Badarpur-based artist Chandan Sen Gupta has conceptualised the whole theme for the pujo, which is stepping into its 10th year.
This year, Indirapuram’s Prantic Cultural Society —which organises the area’s Durga pujo — will be stepping into its tenth year. To mark the same, it has developed its pandal on the theme of Mayan civilization.
Speaking on the theme, Malay Majumder, chairman the society, said, “The theme portrays the civilization’s massive contribution to the history of mankind. The pandal would give visitors an opportunity to immerse themselves in the era of ancient Mayans.”
Badarpur-based artist Chandan Sen Gupta has conceptualised the whole theme.
The sculptures have been made with a mixture of fibreglass, jute, wood dust and plaster of paris (POP), Gupta informed, adding that more than 50 workers and artisans have been deployed for the project.
He continued, “Such projects need intricate detailing, so we started working quite early. We began August onwards. The pandal would be ready by tomorrow.”
Interestingly, the basic bamboo structure has been built using pieces of cloth and not ropes.
Neeladri Deb Chowdhury, vice-president of Prantic, explained, “This method comes from Bengal, and is not popular in Northern India. In Bengal, we use pieces of cloth to tie together the structures and not ropes. This leaves no space in between the joints, and makes the structure more robust and stable.”
“Also, your hands don’t get bruised in the process of tying,” he added
Pieces of cloth have been used to set up the bamboo scaffolding, a method popular in Bengal
This tradition of making theme-based pandals started five years ago for Prantic — the aim was to introduce the people of NCR to the grandeur and lavishness of pujo celebrations back home.
“In Bengal, all pandals are theme-based. The art and craft used in pandals is an essential part of Bengali culture, and we want people here to be aware about this rich heritage,” Deb Chowdhury added.
The idol this year is a 14-feet-tall eco-friendly goddess — no artificial colours have been used in the making of the statue.
Manik Pal, the famous idol-maker based in Delhi’s Chittaranjan Park, has designed the idol.
Here’s what Pal had to say on his creation: “It took over two months and half a dozen sculptors to design the idol. The specialty of the idol is that it’s made from mud and not POP, and no artificial colours have been used.”
There are activities galore as well.
On Chaturthi, a prabhat pheri [morning procession] will be taken out in Indirapuram to showcase the heritage of Bengali culture, and also mark the 10th anniversary of Prantic’s Durga Pujo. In the following days, there will be a Dandiya night, art-and-craft competition for children, food carnival, music competition, and drama and dance competition.
The association has also invited popular vocalist Suresh Wadekar to perform on one of the days.
The pandal is expected to be ready by tomorrow