Durga Puja or Durgotsava festivities have begun in Bengal. The five-day celebrations began today with Shahshti, the sixth day of the Lunar calendar. It will be followed by Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami, Maha Navami and Vijayadashami, when the Durga idols would be immersed by teary-eyed devotees in the rivers, lakes and ponds. Durga Puja festivities begin with Kalparamvo (the beginning of the Pujas), Bodhan (the consecration of Ma Durga's idol), Amantran (inviting the Goddess) and Adhivas (sanctifying the stay of the Goddess in the exact spot where the puja is being held).
Durga Puja is the main festival of Bengal and the state has been adorned with lights and is colourfully-decorated to welcome the goddess.
Dressed in new clothes, thousands of devotees brought the streets of the state alive. In capital city Kolkata, around 3,000 community puja pandals have been set up, another 25,000 community pujas have been organised by local clubs, non-government and social organisations.
While making the rounds of different marquees, the devotees enjoyed the sumptuous food offered by roadside vendors, even as the rains played hide and seek, news agency IANS reported.
Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wished people on Shashthi on Twitter.
"Greetings to all on the occasion of Maha Sasthi," she tweeted.
Greetings to all on the occasion of Maha Sasthi— Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) October 4, 2019
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It is believed that during Durga Puja, Goddess Durga, accompanied by her four children - Ganesh, Kartik, Lakshmi and Saraswati - descends on earth every year to visit her parents and to fight evil. Goddess Durga who killed demon Mahishasur comes sitting on a lion mount and wields an array of weapons in her 10 hands in symbolic representation of Shakti, or woman power.
(With Inputs From IANS)