50+ Incredible Photos of Kolkata Durgapuja Pandals

About this blog: Kolkata Durgapuja is an enigmatic celebration of life and Bengali culture. Inclusive in nature, Durgapuja in Kolkata touches life at the most obscure points. From marginalized groups of child labor and sex workers from city’s oldest red light zone, to Rabindranath’s nuanced literature, Durgapuja transforms the city into a fairy tale land of all engulfing festive spirit. This photo blog on Kolkata Durgapuja is dedicated to the Goddess Durga and her extended mortal family from Bengal.


For more content on Kolkata, read here.


By the middle of previous century, Durgapuja celebration in Kolkata came out of the Bonedi Bari, the landlord’s houses and became a part of Barowari (Baro Yaar, literally 12 friends) celebration. Every neighborhood would contribute Chanda to crowd pull the expenses of Puja.

With the advent of commercial sponsorship, Durgapuja loaded on pomp and galore and became event alike famous carnivals of the world. More intricate designs, thriving ideas, diverse themes started to be a part of the Durga Puja celebration.

Nowadays, the famous Durgapuja committees of Kolkata want to convey a message, a pressing issue to visitors. The message finds its root in current affairs or politics or a social cause. And many a times, the art work is built in and around Kumartuli, where Durga idols are made.

During Swadeshi revolution, India’s struggle for independence, the Asur (the buffalo God, whom the Goddess is believed to have defeated) often had his face modeled after the British collector. Obviously, such incident had brought in much hue and cries, and the British ire.

The idea was to stir people, evoke an idea and send a message. The tradition does not cease to exist.

If you study the Durgapuja Pandals of Kolkata, you will find a message behind. Beside being incredibly beautiful, I try to grab the idea when I Pandal-hop with million others on the 5 nights of Durgapuja! Only in Kolkata.


Also read: First time in Kolkata during Durgapuja? Read this ultimate guide!


durgapuja pandal Kolkata

A Durgapuja Pandal at Chaltabagan, North Kolkata. The Durga pandal is created with plethora of literary works by Rabindranath Thakur.


Bengali Durgapuja in Kolkata: beautiful pandals in Kolkata, a photo blog on Durgapuja  #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Goddess Durga Maa: durgapuja pandal photo gallery from Kolkata

durgapuja pandal Kolkata: beautiful decoration for Durgapuja Pandal

The Pandal from outside features Rabindranath’s signature. Also features words from Geetanjali.


Also read: Kolkata Photo Blog, a love letter to Kolkata!


durgapuja pandal photo gallery

Kumartuli Sarbojonin Durgapuja, another iconic Puja from North Kolkata that is modeled after a Bonedi Bari. Bonedi Bari is the erstwhile Jamindar or landlords of Bengal, who initiated the festivity pertaining to Durgapuja. At present, there are close to 30 Bonedi Bari Pujas celebrated in old households of Kolkata.


durga pandal in Kolkata: beautiful pictures of Maa Durga
A pillared Thakurdalan is modeled after the historic Bonedi Bari Puja platforms

durga puja decoration in Kolkata: Bengali Durgapuja celebration in Kolkata
The interior of the pndal is modeled after typical Bonedi Bari architecture

durga puja decoration: a mela celebrated in North Kolkata

Many a times, Durgapuja is celebrated with a full fledged Mela (fair) by the side of the pandal.


durgapuja pandal photo gallaery: Daker saj in Durgapuja  #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Maa durga idol

Many a times, Durga is created by the eminent art college alumni. This one, for example, is a Goddess created by famed artist Sanatan Dinda.


Maa durga idol, painted by Sanatan Dinda, the famous artist   #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Light decoration on road during Durgapuja at behala player's corner: Saurav ganguly bari durgapuja

Lights and Shamiana will guide you home!

durga puja decoration in Kolkata

durga pandal in Kolkata    #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess
The Durgapuja that is celebrated near Sourav Ganguly’s house. he often comes out and plays Dhaak for this Puja!

durgapuja pandal photo gallery

A Durga Puja Pandal celebrating nuances of Bangla language. You step into this Pandal to hear various Bangla poetry by poets from West Bengal and bangladesh as well. This was somewhere in Parnasri, behala.


durgapuja pandal photo gallary

durga puja decoration in Kolkata #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

durga puja decoration: theme Pujo idea  #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess
Almost live, right?

This Durgapuja Pandal aimed at raising awareness at child labor was celebrated somewhere in Dumdum. India runs on Chai and Bengal is no exception. Many a Chotu or Paltu loses their precious childhood days working at these tea stalls. Leave alone a chance to get education, they are subjected to various exploitation, ranging from low wage to molestation and sodomy.

This Durgapuja pandal at Dumdum was an eye opener to the prevailing situation. We entered the pandal and was stuck with a heavy air. The clay dolls were almost alive, with their skin polished with Gorjon oil.


durgapuja pandal in Kolkata: a photo gallery

#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess
That torn vest, the checkered Bermuda, the kettle in one hand: a very recognizable picture

durga puja light decoration in Pandal, Kolkata
Tea kettles and glass hanging from the top of the pandal.

Sometimes, it takes a celebration to pin point the prevailing inequity in a society!

durgapuja pandal from Park circus: photo gallery
Durgapuja pandal at Park circus seven point.

Apart from other things, Park circus seven point crossing Durga Puja Pandal signifies prevalent communal harmony in West Bengal. It showcases, no matter what the political ploy is, people in Bengal have always preferred to live in peace and integrity.

When in Park Circus Puja Pandal, ensure to eat a packet of mutton Biryani with extra potato from Arsalan restaurant. “Ekta extra aloo”, the extra piece of potato is the keyword here!


Also read: Bijoya Sammilini: notes of food and frolic, a very Bengali thing!


#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Maa Durga

A Puja Pandal where Durga Thakrun arrives on boat along with her family, symbolizing refugees of the world!

durgapuja pandal photo gallery  #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Maa durga idol: theme puja in behala

Bengal has a painful history of partition at the advent of independence in India. Colonies mushroomed around Kolkata suburbs, rendering them names like, Arabinda Palli, Jadu colony etc etc. Colony, the word is a remnant of neighborhoods termed as refugee colony.

This Durgapuja Pandal was an ode to the nameless lot of displaced population, from erstwhile East Pakistan to Myanmar to Syria. One of the placards read, “Refugees are welcome”. It touched my heart.



durgapuja festival photo: maa Durga in a rustic set up  #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

An unfinished Thakurdalan stands meekly.

I want to go home, but home is the mouth of a shark

home is the barrel of the gun

and no one would leave home

unless home chased you to the shore

unless home tells you to leave

what you could not behind,

even if it was human.

no one leaves home until home is

a damp voice in your ear saying

leave, run now, I don’t know what

I’ve become.

Home, by Warsan Shire

durga puja decoration

durgapuja festival photo
Note the rice bags. This is what they used to get of rasion surplass back in the tiring days.


A curious case of equilibrium

durga puja decoration: durgapuja festival photo from Kolkata

Notun Dal at Taratala had modeled their Durga idol as a medley of engineering and art.

Rubic’s cubes put into equilibrium

Maa durga idol  #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess
A Durga Thakur, apt to be called an engineer’s muse?

durgapuja festival photo from Kolkata


Durgapuja photo blog

purulia Chhau mask used for decoration in Durgapuja

A Chhau mask used to decorate a durga Puja pandal near kalighat. Chhau dance is a tribal and folk art form that enacts stories of Indian epics through a masked-dance form.


Sonagachi, the red light area of Kolkata, has a dedicated welfare association named Durbar. Durbar has a traditional Puja celebrated by the sex workers of the locality and is a major attention drawer. A Puja committee close to Sonagachi decided to borrow the idea and installed many art works to recreate a red light zone. Durga idol was placed in one such recreated zone.


Sex workers Durgapuja in Kolkata
A Durgapuja Pandal themed after red light area of Kolkata, SOnagachi and its sex workers.

A clay doll modeled after a sex worker. Told you, Durgapuja in Kolkata is inclusive in nature.


Durgapuja also means walking with millions, for entire night, tirelessly! Are you ready?

Finger on mouth showcase an eerie silence… thought provoking indeed!


The most beautiful Maa durga idol
One of the most beautiful faces of Maa Durga

Modeled after typical south Indian lady, this Durga idol sits pretty on a wooden hammock. Her 4 children are inscribed on the rocks.


durgapuja festival photo: maa Durga, a beautiful face of Goddess  #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

This Durgapuja pandal was inspired with age-old handloom art of Bengal. Below is a picture where Durga Thakur is clicked through a loom!

Maa durga idol in Kolkata

#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess




A Durgapuja pandal modeled after a palace.

durgapuja festival photo

#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Durgapuja also means creating earning opportunity for different strata of society. I thought this only happened during 80s Bollywood movies. But I was wrong.


durga puja decoration: durgapuja festival photo blog   #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Barisha club Durgapuja in Behala prepares an astonishing Pandal, every year. take for example this one. The entire Puja Pandal showed an embryo, transforming into a human, a connection with its mother. The story eventually ended with the mother being left alone at old age home, one of the banes of modern society.


durgapuja festival photo: borish behala Puja Mandap

Bridhashram, Kolkata
A crane picks up the old mother. Hard hitting reality that left many visitors in moist eyes.

Maa durga idol
However, the Durga idol of this Puja Pandal was one of the finest. It went on to win many prestigious prizes.


The clock ticks, signifies the end of life cycle.

#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

I think this Puja Pandal at Kalighat attempted to showcase human evolution.

Kolkata durgapuja photo blog

Durgapuja Pandal

Tridhara Sammiloni on Rasbehari road in South Kolkata specializes on intricate details.

Durgapuja Pandal

#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

durgapuja festival photo. Maa Durga Idol. #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

durga puja decoration. maa durga Idol, Kolkata. #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess


Chetala Agrani Club drew inspiration from Rajputana Mahals of Rajasthan. Little wonder given this was also the year when movie Padmavat was released.


durga puja decoration


Note the Durga idol made of black sand stone

durgapuja festival photo: the most beautiful Durgapuja in Kolkata

Beautiful Pandal decoration in Kolkata. #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Entry to Tridhara Sammiloni on a Nabami night at 3 am. I could NOT manage a good photo, this is why!

Goddess durga thakur photo

Goddess durga thakur photo


#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Goddess durga thakur in Kolkata: a photo essay


Thailand white temple decoration in Kolkata Durgapuja. Deshpriya Park Thailand Pandal
A replica of the white temple of Chiang Rai, Thailand created as Durga Puja pandal at Deshpriya Park.

durga thakur photo: Deshpriya Park Sarbojonin, most hyped Durgapuja in West bengal

Deshpriya Park Puja Pandal is famous for creating a pandal of scale and inspiring awe among the visitors.

Deshapriya Park Kolkata Durga Pandal

Deshapriya Park Kolkata Durga Pandal


Barisha behala Durgapuja Pandal
A Jarowa Tribal village showcased in Borisha Puja Pandal

durga thakur photo

durga thakur photo: Barisha Sammiloni Andaman Puja theme

durga thakur photo. maa durga in Kolkata. #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

This was also the year when a foreigner ventured into the distant islands of Andaman Nicobar archipelago where Jarowa tribes live. His intent was to “civilise” them, bring them closer to God. The “Godless” people as the indigenous tribes were referred to.

Of course the man met with resistance by the tribesmen, where no man has ever ventured in and had been been killed eventually. The incident met with a lot of criticism and sparkled debate of responsible travel practices.


Bengali Durgapuja in Kolkata: Andaman puja theme

Bengali Durgapuja Pandal in Kolkata : Andaman Jarwa village puja theme in Kolkata


#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess
A Jarowa mother breastfeeding her child: of course made of clay

Bengali Durgapuja Pandal in Kolkata

Suruchi Sangha

Bengali Durgapuja in Kolkata: Maa durga pandal: ballygunge Cultural

durga puja decoration: ballygunge cultural


Currently there are close to 2000 Pujo Committees in Kolkata, each being a cornerstone in Bengali social lifestyle. Some of these Pujas are close to 80 years old. Fund raised go upto 15/20 lakhs or more for the entire celebration, apart from sponsors.


Maa durga pandal

Maa durga idol of Bagbazar Sarbojonin: very Famous Durgapuja of Kolkata
Bagbazar Sarbojonin, the iconic Durgapuja Pandal of North Kolkata

durga pandal

The most beautiful Maa durga idol

durga pandal with bengali decoration

durga puja decoration: ghost houses of North Kolkata  #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

durga pandal

durga pandal

Maa durga idol


Maa durga idol


#durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Bisarjan photo of Durgapuja: Bonedi Barir Puja
Before Bisarjan, immersing the Goddess in Ganga, the family bids adieu by offering Paan-Mishti. Shot at Sabarna Rajbari, Borotorof.

durga pandal

durga pandal



durga pandal: durgapuja bisarjan in Kolkata

Maa durga idol   #durga #kolkata #kolktaculture #maadurga #kolkataphotography #india #hindufestival #indiaculture #bengalculture #indiafestival #indiatravel #kolkatatravel #goddess

Maa durga idol going for Bisarjan, Kolkata

Also read: Dakini Jogini, an ode to Kolkata Kalipuja when the rest of the country celebrates Diwali!

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2 thoughts on “50+ Incredible Photos of Kolkata Durgapuja Pandals”

  1. Pingback: Kolkata Durgapuja: In Pictures – Madhurima's travel blog

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