Millennium Post

Govt plans to conserve Puja artwork

The state government is making elaborate plans to conserve and display handicrafts and artwork of Durga Puja at Eco Park.

Within a week after Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had announced at the immersion carnival held on Red Road on October 14 that a permanent exhibition site to conserve and display the handicraft and artwork of Durga Puja would be set up in New Town. This is for the first time in the history of Bengal when such a venture has been taken up.

The Chief Minister is trying to woo tourists both domestic and foreign by showcasing Durga Puja. The immersion carnival had evoked great enthusiasm both from public and tour operators.

Two senior officials of the state government, Debashis Sen, additional chief secretary, Urban development department and Atri Bhattacharya, principal secretary, Information and Cultural Affairs department met the organisers of several Puja committees on Wednesday to discuss the plans in details. It was decided that officials of I& CA would get in touch with all the important Puja committees and submit a report to the Urban development department.

The Puja committees that attended Wednesday’s meeting included Suruchi Sangha, Chelta Agrani, Kalighat Milan Sangha, Tridhara, Tala Baroari, Hindustan Park, Babubagan, Sree bhumi and AK Block Salt Lake.

Durable exhibits like those made with fiber glass, stone and steel could be kept outdoors in Eco Park. The West Bengal Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation (WBHIDCO) will set up the foundation to put up the exhibits and install fencing and make necessary lighting arrangements. The problem lies with the sensitive decorations made with wood, cotton, earth and clay which are required to be kept indoors in dust free environment. The decorations made with such materials will be kept in an air conditioned room in Mother’s Wax Museum II which will be opened shortly till they are taken to Eco Park where they will be kept in a storage room.

It may be recalled that many economists, both national and foreign had criticised the pomp and grandeur of Durga Puja and termed it as  the biggest festival of economic wastage as the idols are immersed and the decorations are dismantled within a week after the festival was over.
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