As Wednesday marks the eighth day – Ashtami – of Durga Puja, the Hindu festival that celebrates goddess Durga maa and the spirit of oneness that binds all people from all sections of the society, makes way for differently abled people.
On the eighth day (Ashtami) of Durga Puja festival. The devotees worship goddess Durga’s weapons and perform a grand aarti (ritual with camphor-lit lamps) amid dhaak (drum) beats and dhunuchi (earthen pot with burning coconut husk) dance.
Creating an all-inclusive festive environment, a puja committee in the southern part of Kolkata has dedicated its 73rd-year Durga puja celebrations to the blind and appealed for eye donation for them.
In an effort to help the visually impaired to touch their most loved goddess and feel the joy of the festival, a huge idol of Durga has been set up at the path leading to Samaj Sebi Sangha pandal, in Ballygunje area.
The idol of Durga is made with over 20,000 screws.
Braille inscriptions of Durga mantra and shlokas made adorn the panels on the two sides of the pandal.
A special audio presentation, with Tollywood superstar Prosenjit Chatterjee’s voice-over, has also been arranged for the occasion.
A huge visage also decorates the entrance gate to the pandal, their eyes covered with palms.
The Samaj Sebi encourages people to feel the display at the pandals.
Also Read | Virtual reality can alter your taste: Study
At another pandal in the city, wheelchairs and stretchers have been arranged for the aged and differently abled devotees.
The volunteers at Bhowanipore 75 Palli have ensured that people with disabilities or challenges do not miss out on the joy of visiting pandals during the festival, Subir Das, one of the organisers, said.
“There is a medical camp and an ambulance outside the pandal. Differently abled visitors and pregnant women do not require any card of pass to use the VIP entrance. Our volunteers have been assisting them,” he was quoted as saying by PTI.
Also Read | Stephen Hawking's final book offers brief answers to big questions
The eye donation camp will be held in collaboration with a social organization, the organisers said.