Durga Puja 2021: The five-day festival of Durga Puja is just around the corner. It is one of the biggest Hindu festivals and preparations are on in full swing.
While Durga Puja is particularly significant for Bengalis living in West Bengal and outside, many other states such as Odisha, Tripura, Bihar, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat also celebrate the festival with great enthusiasm.
The 10-day Durga Puja festival ends with Dussehra that celebrates the victory of Goddess Durga over Mahishasura, the Buffalo demon, depicting the triumph of good over evil.
While the main celebration begins with Maha Sashthi, the festivities start much before — with Mahalaya, the last day of the dark fortnight (Krishnapaksha) of Ashvin month, according to the Hindu lunar calendar.
Durga is believed to descend on Earth, her ‘paternal home’, on this day every year.
Devipaksha begins the next day, which marks the first day of Sharad month, heralding the ten-day Durga Puja celebration.
Durga Puja Days And Their Significance
While the Durga Puja rituals begin with Mahalaya, the main festival starts on Maha Sasthi, the sixth day of Devipaksha.
According to Hindu mythology, Lord Brahma had given Mahishasura a boon of invincibility, which meant no man or even God could kill him. Powered by the boom, it is said, he chased the gods out of their heaven. All the gods then got together to create Goddess Durga.
Durga slays demon Mahishasura on Dashami, the 10th day of Devipaksha, and hence the day is celebrated as Vijaya Dashami, symbolising the ‘victory’ of good over bad.
Durga Puja 2021 Dates
Mahalaya: October 6, 2021, Wednesday
Maha Sasthi: October 11, 2021, Monday
Maha Saptami: October 12, 2021, Tuesday
Maha Ashtami: October 13, 2021, Wednesday
Maha Navami: October 14, 2021, Thursday
Vijaya Dashami: October 15, 2021, Friday