Saturday 12 October 2013

Durga Puja of Kolkata in 2013

One kind of intoxication has firmly gripped the City of Joy from 'Sasti' - the day of consecration of Devi Durga. People in general have become oblivious of daily routines and a festive mood has engulfed the City of Joy. From children to very old citizens, particularly the youth, are in pursuit of their due share in the autumnal festival of Bengal - perhaps best in the world.

Chanting of 'anjali mantras' ( a mystical sacred hymn for offering devotion to the goddess ) through loud speakers are drawing large number of devotees to 'pandals'. In the city suburbs many teenagers are busy to perform in cultural functions. Elderly persons are simply loafing about at prominent places beside 'pandals'. Road side eateries  are full of hungry 'pandal'  hoppers day and night. Before 'Mahastami' even the wine shops are at sea to take care of long queues in front of the shops.

Poor people of adjoining districts, wearing their best clothes, are thronging Kolkata to enjoy the on going pomp, novel themes and illumination of 'pandals'. Even Bengali television channels are competing among themselves to spread the glory of the Durga puja in the city in general and big 'baroari' (community ) pujas in particular.

With four consecutive holidays, the urban middle class is in the peak of the festive mood and trying to enjoy it up to the hilt in different ways. Even the onslaught of cyclone Failin in the neighboring state Orissa and its mild impact on Kolkata has failed to dampen the spirit of the festival at 'Mahastami' night.

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