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Photographer's Note

Yesterday was officially the last day of Durga Puja.

On this day, people from the various pandals go and immerse the idol of the deity in a holy river.

I went to the Okhla Barrage (banks of the Yamuna) where they were going to submerge these idols. There were atleast 10,000 people or more from all over South Delhi. I was quite impressed with the crowd-they were very well behaved and unlike the ones we usually come across in Delhi.

I believe the process of immersing starts around 12 noon and sometimes even carries on for a few days depending on the number of idols that are to be immersed.

This picture was taken at around 5:30 pm and we were there till 8:00. There were still loads of idols in waiting at that point of time and people were quite sure it would carry on till atleast midnight.

The tenth and the last day of the Puja is both joyous as well as one filled with sadness and emotions. Sad because the people are bidding farewell to their goddess; emotions are at their brink with a little weeping and crying off and on. Before the immersion, if time is on their side, people do their last bit of puja, arati and the dhonuchi dance as well. All around you can hear drum beats and though its a celebration, one does encounter the emotional bit too.

This was the first time i've actually seen it first hand and it was quite a captivating moment. Even though i had been there a few hours and there was nothing new happening, i just didn't want to leave. Its something that I can't explain, but you'll have to experience it to understand it.

Shubho Bijoya as they say in Bengali to all of you! (a term wishing you a happy 10th day of the puja; rather just wishing you a joyous and auspicious year ahead - exact translation being 'Auspicious Victory')

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Additional Photos by Smrithi Rao (sn00zie) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 892 W: 27 N: 592] (2384)
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