India, Oct. 10 — To send the message that thermocol should not be used for anything other than a decorative purpose, an inmate of Bengal’s Dumdum Central Correctional Home created idols of goddess Durga and her children out of a synthetic chemical. The unique Durga idols were worshipped in the jail premises.
Apart from the idols, the entire place was decorated with thermocol
Thermocol is the popular name for polystyrene, a synthetic polymer that is non-biodegradable.
Debasish Nath (47), who made the idol, has been lodged in the correctional home as an undertrial prisoner for the past 10 years.
This is the first time that the idol was made by an inmate of the jail. Earlier, idols were bought from the market.
The idol of Durga is about 8 feet high and her four sons and daughters are about 5 feet in height.
Assisted by two other inmates, Nath completed the work in 12 days, said officers of the correctional home.
“Our government has taken a decision to stop the usage of single-use plastics and thermocol since these pollute the environment. But thermocol can be used for decorative purposes. With the idol at the Dumdum Central Correctional Home we are highlighting this message,” said Ujjal Biswas, the minister of correctional homes in the state.
The minister said that Durga Puja is held in the state’s correctional homes, but usually the idols are bought.
Dumdum jail accommodates about 3,800 inmates.
“There’s a pond inside the correctional home, which is named Anup Sagar. It was dug in 1941 and is about 35 feet deep. The idols will be immersed in the pond,” said Debasish Chakraborty, superintendent of the correctional home.
Chakraborty also said that there are 515 women inmates in the correctional home and they took part in the ritual of Sindur Khela that consists of women smearing vermillion on the faces of each other wishing them good luck and long life.
Officers of the correctional home department said that Nath is facing charges under the Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, though the charges are yet to be proved against him.
For years, he used to be depressed and shunned the company of other inmates. But nudged by the officers, Nath gradually began interacting with others.
Officers said that a few weeks ago when the jail authorities brought up the topic that they wanted to do something new for Durga Puja this year, Nath came up with the idea.
Source from HT media