Jamshedpur, October 9: Mahashtami, which is believed to be the most auspicious of the four-day-long Durga Puja festival saw thousands of devotees throng Durga Puja pandals across the city on Sunday.
The day marks the victory of goddess Durga over the evil demon Mahishasura and epitomizes the good over the prevailing evil.
Mahanavami will be observed on Monday, the third and final day of Durga Puja. Durga Puja on Maha Navami begins with Mahasnan and Shodashopachara Puja.
On Maha Navami Goddess Durga is worshipped as Mahisasuramardini which means the Annihilator of the Buffalo Demon. It is believed that on Maha Navami day Durga killed the demon Mahishasura.
Durga Puja celebrations are at the peak in Jamshedpur and other towns and rural areas as well. Thousands of devotees throng Puja pandals in the evening and night hours to have glimpses of glittering high-cost tableaus erected at almost all Puja pandals in the Steel city.
An ambience of devotion prevailed at all the Puja pandals as devotees with flowers and Puja Thalies lined up before Goddess Durga on the Maha Ashtami.
Devotees chanted hymns of the Goddess as people visited their local pandals to offer anjali (prayers) before heading to other pandals to see idols of the Goddess and her four children, artworks, lights and for merriment.
The celebrations at Thakur Pyara Singh in Kasidih, Manimela in RD Bhatta, Hind Club in Ranikudar, Jairam Sporting in Adityapur, Farm Area in Kadma, Agrico, Sidhgora ground drew huge crowds.
Colourful lights and Shining tableaus at the Puja pandals are attracting people a lot. The rush is seen till 4 am at all these Puja pandals.
Children and their parents, new and middle-aged couples and so-called love birds are seen taking selfies and photographs of the high-rise temples, thanks to the advanced mobile technologies.
What adds to the entertainment of revellers is ‘Sangeet Sandhya’ programmes being presented by noted orchestra parties at major Puja pandals.
Despite hot weather and spells of rain, Durga Puja festivities saw large crowd on Maha Ashtami on Sunday, drawing large crowds to colorfully-decorated and brightly-illuminated puja pandals.
Puja venues at different parts of the city are witnessing large crowds this year as well. Despite the best efforts of Jamshedpur Police, prolonged traffic congestions hampered the smooth flow of vehicles in different parts of the city on Sunday.
The average budget of most Puja associations in major towns of the State is moderate to high, with most of the money spent in organizing elaborate community lunch, known as ‘bhog’.
Various puja organizers throughout the city are conducting cultural shows.
With eating out now becoming almost a ritual for various classes as they soak in the festival spirit, the city’s dining hubs have spruced up their menus and included surprise items to bowl over their guests.
Eateries, whether star-rated or roadside, did great business with people thronging these to have their food of choice, from Chinese, Tandoori or Bengali cuisine.
Heavy security measures have been put in place to control the crowd. Police officials and local youths were seen engaged at controlling traffic. Parking places have been separately arranged at prominent Puja pandals.
The Durga Puja celebrations would continue till Tuesday. The Maha Navami, Maha Dashami and the immersion procession would be conducted on Monday and Tuesday.