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What Durga Puja means to student Rayirth Roy

14 November, 2017 13:20:17
What Durga Puja means to student Rayirth Roy

The sight of pretty ‘Shiuli’ flowers strewn on the ground, a delightful nip in the air in the early morning, long stretches of colourful lighting adrning the streets, all bring on a sense of wonder, elation and anticipation --- yes, Durga Puja in Kolkata means all of that and much more. Durga Puja marks the battle of goddess Durga with the powerful buffalo demon, Mahishasura, who performed prayers for years to seek Lord Bramha’s boon of immortality. With this belief, he waged a war against devas, with his army of asuras. In the battle, the devas were defeated, and so Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva created Maa Durga. 

Maa Durga led a battle against Mahishasura and killed him. Thus, Durga Puja marks the victory of good over evil, and reinforcement in the belief in ‘Shakti’ – the female embodiment of power. For Bengalis, Durga Puja is more than a five-day long festival, preparation for which begins months in advance from setting up pandals, preparing for poetry recitation, singing, dancing the joy of wearing new clothes, planning activities with friends, family and saving money to eat ‘phuchka’ and ‘papri chaat’and when the euphoric five-day carnival is over, there is a sadness in my mind, a feeling of emptiness along with a glimmer of hope and anticipation to look forward to the next year when the wonderful cycle would repeat itself as they say, “Aschhe bochhor abar hobay.”

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