The annual festival of the Hindu community Durga Puja is here. The celebrities along with the common people are enjoying this festival with great devotion and fanfare.
Durga Puja is one of the most important Hindu festivals that involves worshipping of Goddess Durga who symbolizes power and triumph of good over evil in Hindu mythology. Beautiful and colourful mandaps are built all across Bengal and the beautiful Durga Idol is another attraction. Rich and affluent royal families celebrate Puja in their own houses and they compete with other by making better, bigger and more innovative mandaps. The most eye-catching and decorative mandaps get awards every year.
In Bangladesh though the mandaps are not very expensive in comparison with the Kolkata ones, but these are built with great care and devotion. The largest mandap is built on the Banani playground. But one can get the actual flavor of Durga Puja at Shakhari Bazaar. The ambience turns surreal with the dhunachi and with the sweet flavor of chandan, the sounds of shankha and dhaak and mithai bhog along with the ululation of the devotees. One can also buy plethora of traditional Bengali sweetmeats during this time. Trade and commerce gets a real boost during the celebration. Educational institutes remain closed during the days of Puja observation.
The rejuvenating and scintillating five days of Puja are simply stunning. Bangladesh being a secular country, progressive Muslims also visit the mandaps with their families. Media gives wide coverage of the events with due importance and solemnity.

Badhan Sarkar