The renowned Chatra Kumartuli in Serampore which is the main supplier of idols of Durga and other deities in the entire Hooghly district now wears a deserted look because of the fear of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The usual rush of the Durgotsav committees to place orders, a large number of idol makers and artisans working round-the-clock to meet demands are missing this year.
An art lover now will feel a stab of pain if he visits Chatra Kumartuli. Things are not as they should be as Durga Puja is nearing fast. But the ongoing pandemic has robbed the charm of Chatra Kumartuli.
Experienced idol makers and artisans Binoy Pal, and Jaganath Pal said: “Last year after the first phase of the pandemic, we managed to keep up our business running at a low profile and survived with our families, but this year the second phase is not yet over and there is an impending threat of the third wave. ”
“Usually just after Jagannath Ratha Yatra, there is a great rush of the Durga Puja preparations with committees for placing orders. a team of idol makers work under our supervision round-the-clock to meet the demand and transport the finished Durga idols to the different pandals a day before Mahalaya. Now due to the ongoing pandemic and the impending threat of a third wave of Covid even after Jagannath Ratha Yatra, we have not received any high budget orders.
“Durga Puja usually fetches us a good profit. But till now we have received a very few low-budget orders which are not going to fetch us any profit since the prices of hay, bamboos, nails, colours have shot up. We are really panicky as we fear that this year we will be having days in great distress for being unable to make ends meet for our family.”
“The entire idol makers and artisans of Chatra Kumartuli appeal to the government to extend a helping hand and support so that we can at least give our families basic needs,” said Idol makers and the artisans of Chatra Kumartuli at Serampore.