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Chappell spared Mahisasura fate

Police have forbidden artisans from depicting the Indian coach as the demon killed by Goddess Durga in Puja idols.

india Updated: Sep 04, 2006 14:42 IST
Indo-Asian News Service
Indo-Asian News Service

The city police stepped in to ensure that no artisan shapes 'mahisasura', the demon killed by Goddess Durga resembling India's cricket coach Greg Chappell in the idols to be displayed during the September-end puja.

Kolkata police, led by city commissioner Prasun Mukherjee asked artisan Dilip Pal, a Kumartuli artisan to dismantle the idol of the demon fashioned after Chappell. The idol was ordered by Deshabandhu Road Sarbojanin Durgotsab.

"We have decided to keep a close vigil and ensure that not a single demon resembles Chappell," said Pradip Chatterjee, deputy commissioner of police, headquarters.

"Our suggestion to all puja organisers is to follow this instruction. Police will intervene if this is violated," he added.

However, the artisans at Kumartuli - idol makers' hub in the city - did not like the cultural policing though. "This is curtailing our artistic freedom. And if the authorities do have such holy cows, we should be given a full list in advance. Why waste the efforts of an artist and demoralise him," said Babu Pal, secretary of the Kumartuli Mritshilpi Sanskritik Samity.

"Can you do this to any famous painter who paints our gods and goddesses with full artistic liberty," asks Dilip.

First Published: Aug 31, 2006 17:48 IST