Bhavan’s Cultural Centre, Andheri (BCCA) has been active since 2004 without any interruption. Its range of activities includes plays, dance performances, classical music events, Kavi Sammelans and Mushairas, talk shows, screening of classic films, drama competitions, elocution competitions, etc. Most of these programmes are free of charge for the members. Even during the time of the Corona Pandemic, BCCA presented more than 100 programmes online on YouTube and these attracted more than 1 million views and 25000 members.
By the advent of the new century, the city of Mumbai had witnessed a demographic shift from the main island to the suburbs. Bhavan’s Cultural Centre, Andheri (BCCA), considered today a premier cultural hub in Mumbai, had a very humble beginning in 2004. It began in an unused barrack room that had remained locked for a long time and the lock of which had to be broken open. The moving spirit behind this innovative move was Dr. Manesh Shrikant, the then Chairman of Andheri Campus. He was ably assisted in this endeavor by Lalit Verma and Lalit Shah. In a meeting called to plan the activities and programmes, Lalit Verma and Maithili Vishwanathan suggested the name Bhavan’s Cultural Centre, Andheri. And so was it.
This sapling planted in 2004 blossomed into full bloom within a year. For 25 days in 2005, “Swami Haridas Sangeet Sammelan” was organized in collaboration with Sur Singar Sansad. Legendary maestros of Indian classical music participated in the Sammelan.
In the same year, Padma Vibhushan Pandit Birju Maharaj started his Kathak Classes under the auspices of BCCA in Bhavan’s Wadia School at Andheri.
From Independence Day to Gandhi Jayanti in 2006, BCCA organized, with the help of Bankim Kapadia, the “Seven Island International Film Festival” showcasing 40 documentary films from 12 countries on the theme of Non-violence.
Since 2007, BCCA has been organizing the hugely successful “Chitralekha Natya Spardha” of Gujarati plays in association with Chitralekha Gujarati weekly.
To do justice to the expanding range of BCCA activities, BCCA Hall and Sardar Patel Auditorium were commissioned and Pranganga Amphitheatre was developed on the bank of the pond in Bhavan’s Andheri campus.
With these multiple infrastructural facilities, BCCA was able to offer more than 200 programmes in a year. The core team included Kamlesh Daru, Lalit Verma, Nishita Tambe, Lalita Dhara, Kuldip Singh, Suresh Khare, Pushpa Saksena, Deepak Mehta, Hiten Anandpara, Ashitbhai, Ramakant Bhagat, Pravin Solanki, and Anil Kavish.
BCCA started enrolling annual members and by 2008, it had become a popular domain of multi-lingual and multi-faceted cultural activities.
A novel initiative was introduced in 2011. BCCA started a unique lecture series in collaboration with Coffeemats and Vikalp under the title “If this is my last lecture …”. This series of 25 lectures in Gujarati featured renowned individuals from diverse walks of life. The first lecture in this series was delivered by the eminent Gandhian Narayan Desai. The other speakers in this series included Shahabuddin Rathod, Dr. Suman Shah, Dr. Pankaj Joshi, Dr. J.J. Raval, Sitanshu Yashashchandra, Gunvant Shah, Martin Macwan, Dinkar Joshi, Dr. Manu Kothari, Amrutlal Vegad, Morari Bapu and others.
BCCA has been truly dedicated to fulfilling Munshi-ji’s mission of propagating our culture and values.
Last updated on:26, May, 2022