Artists are recreating the observed effects of climate change and global warming on the environment. Many organizers are basing their themes on issues dominating the discourse to make an instant connect and spread awareness. Moreover, citizens are increasingly becoming concerned about environmental issues and relating to the themes.
Durga Puja pandals are crowd pullers and using them to spread socially relevant messages is a great idea. There has been increasing awareness of environmental issues and, hopefully, this constant focus will help us become more responsible citizens.
Organizers of Kashi Bose Lane Durga Puja in north Kolkata commissioned artist Pradip Das to create the model of a city where all the water has dried up. Earlier this year, a similar situation occurred in Chennai where drinking water became so scarce the administration had to ration consumption. “We hear about climate change and its impact, but do we actually know what it can lead to?” asked Pradipta Nan, joint secretary of the committee. The Puja will complete 82 years in October.
At Shyambazar Palli Sangha near Shyambazar Metro station, the pandal will resemble a tram car and a deity will be placed in the mock-up of a tram terminus. The artwork inside will depict how trams have evolved and the role they have played in modern-day commute. Secretary of the committee Subrata Bhattacharya said, “It is not only a part of Kolkata’s heritage, but is also an eco-friendly mode of transport. If used effectively, it can be a solution to rising pollution.” The puja has stepped into its 59th year.
Global warming occupies the central theme at Bhowanipore Durgostsab committee Puja where the pandal and the adjoining area has been decorated like a nursery of plants. “We want to make people aware on the need to protect vegetation. We need more trees if we want the earth to survive. The pandal will be full of plants brought from all parts of the country and abroad,” said Subhankar Roychoudhury, general secretary.
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