On the morning of December 23 a large gathering of poets, friends and family of Smt Sarojben Narendrabhai Mehta were present at the launch of her new book "Sandhya Kale Parodhna Ujas”, an anthology of her favourite Gujarati poems, garba and ghazals written by different well-known authors. The selection reflects her extensive knowledge and appreciation of Gujarati culture and literature.
Sarojben is a well-known and highly respected member of the Palanpuri community in Mumbai, and for more than four decades now, has been one of the key organisers of cultural activities for the community in this city, mainly in her role as a member of the Executive Committee of Palanpur Samaj Kendra.
In 1975, she and three other associates had launched the Palanpur Kala Kendra and conducted programmes of dance and drama, organised Fun-fairs, etc. and in 1980 it merged with PSK.
The event began with Mrs Heena Mehta's lyrical recital Navkar Mantra and Stuti, and later the atmosphere at the function was filled with many long forgotten melodious poems.
Sarojben’s daughter Falguni Kothari, who gave the Welcome Address likened the gathering to a beautiful rainbow or Megdhanush, which was also the name given to the programme. She said that her mother had always been interested in Gujarati and even English literature and she still loves to send handwritten letters to our family.
Mukesh Joshi, a poet who conducted the programme, spoke about Sarojben's interest in Gujarati poems and literature, and observed that it was sad that the younger generation today has moved far away from such literature.
The book was launched by Mehulbhai (Suren Thakkar) and was warmly received by those present. Mehulbhai also recited 'Charankanya' with great feelings and spirit.
Dr Shefali Shah shared her experiences with Sarojben emphasising that she was always greatly interested in art and culture. Padmashree Dr Prakash Kothari recited Jharukho, a ghazal written by Saif Palanpuri.
Speaking about the family, Arunbhai Mehta recalled how he used to meet Narendrabhai at Sheikh Memon street having tea with other friends, while Dr Vikrambhai Mehta warmly remembered Sarojben's earlier anthology of literature – "Saptarshi Mahasahji".
Welcoming the new book, Dr Satyavatiben Jhaveri said that each and every page brought back pleasant memories of the great poets.
After Rajul Deewan presented his hilarious comedy, Sarojben expressed that she was particularly grateful to all her family members who had supported her when she was working on the book and also at the launch event and thanked them as well as others who had assisted her, as well as those who had attended the launch.
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