Durga Puja is here!
And this year, the Puja committee in Kolkata has decided to dedicate this year’s entire Durga Puja theme to the struggle of sex workers.
On the streets of the Ahiritola Jubakbrinda Durga Puja pandal in north Kolkata, a 300-foot-long graffiti is capturing the hardships and the circumstances that force a woman to enter this profession.
Addressing the inclusion of these sex workers with the theme 'Utsarito Alo', the pandal tries to give them the respect and dignity that they deserve.
“Durga Puja is about social mingling and celebrations by all, including sex workers. With this graffiti, we are pledging to return their basic rights to live in society, keeping their head high just like others," Indian Express quoted Debarjoon Kar, curator of the project.
Eight artists worked tremendously hard to come up with this art. Not just the street, the entire premise has been dedicated to these women.
“Through time, our orthodox society has neglected the community of sex workers. We fail to realise that they are also someone’s mother, someone’s sister. They also have a family that should get the right to live a life with love and dignity, instead of facing torture and hatred from people,” said Uttam Saha, working president of Ahiritola Jubakbrinda.
Over 10,000 sex workers from Sonagachi- Asia’s largest red light district are overwhelmed with the support that they got from the Puja committee.
Members of Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee (DMSC), an NGO which works closely with sex workers, have been invited to inaugurate the project and paint the artwork.
Not just soil from the brothel (an essential component for the making of Durga idols), this year, inhabitants of the brothel are also welcomed with equal dignity.
Information Source: IndianExpress
Title Image: DNA