Patna: On the second day of Chhath Puja 2023, ‘Parvaitin’ (who observes fast) on this day, cooks roti and rice kheer and serves it as a bhog to the ‘Chandradevta’ (Moon God).
A local devotee told media, “I came specially for Chhath Puja from Chhattisgarh. There’s something different about the way the festival is celebrated in Bihar and it feels so special.”
Talking about the rituals on Kharana, a devotee said, “On this day first we worship and take a holy dip in the river Ganga and rub our hand and feet with sand and we cook kheer and roti as Prasad to offer the lord. I’ve been celebrating this festival for the past 14 years and every year the management is up to the mark.”
Soon after Diwali, people especially ‘poorvanchalis’ start preparing for the Chhath Puja. This ancient Hindu Vedic festival is mainly celebrated in Bihar, Jharkhand and Eastern Uttar Pradesh in India and Nepal.
Also referred to as Surya Shashti, Chhath, Mahaparv, Chhath Parv, Dala Puja, Pratihar and Dala Chhath, the four-day-long festival is dedicated to the deity Surya and Shashthi Devi. As part of the ritual, women fast for the well-being of their sons and the happiness of their families. They also offer Arghya to Lord Surya and Chhathi Maiya.
The four-day festival started on November 17, which is a Friday, with the main day and the last day of the puja, being celebrated on November 20, which is falling on Monday. On each day, people observe the Chhath and follow rigorous rituals.
The main purpose of Chhath Puja is to help the Vrattis gain mental and spiritual purity. It is believed that sunlight has cures for various diseases and conditions. Taking a dip in the holy river also has certain medicinal benefits. The festival requires maintaining the utmost ritualistic purity.
A full day fast without water is observed on the third main day of Chhath Puja. The main ritual of the day is to offer Arghya to the setting Sun. On the fourth and final day of Chhath, Dusri Arghya is given to the rising Sun and it is known as Usha Arghya. The 36 hours long fast is broken after giving Arghya to the Sun.
(with inputs from ANI)