Women vie for Red Road Carnival's national recognition
Kolkata: Twenty-five women who running puja committees have come under one umbrella to appeal to Prime
Minister Narendra Modi for giving national status to the Red Road Carnival in Kolkata where community puja organisers parade with the Durga idols and their entourage while a sea of people, including foreigners turn up to witness the event.
"We have already been able to bring in 25 puja committees managed by women under one umbrella. The main purpose is to provide a platform for the women to showcase their skills in various activities. One of our primary duty will be to urge the Prime Minister to give national status to the Red Road Carnival. The committee will work not only during Puja but through out the year," said Minister of state for Health Chandrima Bhattacharjee, who is the president of Hindustan Club Durga Puja Committee in Gariahat.
Bhattacharjee on Monday held a meeting with 25 puja committees run by women in the city and announced that the organisation named 'Banglar Dugga' will work to ensure that women associated with Durga puja like women priests, artisans or dhakis get their due recognition. "We will organize different fairs across the state so that the women get a platform to showcase their skill and creativity in various fields. They will also be felicitated for their excellence in these fields. This is just the beginning and we will bring in more and more women run puja committees across the state under this apolitical forum," Bhattacharjee said.
The committee for Banglar Dugga is expected to be constituted in the next meeting where more puja committees will join. Bhattacharjee also lashed out at the BJP (without naming the party). "The lotus which is the symbol of a particular party is an integral part of Durga Puja. The party is politicising the use of the flower. We believe that puja should be observed following rituals and there should be no politics," she said.