Top 5 Theme Pandals of Guwahati this Durga Puja!
Durga Puja, the 4-day festivity that earlier used to remain confined within the pandals of the local organizers and people hopping from one pandal to the other to enjoy the festivities, has today evolved into a virtually commercial event, all thanks to people’s heightened expectations, deep pockets of a few contributors and continued efforts of the organizers.
In a bid to grab attention like last year, the organizers of several localities have lined up pandals based on various themes. Only this time, the pandals are grander and the budgets higher.
G Plus has compiled a list of the top five such Puja pandals that are a must visit.
1. Latasil Durga Puja
Puja theme: One of Guwahati’s oldest and the one that receives the highest footfall, Latasil Druga Puja, in Uzanbazar, has gone gigantic this time. With a total height of 85 feet, the pandal depicts Lord Ganesha lying on a large hill over whom Goddess Durga can be seen standing. The idol, built on single structure, will be inside the pandal.
Organiser says: Bijit Kalita, president of Guwahati Sarvajanin Durga Puja Samiti (Latasil) said, “Our attempts were to bring forth the love that a son has for his mother. So, we are re-enacting one of the scenes from the mythologies.”
Legacy: 35 years
Budget: Rs 16 lakhs
2. Athgaon Durga Puja
Puja theme: Having bagged the Best Jury Award last year, the Athgaon Sarvajanin Durga Puja Samiti, located adjacent to the Mission Hospital, has taken the concept of going green. The pandal is built with used bamboo to avoid pollution and the Idol will have such lighting arrangements that it will change colours that will give a 3D impact to the viewers.
Organiser says: “After winning the award last year, the pressure has gone higher and we have to maintain the legacy of doing something different and encouraging something good. This is what inspired this year’s theme,” Sandeep Anand, President of the Samiti said.
Legacy: 35 years
Budget: Rs 6 lakhs
3. Triangular Colony
Theme: The Triangular Colony of Pandu has decided to bring up the Manipuri tradition, one of the oldest in northeast, in their artworks. The Idol will be 40 feet tall and accompanied by four other smaller (20 feet) idols of the other Gods. Besides that, other smaller idols, all adorned in Manipuri traditional clothing, will be seen in the mandap. There will also be several inscriptions of Manipur mythologies inside the pandal.
Organiser says: “People outside northeast think that we are a newly developed or a developing race and that is why they think we are less civilized. Our attempt is to bring out one such old tradition, one puja at a time, so that visitors and people from outside watching on TV can know about us,” Sumit Dutta, president of the organizing committee said.
Legacy: 18 years
Budget: 18 lakhs
4. Santipur Sluice Gate
Puja theme: The pandal in Santipur near Pragjyotish College will resemble the Pal Durga Bari (residential Durga Puja of the Pal family) in South Kolkata of West Bengal that will complete 140 years of organising the Puja. The pandal is being built in the form of the Pal’s bungalow and the Idol is also in the same way as they do. Also, as part of special attraction, the battle between Goddess Durga and Mahishasura will also be shown mechanically at the Pragjyotish College field.
Organiser says: “If one digs into the history of Durga Puja, Pal’s puja holds great significance in organising and popularising this festivity. We thought people should know about it and so are re-enacting the same,” Sandeep Anand, president of the Samiti said.
Legacy: 18 years
Budget: Rs 18 lakhs
5. Nayantara Durga Utsav
Puja theme: In Nayantara, between Athgaon and Santipur, the organisers have chosen to address the perennial problem of floods and rhino poaching through paintings. The entire pandal will be adorned with massive oil paintings about people’s plight during floods in Assam and how rhinos are getting more endangered with unabated poaching.
Organiser says: “Durga Puja is more than a four-day religious affair. This can be a platform to raise awareness among people and so we have chosen this issue,” Munindra Narayan Dutta, president of the organising committee said.
Legacy: 10 years
Budget: Rs 12 lakhs