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Short circuit disrupts devotees' entry to Durga Puja marquee for hours (Lead)

Kolkata, Sep 30 (IANS) Hundreds of devotees and visitors failed to gain entry to the much-talked Durga Puja at Santosh Mitra Square here for several hours on Saturday after an apparent electrical short circuit triggered a scare, though entry later resumed after a go-ahead from the Kolkata police.

The police nod came after Public Works Department authorities gave the green signal after inspecting the premises of Saturday afternoon.

“The visitors have started coming (again) and things are back to normal,” Santosh Mitra Square Puja Committee President Pradip Ghosh told IANS.

A written No-Objection Certificate was collected from the PWD engineers by Kolkata police officers. Several hundred visitors waited amid the rain for the marquee’s gates to open.

The puja drew huge crowds because of its London-themed marquee and goddess Durga draped in a 22-kg saree made of 22 carat gold and costing Rs 6.5 crore. Public entry to the marquee was halted early Saturday morning on Mahadashami, the last day of the festival.

After smoke was seen coming out of a chandelier at the ‘pandal’, fire brigade and police were rushed to the spot.

The enthusiastic crowds were not allowed to enter till teams of the PWD, civil, electrical, and fire departments inspected the area.

“This is a conspiracy against us. This Puja has attracted lots of attention and that’s why the people are jealous,” Ghosh earlier said.

“There was no smoke inside the pandal. If there was any fire there must have been some sign of it around or inside. We have had a lot of celebrity guests coming in and lavishing rich praise. I don’t know why the police haven’t been cooperating with us,” he added.

Replicas of the London Eye, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, and the London Bridge are the other attractions at the marquee.

Post Source: Ians feed

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