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Durga Puja 2024 – Know all about the Festival in Odisha

Durga Puja, also known as Dussehra, stands as one of the most revered and widely celebrated Hindu festivals, signifying the triumph of good over evil. In 2024, the festival will be observed from Wednesday, October 9th to Sunday, October 13th, marking a period of joyous festivities and religious fervor.

Mahalaya: Wednesday, October 2nd

Mahalaya marks the beginning of the auspicious nine-day period known as Navratri. It is a day of deep spiritual significance when Hindus offer prayers and pay homage to their ancestors. Devotees believe that on this day, the goddess Durga begins her journey from Mount Kailash to descend on Earth and vanquish the forces of evil.

Durga Puja 2024

Maha Shashthi: Wednesday, October 9th

Maha Shashthi is the sixth day of Navratri, representing the ceremonial unveiling of the Durga idol. This event is accompanied by rituals and prayers, setting the stage for the upcoming days of celebration. Artisans and devotees come together to adorn the pandals (temporary structures) with intricate decorations, creating a vibrant and festive atmosphere.

Maha Saptami: Thursday, October 10th

Maha Saptami, the seventh day of Navratri, is marked by the ritualistic bathing of the banana tree trunk, which symbolizes Goddess Durga. This symbolic act represents the purification and empowerment of the goddess, preparing her for the battle against the forces of evil. Devotees engage in elaborate prayers, traditional dances, and cultural performances during this day.

Maha Ashtami: Friday, October 11th

Maha Ashtami holds immense significance as the eighth day of Navratri. It is considered the most auspicious day of the festival, commemorating the slaying of the demon Mahisasura by the formidable Goddess Durga. Elaborate rituals, including the Sandhi Puja, are performed during this day, invoking the divine energy of the goddess.

Maha Navami: Saturday, October 12th

The ninth day of Navratri is dedicated to Maha Navami, honoring the nine forms of Goddess Durga. Devotees engage in fervent prayers and rituals, seeking blessings for health, prosperity, and protection. Community feasts and cultural events add to the festive spirit, bringing people together in a celebration of unity and devotion.

Cuttack Durga Puja Chandi Medha

Dashami: Sunday, October 13th

Dashami, also known as Vijaya Dashami, marks the tenth and final day of Navratri. This day holds profound significance as it symbolizes the culmination of the festival. The highlight of Dashami is the immersion of the Durga idol in a river or another body of water, signifying the departure of the goddess and the triumph of good over evil. The processions during immersion are accompanied by music, dance, and a mix of emotions ranging from joy to a sense of farewell.

Durga Puja is not merely a religious celebration; it is a cultural extravaganza that unites communities, transcending regional and linguistic boundaries. The festival exemplifies the victory of righteousness and the power of divine feminine energy, inspiring devotees to embrace the virtues of courage, compassion, and resilience in their own lives. As the streets resonate with the beats of dhak (traditional drums) and the air is filled with the fragrance of incense, Durga Puja becomes a manifestation of joy, spirituality, and the eternal quest for goodness.

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