After Deshapriya Durga, Mayor’s ‘Kali’ Sparks Row

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Kolkata: The advertisement war which was sparked three months before revolving round the ‘world’s tallest Durga idol’ has snowballed into Kali puja too. After Deshapriya Durga took the crowed by storm, now it is the turn of Behala to hog the limelight during Diwali beginning from November 10.

“Boloto kaka, ebar ki” ( Can you tell what is our theme this time) reads the teaser ad released by the Surjya Sangha of Parnasree in Behala. The billboard has been hung across the city. Everything would have been smooth had not the Mayor Sovan Chatterjee’s name appeared in the teasers as president of the puja committee.

A controversy has arisen after several such billboards bearing the mayor’s name as president of the puja were put up just beside the main entrance to the Kolkata Municipal Corporation headquarters. It is a catch—22 situation for the KMC advertisement department officials who have been entrusted to clear the city of hoardings and banners after Durga pujas.

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No one dares to touch the hoardings put up in front of the civic headquarters because of the mayor’s name attached to these. However, it is illegal to put up any kinds of hoardings or banners in front of the KMC headquarters, which is a heritage building.

Former mayor Bikash Bhattacharya felt that it was highly unethical on part of a mayor to allow to deface the KMC headquarters , a heritage building by putting up hoardings of a puja committee of which he (mayor) is the president. “This is purely a show business in the name of performing religious festivals. Mayor should know that he is not above law and should not allow to deface a building of importance simply because he is a functionary of a puja committee,” Bhattacharya said.

Mayor Sovan Chatterjee said that he was unaware of the fact that such hoardings have been put up in front of the KMC headquarters. “I will definitely take action and remove the hoardings,” Chatterjee said .

(with inputs from TOI)