Ask a typical NRR ( Non Resident Ranchite ) what he misses most in Ranchi. And his typical answers would be Ranchi’s weather and its Durga Puja celebrations. Well this list has been growing . People have started adding Kaveri restaurant and some of my Bitian mates even miss the ‘sattu ki kachori and sabji’ in Churuwala’s . Then there is Church Complex where people spend hours idling their time. Once in often you could spot unmatched couples separated one meter apart and talking to each other. Never understood why Church complex , the most visted place in Ranchi, was often a meeting place for couples. But above all DP a.k.a Durga Puja , Dusshera , Dassara , Vijay Dashmi has always been one of most fascinating and happening things Ranchi. A fun packed three day adventure.
During my last few years in school I started getting the liberty of going along with my friends to watch pandals. I got overwhelmed by the sheer number of people on the road. Those were the days when most Puja Samities started this lottery phenomena of getting “Hero Honda” motorcycle through a Rs 10/- lottery ticket. That was publicised heavily and whenever you were out in Main Road , you would only hear loud modulated voices inviting you to buy the lottery. I made several mistakes to purchase them and as usual luck was not with me. Lot of unaccounted money was made in this process by these Puja Samities and we never knew whether this entire thing was “matched fixed” and to whose pocket the money actually landed ? Thankfully sanity prevailed and it was banned later, though it was fun.
And remember those ear bursting high decibel welcome notes from these Puja Samities shouting something like this ” ABC Samiti …durga pooja ke uplakshya me …aap sabhi bhai behno ka hardik abhinandan karti hai…karti hai ..karti hai ..echo ..echo..” . Personally I fantasized slitting throats of these individuals. God forgive me that.
Then there was a puja near Harit Bhavan and there use to a “mela” kind of thing in the same place. The entire setup was mouthwatering (for foods ppl) and with lots of beautiful girls around , just made the whole environment more eye-friendly. So many one sided love affairs started and ended the same day. And if this was not enough then there was celebration in Mecon colony where there was a even better crowd (the general people crowd fool ..nothing else) . The nagada , the lightings , the chantings – the whole setup created an aura of religious fervor. And then we had a Kokar’s Durga Puja – famous for its lightings. And who could forget the famous Bakri bazar’s creative pandals. They might have created almost all monuments which are there on this earth.
Well those were the days. Days for all . Days for boys falling and falling in love multiple times in a single day . Days for girls , getting all pumped up with make ups and their best outfits . Days for those “Phuchka walas” ,to earn what they could not make in months. Days for shopkeepers for the best shopping season. Yes those were the days.
Every year I promise myself to be in Ranchi next year . Every year I fail . And this year is no different .
Its DP in Ranchi and I am missing it.