The number of idols at the mega pavilion has been increasing over the years and in the current state, it is a strong contender for the title of the biggest Mandap in South Asia
A unique Puja Mandap in Bagerhat Sadar upazila with over 800 idols is turning heads with colourful designs and an electrifying atmosphere as the festival of worshiping mighty goddess Durga, the slayer of demon king Mahishasura, began on Friday.
The number of idols at the mega pavilion has been increasing over the years and in the current state, it is a strong contender for the title of the biggest Mandap in South Asia.
Dr Dulal Shikder of Hakimpur village started organising Durga Puja celebration in 2011 with 251 idols to inform the devotees about the importance of their gods and goddesses.
It came to be known as the Shikderbari Puja Mandap. After Dulal’s death, his son Liton Shikder continued the tradition by arranging the mega celebration.
“I’m very happy that the celebration has been attracting the people of all religions,” he said.
“The visitors' comments on the commentary book are very encouraging, " he added.
Last year, Liton set up 701 idols and increased number by 100 this year.
Bagerhat Zila Puja Udzapon Parishad members said they consider the Mandap the ‘best in the world’ as no other person individually organises such a huge festival.
The sculptors used colours wisely to evoke Hindu mythology. The atmosphere gives a sense of the sacred and fills the air with festivity and religious fervour. The five-day festival will end with the immersion of idols on October 8.
The organizer parried a question about the expense of the mega festival, saying the celebration speaks for itself.
Head sculptor Bijoy Krishna Bachar said it took 15 sculptors six months to make the idols that were decorated with colours and ornaments acquired from local and foreign markets.
Bijoy said the 50-feet high entrance gate will attract anyone with its innovative design.
The visitors from various different districts but agreed on one thing this is the biggest Puja Mandap they have ever seen.