KMC to encourage melting idols with water jets for immersion
Kolkata: To curb pollution in river Hooghly, Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) has decided to encourage community Puja committees to use water jets for melting idols instead of immersing them into water bodies.
"I have instructed concerned officials from the KMC to render all possible assistance to clubs organising Durga Puja or Kali Puja so that they can adopt the 'wash and melt' model from next year. In places where water is available, we can encourage clubs to create elevated platforms with some sort of cage and use water jets for immersion," said Firhad Hakim, chairman of Board of Administrators of KMC.
This year, Tridhara Akalbodhan Club in south Kolkata had set an example by washing and melting the Durga idol and her entourage using multiple water jets. The idol was taken to a makeshift water body, adjacent to the pandal.
Debasish Kumar, member of Board of Administrators—who is also the in-charge of the maintenance of the ghats, said if some clubs insist on using river water for immersion, then the same can also be lifted from the river and the idols can be washed and melted on its bank.
Later, the frames of the idols can be transported to the Dhapa dumping ground in a similar fashion in which the idols immersed in the Hooghly are also lifted and carried there.
A number of clubs in Naihati and adjacent Bhatpara in North 24 Parganas, where Kali Puja is a bigger festival, have also switched to this mode of immersion.
Water jets are used to melt idols after conducting the ritualistic –'darpan visarjan', for which water from the Ganga is symbolically poured over the reflection of the goddess in a mirror.