So the day has again come. A day when bongs tearfully bid goodbye to their beloved mother Godess Ma Durga. Who had come ‘home’ with her children to bless all of us and give us power to fight the ‘evils’ for the whole year. Its Bijoya Dashami today actually its called Vijaya Dashmi in rest of India. Its a day when Indians celebrate victory(Vijay) of Good over Evil.
In Bengal its the end of the festivities of the Durga Puja. The Durga puja is a very unique festival celebrated by people of Bengal. Whole state stops everything to worship the Godess for 5 days. If you have ever been in Bengal during the Durga Pujas you would know what I am talking about. Actually this festival is not confined to the State we Bongs celebrate it in our own way wherever we are that is from Bangalore to Switzerland.
Vijay Dashmi also marks a begining of another unique phenomenon for Bengalis called ‘Bijoya‘. Its a tradition of spreading universal brotherhood. Its a time when Bengalis visit each other with sweets and Wish each other “Shubho Bijoya” and men do ‘Kolakuli’ a tradition where people Hug eachother in a particular way. The ‘Kolakuli’ is ofcourse for same age guys and pronam(touching feet) for the elders. You get a treat of Narkel nadu(coconut laddo), Nimki(a snack ref pic), Ghugni(white peas curry) etc. This visits can go upto diwali so quite a long period to cover as much ground as possible. Nowadays ofcourse most of the Bijoya is done through phone, email, SMS, Chat, Scraps, Facebook, Tweets(latest addition).
So as the women get ready for “Sindur Khela” and men get ready for the immersion procedures, kids get sad for the end of festivities I sit here thousands of miles away from my hometown and look back to those good old days when I would be in Kolkata and do what every Bengali in Kolkata does during the pujas go pandal hopping then all those ‘pujo prems’( Puja Love stories) ya pujo also meant a time for boys n girls find mates sometimes the relationship lasted only the puja days but many times it lasted lifetime. Actually theres a lot to write about Durga Pujo in Kolkata particular but wouldn’t like to burden you with a very long post which will not be relevant to you. I leave you with some recipes and lots and lots Good Wishes for Dussera and for Bong readers “Shubho Bijaya”.