi, means the beginner poet or the first poet of the Nepali language.

It was his creation that the Nepali language became very popular among the people. It was his creation that laid the foundations of Nepali literature. Thus, people pay homage and honor him every year on July 13 as Bhanu Jayanti. Today, anywhere in the world where Nepali speaking people reside will commemorate his 208th birthday. Gorkhas of Chümoukedima will also commemorate his birthday on July 13, 2022. Bhanu Jayanti, the birthday of Nepali pioneer poet “Adikavi” Bhanu bhakta Acharya, is celebrated on July 13 every year as a symbol of nationality by Nepalese who are within and outside the country.

We, the Gorkhas of Chümoukedima, will also commemorate his birthday although he was not born on the soil of Nagaland because we speak the language of which he laid the foundation. The Gorkhas of the Nagaland people still recite his creation and his greatest love and respect. They too used his books as their friend whether they were in trouble, happiness or sorrow. He is very popular in the community. So, Gorkhas of Nagaland celebrates his birthday self-voluntarily, because we feel he owes him this respect and honor. We celebrate his birthday with respect for the foundations of language laid down by him. It will not be enough to publish poems and literary works bearing his name; we should also ensure that our new generation know him and honor him by commemorating at least his birthday every year.

Darcy J. Skinner