9 days and 9 different ways of Navratri celebrations in India: Significance and important dates

Navratri celebrations begin with much excitement and enthusiasm, and this holy festival is marked by 9 days of happiness, joy and laughter. As the nation is getting pepped up to celebrate Navratri, we give you an insight into the Navratri celebration across the country and how it is celebrated in these 9 states.
Idol of Goddess Durga9 days and 9 different ways of Navratri celebrations in India: Significance and important dates
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India is a diverse country which brings so many different shades to the palette that it is bound to give us a sense of joy and happiness. Along with it are the festivals of India that are equally colourful and vibrant. One such festival of colours is Navratri that is celebrated across the country with so much zeal and enthusiasm that it is bound to attract people from all over the world to celebrate this holy festival of India.

Navratri is a 9-day festival that is dedicated to Mother Goddess and her various forms like Saraswati, Lakshmi, Durga and more. These goddesses represent different virtues and are worshipped on 9 different days accordingly. The auspicious 9 days are celebrated in 9 different ways throughout the nation that are each unique on its own pertaining to their geographical boundaries and the culture they represent. Let us have a look at how these boundaries and cultural differences reflect on the festival of Navratri in India. Here are 9 days of Navratri and 9 different ways of celebrating it.

1. West Bengal, Assam and Bihar

Celebrated as Durga Puja which is the main festival of West Bengal, Saptami, Ashtami, Navami and Dashami are the last four days of Navratri that people celebrate in the eastern part of India. Durga Puja is celebrated on a grand scale throughout the state wherein certain rituals are performed and prayers are offered to Maa Durga. 

2. Gujarat

Garba and Dandiya are the major events in Gujarat that mark this festival with excitement and vigour to celebrate it. Devotees worship a symbolic clay pot called garbo that represents the womb of a family of the entire universe and a lamp which is lit next to the pot that represents oneself. Dandiya is the folk dance that is common throughout the state that involves people dancing in coordination in a big circle using small sticks.

3. New Delhi

The capital of India, New Delhi, observes the festivities of Navratri in a much diverse way. People from all walks of life come together to celebrate this festival and it goes without saying that all different rituals come together as one on all 9 days of the festival. Delhi is one city where Navratri and Durga Puja come together due to the large population of Bengalis nestled in the capital city. However, Ramleela performances are observed throughout the capital city to mark the Navratri celebrations. Ramleela is an act that narrates the story of Ramayana performed by people in form of recitals, and dialogues.

4. Punjab

Punjab on the contrary has a different way of celebrating Navratri that is distinct from the usual. During Navratri, women in Punjab keep a fast for the first seven days of the festival, worship the goddess and take part in jagrans that is an overnight celebration of chanting hymns and singing devotional songs. On the eighth day, the fast is broken and nine young girls are invited over and worshipped as a form of goddesses of Maa Durga by preparing them a feast.

5. Rajasthan

The colourful state of Rajsthan is decked up even more during this time of the year. Dussehra Mela is the main event of Rajasthan where people from all walks of life come together and frolic on the ground to be part of the celebrations. 

6. Himachal Pradesh

Navratri celebrations in Himachal Pradesh happen on the tenth day known as Kullu Dussehra that marks the return of Lord Rama to Ayodhya. It is part of the Navratri celebrations in the North and famous in the Kullu valley. The valley is decked with bright colours and adorned with illuminating decor. There’s also a huge procession carried out with idols of Goddesses and certain dance and rituals are performed followed by the famous performance of Lankadahan by the side of Beas River.

7. Maharashtra

Navratri celebrations in Maharashtra represents new beginnings wherein the women mount a copper or brass jar filled with water, upon a heap of rice that is placed on a wooden table and next to it is a lamp that is lit to symbolise knowledge and prosperity. The jar symbolises agricultural well-being.

8. Kerala

This state observes Navratri as a celebration to honour Goddess Saraswati, the goddess of learning, education and knowledge. These nine days are considered to be the most auspicious on Kerala, and it is the beginning of something new every day. On the last three days of the festival, people in Kerala worship Saraswati and place books in front of her idol or image.

9. Tamil Nadu

During Navratri, Tamil Nadu follows a famous festival of dolls also known as Bommai Kolu. The dolls include gods, goddesses, birds, farmers and arranged in their household in a symmetrical order according to various themes and guests are invited over to witness this spectacle.

Also Read:  Rangoli Designs for Navratri 2020: 5 Design inspiration you can take to adorn your house this festival 

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