BACKGROUND:

Joynagar Moa Nirmankari Society

There is no doubt that the Moa of Joynagar had been satisfying the taste of the Bengalis for more than hundred years. The Moa of Joynagar is well-known to crores of Indians even beyond the site of origin. It is quite favourite and acceptable to all Bengalis and others in the neighboring States of Bengal. ‘Cheler hater Moa’, a famous proverb always reminds us about this tasty Moa of Joynagar. The word Moa comes from ‘Mo’ means Madhu (honey). The Honey (Mo) of Sunderban is world famous.

 

Since ages, Gour-Pundra-Bengal is also famous as a place of ‘gur’ (molasses).


The old Pundra Bardhan came to known as Gour for the preparation of best gur from sugarcane. Panini wrote ‘Gurasha auang desho goura’, which means Gour is the place of gur. At that time, Mitragunge was a famous gunge area (market place) inJoynagar. In this village, Hat-Bazar used to be held on Mondays and Fridays. The villagers from different villages viz. Tili Para, Moydah, Uttar Para, Baharu, Dakshin Kalikapur used to come to sell gur (molasses) in the Hat-Bazar. The great quality of date-tree jaggery is well documented in the Piruli song of Farid Pir. Haranath Mondal has also collected different poem on date-tree jaggery of Dakshin Kalikapur. The artisans belonging to Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, Other Backward Classes and Mahisya Community were first to prepare these sweets without any consent and the knowledge of Zaminders (land lords) of Joynagar-Majilpur area. It is most astonishing to learn that this Moa, sweetest of all sweets was invented and popularized without any knowledge of land lords. However, these kinds of sweets are sold to their relatives locally and also the far of places. Thus the fame of the popular Moa spread throughout India during the season of Moa. They became the main patron of Moa of Joynagar. These land lords, thus, helped to promote the popularity of the Moa of Joynagar amongst the residents of the different areas.

 

In the middle of the nineteenth century a link was established between the people of the Joynagar-Majilpur areas and the employees working on different offices of Kolkata. In the process, Bengalis living in Kolkata and neighbouring region came to learn about the tasty flavour of these completely unknown sweets and named it as “tasteful Moa”. Bengalis hankered for these sweets in the winter season. As a result, the sale of these sweets raised and there is an immense change in the standard of living of these poor working class people. With the change of market pool, the living conditions of these workers along with their members in South 24 Parganas improved and they now became the upholders of good fortune.