Durga Puja revellers line up to see diamond-studded idols

The Durga Puja of the city's Sree Bhumi Sporting Club has caught the eye of many and people are queueing up to catch a glimpse of the idols that have been adorned with a whopping Rs.10-crore diamond jewellery.

Kolkata: The Durga Puja of the city's Sree Bhumi Sporting Club has caught the eye of many and people are queueing up to catch a glimpse of the idols that have been adorned with a whopping Rs.10-crore diamond jewellery.

Known for its extravagant displays, this community puja has got revellers making a beeline for this marquee on the north-eastern fringes of the city.

The bedazzling deities have not only caught the fancy of the commoners but even Bengali actress Rituparna Sengupta, who visited the marquee.

The jaw-dropping diamond studded idols have also made their way to the social networking sites with many of the visitors - mostly women and young girls - uploading snapshots on their Facebook and Twitter accounts.

The idols last year glittered with gold ornaments worth over Rs.5 crore. And this year, thanks to jewellers Nemichand Bamalwa and Sons (NCB), they have been decked up with diamond jewelleries of all kinds.

"Besides the dazzling crowns, specially designed nose and ear rings have been crafted for Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati," D.K. Goswami, general secretary of the club, told IANS.

Bachraj Bamalwa of NCB said the jewelleries adorning goddess Durga alone are worth nearly Rs.5 crore.

"While her crown is the biggest, she has also been adorned with nose and ear rings, bangles and a 30-inch diamond necklace. The other idols too have been adorned with crowns," Bamalwa told IANS.

Bamalwa said the jewellery will adorn the deities till Vijaya Dashmi - the day the idols will be taken for immersion.

Trinamool Congress legislator Sujit Bose, the man behind the puja, says this is the first time that diamond jewellery has been used.

"... this time we have created a record of sorts. I don't think anywhere in the country such a thing has been down," said Bose.

He said the average daily footfalls at the pandal have already crossed a lakh.

However, with more than Rs.10 crore at stake, the organisers have also put in tight security measures.

"Besides nearly two dozen policemen, we have also employed over 50 private security guards and installed CCTV cameras to keep a check 24 hours," said Goswami.

Catching up with Sree Bhumi is the Ekdalia Evergreen Club at Gariahat where the idols have been ornated with 18-kg of gold.

The idols of Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswati, Kartick and Ganesha have been adorned with kundan meena jewellery - a traditional form of Indian gemstone jewellery.

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