Local News May 2018



The cosy housing society of Raheja Vistas, inside the Raheja Vihar complex in Chandivali, houses a strong and vibrant Bengali community of around sixty families. Initiated by a ladies here,  they like to call themselves 'THE BONG CONNECTION',  and has been quite active in various traditional Bengali celebrations in the last one year.

On 21st Of April, 'THE BONG CONNECTION' celebrated the Bengali New Year, or the 'NABOBARSHO'. Like every time, this time too, the event took place in the Clubhouse in Raheja Vistas.

In an endeavour to keep the 'BANGALIANA' or the Bengali essence alive, the event was meticulously planned to include the various Bengali elements, like the 'ADDA', the cultural programme and a quintessentially Bengali food menu.

The planning started around two months ago. Over weekly meetings and endless banter, all the details were eventually finalized.

The food menu was carefully chosen to include typical Bengali starters like the 'MOCHAR CHOP' and 'FISH FINGER', with the authentic 'KOLKATA BIRIYANI' for dinner, ending on the sweet note of 'RASHOGOLLA' and 'MISHTI DOI'. 

The cultural programme too, served dollops of 'BANGALIANA' in an endearing package of popular Bengali songs, recitation and dance performances. Regular rehearsals ensured a superb show. Both kids and adults joined hands to make it successful. 

Other than the food and the performances, the third attraction for the evening was the 'ADDA' or the general bonhomie amongst the 40 families present there. 
The gorgeous Bengali women in Saris and the menfolk in their colourful Kurtas is always a treat for the eyes and definitely added to the  grandeur of the evening as well.

An evening of fun, laughter, good food and great company, cutting across all age groups, made the celebration really special.

Vistas' 'THE BONG CONNECTION' started their journey exactly one year back with the 'NABOBARSHO' celebrations in 2017. The 'NABOBARSHO' 2018 is their fourth event over the last one year, as also marks their first anniversary.

The most interesting fact, perhaps, about 'THE BONG CONNECTION' is that it is an initiative totally by the BONG ladies. All the events here are always 'manned',   planned, organized and executed by the Bengali womenfolk. 

'THE BONG CONNECTION' is a community platform which is like a breath of fresh air to the Bengali families residing in Raheja Vistas. It gives them the much-needed break from the monotony of daily routines, while also keeping their Bengali roots intact.


Aalaap Budding Stars of Raheja Vistas

‘Hunar to sab mein hota hai, fark sirf itna hai ki kisi ka chhup jaata hai aur kisi ka chhap jaata hai.’ It is said that “Everyone is talented. The only difference is that in some cases it remains hidden and in the others it gets showcased.” Children from Raheja Vistas proved the point by presenting a treat of bollywood songs to the audience in their melodious voices, on 14th April 2018. The kids, aged between 10-14 years, enthralled the crowd, by singing songs from the old classics as well as from the latest blockbusters.

The platform was provided to all the children in the specified age group irrespective of the formal training being received by them. The only measure of selection was their passion for singing. Interestingly, many shy and hesitant kids too came forward and realized their inclination towards singing. The initiative was taken up by few society women including Shribanee and Julie, who painstakingly auditioned and short-listed the children for the first ‘Aalaap’ show. Apart from organizing the whole event, the ladies made sure that the kids stuck to their weekly practice sessions besides providing the much needed encouragement and confidence at regular intervals.  The songs were beaded together through the evening by a lovely bunch of kid comperes, who used real life quotes and tricky introductions to motivate the singers. A surprise Bollywood songs quiz kept the people in splits.

The songs chosen included classics like Paan khayen saiyan hamaro, ankhiyon ke jharokhon se to the recent ones like Bulleya, main tainu samjhavan ki and Secret Superstar’s ‘Main Kaun hoon.’ A special tribute was planned for Late Sridevi which included her signature songs like Hawa Hawaii and ‘Navrai Majhi’ from English Vinglish. A wish to equate the real life with reel life was expressed when one of the comperes wondered how would it feel if Sridevi, like her comeback movie English Vinglish, could also make a comeback in everyone’s life.

The event culminated with the presentation of individual personalized trophies to all the participants as a motivational gesture by the event coordinators. Kids were of course delighted as that meant a fruitful end to their four months of hard work amidst tight and varying exam schedules of several schools.