Timarpur & Civil Lines Puja Samity ( TPCLPS ) was formally established in 1914. Since then it has been celebrating Durga Puja year after year without any break. The journey was at times difficult and unsteady, but as a toddler stumbles many a time before it learns to walk, we determined Timarpurians have come a long long way and are on the verge of a momentous moment – our Centenary Year’s Celebrations in 2013! Statistically, it is the second oldest Durga Puja Samity in Delhi. The TPCLPS is a living example of glorious success achieved through combined efforts of its countrywide well wishers. As they say, you may take one out of Timarpur, but cannot take Timarpur out of anyone! Even today, a Timarpurian may be physically thousands of miles away but his heart remains here at Timarpur.
In fact, even before the shifting of the capital of the British India to Delhi in 1911, many Bengalis had migrated to Delhi either due to shifting of their offices or to work in the Government offices. In this process, the first Durga Puja in Delhi was held in 1910, when it was performed by ritualistically establishing the “MANGAL GHAT” symbolizing Devi Durga.
Timarpur is situated in the northern part of Delhi – very close to the Delhi University North Campus. For the last many decades, the Puja celebrations have been held at its Puja premises in front of the Institute of Nuclear Medicines & Allied Sciences (INMAS) of DRDO.
As it is said-Rome was not built in a day-similarly, after its foundation was formally laid in 1914, during all these past years, we have also built TPCLPS brick by brick and made it withstand many adversities and uncertainties. During the last 99 years, on several occasions, the Puja Samity passed through hard phases of financial and administrative crises mainly due to lack of funds and active human resources. On several occasions conditions became so precarious that the puja was on the verge of a premature end. But on every such occasion, Devi Durga stood by our side and right help came at the right time. The puja not only survived but thrived! Someone or the other amongst us took charge of the situation with true grit and determination coupled with the cooperation and support from all well wishers. The consistent growth continued. Contrary to our amazing success, a number of Puja Samities were formed in and around Delhi; while some of them could not continue and many others got merged with others.
The fact remains that Timarpur & Civil Lines Puja Samity (TPCLPS) has been able to maintain its own identity amongst capital’s traditional pujas. Unlike many other so called big Puja Samities, our puja has a heart and soul of its own. We may not be rich financially but we are rich in so many other ways! The puja at Timarpur is a happening of total participation : of Bengalis and Non-Bengalis, Residents of Timarpur & Civil Lines Area and Non-Residents, Seniors and Juniors and so on. TPCLPS has based its entire celebration on the tradition and cultural heritage of India, especially Bengal. Here traditions & rituals are still being followed meticulously. Although the Samity has never tried to commercialise the Puja celebration in Timarpur, yet it has always adapted to the changing values, needs and styles with the passage of time. Modernisation here has never trampled traditions!
Possibly, TPCLPS introduced the first Protima of Shola in the community Puja celebration of Delhi many years ago. Immersion of Ma Durga is a sight to watch and remember. On the day of Maha Dashami, from Timarpur Puja premises to 7 kms away Geeta Ghat , the Protima [idol ] of Ma Durga is taken on illuminated Carts and these carts are pulled by young volunteers and general public and not paid workers.