The Durga Puja is the most popular festival in India. It is mostly celebrated in eastern parts of India. This festival is for 9 days and celebrated differently all over India. In various places in India, it is celebrated as a Navratri Festival.
When it is celebrated?
It is celebrated as per the Hindu calendar year. The festival starts in the autumn months of September or October or in the first nine days of Ashwin months. It is a time when the festive season starts in India.
How it is celebrated?
Goddess Durga is worshipped in this festival just like Ganesh Ji is worshipped on Ganesha Chaturthi festival. She is believed to be a ten-armed goddess of fertility. It is celebrated to rejoice good over evil. It is believed that Ma Durga vanquished the buffalo demon named Mahishsura. This festival is celebrated along with Dusshera festival.
Many deities of Hinduism like Lakshmi, Saraswati, Ganesha, Parvati, Kartikeya, and Shiva are worshipped. On this day a tarpan ritual is performed where all the family members remember their ancestors. On the puja mandaps, early in the morning various shloka’s and arti’s are chanted. The puja starts on the day of Saptami and on eight-day which is Ashtami, a vegetarian diet is followed.
On the last day that is ninth day Navmi when goddess has to stay at the home andon the tenth day that is Dashmi, the idols are carried in procession and immersed in a closed river. This is done to send her back to the husband’s house. Married women offer red sindur to the goddess Durga. On this day the ritual of kumara puja is followed.
There is a huge variation in worship practice in different states of India. The Bengali Durga puja combines Vedic, Puranic and tantric practice. In this festival season, people visit Calcutta in West Bengal. This festival is widely celebrated there. The Durga Puja is a kind of social and theatrical event. This festival is celebrated with great enthusiasm all over India.