The Telegraph
| Sunday, October 2, 2016 |


Bengali by nature

Author KUNAL BASU left Calcutta almost four decades ago as a student. But in his mind he hasn’t — he has just been travelling for 38 years. Which is why, as he puts it, his “suitcases are a bit heavy”. In conversation with Graphiti’s Abhijit Mitra, Basu opens up, among others, about his relationship with the city, his first novel in Bengali, Calcutta’s Durga Puja, and being a Bengali abroad. Excerpts.

How long has it been that you have been outside Calcutta? I went to study in the US in 1978. So what would it be? Thirty-eight years. But I’ve been back here twice for a  year each during sabbaticals. And these days I live in Calcutta... | Read»

Haute hues

Make a chic statement in these designer ensembles this Durga Puja, says Lubna Salim

It’s that time of the year when we welcome the goddess turned out in our very best. A quick wardrobe update will include ensembles and accessories from the top signatures in town that can be worn during the four most important days... | Read»

An occasional treat

With the Pujas round the corner, luchis come back on the table and that’s a good reason to rejoice, says Rahul Verma

We are not much into rituals, but there is one custom that we try and follow on festive occasions — we eat luchis. There was a time when I found these deep fried, fluffy flour breads too heavy, but no longer. Now that I have got used to... | Read»

Tradition with a twist

Sajni Mukherji takes us back in time and tells the rip-roaring tale behind the deviation from tradition in the Rai household where Pujas end on Navami and the Bisarjan takes place on the same day

As we gear up for the year’s biggest carnival in these parts, one’s thoughts go back to earlier times. Kaliprasanna Singha’s Hutom Pyanchar Naksha gives details of the 19th century Pujas, essentially similar to the ones we... | Read»

Royal rituals

A thousand-year-old Debi Puja, started by a branch of the Malla kings, is celebrated in Bishnupur at almost the same time as Durga Puja, says Bishnupriya Basak

Bishnupur, the land of exquisite terracotta temples is also the stage of ‘the Play of the Gods’, as anthropologist Akos Ostor calls it. Myth, ritual and festivities are played out in different domains of the household, community and... | Read»

A season for buying

The Pujas give you the perfect excuse to loosen your purse-strings and splurge on the hi-tech goodies that your heart desires, says Tushar Kanwar

Durga Puja is here and along with it, there’s a perceptible feeling of magic in the air. What else could explain the gradual loosening of purse strings or the way parents or significant others look the other way as gadget enthusiasts across... | Read»

Playing favourites

A lighthearted look at the deities in Ma Durga's entourage that celebrities identify with

I relate to both Ganesha and Karthik in different ways. I relate to Ganesha because I’m a foodie and whenever I am travelling, I love to gorge on Japanese, Italian and Thai food. I love pizzas too but I try and avoid them for obvious... | Read»