Kolkata, Nov 3: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Sunday distributed Kali puja “prasad” and greeted guests, including 65 residents of an old age home, at her residence here.
Banerjee visited the old women (residents of an old age home in Chetla, south Kolkata) during the Durga pujas last month and extended a warm welcome to them at her home, where she holds an annual worship of goddess Kali.
Bathed in lit-up clay lamps and bulbs, the chief minister’s home saw a steady stream of visitors; and Mamata Banerjee greeted her guests with hands folded.
Banerjee has been organising the “puja” at her house in the the Kalighat area since 1978, when she was a student leader of the Congress.
The doors of Banerjee’s spartan residence in the dingy Harish Chatterjee Street were thrown open to the public; following her strict instructions, security here is never obtrusive.
Thousands of Trinamool Congress supporters and commoners visited the single-storey house through the day to watch the puja in the courtyard and catch a glimpse of the party chief.
Looking cheerful, the chief minister, clad in her trademark cotton sari and rubber slippers, was busy making the puja arrangements, overseeing the cooking of “bhog” (food offerings for the goddess) and welcoming VIPs as well as commoners.
State Industry Minister Partho Chatterjee, other ministers, MPs and MLAs and Kolkata Police Commissioner Surajit Kar Purkayastha were among those who visited Banerjee’s residence.
The chief minister kept a fast through the day Saturday and broke it only after offering “pushpanjali” (special offering to the goddess) late in the night.
According to Hindu mythology, Goddess Kali is the first of the 10 incarnations of Goddess Durga, who killed demons Shambhu and Nishambhu, but stepped on her husband Lord Shiva as she lost control in the bloodbath.