Ganesh Chaturthi marks the birth of the deity Lord Ganesha (Chaturthi Special Report)

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Special Report: Although the spirit, zeal, fervor, devotion of the people about the Ganesh Chaturthi celebration still persist in the mind of people government restrictions on celebration due to Covid-19 diminished the spirit of the people to certain extent for the past two years. However just to keep the religious spirit, sentiments of the people alive and appease devotees, state government has permitted to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi with some Covid-19 related conditions to avoid more spread of pandemic.

Ganesh Chaturthi marks the birth of the deity Lord Ganesha, God of wisdom and prosperity and one of the most auspicious festivals being celebrated on Chaturthi Tithi of Shukla Paksha in the month of Bhadrapada in India and across the globe.

History and significance: The propitious celebration begins with devotees bringing idols of the deity to their homes and worshiping him. The worship is initiated with the pranapratishtha, a ritual to instill life in the idols followed by the 16 ways of paying tribute known as shhodashopachara. Vedic hymns from religious texts are recited while the idols are adorned with red sandalwood paste and yellow and red flowers. The idol is then offered coconut, jaggery, and 21 modaks.

Families enjoy scrumptious food, celebrate with friends and family, worship the idol with fervor and zeal and finally immerse the idols at the end of the commemoration, symbolizing Ganesha’s journey to Mount Kailash, the abode of his parents Lord Shiva and Goddess Shakti/Durga. The celebration of Ganesh Chaturthi assumed a public observance when Maratha ruler Shivaji used it to rouse nationalist sentiments among his subjects who were fighting the Mughals. The festival was revived by Bal Gangadhar Tilak in 1893 when the British had banned political assemblies.

Although the festival holds significance in India, it is extremely prominent in the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Gujarat.On this day, people perform their religious duties of cleaning the temple in their house, offering durva ghas, laddoos, and modaks one of the favorite sweets to the Lord Ganesh, and completing the worship with an aarti. It is believed that during the celebration (worshipping) period, Lord Ganesha graces the earth and brings happiness, wisdom and prosperity for his devotees.

Ganesh Visarjan: On the 10th day of Ganesh Chaturthi, Anant Chaturdashi is observed, it is the day when devotees sing, dance and come together to bid farewell to the Lord Ganesha. The devotees gather up and hold huge processions for Ganesh Visarjan.

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