Bhubaneswar: The ten-day celebrations of auspicious Durga Puja comes to an end today on the occasion of Vijayadashami. It is believed to be the day when Goddess Durga clashed with Mahishasura’s army and slayed the buffalo demon once and for all. It is also believed to be the day that Lord Rama defeated King Ravana and his army in a long battle between the forces of good and evil. It is for this very reason that the day is called Vijayadashami (the day of victory).
According to mythology, Durga was created by the Gods by pooling in their spiritual powers as they wanted to create ‘Shakti’ that was ultimate and could annihilate demon-god Mahisasur. This day marks the journey of Goddess Durga back to Kailash after ten days of stay at her parent’s house on Earth. Every year, Mother Durga visits her paternal house along with her four children—Lakshmi, Saraswati, Kartikeya and Ganesh.
Vijayadashami celebrations include processions of idols of Maa Durga and her coterie of Lakshmi, Saraswati, Ganesh and Kartikeya to a water body. The procession is accompanied by music and chants, after which the images are immersed into the water for dissolution and a goodbye.
Dussehra also marks the end of the epic war between Sri Ram and Lankan kind Raavan. The effigies of ten-headed demon king Raavan along with his brother Kubhakaran and son Indrajit are burnt with fireworks marking evil’s destruction.
The festival also starts the preparation for one of the most widely celebrated Diwali, the festival of lights, which is celebrated twenty days after Vijay Dashami.
Amid Covid restrictions, there will be no ceremonial goodbye to Maa Durga or the Ravan Dahan.