Bari Maidan at Garamnullah in Sakchi. The ground will again miss its date with idols on Dashami, as its present location is “inconvenient” processions, allege puja committee members. Picture by Bhola Prasad
Jamshedpur, Sept. 26: The beleaguered Bari Maidan at Sakchi will miss its Dashami date for the fifth year in a row.
When the ground, named after trade union leader Abdul Bari, was near Sakchi’s Supervisory Flats, idols en route immersion would congregate on it to be numbered and sent off in an orderly manner.
But when it was relocated to Garamnullah in 2006, due to Tata Steel’s expansion plans, its location became a disadvantage
Jamshedpur Durga Puja Kendriya Samiti, co-ordinating the pujas for the past 80 years, has not found the new location convenient for divinity’s final send-off. As in the previous four pujas, this year, too, Bari Maidan would not be used to congregate Durga Puja immersion processions, after various Jamshedpur puja committees vetoed the move.
From 2006 onwards, all Dashami processions start off for the river from different points, instead of converging at the Bari Maidan or a similar ground to be numbered, which has increased traffic chaos and immersion delays.
But still, puja committees prefer the chaos to the Maidan’s new location.
“Bari Maidan’s new location is its disadvantage. For the fifth time in a row, puja committees have rejected its feasibility,” said Samiti general secretary Ram Babu Singh.
In its earlier location, the Maidan was used as a venue for public and political meetings.
The new Maidan at Garamnullah, across three acres, remains at best a grazing field.
“Both the district administration and Tata Steel should take up the issue, as Bari Maidan is lying idle. Alternate arrangements should be made to facilitate congregation of all puja processions at one point,” a senior functionary of the Samiti said, adding that now, immersion routes could not be monitored properly as processions moved towards river banks according to their whims and fancies.
When Tata Steel had decided to acquire Bari Maidan, the Samiti had protested. But the steel major assured that Bari Maidan would be given a new location. It was, but the location did not find favour with puja committees.