Covid-19 on mind Tripura to celebrate Durga Puja in a low key

Tanmoy Chakraborty

Durga Puja, also known as Durgotsava is one of the biggest Hindu festivals, it is celebrated to pay homage to goddess Durga. The celebration is all about meeting friends and having a whale of a time. But with the current pandemic, it seems that following the same traditions will be a tad difficult. With just about a month to go for the biggest annual extravaganza in Tripura, the preparations have begun across the city, albeit at a lower scale this time, as organisers chalk out safety plans to avoid further spread of Covid-19.

This year in the air there is the virus and the fear of it. Keeping in mind the COVID-19 scare, puja committees across the Agartala city, and elsewhere in Tripura have decided to keep celebrations low key.

The big budget puja organiser this year has not set up such attractive pandals due to the COVID.  However, they have maintained the rules and regulation of the COVID-19 which was set up by the state and central government.

One Anup Paul members of Deshabandhu Chittaranjan Club has said that due to the COVID-19 the Puja has organised in a very small way. At least 20% of the budged came down.

He also said that this year their puja will be show casted in social media so that the crowd would be less.

“Our Puja was one of the biggest puja in Tripura and in Agartala as well. The budget usually more than 30-50 lakh since few years but due to the COVID-19 this year the budget came down to 20%. We have not collected subscription from local people too”, he said adding that the artisans of pandal and idols are from Tripura.

Pradip Saha treasure of Shiv Nagar Modern club said, “We have decided that this year we will not take any risk and by maintaining the state and central government rule we have decided to hold the puja in a low key manner”.

He also said, “Unfortunately this year we are not organising Durga Puja on a large scale considering the unprecedented situation. No ‘pandal’ will be installed to prevent large gatherings to keep the public safe from this contagious disease”.

Last year the budget of Shiv Nagar Modern Club was more than 20 lakh but this year in a very simple way the club members are observing the Puja without any pandal.

Sanjay Saha, President of Netaji Play Forum said that every year the budget used to very high and they also organise fair for the people but due to the Covid the members of the clubs only donated for puja maintain all norms of the COVID-19.

Even the Bharat Ratna Club which know as the largest Puja in the state has also observing their puja in a low key.

But almost all the Puja organisers across the Agartala city will host a small puja to ensure continuity of puja.

The COVID-19 had also hit the small scale businessman across the state as the shop were keep close for the last six month due to the lockdown.