TINSUKIA: The family Durga Puja of Gupta Kutir of Digboi oil township in Tinsukia district, that started in 1923 at Kanchanpur in Noakhali in undivided India, celebrated its 98thyear with pomp and gaiety.
According to legends, Uma Charan Duttagupta began Durga Puja celebration without idol and the first idol puja began after five years following the birth of a female baby. Initiated at Digboi in 1941 by Sachindra Mohan Duttagupta in Digboi forest department, it was later shifted to a saw mill located in the present premises. Though the first idol worship stated at Digboi in 1947, it was in 1951 that puja began in permanent mandap, said Dr Snehankar Dutta Gupta, a renowned physician of Tinsukia, adding that the puja embraces Kshatriya tradition with special alteration in the positioning of the idols of Kartik and Ganesh. Though buffalo was sacrificed earlier, it was stopped altogether almost 45 years back and has now been replaced by few goats.
"Though we don't have a trust, every year we call a meeting before Puja and prepare a budget to which all extended family members from the State and outside contribute," said Dr Dutta Gupta acknowledging the support of the local administration and IOCL.
With the reduction in the size of the idol and restricting the entry of outsiders this year, the bhog for the Goddess was prepared by the family members with full sanitization, asserted JharnaDutta Gupta, headmistress of Balika Bidyamandir Digboi.