Most of the Durga idols in Kolkata were immersed by Sunday. The pujas that will immerse their idols on Monday, the last day of immersion, drew crowds even two days after Dashami.
Of the 3,500-odd pujas across the city, only a few hundred were left to be immersed by Sunday night, an official of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) said.
The civic body is responsible for making all arrangements for the immersions at the 16 ghats along the Hooghly. It also makes arrangements in other water bodies in the city where many idols are immersed.
As many as 1,700 idols were immersed on Friday and about 300 more on Saturday. On Sunday, till late evening, more than 300 idols were immersed, while many other organisers were in the queue, said the official.
The immersion of 1,700 idols on Dashami rarely happened in the pre-pandemic times. Usually, the numbers would stay below 1,500.
“We had expected that a large number of idols would be immersed on Dashami and our prediction turned out to be true,” the official said.
Several big-ticket pujas, including Bosepukur Sitala Mandir, Ballygunge Cultural Association, Ekdalia Evergreen and Maniktala Chaltabagan, immersed their idols by Sunday.
Organisers said the absence of the Red Road carnival, where idols were taken in a procession, was one reason why they immersed their idols by Saturday. The carnival has been scrapped as a precaution against Covid.
“We used to take part in the carnival and so would immerse our idols three or four days after Dashami. As there was no carnival this year, we immersed the idols a day after Dashami,” said Kajal Sarkar of Bosepukur Sitala Mandir.
A member of Ballygunge Cultural Association also cited the absence of the carnival as the reason for immersing their idols on Dashami.
Among the crowd-puller pujas that were scheduled to immerse their idols on Sunday was Chetla Agrani and Suruchi Sangha. Both had a steady stream of visitors till Saturday. On Sunday, too, there were some visitors.
Joydip Roy, a resident of Behala, visited Suruchi Sangha with his sister-in-law and her husband on Sunday.
“My relatives live in Howrah. I wanted them to have a look at some of the best pujas of south Kolkata,” he said.
The group first visited the pandal of Barisha Club, only to learn that the idols had been immersed. They, however, could see the idols at Suruchi Sangha and Chetla Agrani.
Arun Kumar Nath and wife Madhuri, residents of Barrackpore, visited Suruchi Sangha on Sunday afternoon. Madhuri’s parents live in New Alipore.
“We came to visit my parents. Since the pandal is near my home, we decided to drop by,” she said.
Two bodies found from Hooghly
The bodies of two men were recovered from the Hooghly on Sunday, police said.
The first body was spotted at Cossipore ghat in north Kolkata and the other near Baje Kadamtala ghat on Strand Road in central Kolkata.
The bodies have been sent for post-mortem, police said.
The police could not establish the identity of the men till late on Sunday evening.
“It could be that both men drowned during immersion on Friday or Saturday. We are awaiting the post-mortem reports to find out if they were murdered,” said a senior police officer.
Till Sunday evening, no one had filed any missing complaints, another police officer said.