BY ARADHANA BHATTACHARYA
Durga Puja symbolizes our eternal journey to
self-realization and not just the victory of good over evil.
Behind the apparent splendor of the rituals there lies a
deep spiritual significance worth contemplation. Keeping
with this essence, Pujari a non profit organization based in
Atlanta, Georgia, celebrated the traditional Bengali
festival of Durga Puja with great enthusiasm and fervor on
October 20th & 21st at Berkmar High School, Lilburn, GA
The preparations for this mega event commenced a day in
advance when the decoration team along with the volunteers
worked hard to put up the magnificent background in place.
The ‘protima’ (idol) was placed in stunning beige and maroon
temple setting that adorned the goddess with its simplistic
Adding another feather to Pujari’s plume, this year's
celebration was marked by poliferic numbers of devotees
attending the festivities, excellent time management by the
committee members paving way to a an organized and
systematic flow of events and of course fun and frolic
The Puja day commenced on a somber note with a ceremonial 'Puja'
and 'Anjali' that was performed with great reverence and
strict adherence to Bengali customs and traditions capturing
the essence of the autumn festival in its glory.
Prasad' and 'Bhog' was served by Pujari members to the
colossal gathering of devotees in a traditional fashion
bringing back memories of this celebration from across the
Spread over the two days, the line-up for the cultural
evenings included a variety of events showcasing the local
talents that was well appreciated by young and old alike.
Some of the highlights included ‘Agomoni gaan’ by Indrani
Ganguli, kids/youth variety programs like “Hitopdesh’, ‘Chandalika’,
‘Ek Mutho Rodhur’ ,instrumentals ,Puja songs by Krishna
Majumder – a visiting parent from India and much much more
connecting us back to our Indian roots.
‘Kanchan Ranga’ – a hilarious Bengali play directed by
Shyamoli Das added its spell of laughter to the evening.
Achieving great heights in the cultural arena, Pujari was
proud to associate big names like the popular Bangla band
‘Kaya’ and Tanushree Shankar and her contemporary Indian
dance troup, with the two day festivities.
When on one hand, ‘Kaya’ with their electrifying performance
compelled the audience never to leave the dance floor;
similarly on the other hand, it will not be wrong to say-
the spectacular dance performance by Tanushree Shankar and
her troupe was magnificent, sublime, truly rare and a unique
experience of ones lifetime.
A special issue of Pujari's signature magazine 'Anjali',
edited by Sutapa Dutta, was also brought out to commemorate
this special occasion. The magazine contained articles and
write-ups from local enthusiasts and also writers of
The two day celebrations ended on a happy note with the
‘Pujari’ patrons looking forward to their next event.
Overall a very successful event organized yet again by the
executive committee of ‘Pujari’ namely Prabir Nandi, Pabitra
Bhattacharya, Surojit Chatterjee, Sanjib Datta, Satyaki
Lodh, Shyamoli Das, Sushanta Saha, Sutapa Datta, Sudipto
Samanta and Supriya Saha supported by all the ‘Pujari’
members and patrons - keeping Bengali traditions alive.