Ahmedabad (Gujarat), Oct.14 (ANI): Hundreds of Hindu devotees, especially women, performed the traditional Garba dance with fervor and gaiety here on the first day of the nine-day-long Navratri festival on Tuesday.
Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel inaugurated the festival in a stadium here.
Dressed in traditional attire, women and men regaled the audience with their enthralling dance moves, holding lit earthen pots and decorated metal pitchers on their heads.
The Garba dance dates back to ancient times when women performed it to please and appease the Goddess Durga and to ensure victory of their husbands in times of war.
The festival culminates on the tenth day, known as Dussehra, which marks victory of good over evil.
Goddess Durga represents power, the feminine force which guides and destroys all the evil from earth. The festival is also about the annual visit of the Goddess Durga with her children to her ancestral home on Earth.
Millions of Hindus fast, offer prayers and dance to please the mother goddess during Navratri. Some restrict their diet to fruit and vegetables, spurning meat, onions and garlic. (ANI)