BHADRAK : The chant of “Yaa Devi sarvabhuteshu Shakti-rupen sansthita...” resonates in Baudpur, a non-descript village on the bank of river Salandi in Randia panchayat as Durga Puja picks pace.
The traditional celebration of Devi Puja being performed by a Bengali family has been attracting natives settled outside the district since time immemorial. The village turns into a holiday home with families turning up without fail to drench themselves in the festivities.
The tradition was first started by Muralidhar Dey in 17th century. But the Deys could not continue the tradition in the absence of male heir and immersed the idol with ‘medha’ in 1884.
In the later part of the century, four Bengali families, including Dey, Dutta, Das and Chand from West Bengal made the village their home and restarted the tradition. Now, about 100 Bengali families live here.
This year, the Sinha family installed the idol of the Goddess in their ancestral bungalow where all the rituals are performed as per tradition. According to Arun Chand, the village population increases by over 60 per cent during Durga Puja as all natives make it a point to come here. The extended Sinha family settled in London also visits the ancestral house every year during the Puja, Chand added.
A special dinner, ‘Grama bhoji,’ is also organised during the four-day celebration. The puja celebration starts from Sashti and ends with the immersion of the idol on Dasami, said Panchana Giri, a villager.