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First in 85 years, Kolkata’s Santosh Mitra Square pandal will open to only nearby residents

The organisers have also decided to limit the number of visitors. Residents are required to carry their identity cards so that organisers can ascertain their addresses.

By: Express News Service | Kolkata | October 15, 2020 1:30:10 pm
The pandal is themed on the Badrinath temple. (Express photo by Partha Paul)

In a break from its 85-year-old tradition, people not living in the vicinity of Santosh Mitra Square would not be allowed to visit its Durga puja pandal, a major attraction in Kolkata, due to coronavirus infection risk, said organisers.

The organisers have also decided to limit the number of visitors. Residents are required to carry their identity cards so that organisers can ascertain their addresses.

“We will allow people living in the vicinity. We want to definitely celebrate puja, but looking at the Covid situation, we have decided that people with identity cards can enter our puja pandal,” said Sajal Ghosh, one of the organisers. The club members recently held a meeting and discussed entry restrictions. Medical fraternity has warned of a high risk of surge in coronavirus cases after puja.

This year the 12-foot pandal, one of the oldest in Kolkata, is themed on the Badrinath temple and designed by artist Mintu Pal. The organisers are staring at a financial loss as many sponsors are expected to back out due to Covid restrictions. Despite this, they have decided to stick to the curbs.

Last year, the Santosh Mitra Square pandal had placed a Durga idol weighing 50 kg of gold.

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