Kolkata, Oct 10 IBNS | 2 years ago

As the Maha Panchami night faded away, new hope and aspirations loomed in the air with Hindus gearing up to welcome Goddess Durga along with her four children (Laxmi, Saraswati, Kartik and Ganesh) amid pious rituals as the festival officially commenced from Mahashasti on Thursday. .The carnival in the city of Kolkata already started on Wednesday with festive frenzy Kolkatans rushing to visit the nearest pandals to catch a glimpse of the goddess and her children.

Once again the city has been adorned with the jewels of heavy lights and colourful pandals (marquees) as people soaked into the celebrations of the annual festival of joy.

The crowd kept bustling through the crowded streets of the Kolkata on the Maha Panchami day itself as slow traffic movements were reported from different parts of the city.

Some people were spotted busy with their last minute shoppings and visited the nearest shopping malls or shops.

The dhaks (Indian rustic drums) had an early start on Mahashashti sending the wave of excitement among the people across the city, signalling them that the much-awaited festival has finally commenced.

The picture was unaltered in every corner of the city whether it was Gariahat in the south or Hatibagan in the north.

From North to South, the clubs and organisers are ready with their unique themes and decorations. People are expected to travel the entire map of the city in haunt of the best pandals and protima (the idol).

While the children still depend on their parents to taste the flavours of Durga Puja, the teenagers and college students prefer to visit Maddox Square or some other famous puja pandals in Kolkata to make the most of this merrymaking festival.

South Kolkata's Maddox Square, which shelters out to number of teenagers, catering to the fun and frolic environment, promises to keep the ambiance intact this year.

"This is my den for the entire festival. I just love coming every year to Maddox Sqaure," said a college student Rakesh Ghosh.

However, there are some people who prefer to stay indoors and relish the moments of festivity with friends and family members.

"I love to stay at home during these days. It gives me an opportunity to spend some time with my family," said Corporate official Sutiksha Basu.

"I don't go outside. It is better to spent some quality time with family and friends. We chat and have nice time indoors. My daughter visits my home during Durga Puja and I prefer to spent the moment with them," said Riya Das, a housewife from Kolkata.

But whether you stay indoors or stand in long queues, the city surely has something in store for everyone during these five days of fun, frolic and festivity.

(Posted on 10-10-2013)