Is Durga Pujo being commodified? –
An Opinion Survey
Pujor boyesh kotoHow the pujo started
Apnara ki kokhono ekchala murti gorechen
Kobe theke theme pujo kora shuru korechenBrand mul sponsor j shey koto bochor dhore sponsor korche
Aapnar decision-making er opor sponsor der probhab kototaThakle ki ki byapare decision naeKhorchapaati (break down)
(Is the idol shabeki/ traditional
Khorcha in each
? Aj theke 5bochor agey kotota khorcha hotoMain sponsors
If got awarded then who sponsors for the awards
Also the prize money for the award
Is there any ritual jeta r palon kora hoenaBhog bitoron
Bhog o ki sponsor kore keuMedia partner er golpo ache kina
Konorokom programme hoe kina like band ashe kina
Ageo ei programme gulo hoto kina na onno programme hotoSheta hole koto bochor agey hotoHow tradition has changed
Apnara ki bhabishyate aro theme er dike jete chan(comments section rakha jete pare)
Tradition e korle what is their main focus
Theme e gele keno theme er dike shift korcheSponsorship er byapare proshnoKotota sponsored hoe
Etai ki reason theme er dike shift korarCompetition nie proshnoOrganizing different competitions/events by different brand names nie proshnoEi competition ityadir jonno ki artistic creations in durga pujos in Kolkata berecheAapnar ki mone hoe j sponsor ra byabsha korar opportunity hishebe dekhchePujor naame ki kono prefix suffix kichu byaborihto hocche sponsor er naamePujo and commercialism: Companies have identified Durga puja festival in Kolkata as a great opportunity to grab share of eyeballs of consumers. Due to steep buying behaviour of consumers, these companies generate high revenues from trade. Besides they also use this opportunity to make their brand popular among consumers. Firstly they offer huge sponsorships to the clubs who anyway spend millions every year on their pandal. Companies literally fight for space, stalls, gates, banners in key locations of famous Durga pujas. Sometimes the money offered to these clubs as sponsorships are so high that they even agree to prefix or suffix the brand name along with the club name. Brands like Times of India, Star Ananda, Pepsi have done this very successfully in the past. Secondly companies also organize multiple events through which they choose the best puja pandal of Kolkata, best artist of Kolkata, best ambience etc. This not only provides a platform for the puja pandals and artists to get recognized, but also helps the brand to get consumers’ attention. One brand which has done this really well is Asian Paints. Asian Paints has an important role in raising the standards of Durga Pujas in Kolkata. They started Asian Paints Sharad Samman in 1985 and have continued the tradition of identifying the best puja pandals of Kolkata every year. Asian Paints also involves celebrity jury for choosing the best puja pandals of Kolkata and continuously updates the people of Kolkata on shortlisted pujos through newspaper and television announcements. There are many similar Puja awards now in Kolkata like True Spirit Puja Awards, Pujo Perfect etc which choose the best pandals in Kolkata. These awards have proven to be very motivating to the puja organizers and artists and have raised the artistic creations of Kolkata Durga Pujas year after year. Finally companies along with co-branding with media (television channels, radio channels, newspapers) make live shows and promotional programs in the puja mandap premises where visitors participate and win prizes. In this way, not only the media gains their popularity, but also the companies who have co-sponsored the events with them.
Emami has tied up with more than 100 pujas pandals at housing societies in Kolkata where its Healthy ; Tasty edible oil will be used in cooking the bhog. The company will also package bhog for another 30 pujas that will be home-delivered in their respective localities with the package flaunting the brand name in big and bold. These twin initiatives will see the company reach out to a target base of more than one lakh people and help build the brand, said Aditya Agarwal, director of the Kolkata-based FMCG major.”It’s not that sales jump immediately, nor is it intended for that. But we expect to derive a long-term impact and build an emotional connect with consumers.” Dabur found a sweet spot in the fruits that are consumed the least in the spread of the bhog.The beverage and shampoo maker will serve 125-ml packs of its Real brand of fruit juice at the pandals.”During festivals, our food habits become unhealthy with higher intake of sweets and fried items.”
Brands are bullish on the their new-found divine recipe for success but some experts find it too aggressive and caution that the companies may have a tightrope walk between branding and tradition.”Festivals in India have got highly commercialised and companies look to get value in return, but branding a bhog could be crossing the line,” said commentator and brand specialist Santosh Desai.It is, however, hard to make a distinction when old practices yield place to the new ones such as the quintessential mishti being replaced by chocolates. “It’s part of the process when rituals are being replaced by brands,” he said. Campaigns that are too obtrusive could lead to a backlash, warned an expert. “Some things are sacrosanct; they need to be kept that way. Overloading consumers with marketing may not necessarily work,” said consultant Harish Bijoor. Still, clever branding exercises can translate into goodwill and mileage. Months before the Durga Puja, consumer goods giant Hindustan Unilever had branded rotis at the Kumbh Mela this year. Each roti bore the message — Lifebuoy se haath dhoye kya?Fine dining chain Speciality Restaurants is sponsoring the prasad at seven of the biggest puja pandals in Mumbai, including that of Lokhandwala, besides the Kalibari puja in New Delhi. However, the company doesn’t intend to brand the bhog with any of the names of its restaurants.Speciality Restaurants CEO Anjan Chatterjee said he prefers not to brand the bhog because of the religious sentiments attached. “Instead, we get free space in these pujas where we put our restaurant stalls such as Oh! Calcutta, Mainland China, and banners, which is a big branding opportunity since some of these pujas receive footfalls of well over five lakhs every day,” he said. The more old-style forms of branding, including stalls, will still have a substantial presence, promoting products ranging from food and beverages to apparels, household products, insurance companies and even tyres and banks. Some traditions are worth keeping, it appears.
At the core of this are mega-competitions, where each Puja committee competes for awards — a rivalry that has transformed the festival into an “industry.”
A 2013 report by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) claimed that despite a slowdown in the economy, the size of the “Durga Puja industry is about Rs 25,000 crore and likely to touch Rs. 40,000 crore by 2015 with a growth of 35 per cent per annum.” There is, of course, scope for error in any such estimates, but even if the actual revenues were only a third of the estimates, Durga Puja would still be the largest money-spinner of Bengal.
The mega-budget pujas, led by leaders, create temporary employment opportunities like a home-grown “industry”.
North e pujos are standing on the threshold of modernity and tradition. They have not made a full shift towards modernity yet, thus they make a better subject for the purpose of this study. South pujos have majorly shifted to modernity with a mostly clear-cut line in between.
Sponsorship jara beshi pacche tara theme er dike jhuke ache beshi