sweden durga pujo

Tithi Bhadra: This year, UNESCO has given the title of heritage to Durga Puja of Bengal. Bengal’s face has been bright. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has announced a grant of 60,000 rupees to 43,000 puja committees in the state. In addition to the state puja, there is an extra enthusiasm for the pravas puja every year. There is interest to know about Puja in Sweden, Puja in Australia, Puja in London. Bengalis keep their eyes on the TV screen to watch foreign pujas. How foreign pujas are celebrated. Who participates? Are they all Bengalis? Puja has been going on for 5 days. Theme puja abroad or old puja more? How is the idol abandoned? Where was the Goddess Durga brought from? etc. etc. various questions.

We contacted a friend who lives in Sweden to know about Pujo in Sweden. Name Yudhajit Dasgupta. who works in Helsingborg, Sweden. He is a member of South Sweden Bengali Cultural Society. I got to know the details of Pravasi Puja from him.

He said, the last 2 years, the corona virus had interrupted the excitement of Puja. The Swedish government imposed various restrictions on gatherings. Gatherings of more than 50 people at a time were prohibited. After a large number of visitors entered the puja mandap, the entire area was sanitized and another group of visitors were allowed to enter. Incidentally, for idol darshan one has to visit the site of the concerned committee and get registered. Ekratti baby is also kept in the visitor list. This is essential for the safety and security of the premises and all visitors.

Durga Puja is celebrated every 2 days by South Sweden Bengali Cultural Society. Now it has increased to 3 days. Puja will be organized on Saptami, Ashtami and Navami. An added attraction this year is the image of social change through Puja. There will be a touch of women’s empowerment throughout the puja.

Incidentally, the Puja of Prabas is very different from the Durga Puja we have seen. Durga idol is not brought there every year from Kumortuli. Here Durga Ma is like the Tagore of the house. The same idol is being worshiped every year. At the end of the puja, the Durga idol is kept with great care. The idol is worshiped again next year. Bengali Cultural Society, South Sweden Puja will fall this time in 6 years. Durga Puja has been happening since 2017.

A few days of Puja passed with great fanfare. All together enjoy cooking, dipping wrists and eating, along with various cultural events. Some recite, some sing, some dance or drama. And its preparation goes on for months. Along with cultural competitions like Dhunuchi dance, candle lighting, best pair etc. Vijaya comes in the dance of Sindur Khel, Devi Baran and Bisarjan. These few days, the expatriate Bengalis forget their work and enjoy the puja. And the non-Bangalis also joined the Bengalis of south Bengal in this Anand festival. With the presence of Indians and foreigners from other provinces, the festival grounds became a reflection of true globalization.

It is quite difficult to organize puja abroad. Necessary items for puja are not available. Durga puja has to be done by renting a community hall instead of in the open field because of the cold. Jhakki is not less. But who dares to block the emotions of Bengalis. If there is a will, there is a way. This adage is one hundred percent true when it comes to pooja abroad. Therefore, the expatriates are continuing to worship in the diaspora after overcoming difficult obstacles.
Bureau report Khas Khabar

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The article is in Bengali

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