Thursday 10 October 2013

O Kolkata Devi Durga Puja

Defeating all administrative hurdles and successfully fighting the battle in the courts just for worshipping Devi Durga idol openly, the sex-workers of Sonagachhi, the largest red light area of the City of Joy, are finally fulfilling their long cherished dreams. Emboldened by the final court verdict, scores of organizers are now busy making arrangements for the puja rituals. Seven hand-cart loads of sacred 'vog' (kooked rice after offering to the godess) will be distributed to the shelters/homes of thousands of sex-workers in Sonagachhi. They will smear vermilion on the forehead (a sign of married Hindu women) of Devi Durga's  idol on the day of immersion in the river Ganges. They will also smear vermilion to the fellow sex-workers on 'Dashami' day - for the first time in their life.

On the other side of the coin, one big community puja in the eastern side of the city has adorned the idol with 12kg.of original gold ornaments! At the Udayan Sangha in south Kolkata the matchless idol of Devi Durga has been carved out of 16 ton single piece sand stone (idol is 9 ton).

Meanwhile, for the first time Kolkata police has pressed into service a flying machine to watch vehicular traffic movement in day and night with a high resolution camera from a maximum height of 250 meters. Purchased from DRDO, the drone can fly 90 to 120 minutes at a stretch within a radius of 2.5 kms. The drone will keep watch of different immersion spots in the river Ganges and promptly send photos to ground control for quick action. 

The day of  ''Panchami '' has already witnessed  the swelling pandal hoppers even before the consecration of the images of Devi Durga. With sunny weather in the afternoon of "Sasthi", Kolkata is readying itself for burst of crowd and a sea of humanity on the streets.

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