Durga puja is the soul and essence of the Bengali community and West Bengal. Even though it is celebrated in many other states and by other communities in India during the Navratri season, but it is commemorated in the grandest platform in city of Kolkata and West Bengal. It is the grandest celebration of all with a colossal magnitude. Durga puja is the most important festival in the state, and it is jubilated in a mesmerizing way. In the Hindu culture, it is a time when Durga visits her maternal home along with her other deity children like Ganesh, Laxmi, Saraswati, and Kartik. According to mythological tales, Durga fought the demon Mahishasur during these nine days and finally vanquished him on the day of Dusshera.
Apart from the mythological and spiritual importance of Durga puja, the festival is a time of joy and revelry for the local population of West Bengal. People come out of their home for all these nine days of Durga puja and get busy in hopping pandals and worshipping goddess Durga. There are more than 4000 Durga puja pandals that get erected during the puja season and more than 100 in the city of Kolkata itself. The Durga puja is not a festival that gives the people a time to celebrate and do pandal hopping all night long, but there is a huge magnitude of macroeconomics linked to it.
This festive season is also a lucrative time for business, and it involves many people to make this festival in such a gala event. It includes the craftsmen who make the Durga idols, pandal decorators, electricians, priests, dhakis, food stall owners, security personals, advertisers, and many other business houses to materialize this grand festival. The construction of Durga puja pandals begins months before the puja begins, and the sculpting of the Durga idols begins a year before that. The decorators and artisans work day and night to make the marvelous designs of the pandals based on different themes. In conjunction with the decorators, the electricians make arrangements to provide the lighting effect, which starts right from the streets to the pandal.
The fashion and other wearable item business also witness an increase in their business before and during the Durga puja season as people opt to buy new clothes before the festivity begins. The hoarding and advertising business also register a good amount of profit as various companies who sponsor the Durga puja put up their banners across the streets to promote and advertise their brand and products. The festival season also becomes a money minting time for the food vendors and restaurants across the state as well. Lakhs of people who come out to see Durga puja pandals all night long eat food at these outlets, which gives these eateries an opportunity to earn money and gain some profit from it. Thousands of other street vendors do also do brisk business during this time of the year with products ranging from toys, handicrafts, artificial jewelry, and many other things. Thus, the organized business sector also earns a reasonably good amount of money during this festive season. Apart from the police protection, thousands of private security guards are also hired for controlling and managing the crowd inside the pandals and on the streets. They also look after the safety and security of the pandal hoppers along with the police force.
According to a survey, nearly Rs 4,500 crore worth of transactions takes place during the festive season of Durga puja in Kolkata itself and around Rs 15,000 crores all over West Bengal. It includes business transactions, employment wages, and other expenditures like decoration, craftsmanship, and advertising. Hence, Durga puja is not only a festival of worshiping Goddess Durga, but she also blesses everyone with wealth and employment during the festive season.