May 23, 2022

UNESCO Recognition Ceremony for Durga Puja: Mamata angry over not being invited

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is angry that the West Bengal government has not been invited to the UNESCO World Recognition of Durga Puja in Kolkata as a World Cultural Heritage Site. The event is being held in Kolkata on Friday evening. The chief guest was Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
Last year, UNESCO recognized the traditional Durga Puja of West Bengal as a cultural heritage of the world. In recognition of that, the Tourism Department of the Central Government of India has organized a cultural event at the Victoria Memorial in Kolkata this evening. Donna Gangopadhyay, wife of renowned cricketer Sourav Ganguly, is expected to perform the dance. But the West Bengal government, along with Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, was angry that no state government representative was invited to the event. He said that various clubs and puja committees in Kolkata are behind this international recognition. Millions of people in Bengal have contributed to this.

Mamata said, ‘There is no reason to think that Bengal is so weak. We have been promoting this Kolkata Durga Puja for 10 years and got the recognition of UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. No one else has contributed to this.

Leader of Opposition in the West Bengal Legislative Assembly and BJP MLA Shuvendu Adhikari said, “UNESCO does not recognize any state’s recommendation in this way. The Ministry of Culture of the Government of India had applied for the declaration of Durga Puja as a Heritage. Responding to that request, UNESCO has recognized this tradition of Durga Puja in Kolkata. It has nothing to do with her (Mamata) credit. ‘
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Addressing Mamata, Shuvendu said, “He always thinks that West Bengal is a separate state and he is the Prime Minister of that state. That is why he said Joybangla slogan of Bangladesh. But he should know that he cannot write directly to UNESCO or any international organization. It is against foreign policy.

In their letter to place the Durga Puja in Kolkata on the UNESCO World Heritage List, they wrote that the Durga Puja in Kolkata is 331 years old.