West Bengal: Mamata Banerjee rallies to celebrate UNESCO tag for Kolkata's Durga Puja

Addressing the crowd, Mamata said that in the recent past she had conducted a study through the British Council and IIT Kharagpur where it was seen that during Durga Puja business worth Rs 40,000 crore is done.

Aritra SinghaUpdated: Thursday, September 01, 2022, 09:02 PM IST
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West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee takes out a rally thanking UNESCO for putting Durga Puja on the intangible cultural heritage representative list, in Kolkata on Thursday. | ANI

Kolkata: Taking out a colorful rally in Kolkata, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday thanked UNESCO for giving an intangible heritage tag to West Bengal’s Durga Puja.

BCCI President and former India skipper Sourav Ganguly who was also present at the cultural programme in Kolkata’s Red Road thanking UNESCO said that during Durga Puja in Bengal is at its ‘best’ and people of all age groups indulge in merrymaking.

Addressing the crowd, Mamata said that in the recent past she had conducted a study through the British Council and IIT Kharagpur where it was seen that during Durga Puja business worth Rs 40,000 crore is done.

“Durga Puja is an emotion in Bengal and is not just limited to any particular religion. This festivity brings people of all faiths together. I would thank UNESCO for the heritage tag. From today onwards, our festivities have begun one month in advance. I welcome people from all walks of life to participate in the occasion,” said Mamata.

Taking to Twitter, Mamata said, “Durga Puja is an emotion that rises above parochial barriers and brings us together. It unites the magnificence of art with spirituality. We thank @UNESCO for recognising Durga Puja as intangible cultural heritage and honouring the labour of love of everyone involved.”

It may be noted that at least representatives of over 1000 Durga Puja committees were seen participating in the rally from the ancestral house of Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore to Red Road.

Meanwhile, a team of UNESCO who was present in the programme said that they would again visit the city on September 24 and would visit few noteworthy Durga Puja of the city.

One representative of UNESCO, Eric said that the reverberation of people was ‘unbelievable’ and also that he is looking forward to visiting the city during the festivity.

The opposition, however, said that the Chief Minister is ‘taking away’ someone else’s credit that led to the heritage tag of Durga Puja by UNESCO.

Historian Tapati Guha Thakurta who was also present in the programme said that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee ‘didn’t’ take her credit away.

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