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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into the City of Blinding Lights

Last updated on: October 10, 2013 13:39 IST

Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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The four most-awaited days in the Bengali calendar are here. 

Ma Durga makes her entry into pandals and homes across Bengal, and into all our hearts, today.

Let's take a look at some of her most mesmerising avataars and the stunning pandals she is reigning over...

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Image: FD block Durga Pujo in Salt Lake
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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The idol of Ma Durga was formally unveiled by priests today, on the morning of Shashti, the sixth day of the Pujo.

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Image: Mudiali Durga Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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The pushpanjali, the practice of offering flowers to Ma Durga while chanting mantras, starts on Saptami, the seventh day. 

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Image: Mudiali Shiv Mandir Durga Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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The pushpanjali, a morning ritual, is considered to be the most important part of Durga Pujo by many.

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Image: Surir Bagan pandal in north Kolkata
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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Pujo organisers across Kolkata have gone to great lengths to create the most breathtaking pandals for the deity.

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Image: Raipur Club Durga Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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The creativity of the organisers is evident from this pandal, where Ma Durga is bathed in neon lights, crowned by a giant trishul and towering over a Asura who looks suspiciously like Lord Voldemort from the Harry Potter series.

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Image: Badamtala Ashar Sangha Durga Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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Some Durga Pujos in Kolkata have become legendary for their breathtaking idols and outlandish pandals, like this one in Golf Green, which happens to be one of the city's most visited pandals.

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Image: Golf Green Sarodotshob Comitee Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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Thousands of people wait for hours in serpentine queues to catch a glimpse of their beloved deity and admire the ingenuity of the pandal designers and organisers.

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Image: Bharatiya Tarun Sangha Durga Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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For these four days, Kolkata, much like its fellow metropolis Mumbai, becomes the city that doesn't sleep. 

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Image: Bharatiya Tarun Sangha Durga Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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Pandal-hopping becomes the city's night-time obsession as scores of people take to the streets to make the most of the festival.

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Image: Mudiali Durga Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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Durga Pujo turns Kolkata into City of Blinding Lights

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The atmosphere is resplendent with the beat of the dhaak and the aroma of bhog, the special khichdi which is made for Ma Durga and later distributed to her devotees.

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Image: Hati Bagan Sarbojanin Durga Pujo
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty

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