Skip to content Skip to navigation

Invoking the goddess Durga

Durga puja is awaited with bated breath every year and the goddess is given a tearful farewell every year at the end of the puja, and this year won’t be any different either. Guwahati’s heart throbbed with festive fervour as devotees offered ‘anjali’ in their ‘para pandals’ Guwahatians pulsated with the puja spirit indulging in pandal hopping and invoking the goddess with hearts brimming with pious devotion. For once the markets had a forsaken look as the usual customers turned devotees attired in their festive best visited pandals instead of shops luring them with festive discounts.

Strangely Guwahati lacked the usual crowded streets during the puja days for traffic moved easily in the usually packed streets and by lanes except in particular areas where a few traffic snarls were spotted. However, a day later the devotees turned up in large numbers. The puja pandals dazzling with breath taking decorations and lightings drew huge number of people with the celebration of the auspicious mahaastami. The air reverbrated with the chanting of mantras and the beats of the dhak.

However, this year puja pandals though crammed with devotees also saw a huge deployment of security personnels as the pandals being sensitive spots and susceptible to terrorist attacks are under the police scanner. The disturbed times today has dampened the spirits of devotees making them extra cautious in their movements. Perhaps this is the reason behind the low turn out of people in the streets.

Traditionally, the five day puja celebrations begin with Mahalaya when one is able to perform any number of shradha ceremonies of one’s departed relatives. Then comes the Sandi Paath after which begins the rituals of puja. Legends hold that Lord Rama had offered puja to devi Durga in order to get her blessings in the killing of the evil called Ravana. Chronologically speaking Sashthi is the first day of puja when the goddess is put on a pedestal and the priests invite her to their midst which is followed by Saptami the second day when the proceedings begin by bathing the goddess. Maha Ashtami is a repeat of the previous day where sometimes animal sacrifices are offered to please the goddess, a primitive or rather pagan ritual that needs to be eradicated from our culture as it has no place in our developed society. However after navami finally the last day of puja is Vijaya Dashami when the devotees bid a tearful farewell to the goddess.

Guwahati alone boasts of more than 600 pujas, the oldest being Hari Sabha in Panbazar. Pandals in Beltola, Ganeshguri, Silpukhuri, Uzanbazar, Kumarpara etc witness the maximum rush and today laser shows in certain pandals are a huge crowd puller.

Come let us all invoke the goddess and ask her to grant us the beauty of soul, the taste of sweet success, give us name and fame and destroy the evil forces in us and show everyone the right direction.

“Rupang dehi, jayang dehi, jasho dehi dishu jehi ”

Photo: People throng on the occasion of Maha Navami during Durga puja celebrations in Sivasagar, Assam on 20-10-2007. Picture by Luit Chaliha.

Comments

jaay's picture

What a wonderful thought.

Pages

Add new comment

Random Stories

AMWJU protest over murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh

7 Sep 2017 - 10:41pm | AT News Imphal
 Member of the All Manipur Working Journalists’ Union (AMWJU) today staged a sit-in protest to condemn the killing of senior journalist and Editor Gauri Lankesh on September 5. Gauri Lankesh,...

Gogoi assures of implementation of Bodo medium issues

8 Sep 2015 - 6:17pm | Hantigiri Narzary
 Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has assured of setting up of a separate cell soon for Bodo medium with own office to look into medium related as proposed earlier in the name of the Bodo and Other...

Manas NP expanded to 850 sq.km

18 Aug 2016 - 6:48pm | AT Kokrajhar Bureau
The Manas National Park (MNP) has got nod of approval for addition of 350 sq.km from Governor of Assam under Chirang division in west part of the National Park. Governor approved the first addition...

A day with Papon

11 May 2015 - 6:22pm | Rajdweep
Talking to Papon while interviewing him has always been fun. His sense of humor stands tall all throughout. But, recently his comment on the national anthem dragged him into a controversy of sorts....

Other Contents by Author

“When bamboo flowers, famine, death and destruction follows”, says a tribal legend in Mizoram. Who better than the hardy Mizos would know this, considering that theirs is probably the only land on earth where history is closely intertwined with the mysterious cycle of bamboo flowering? Back in 1959, bamboo flowering in the state set off a chain of events in the rugged hilly state that ultimately led to one of the most powerful insurgencies against the Indian union spanning over two decades.Once again the legend threatens to become a reality as thousands of rats are rampaging through rice and vegetable fields in Mizoram, adding fuel to the growing fears of famine in the region....
The towering white structure of the Gauhat High Court, a landmark of Guwahati stands tall glimmering in the city skyline. A keeper of law and a defender of justice it has been advocating justice since the past sixty years of glorious existence.It was way back in the year 1948 on April 5 Ronald Francis Lodge was appointed the first Chief Justice of the Assam High Court. The Assam High Court was inaugurated by then chief justice of India Justice Harilal Kania in the present house of the district and sessions judge , Kamrup Guahati on the western bank of Dighalipukhuri. The inaugural ceremony was attended by many luminaries of Assam including Sir Akbar Hydari, Pemier Gopinath Bordoloi,...
Since the last few years the world has witnessed a not so silent revolution aiming women emancipation carried out mostly by the women for the women. The revolution has reached such a stage that today many women claim to walk shoulder to shoulder in the journey of life.An International Women’s Day observed on the March 8th is a flame that proves that women have come of age in an otherwise patriarchal society. Today there is hardly anything that a man can do which a woman cannot, provided she wills.Along with the rest of the world Guwahati too celebrated International Women’s Day. The Directorate of Social welfare organized a day long seminar and sale cum exhibition of the...
Assam tea is all set to make inroads in the markets of Pyramid land - Egypt. Assam tea producers are considering Egypt as the latest destination for Assam tea.Delegations of tea planters from the state recently back from Egypt and Israel have stated that Egypt has huge potential for the export of Assam tea. Egypt is presently importing its maximum tea from Kenya, which incidentally is the world’s largest tea producer.Of the 75 million kilogram which the total market area of tea in Egypt, 90 percent is supplied by Kenya and Indian tea including Assam tea supplies about 2.7 million kilograms (2006) of tea.The political unrest in Kenya may become beneficial to Assam if it takes advantage...
It is heartwarming to know that there are people and organizations that care to spare a thought for our four legged counterparts with whom we share this earth. Yes, it is a respite after the horrible incidents of poachers brutally mutilating rhinos to possess their horns to realize that scarred rhinos are being nurtured to health and returned to where they belong. The lions Club of Guwahati Seva has decided to donate a hydraulic tail-lift to the People For Animals (PFA). Sick and injured animals which are generally pulled by chains and ropes to be transported to hospitals will no longer have to undergo pain as the Hydraulic Lift will be used to pick them from streets to the PFA hospital....
To be or not to be a heritage site…. is the dilemma persering Majuli -- the largest river island in the world. The Centre seems to be at its wits end on deciding the status of Majuli island. The Centre has once again renominated Majuli island for inscription in the World Heritage Site List under the ‘Cultural Landscape’. After losing the battle in 2006 Majuli is once again back with a bang this year.The surprise announcement came yesterday even as Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi declared that the Rs 20 crore sanctioned by the planning Commission in Delhi for the river island would not be spent on flood control measures but for preservation of the heritage sites.Majuli...
The flu – bird flu is back with a bang. The state Animal Husbandary and Veterinary Department sounded a health alert on Avian influnza in poultry in all the districts of Assam.Following the Bird Flu outbreak in Bengal the state has beefed up security measures so as to curb its effect in the state. Reports are rife that the bird flu outbreak in Bengal could turn out to be the worst in the country and may measure up to the crisis faced by Thailand, Bangladesh and Vietnam.Assam sounded its alert in the bordering districts which share borders with Bengal including Goalpara, Dubri, Kokrajhar and Bongaigaon.RK Sharma, the deputy Secretary, Veterinary and Animal Husbandary Department stated...
It has finally arrived the dream car of the middle class Indian –the Nano, a Tata small car which was unveiled at the Auto Expo in New Delhi last night. Touted as the People’s car and the world’s cheapest at that the Nano is priced at an affordable Rs. One lakh. However it is to be noted here that the sticker price is not inclusive of the 12.5 percent value added tax and transportation costs from the plant at Singur, near Calcutta from where it will be manufactured.Ratan Tata, the Tata group chairman has shown the word that promises are made to be kept! The announcement of the small car project was made by Tata at the Geneva Auto Show in 2003 where his announcements were...
President’s rule was clamped in Nagaland and the Assembly kept in suspended animation after the coalition party Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN) led by Rio’s Nagaland’s People’s Front (NPF) despite winning a controversial no confidence motion on December 13.Rio survived the trial of strength by 23-19 votes in te 60 member house. It survived because speaker Kiyanielie Peseyie barred three Independent MLAs from voting on the motion and declared invalid the votes of nine dissident NPF MLAs. The Neiphiu Rio government in Nagaland would have completed its full term of office but it failed to do so as it’s rule was ended by the declaration of president’...
Another year has gone by and it seems that in the entire year everything else but time stood still. For the troubles that Assam was afflicted with are still there but the year has passed with no one the wiser. Goodbye 2007 – Hello 2008 but will it be any different. Will the terrorist bombs go silent in this brand new year? Will killing of the innocent stop this year? Will families feel sure about their dear ones this year? Will bandhs become a thing of the past this year? Of course not whom are we kidding?The strides of modernism seem to have ushered in its wake a host of psychological anxiety to man’s life or else why is the entire world wallowing in strife. Religious...