Agartala, Oct. 21(ANI): Thousands of men, women and children, turned up in their best on the streets in Agartala making rounds of different marquees as the Durga Puja festivities got off to an electrifying start across Tripura.
With the azure sky belying the party-pooping rain forecast of the met office, people walked shoulder to shoulder soaking in the fun and gaiety as a spruced-up Agartala was resplendent under lakhs of kilowatts of bright lights twinkles and pompous marquees.
The usual five-day autumn carnival, shortened to a four-day affair this time according to the almanac, is the biggest in eastern and northeast India – is being celebrated across the state, with every city, small town and village joining in the merriment.
The community pujas in the state number around 2,400 this year of which 800 are taking place in remote tribal areas in the districts.
Hundreds of people from all communities and religions were seen hopping from one pandal (temporary temple) to another while many other waiting to enter the pandals.
Roads are choked with human traffic throughout right from the evening.
Sulekha Satpati, a pandal hopper said: “We on the occation of Navaratri are out to see the pandals and enjoying it. We shall move from one pandal to another and are from Orissa and here as my husband is posted here in CRPF. We are enjoying the outing here.”
Various themes were displayed in the pujas and the crowd was attracted towards recent incidents which were displayed like global warming, archaeological heritage, traditional music of India and other contemporary issues.
Many imaginary temples with intricate designs created out thermocol and plywood and colourful lights also attracted pandal hoppers.
Though Durga Puja is the mainly a festival of the Hindu Bengalis but people from all religion and community participate in it and enjoy the festival.
“People from all religion and community participate here in the festival of Durga Puja and together we enjoy it. Pandals are very beautiful here and for the last two hours we are out with my children and now we are tired but still moving because Puja comes only once in a year,” said Maushumi Marak, another pandal hopper.
While another aged visitor Sukumar Banik said: “I have visited most of the pandals of the city and enjoyed it. The arrangements are fine and smoothly, everything is peaceful.”
According to Hindu mythology, the festivities and prayers begin with the symbolic arrival of the goddess on earth on the sixth day of the first quarter of the moon and ends on Dashami or the 10th day, which is celebrated across the country as Dussehra.
Traditionally, every pandal has an idol of Goddess Durga depicting her as slaying the demon Mahishasur.
The goddess, astride a lion and wielding an array of weapons in her ten hands, eradicates all evil from the earth before returning to her husband Lord Shiva at Kailash on Dashmi.
The festival will conclude Friday, when the idols would be immersed by teary eyed devotees in the rivers, lakes and ponds. On this day, she returns to her husband, Lord Shiva. (ANI)