West Bengal is infamous for denying religious rights to Hindus in the past. In 2016, the West Bengal government issued orders to curb traditional festivities associated with the immersion of Durga idols, because Muslims would celebrate Muharram the next day. Multiple reports of communal disturbances emerged from the state during Durga Pooja celebrations, but the government dismissed these reports, just as it refused to accept cases of riots in Dhulagarh, Nadia and Kaliachak. Mosques have proliferated, while Hindus are facing increasing restrictions on performing their rituals. Earlier in 2010 also, in Deganga, riots took place over attempts by Muslims to prevent the annual Durga Pooja procession. In 2017, Tehatta High School in Uluberia stormed into public limelight when its Hindu students protested for being denied the permission to celebrate Saraswati Pooja.
However, as the BJP is making deep inroads in West Bengal, now it is heading in the right direction. It is on the way towards Hindu renaissance. Hindu organizations are working very hard to revive the suppressed Hindu culture in West Bengal. A glimpse of it can be seen in the Janmashtami celebration. On the auspicious occasion of Janmashtami, thousands of shobayatras (celebration marches) were carried out across the state with the help of Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Bajrang Dal. Janmashtami is also the foundation day of the VHP so the festival becomes more important. The Janmashtami celebration will continue on Tuesday also. The kids dressed as Lord Krishna and took to streets to celebrate the Janmashtami festival.
Around 70 shobayatras were carried out in and around Kolkata. Devotees were even demanding for Ram Mandir. VHP and Bajrang Dal are ensuring that more and more people attend celebration marches. DJ, dance, singers, and kids dressed as Krishna Bhagwan, saffron flags, large photos and idols of Krishna Bhagwan have become common in the state. Even, in the areas where Hindus are minorities, women with children in their laps have come out on street to join the celebrations. It is only saffron all around. Earlier, also in the celebration of Hindu festivals like Ram Navami or Chaitra Navratra the dominance of saffron was clearly visible in the celebrations. If all the aforementioned festivals are now being celebrated at such a large scale it is all because of the efforts of Hindu organizations such as VHP, Bajrang Dal, RSS and many others. The rise of the BJP in the state also played a significant role in the Hindu renaissance in the state.
According to MyNation report, in areas such as Purulia where in recent time BJP has made deep inroads, TMC members were organizing Janmashtami celebrations. VHP’s Sourish Mukherjee said, “TMC never organised such celebrations earlier. But now they are forced to do it because of us. Where were they when the chief minister stopped us from visarjan of Durga (idols) last year? People of Bengal can see through this pseudo Hindutva.” MyNation quoted another VHP member saying, “Bengal has finally woken up. Dekhte thakun (Keep watching).”
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