New Delhi [India], October 3 (ANI): After a year of COVID induced hiatus, the Durga Puja pandals in Delhi will once again be installed with goddess Durga idols, as the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) recently gave permission for Durga Puja and Ramlila in the national capital with certain conditions.
Last year, due to COVID, Durga Puja was not organized in Delhi on a large scale, though in some areas the Puja was done without much grandeur. This year, with the festivities getting approval from DDMA, preparations have commenced in some parts of Delhi.
CR Park is one such area of Delhi, where Durga Puja is organized annually with much pomp and show. Several artists from different parts of the country, especially West Bengal, who make idols of goddess Durga, have reached the location.
Manik Pal is one such artist, who along with his 15-20 companions annually travels from Krishna Nagar in Nadia district of West Bengal to CR Park in order to make idols of goddess Durga. In a conversation with ANI, Pal told that he and his companions have been doing so for the past 20 years.
Pal said that this time only 7-8 craftsmen have come due to COVID. He told, "last year there was no work due to COVID, we had made only 6-7 idols because people mostly worshipped at their homes. But this time after getting permission for celebrating Durga Puja in Delhi, the demand for idols is coming in and in accordance to that we have made about 25 idols so far, although, all of these idols are small, mostly 4-5 feet."
On being asked that how much did COVID affect the work of these craftsmen financially, Pal said that this time "we will only be able to earn money for food." He added, "Earlier, we used to earn so much that we were able to sit at home and eat for 6 months, but now we are even working by taking a loan. Craftsmen are also surviving by taking loans."
As the festive week of Navratri approaches fast, devotees are looking forward to celebrating Durga Puja with great enthusiasm. The festival season will commence with Navratri starting in October and Durga Puja being celebrated during the same time. Following that Dussehra will fall on October 15 and Diwali on November 4. (ANI)