It could be interesting to see how ‘Durga Idol Immersion’ issue on Muharram day will be tackled by the police and administration in West Bengal as police confirmed to media outlets that they have not received any application from community puja organisers anywhere in the state seeking permission to take out Durga immersion procession on October 1, when a section of Muslims would also take out procession.
Banerjee’s government and BJP and its allied organisations are locked in a bitter war of words after the chief minister banned immersion on the day. The BJP accused her of trying to appease the minority community.
A division bench of the Calcutta high court, however, stayed the blanket ban and ruled that immersions should be allowed if the police found that the processions would not jeopardise the law and order situation. The court also ordered the police to identify separate routes for Muharram and Durga puja processions.
Chastised by the court ruling, the state government asked puja organisers to apply to the police sufficiently in advance for obtaining permission for immersions.
Additional director general (law & order), Anuj Sharma, told HT that not a single application for immersion on October 1 has been received till date. “There are about 25,000 community pujas in all the districts combined. So far we have not received a single application,” Sharma said. Another senior officer of Kolkata police ruled out the possibility of “any last-minute” application.