Millennium Post

City bids colourful adieu to Durga

City bids colourful adieu to Durga

Kolkata: Durga Puja in Kolkata concluded peacefully as hundreds bid farewell to the deity, cutting across all ages and social barriers, marking the end of Bengal's biggest festival.

The banks of the Hooghly and other waterbodies wore a festive look as people from all walks of life joined in the colourful immersion processions, to the accompaniment of 'dhak' (drums) and band parties. Though there were intermittent showers, it failed to dampen the festive frenzy.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in a Facebook post on Wednesday said: "Durga Puja has come to an end this year. I would like to thank one and all for visiting the pujas and participating in the festivities.

"I would like to thank all the puja organisers for their tremendous support and cooperation.

"I thank our @kolkata police force, West Bengal Police and civil administration who have been tirelessly active throughout in ensuring our safety. Our yearly Durga Puja carnival will be held at Red Road on 11 October. This will be organised by the State Government for the fourth time after its phenomenal success over the years. I invite all of you to come and witness this beautiful event. The event will also be #LIVE on my Facebook page for all to see."

During the four days of Durga Puja, though there was intermittent rain in different areas during the day, the evening sky was mostly clear and lakhs of people from the neighbouring districts came to the city and visited the important pandals. The Chief Minister inaugurated several noted Durga Pujas, starting with Hatibagan Sarbojonin, followed by Chaltabagan, Chetla Agrani, Suruchi Sangha, Naktala Udayan Sangha, Ekdalia Evergreen among others.

Many Durga Puja organisers highlighted various programmes like 'Save Water Save Life' and 'Safe Drive Save Life'. The Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation (HIDCO) will award the best green Puja in New Town as a part of the 'Save Green Stay Clean' drive.

Traffic management by the state and city police was excellent. To avoid traffic jams on national and state highways particularly at night, the district police stopped lorries and heavy-duty trucks and did not allow them to enter Kolkata before 8 am.

In the city, the police personnel controlled the crowd and earmarked areas to park cars and two-wheelers. As a result, the main thoroughfares remained unclogged. People visiting the important pandals had to move in queues and separate entry and exit points were made for the pandal-hoppers.

The Carnival on Red Road showcasing the best Pujas that have bagged prestigious awards will be held on Friday. Apart from the spectators, VIPs including senior officials of various Consulates will also be present.

Elaborate arrangements have been made at the ghats along River Hooghly to facilitate immersion. The civic authorities removed the wooden structures of the idols within minutes after their immersion to make the river pollution-free.

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