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Significance of Durga Puja in India and Its Celebration

One of India's most auspicious festivals, Durga Pooja signifies "victory of good over evil". The festival is celebrated by worshipping Goddess of Power (Maa Shakti). The festival occurs in the Hindu month Ashwin and festival takes place from first day to tenth day of this month. The festival is an event of great passion and zeal for Indians and overseas Indians who are settled there come back to their home in India to celebrate this grand yet auspicious birthday with their family and close ones.

The Durga Pooja goes for ten days, but the idols of Maa Durga are installed on the seventh day of Navratri. During the final three days the Durga Puja is rejoiced with great pomp and joviality. The idols of Maa Shakti can be seen in different designs, sizes and colors. Maa Durga is also called the Goddess of Power (Shakti). The idol of Goddess Shakti has ten hands and situated on the back of a big lion. The Goddess fights with Mahisasur (a demon) with ten different arms.

Maa Lakshmi (Goddess of wealth & fortune) and Maa Saraswati (Goddess of wisdom & learning) stand on the both sides of Maa Durga. Both sons of Maa Durga, Kartika and Ganesh sit next to them upon a peacock and a mouse in that order. For last three days, the idols of these deities are devoted along with their mother goddess Shakti. The Durga Pooja starts from the seventh day of the bright moon.

There are various myths associated with Durga Pooja. It is said that Goddess Shakti killed a demon named as Mahisasur on this day. Another myth that is most popular is that Lord Shri Ram killed evil demon Ravana on this day and performed devotion and worship to Goddess Durga. And the third story associated with Durga Pooja is that the Kind Suratha performed a special pooja for Goddess of Power on this day.

In Durga Pooja rituals, Bhog (Prasadam) and flowers (Pushpam) is offered to Maa Durga. The prist chants the holy "Chandi Shloks" and perform the pooja rituals. On the days of Navratri, devotee women sing Bhajans and songs devoted to Maa Amba together in groups at Durga Pooja Pandals, temples and homes. On the last day, which is known as "Vijaydashmi" Durga idols are immersed into the water. Well Dressed and beautifully ornamented Durga idols are take out in a parade with band and music, colors are spread all around that all people appear in a same color of devotion to the Goddess Durga.

The form of Durga Pooja Celebration may differ as per states and locality. The grand Durga pooja celebration can be seen in West Bengal region and Durga Pooja in Kolkata has global fame because of its splendid and passionate celebrations.

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