"Durga Puja 2021: Here are the Unique Pandals that Made the Headlines"
The longest festival celebrated all over India, despite the origin restricted to Bengal, is Durga Puja. This nine-day festival is celebrated to cherish the triumph of Goddess Durga over the shape-shifting demon Mahishasura. Thus, this festival is popularly celebrated as it symbolises the victory of good over evil and marks as the part of harvest festival and hailing goddess Durga for her motherly power over life and creations. Durgotsava usually falls in the month of Ashwin. The nine-day long celebrated in houses as well as in public. Down south, the festival is celebrated as Dussehra and Navaratri, and the idols are decorated in the form of stairs called 'Golu'. Each stair represents diverse forms of life on this planet earth. On the other hand, Durgotsava is quite predominantly celebrated in North India, where goddess Durga's idol is decorated on a temporarily set stage known as Pandals based on different themes. Let's check out this year's most unique pandals.
Abasar Sarbojanin Durgotsab Samity - 'Manush Manush-er Jonne' and 'Jibon Jibon-er Jonne
Avatar Sarbojanin Durgotsab Samity's puja pandal has created two themes this year 'Manush Manush-er Jonne' and 'Jibon Jibon-er Jonne'. Talking about both the themes of Durga Puja, Basudeb Banerjee, Assistant Secretary of Abasar Sarbojanin Durgotsab Samity, says, "Each year when we start making the pandal almost three months before, we have to barricade the adjacent house and a temporary wall of sorts is constructed. Due to this reason, the house suffers. Therefore, this year, we decided to make the house a part of our puja pandal so the residents can enjoy it from the comfort of their home."
He further adds, "In the last two years, not just because of the pandemic but for other reasons as well, we have lost some prominent people. The second theme 'Jibon Jibon-er Jonne aims to pay tribute to the lives lost in these two years,"
Kakurgachi Yuvak Brinda - Jatra
This year kakurgachi yuvak brinda Durga Puja committee chose to bring out the lost glory of the old Bengali theatre acknowledged as Jatra. The pandal has been graced with impressions of some of the best Jatras, including some hand-painted posters that have been long forgotten, that once became the talk of the town in almost every Bengali house. As for the idol, Goddess Durga and her children have been decorated perfectly to match the theme. Even the lion headdresses on the heads of Lord Ganesha and Karthik are set up like props utilised in Jatras.
Prafulla Kanan - Fishermen Destroyed by Cyclone
Prafulla Kanan Durga Puja Committee has come up with a pandal in Kestopur, North 24 Parganas, designed to portray the lives of fishers and people destroyed by floods in the Sundarban village area. Fishermen's population manages the Sunderban village area, and this year it was ruined by Cyclone Yaas. On account of this, one whole village was finished. Fishers of this village have to go through this disaster every year. A member of the organising committee "We have also tried to portray difficulties that the people of Sundarbans faced during cyclones Yaas and Amphan."
Shreebhumi Club - Burj Khalifa
Shreebhumi Club usually comes up with unique and exciting Durga Puja themes every year. Likewise, this year, the club chose Burj Khalifa as its theme and has come up with a lit-up replica of Burj Khalifa that has been conceived by artists and electrical whiz-kids in Salt Lake City's Laketown area. This pandal is attracting several people throughout the day, in the presence of famous personalities. The West Bengal capital revels in joy during the five days of Durga Pujo - Shashthi, Saptami, Ashtami, Navami and Vijaya Dashami as people go pandal hopping around the Kolkata and enjoy delicacies all across. The 145-feet tall Burj Khalifa pandal has special lighting arrangements that make it look nothing short of majestic at night. Two hundred fifty workers built the pandal over two months. Sujit Bose, Sreebhumi Sporting Club President, said, "Every year, we build the pandal in form of a replica of iconic buildings. Earlier, we had built it on the theme of Paris Opera, Kedarnath and Puri temples among others."
Chaltabagan - Tribal
This year Chaltabagan decided to potray the goddess in tribal surroundings. From designing the pandal to the idol, everything has a tribal touch. Devi Durga and her children are dressed in indigenous clothing and accessories that resembles accessories used by tribal communities.