Mayor Firhad Hakim on Monday dismissed the idea of holding Durga Puja at Mohammed Ali Park this year. Speaking to members of Mohammed Ali Park Puja Committee, Hakim said that going by reports from Jadavpur University experts and an internal survey conducted by the KMC water supply and buildings department engineers, it wouldn’t be safe to hold the Pujas in the park this year. Some civic engineers were apprehensive of the fate of the underground water reservoir if crowds descended on the spot.
Hakim, however, proposed an alternative venue. “We have been asked to hold the Puja at an adjacent place instead. The space belongs to the KMC and the mayor has assured us of all possible support. We can understand the concern of the civic engineers about the safety of the crowd and the underground reservoir. We will take a call soon,” said a member of the committee.
Hakim had visited the park to inspect the condition of the water reservoir on June 19 and advised key functionaries of the Puja committee to shift the venue in the interest of public safety. A section of the committee members had requested the civic body top brass to identify an alternative spot to organize the festival.
“We have undertaken restoration of the underground reservoir at Mohammed Ali Park, which has developed cracks. We can’t allow a crowd to enter the park at this point. We respect the traditional Puja and will find another place for it,” a KMC official said.
Source: Times of India