Being a melting pot to multifarious cultures, Delhi has made it bliss for the Bengalis and non Bengalis by hosting a glimmering array of Durga Puja under the same sky. The organisers have introduced the innovative themes and designs of pandals to amplify the merriment.
One of them is Maitri Mandir Durga Puja Samiti in Safdurjung area of South Delhi, which has dabbled the opulence of Palais Garnier – the famous Opera House of France. The stunning Neoclassical structure, in colour scheme of red, gold and off white, is put up in a month in the budget of whopping 40 lac INR. The massive idol of Goddess Durga is intricately fabricated from the clay by award-winning sculptor Pradip Rudra Pal from Kolkata. The cascading staircases in oval shaped hall let the people gaze upon fellow devotees, while the golden roof and chandeliers keep the attendees transfixed.
During dawn hours, the melodious sounds of Bhajans and homas serenade the ambiance. Rest of the day, magic of dandiya, contests and live gigs takes over. The seven-membered troop of Dhakis (percussionists) lead by Gokul Das, and Bengali folk crooner Aarko Mukherjee are the major highlights from the festivities.
Without the mention of food, Durga Puja festivities are incomplete. The committee unfailing filled the appetite of devotees by churning out the delicacies of Indian, Mughlai and Bengali flavors in the vast number of stalls.
In Durga Puja, we celebrate the victory of Maa Durga over the buffalo demon Mahishasura. On the same note, the Opera House theme epitomises respite from every evil force in the world in the times when bombing, attacks, death and terrorism have become a common talk, believes Debashish Saha, the general secretary.
Also, it is a beautiful commemoration of the golden jubilee of Maitri Mandir Puja Committee.
- Rishu Jain