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Ganesh Chaturthi 2024

One of the most important Hindu festivals welcomes everyone to join its colorful celebration

Dates: September 7, 2024

Ganesh Chaturthi
Ganesh Chaturthi
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Ganesh Chaturthi is the most important Hindu festival in Goa. It's a celebration of the elephant-headed Lord Ganesha, and is usually held on the 4th day of Bhadarva Shukla-Paksh on the Hindu calendar. Temples and houses are decorated with beautiful flowers. A special pandal, made of bunches of betel nuts, coconuts, bananas, and mango-trees is prepared for Lord Ganesha. This festival brings families and friends together to exchange gifts and celebrate the birth of Lord Ganesha.

Ganesh Chaturthi Traditions

On celebration days, people enjoy traditional music and dance. The whole celebration lasts from 7 to 10 days. In local homes, celebrations begin with the ceremonial installation of a clay statue. Families decorate the room by putting up a matoli (wooden canopy) adorned with flowers, seasonal vegetables, and fruits. After that, Lord Ganesha is brought home and placed on the altar.

Apart from Nevri, Besan Laddu, and other savory dishes served on banana leaves, women make Modaks (sweet dumplings), which are Lord Ganesh's favorite dishes. Huge idols, known as Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav, are placed on the streets of cities and villages. Competitions for the best decorated idol are also held. During these days, lotteries are organized where you can win various prizes, such as a car.

On the last day of the festival, everyone can witness the ritual of Visarjan. During this ritual, the idol of Lord Ganesha is carried to the sea in a colorful procession accompanied by loud music and dancing. The region's largest idol of Lord Ganesha can be observed near the main square of Panaji, the state capital of Goa.

During this festival, local people seek to get blessings from Lord Ganesha. Large crowds gather in Mapusa, particularly near Ganeshpuri and Khorlim temples. The village of Marcela is known for its several large idols of Lord Ganesh that are especially colorful and creative due to the impact of local artists and craftsmen.

About Lord Ganesha

Lord Ganesha, the elephant-headed God, is revered as the God of power and wisdom. He is always honored first in prayers and his name is invoked before commencing any auspicious task or form of worship. Lord Ganesha is also known as the Remover of Obstacles and the God of Wisdom. That is why he occupies a place of honor in almost every celebration, from weddings, starting a business to housewarming ceremonies. It is believed that he has the divine power to remove obstacles and evil spirits.

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Authors: Olena Basarab