THE CITY OF LIGHT

THE CITY OF LIGHT

    The city beside the river Gnages is  of French fragrance through it’s formation style,which is quite similar as the Pondicherry as it was under French colonialism in 1673.It’s located a little far from Kolkata in West Bengal and falls under Hooghly district .It also termed as Chandernagore,there are many controversial views about the origin of naming of this city.If anyone wants to get a silence and pleased weather far from the overcrowded Kolkata they can happily enter here and can enjoy a one daylight trip of this city .But apart from this the most interesting ornament that this city carried over is it’s worldwide famous Jagadhatri Puja festival with it’s lightning , that glorify the whole city for those days of festival,and from when this puja was started here till now the city literally hold it moribund look in the same manner after the last day of this festival ‘Bhashan’.

This lightning history is very much of exciting that make me urged to write something about it. My parents and grandparents used to say that the lightning of these days are good but they made a nostalgic frame of those lightnings of 19 th centuries. Basically the main ritual of this festival is in the ‘Procession’ which is basically  taking the ‘pratimas’ tagged by their colony’s name upon a lorry and with other lorries carrying different type of lightning structures on a frame ,following this manner all the pratimas of the city of Chandannagar and also some from Bhadreshwar and Mankundu round the whole city and it happens through the whole night and people see this from houses and also from street whole night,not only people of locality but also from different places . This lightning is the crucial part of this procession and started around 1960-70 when there were gas lamps those were fitted on frame made by wood so that people can easily hold those and walk over with the procession and then came the ‘TUNI BULBs’ . It’s basically executing people’s own ‘barowari’ or ‘para’ (which is the area where they used to live) with their own puja pratimas , and this is very much honourable to them. Sridhar Das is first  who introduced the ‘LED’ lamp light instead of  ‘TUNI BULB’ to make the lightning structures . These LEDs are less in cost than TUNI BULBs . But I still heard from my parents that they still like those lights of old days . But people have to manage with present condition so LEDs are the dominator in this lightnings. The uniqueness of these lightnings are the sequence of it’s lightning system in such a way that make a structure moveable or seems like they are active . Here one can find life in this work ,and it’s a work too of hard labour and patience . Sridhar Das contributed his work in many of the pujas of the capital city Kolkata,infact now his lights are hired in foreign countries also (London). But in chandannagar now Sridhar Das doesn’t give so much of his work contribution it is now under Babu Pal’s work structure but still there are the same craziness and uniqueness in lightning of Chandannagar at the time Jagadhatri Puja. This place is a wonderful one everyone should visit this place for once and atleast should watch the ‘Procession’ for once to understand the royal getup of this city in the days of Jagadhatri Puja festival.

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Tania Ghose
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