Those little details about Durga Puja

Hey guys,
So about Durga Puja….I think most people think that the Puja is all about the idol and the pandals….which are definitely a big part of these four days….but there are also these little things about this festival…the little details….that I guess most of the people don’t know about…

And as they say,the devil’s always in the details…without these little details this festival would loose its charm…..:)


Mahalaya is an auspicious occasion observed seven days before the Durga Puja, and heralds the advent of Durga, the goddess of supreme power. It’s a kind of invocation or invitation to the mother goddess to descend on earth – “Jago Tumi Jago”. This is done through the chanting of mantras and singing devotional songs….The All India Radio (AIR) broadcastes the Mahalaya programme every year at 4:00am on this auspicious day and thus, Mahalaya has been deeply associated with the impeccable voice of late Birendra Krishna Bhadra whose enthralling chants of “Chandi Path” filled every Bengali household.


Pushpanjali is praying to Maa Durga with flowers in hands for the well being and prosperity of the entire family.The priest distributes fresh flowers to all the devotees and recite Sanskrit mantras. The devotees repeat after him word by overestimation the couplet’s repetition is completed,the shower the flowers in their hands on Maa durga.This process is repeated thrice.The Pushpanjali ritual ends with reciting of another couplet once, joining both the hands


The bhog is the blessed food of the Durga Puja, a ritual meal served on all days of the puja. It is eaten at lunch, traditionally by rows of persons seated together, ladled out by volunteers rushing around , serving steaming khichuri( Khichri in hindi), fried vegetables and the eagerly-anticipated mishti along with tomator er chatni( tomato chutney). The bhog is accompanied with shouts between eaters and volunteers (“Dada, eikhane Khichodi aaro laagbe!” ), and of course by conversations, even among strangers.

“Durga Puja does not assume the festive aura without the maddening beats of the dhak, the large drum that men hang around their necks and play with two thin sticks to infuse the frenzied rhythm into listeners. Those enchanting beats are enough to conjure up the sights and smells of Durga Puja.” -The Statesman
Dhaki in C.R. Park
Durga Puja is incomplete without Dhunuchi naach (dance). It is a traditional dance form where devotees dance with earthen bowls to the beats of dhaks (drums).
The earthen bowls are filled with burning coconut husks, camphor and incense sprinkled on them. The husks burn slowly, spreading the fragrance of the holy smoke with the devotees swaying to the beats of the dhaks.
Dhunuchi dance is performed by devotees on all days of Durga Puja – right from Panchami when the Durga idol is brought to the pandal, followed by Shasthi, Saptami, Ashthami, Navami and Dashami.Most pandals generally hold dhunuchi dance competitions on Navami evening.

Sandhi Puja

An integral and important part of Durga Puja, Sandhi Puja is performed at the juncture of the 8th and 9th lunar day. Sandhi puja lasts from the last 24 minutes of Ashtami till the first 24 minutes of Navami. Sandhi Puja requires 108 lotus flowers, a single fruit, dry rice grain for “noibiddo”, 108 earthen lamps, clothes, jewelry, hibiscus garlands and wood apple (bel) leaves.
Debi Boron
The last day of the puja starts with Debi Boron, a ritual in which married ladies worship the Goddess and her children with Betel leaves and sweets before bidding her farewell.
It is followed by sindur khela , where married ladies apply red colored vermilion to each other and greet each other with sweets.
Durga Visarjan

Every year on Dashami, me and my family gather at my Dida’s ( maternal grandma) place for lunch. The highlight of this get-together is that all the idols in the C.R. Park area leave for Visarjan ( immersion) passing right in front of her place. So after enjoying the delicious bengali food cooked by my dida…I get to see all the idols leaving….why is it fun…well because….when these idols leave…it is surrounded by people dancing on the beats of the dhak…so the whole lane gets filled with music and shouts of ” bolo bolo durga mai ki JAI” and “aashchhe bochhor abar hobe”…:D
The whole lane was filled with trucks carrying the idols and the devotees 

People dancing and singing 😀

The idols leaving for Visarjan 🙁

I hope you guys enjoyed yourself as much as I did…:)

Wishing all of you a very Happy Dusshera and Subho Bijoya to all my bengali friends out there 😀