Low-key 'Bhai Phonta' celebrations in Bengal

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Kolkata, Nov 16 (PTI) 'Bhai Phonta' was a low-key affair in West Bengal this time due to the COVID-19 pandemic, even as women across the state prayed for their brothers' long life and good health.

The usual fervour, synonymous with the occasion, was largely missing as not many were seen flocking to shops to buy gifts, or queuing up before restaurants for lunch, as is usually the case every year.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee extended her wishes to the people of the state.

Greetings to all my brothers and sisters on the occasion of Bhai phonta (Bhai dooj), she tweeted.

Many politicians also sought to make the most of the occasion by connecting with their party workers, supporters and people at large.

BJP state unit president Dilip Ghosh and the other senior leaders celebrated the festival with the party's state women cell members, including its chief Agnimitra Pal, at the saffron camp's new office in Hastings area of the city.

Several women were seen applying tilak on forehead of TMC leader and senior minister Firhad Hakim, who was dressed in traditional 'dhoti panjabi', at his locality in Chetla area of south Kolkata.

'I wish all my sisters in Bengal a prosperous and a happy life,' he said.

Another senior minister in the Mamata Banerjee Cabinet, Partha Chatterjee, said that owing to the COVID-19 situation, he and his sisters were not able to celebrate the occasion this year. PTI AMR SBN RMS RMS