Durga Puja, the biggest religious festival of the Hindus, began on Saturday, with the incarnation (bodhon) of the Goddess in temples across the country.But no celebration was seen in a Mandap in Dinajpur's Khansama upazila, rather the Hindus of this area are protesting by hoisting black flags instead of drumming and cheering, demanding the arrest and punishment of the killers of a woman who was murdered after rape.The incident took place at Kumarpara Sarvajanin Puja Mandap in Tongua of Bhervedi union. Read: Durga Puja fervour grips BangladeshSixty-four days back, a housewife named Upobala was killed after rape on her way home.A case was filed but no one was arrested in this connection, said Dhiman Das, President of Khansama Upazila Puja Celebration Committee.The case is now under investigation by the Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI), he added.Anant Kumar Roy, who joined the protest programme, said that they will not celebrate any religious festival with fanfare in the mandap until justice is done for Upobala's murder.Another protester, Nripendra Nath Roy said they boycotted their main festival only for getting justice for Upobala. Instead of celebrating Puja, they are holding a protest programme by hanging banners with anti-violence slogans on the entrance of the mandap titled 'Stand united against communal evil'.
On the occasion of Durga Puja in 2022, mobile financial services provider Nagad has come up with a cashback or discount of up 20 percent in three categories at over 50 brand outlets. They will enjoy cashback or discount on Nagad payments in the lifestyle, e-commerce, and restaurant categories, according to a media statement. Customers may receive up to 20 percent instant cashback in the lifestyle category while shopping from brands such as Baby Shop, Top Ten, Rise, K Kraft, Anjans, Raw Nation, Rang Bangladesh, Bishwa Rang, Sailor, Cat's Eye Limited, and Sara Lifestyle. Read Mastercard credit card bill payment: Nagad offers up to Tk 400 cashback They will receive the cashback if they make the payment at selected merchant outlets using Nagad Merchant QR or Nagad Merchant Pay options. Also, they can enjoy up to 50 percent discount on online shopping while making payment through SSL Gateway. The offer is available at online brands in various categories, including apparel, furniture, and electronics. It will be valid till October 5. Nagad is also offering up to 20 percent instant cashback on payments at selected sweets and food stores. Read Durga Puja fervour grips Bangladesh Besides Durga Puja shopping, customers can enjoy this offer at many restaurants, including Well Food, Classic Sweets, Banglar Sweets, Cake Story, and Banker's Cafe and Restaurant. The cashback or discount offer on Nagad payments will be available till October 30.
Installation of CCTV cameras have been made compulsory at all puja mandaps ahead of Durga Puja to ensure security, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan said. Durga puja will be celebrated across the country from October 1 to October 5 and this year there will be 32,168 Puja mandaps across the country, he said while talking to reporters after a meeting held at the Secretariat over law and order situation for ensuring smooth celebration of Durga Puja. Talking over the security arrangement, Asaduzzaman, said, “We have taken decisions to ensure security at the puja mandap and additional forces of law enforcement agencies will be deployed as per necessary.” Also read: Shahjahanpur murders: Perpetrators not to be spared Besides, Durga Puja organisers have been told to deploy volunteers to ensure security. The authorities concerned have been asked to provide wristbands to volunteers with which police can identify them. Ansar members will be deployed and arrangements will be taken for them. Replying to a question about untoward incidents that happened in Cumilla last year, during Durga Puja, the minister said, “If we think that there is a need to take special security measures then we’ll definitely go for it. Security personnel will patrol the big mandaps.” Read The struggle for Bangladesh's secular soul Besides, the patrolling team will also take steps to prevent stalking, drug use and any untoward incident at the mandaps, he said. People have been asked to make emergency phone calls to 999 to avail any kind of services from the law enforcement agencies, he added. Referring to the traffic congestion, Asaduzzaman, said steps will be taken to ensure smooth traffic management and a team will keep monitoring social media and rumours, and take action. Read No doubt govt behind communal violence: Fakhrul He also urged the authorities concerned to arrange two gates for female and male visitors.
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has said Bangladesh belongs to everyone and it will not bow down to fundamentalist forces. "People from all castes and creeds shed blood to liberate this country," he said in a Facebook post with a picture showing an arson attack in a Puja venue. Also read: No religious excesses, says PM Hasina Published from his verified Facebook account, it said, "We don't want to see this kind of picture. Such a picture is heart-breaking and insulting." “It is the high time to resist them,” he added.
India has acknowledged the "prompt" steps from the government of Bangladesh with additional deployment of security forces following the reports of vandalism in some Hindu temples and Durga Puja venues. "We note that the government of Bangladesh has reacted promptly to ensure the control of the situation, including the deployment of law enforcement machinery," Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi told reporters in New Delhi on Thursday. He said they also understand that the ongoing festive celebrations of Durga Puja continue in Bangladesh with the support of government agencies and of course, a large majority of the public. The Indian High Commission in Dhaka as well as its Missions outside Dhaka are in close contact with the authorities in Dhaka and at local levels over the matter, Bagchi said. Read: Hasina calls for hunting down culprits of Cumilla incident The Spokesperson said they have seen some "disturbing reports of untoward incidents" involving attacks on religious gatherings in Bangladesh. While visiting Puja venue at Karwan Bazar Media Para, both police and members of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) were seen while both Muslims and Hindus were seen at the venue together. Earlier, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said anyone involved in the attacks on Hindu temples and Durga Puja venues in Cumilla will not be spared. Also read: Cumilla incident: DIG says offenders to be hunted down "The incidents in Cumilla are being thoroughly investigated. Nobody will be spared. It doesn't matter which religion they belong to. They’ll be hunted down and punished," she said on Thursday.
With the fragrance of Shiuli ( the flowering night jasmine) in the air, autumn has spread the word - goddess Durga is coming among the mortals once again, sparking the celebrations unique to the biggest Hindu festival - Sharadiya Durga Puja. But in Bagerhat this year, the puja will be a bit bland without the famous Shikdar Bari’r Puja celebration, that is always a grand affair full of hundreds of idols gathered on a single stage. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the elaborate puja celebrations organised by the Shikdar family have been suspended for a consecutive second year. Instead a 'Ghot Puja' (worshipping an urn symbolising the goddess) will be held to maintain the religious traditions and formalities. Tarun Dash said, “This news broke the hearts of local worshippers like me, as for a year we were waiting in hope for the spectacular Shikdar Bari’s puja.” “The scene on the mandap used to be so surreal. It almost felt like all the deities had really landed among human beings,” said Nikhil Chandra, another local. The legend of Shikdar Bari’s Durga Puja In 2011, Dr Dulal Krishna Shikdar in his ancestral home at Hakimpur village in Bagerhat Sadar upazila started a grand celebration of Durga puja garnishing 251 idols. His motive for the grand puja was to make society aware of the significance of worshipping deities according to sanatana dharma (traditional religion, or Hinduism). Read: Security beefed up for Durga puja celebration: DMP Commissioner
The Hindus in the country will celebrate the Mahalaya, the auspicious occasion heralding the advent of goddess Durga. Mahalaya that is considered as ceremonial invocation of goddess Durga is observed seven days prior to the initiation of the Durga Puja, the largest religious festival of the Hindu community. Hindus believe the earth prepares itself and welcomes the coming of the Goddess and her children, through the celebration. Also read: Durga Puja: Covid crumbles market for Kurigram artisans Durga Puja will begin on October 11 with different rituals on the day of Maha Shashthi. MahanagarSarbajanin Puja Committee has arranged special programmes of Mahalaya at Dhakeshwari National Temple. On this day, Hindus remember and pay homage to the deceased ancestors by performing a puja, and offering Brahmins clothes, food and sweets in their name. Also read: Durga Puja: PM donates Tk 3 crore
Kurigram has a long tradition of celebrating the annual Hindu festival of Durga Puja, where huge crowds cutting across religious lines visit pandals just to have a glimpse of the idol of goddess Durga. These idols are, in fact, sculpted from mud and straw by specialist artisans, before being taken to the pandals for worship for a week. And these artisans usually earn the most during the Hindu festive season. But the second wave of the pandemic has made them anxious about business again, with fears of muted celebrations looming large. Read Durga Puja ends with immersion of goddess on Bijoya Dashami Pal Para and Kumar Para are the two localities of potters in Kurigram town, where artisans -- in normal times -- get irritated by usual distractions in the form of onlookers. But this year too, they are a worried lot and seemingly have all the time in the world to explain their plight. The situation is the same in other potter localities of the district, including Kathalbari. Most of the potters claim to have received orders for just eight to 10 idols this year, and that too from puja committees in the district, as against the usual 20-22 in pre-Covid years. "In 2020, we lost all our savings. This year, we were hoping for a turnaround to tide over the losses. Though the situation is marginally better this year, not a single artisan in the area has got an order from outside the district because of the second wave of the pandemic," says Kalikanto Pal, an artisan in Kathalbari. Also read; Durga Puja ends
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday exchanged greetings with members of the Hindu community on the occasion of Durga Puja by visiting Dhakeshwari Central Puja mandap.