Gitanjali , Sarat Samagra , Galpa Guchha — huge thermocol book replicas piled on top of one another announced Srijan Sonargaon's theme for this Durga Puja — Amra Borner Bahan . " Literacy is very important for every individual today and we wanted to spread that message. Education should not be restricted to a few," said Debasish Chakraborty, the secretary of the puja committee.
The Sonarpur housing complex with 178 flats greeted Tollywood star Rituparna Sengupta at her first stop of the day with a shower of petals and arati before taking her to the mandap set up in the parking area beneath one of the buildings for the Ashtami pushpanjali . With a keen eye on eco- friendliness, the residents had worked hard for over three months to set up the creative decor. If letters on kulos hung at various corners, hand- painted fabrics with pictures and self- composed poetry also joined in to spread the message of literacy. Newspaper bags were turned into pieces of art, painted over with bold Bengali letters. A corner of the puja area showcased paintings themed on poetry learnt in childhood, made by the women of the complex.
The most charming bit about this threeyear- old puja was its small army of eight to 15- year- olds, who came together to form ' Team Up to Clean Up'. " We have to keep our apartment area clean and plastic- free.
The place is also a no- smoking zone so that we can have a healthy environment," said Kinjal Ghosh, a member of the kiddie team.
Apart from ensuring a first- aid corner, help desk and posters with emergency numbers, the residents invited children from a nearby orphanage, Ichcha, for lunch during Puja and gifted them new books from the complex library and stationery to aid their education.
Right before Puja, the residents had participated in a blood donation camp held within the complex.
" I like the way the women in this complex took the initiative in putting together the puja. Durga Puja, after all, is about how residents come together. There is a lot of warmth among the people of this complex. Plus, they have followed all the rules and regulations for Festival of Joy.
The ambience and involvement really touched me," said Rituparna.Rituparna with Mukti Gupta, the managing director of Mukti Group, which manages Park Plaza. Ritu's Ashtami outing ended with a sumptuous Bengali lunch spread withTeam t2 and Mukti at the Gariahat hotel ( Garcha 1st Lane).
Article Courtesy : Telegraph