Lakhs bid adieu to Goddess Durga


Cuttack/Bhubaneswar: The five-day Durga Puja festivities drew to a close here on Sunday with the immersion of Goddess idols amidst pomp and grandeur in the twin cities today with more than two lakh people taking part in the processions this time.

The immersion exercise took place with tight security and passed without untoward incidents.

All roads leading to Devigada, the immersion ghat in Cuttack, saw a mammoth gathering on the day.By 8 pm, over 65 idols of Goddess Durga and Hara-Parbati were immersed in the three artificial ponds set up on the banks of river Kathajodi.

In Cuttack, a minor clash took place between people of two adjoining localities – Telenga Bazar and Bamphi Sahi – over the immersion procession that left one person with a minor injury, police said.

Favourable weather conditions, except for a brief spell of rain, ensured a large number of people took part in the immersion ceremony bidding farewell to goddess Durga and her children.

Deputy Commissioner of police Satyabrata Bhoi said the immersion ceremony went peacefully in the city. Thirty-five platoons of police had been deployed in the state capital for the immersion.

“Liquor shops remained closed today. The immersion of idols of the Old Town area was done during the day and the rest will be completed in the night,” said Bhoi.

The police said traffic restrictions were imposed on one side of Janpath between Vani Vihar and Rajmahal Square during immersion. Around 150 traffic personnel were deployed along the immersion route to ensure traffic flow was not hampered.

Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation created four temporary ponds for immersion of idols. While two of those were on the Kuakhai riverbank near Pandara on the city outskirts, another pit was near Sai temple.

The civic body has also dug another temporary pond on the Daya River along Puri Road.

“The temporary ponds have been well covered with polythene to prevent seepage of water to the river. The sizes of these ponds have been increased as compared to last year,” said Bhubaneswar mayor Ananta Narayan Jena.

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