The Durga Puja fervor is already illuminating the city of Kolkata. This year, a Puja Special Tram will grace the city with its beautiful interiors and fabulous exteriors. It has been designed in commemoration of the UNESCO Heritage tag and to celebrate the 150 years of Kolkata tramways. The tram is part of an effort to celebrate Puja uniquely, where West Bengal Transport Corporation (WBTC) has collaborated with Asian Paints and XXL Collective.
Kolkata’s iconic trams, dating back to 1873, are a symbol of the city’s history and charm. To celebrate this milestone, a Puja Special Tram will run from Tollygunge to Ballygunge with a remarkable makeover coinciding with Kolkata’s most important month of celebration. The tram on the Tollygunge route covers all the famous areas known to have historic and large Puja pandals, making it the ideal choice for this transformation.
The exteriors of the first bogie capture the hand-painted artworks honoring Kumartuli – the traditional potters’ quarter in North Kolkata where Durga idols are sculpted. It also encapsulates Sindoor khela and Dhunuchi dance. The bogie also highlights the unique stories featured in the current season of ‘People of Puja’ – a visually impaired artist who has commendable skills and women dhakis who challenge the masculine stronghold of the performing arts. Inside the bogie, the makeover includes Puja decor with cane installations, Alpona art, and a museum-style visual narrative. Interactive elements and QR codes engage visitors with “People of Puja” stories, allowing consumers to explore the stories of the people behind Durga Puja festivities as they enjoy the tram ride.
Stepping into the second bogie transports passengers to a heritage Kolkata location, mirroring the luxurious appeal Kolkata. The exteriors are inspired by West Bengal’s culture and landmarks, featuring augmented reality elements. The artwork on this bogie reflects the dramatic elements of famous Puja symbols. As styles, trends, and attitudes evolve over the decades, one thing has remained constant in West Bengal —the spirit of celebration. THE Tram symbolizes a commitment to nurturing, inspiring, and championing creativity and aesthetic excellence in Durga Puja pandals.
The MD of WBTC Shri Rajanvir Singh Kapur, IAS, said, “We are extremely ecstatic that the Durga Puja festival has provided a beautiful backdrop to this unique tram that will enthral people. I thank my entire team and especially Ritesh & Vikas from XXL Collective who worked hard for the project.”
The tram will run from the month of October till the New Year on Tollygunge-Ballygunge route.