Kolkata: Demonetisation or ‘notebandi’ has been chosen as the theme by organisers of at least two community Durga Pujas in West Bengal this year. The theme has found place in Mitra Sanghati’s puja in east Kolkata’s Belighata area and the organisers have printed over 30,000 replicas of the banned currency notes to portray it. Mitra Sanghati’s puja pandal will feature a money tree having the prints of the banned Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes as its leaves and images of people from various walks of life standing beside the money tree with helpless looks as the notes are of no use, the president of Mitra Sanghati Pradeep Kumar Nemani said.
A traditional earthen bowl meant for saving money will be kept near the Durga idol and a human face with teary eyes will signify the sufferings of the people due to the note ban, he said. “Demonetisation caused a lot of pain to all sections of people. People had money but suddenly it became just a piece of paper. People had money in their accounts but couldn’t withdraw it from their banks,” Nemani added.
The idea to take up demonetisation as a theme came from the sufferings that the common man had to face due to the note ban. “As Durga Puja is a festival of the people, we thought it would be an apt theme,” he said. A puja committee in North 24 Parganas district which also opted for the ‘notebandi’ theme is using the replica of an ATM machine which is out of money on one side of the pandal and on the other the replica of another machine dispensing new Rs 500 and Rs 2000 notes.
“We want to show how the people, irrespective of their financial condition, had to stand in queue for long hours to withdraw money,” a puja organiser told PTI. The lights of the pandal will portray demonetisation and its after effects.