Durga Puja is a huge occasion for Bengalis living both in R.T. Nagar and elsewhere in the city

The Bengali community has a strong presence in the neighbourhood of R.T Nagar or Rabindranath Tagore Nagar with over 75 Bengali families living there.

Around 14 Bengali families came first to this locality when Electronics and Radar Development Establishment (LRDE) shifted base from Dehradun to Bangalore.

‘Feels like home'

“I came to live in R.T. Nagar 30 years ago. Rabindranath Tagore is a part of the Bengali way of life.

When I came to the city I knew nobody and after moving here I made so many Bengali friends. We jointly celebrate Durga puja and the Bengali culture is so strong here that it feels like home,” says A.K. Bhadra, vice-president of the Bengali Association. “I have never once missed Bengal.”

Grand celebration

“R.T. Nagar is well known for its Durga Puja, which was first organised here in 1954 when LRDE was set up. The celebrations were first organised by Brigadier Chakraborthy at the M.I. Lines Road. The venue of the celebration was shifted to Jayamahal between 1972 and 1973 by Air Chief Marshall Roy Chaudhury,” says Himadhri Nandi, head of the Jayamahal Sarabajanin Durga Puja Charitable Samiti, who was born and brought up in the neighbourhood.

Showing equal zest and fervour are the people of the community who organise various cultural programmes like dance, music and drama, which go on for five days.

“I have been living in R.T. Nagar for the last 15 years and I absolutely love the atmosphere of this locality. The Durga Puja here is a huge occasion for Bengalis living both in R.T. Nagar and elsewhere in the city. Everyone joins the festivity,” says Sunaina Das, a resident of the neighbourhood.