Wednesday, September 30, 2009


The Enigma Called Durga Puja

Every year with the advent of autumn, the air is filled with a peculiar joy. It vibrates the arrival of Goddess Durga with her full family regalia. The Bengalis or the Bongs as you say had waited eagerly for her arrival. The joy can be seen everywhere. It starts with buying of new clothes, shoes, jewelleries and anything and everything that can make one bright and colourful. Even the darkest corners of the city get lightened up at least for these few days.

With a son and Daughter to her right, a son and Daughter to her left Devi Durga is highly pampered at her Baper Bari. It can be seen everywhere. The Puja Pandals are decorated and built in such an extent that the Goddess will surely feel comfortable. At times it is made in the form of Kailash to give Her a homely atmosphere. In other places, Palaces are created, Temples are built to make Her at ease. With thousands of Devotees flocking to just have a glimpse of Her, its surely highly pampering.

The Puja last for 5 days. At the end She returns back to her home in Kailash with Debadideb Mahadeb eagerly waiting for her.But these 5 days brings a new lease of life to everyone. The youthfulness, the joy remains buzzing in the air. People wearing their new clothes walk kilometres after Kilometres to visit the Glamorous Devi in Her Pompous Pandals. It’s an extremely enjoying sight. In other times these ocean of crowds would have been quite frightening. But now it’s a complete enjoyment.

Standing in a queue of 50,000 devotees I felt the same. I had a keen desire this time to capture most of the big Puja’s of Kolkata, the City of Joy. Even at 2 am in the night, the whole city was vibrating with joy. Starting from toddlers to aged, everyone was on road. The Egg Roll and noodles shops were doing great business. As well as the Cold drinks stores.

Each and every Pandal had their uniqueness. Some had tried to depict the lost handicrafts of Bengal, where as some has depicted the progress in the latest technologies. Some had “Green” as their buzz word, some had “Ayala”.But the most striking feature was the amount of effort and dedication put into it. It was truly magnificent to watch them.

At times I really wonder that how an idol of clay brings so much joy to everyone. And even the non-living idol has so much life in it. Each and everyone had bowed down to her and asked for her blessings. And in their hearts of heart, they truly believe that She even in the mud and clay form will listen to their prayers.

I heard this question in one Quiz show during the festival, “What does Durga Puja means to you?”, and I asked myself. What truly does it mean? Is it about Prayers, rituals, worshipping the Devi or it is about Joy and Happiness. Pure and Unselfish joy. I leave the answer up to you. Or better to say, As you like it :) .


Saptarshi Basu is a gold medalist in mechanical engineering and has worked in the IT industry for the last eight years. However, writing has always been his first love, his passion.  His second novel, Autumn In My Heart was published by Vitasta Publishing with Times Group (TIMES OF INDIA) in November’11. He maintains a blog and writes screenplays for movies and columns for some online magazines.


Thursday, May 28, 2009

I want you and your beautiful soul

I don't want another pretty face
I don't want just anyone to hold
I don't want my love to go to waste
I want you and your beautiful soul
You're the one I wanna chase
You're the one I wanna hold
I won’t let another minute go to waste
I want you and your beautiful soul