Honorary doctorate to weaver for depicting Ramayana on sari

Basak, a handloom weaver from Fulia in Nadia, was felicitated with ‘Degree of Doctorate in Record Breaking’ by UK’s World Records University, for his intricate artwork on a sari.

Published: 23rd November 2017 11:23 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd November 2017 12:58 PM   |  A+A-

Image for representation


KRISHNAGAR: Little did Biren Kumar Basak of Nadia district imagine that his intricate artwork depicting seven episodes of Ramayana on a six-yard sari could get him an honorary doctorate from a UK-based university after two long decades.

Basak, a handloom weaver from Fulia in Nadia, was felicitated with ‘Degree of Doctorate in Record Breaking’ (Honouris Causa) by UK’s World Records University, an autonomous institute formed by the conglomeration of record books around the world.

He received the honour last week at a function in New Delhi.

The masterpiece, in BasakÂ’s word, took one year of planning and two years of weaving. It was completed in 1996.

"This was the first sari with a storyline and was taken to London along with other saris for exhibition when the CM was touring England last year," Basak said.

However, awards and accolades are not new to Basak.

His six-yard wonder had earned him a National Award, National Merit Certificate Award, Sant Kabir Award and also found a mention in Limca Book of Records, Indian Book of Records and World Unique Records.

After getting to know about the sari featured in the Limca Book of Records in 2015, the World Records University had asked for a thesis on his work. "Ananda Modak, a teacher at a Fulia school, helped father translate his research work into English," Abhinaba, BasakÂ’s Son, said.

The sari is, however, losing its lustre and they are trying their best to preserve it, Abhinaba said.

Coincidentally, renowned Bengali poet Krittibas Ojha, who translated the epic into Bengali, also hailed from Fulia, a sari-making hub of Bengal.

A Mumbai-based company had offered Rs 8 lakh for the nine-yard wonder in 2004 but Basak declined the proposal.

Basak now plans to manufacture another masterpiece with snippets from Rabindranath ThakurÂ’s early life on it. "I have been collecting documents and information for a while, but photographs of Tagore's early life are rare to come by," he said.

The Fulia-based weaver has also designed a sari on the state’s government’s Kanyashree scheme for rural girls and intends to gift it to ‘Didi’ (chief minister Mamata Banerjee).

"I manufacture Dhakai Jamdani (sari variety) that range between Rs 10,000 and Rs 10 lakh. I plan to set up a museum to exhibit exceptional Jamdani saris," Basak added.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp