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Mamata Banerjee honours UNESCO's Durga Puja tag with grand rally in Kolkata's heartland celebrating hues of Bengali culture Durga Puja I Unesco
Images by Avishek Mitra

Mamata Banerjee honours UNESCO's Durga Puja tag with grand rally in Kolkata's heartland celebrating hues of Bengali culture

Shabarni Basu/IBNS | @indiablooms | 01 Sep 2022, 09:59 pm

Kolkata/IBNS: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Thursday walked in a mega rally, organised by her government in the heartland of Kolkata, to express gratitude to the The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for recognising Durga Puja as an intangible cultural heritage.

The rally started from Jorasankho Thakurbari and traversed through seven wards before meeting up at the Red Road to honour the representatives from UNESCO.

As per Banerjee, the rally kickstarted the celebrations for Durga Puja, the annual autumn festival all Bengalis wait for round-the-year.

In fact, the same was visible as Kolkata adorned the festive look with hundreds of people participating in the rally decked up in hues of happiness.

Banerjee called Durga Puja "an emotion" as she invited people from different walks of life to join the cultural fiesta.

Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President Sourav Ganguly also joined the guests at the Red Road event and felicitated the UNESCO representatives.

In his short speech, he spoke about how the entire city of Kolkata transforms into a grand carnival during this period.

"For us, Durga Puja is beyond imagination. I have been to various countries and witnessed several festivals. But you (addressing the representatives of UNESCO) need to witness this festival. Durga Puja brings happiness to everyone-rich or poor.

"You get to know how great it is only if you spend time here during those five days. Thank you for giving the honour to the city and Durga Puja," Ganguly said.

Besides the grand rally, the Red Road event was marked by several performances to highlight the vibrancy of the city.

Speaking on the occasion, a visibly happy Mamata Banerjee said: "This stage has become a United Nations stage meaning unity in strength. For us, religion might be personal, but the celebration is universal. This support from UNESCO will give us a big boost and to the future generations as well. "

"I wholeheartedly thank UNESCO for recognizing Durga Puja as an Intangible Cultural Heritage and honouring the labour of love of everyone involved.

"Thanking everyone who made this day a grand success! Your contribution is appreciated by all. From members of Puja Committees to people of our beloved state as well as the world, your participation meant a lot," Banerjee said.

"I also salute all police personnel on Police Day - our police officers have always outdone themselves in maintaining law and order in the state," she added.

While the countdown for the annual cultural celebrations began Thursday, the ritualistic journey of paying homage to Goddess Durga will kick start later this month.