With the immersion of the idols of goddess Durga, the five-day Durga Puja, the greatest religious festival of the Hindu community, ended on Friday peacefully across the country.
The Hindu community this year celebrated the occasion, better known as 'Sarbajanin Sharadiya Durgathshab,' highlighting the theme - 'Religion for community, festival to all.'Although a tense situation has been prevailing in the country over security concern following successive deaths of two foreigners and subsequent issuance of red-alerts by various foreign missions, an unprecedented peaceful and rejoicing atmosphere was witnessed across the country and no untoward incidents accepting a very few stray ones, were reported during the celebration of the festival in the country.
On the concluding day, tens of thousands of Hindus in colourful attires took to the streets beating drums and chanting mantras as the five days of revelry and celebration ended with the immersion of Devi Durga in rivers and water bodies across the country.
In the capital Dhaka, jubilant devotees joined colourful truck processions carrying idols of Durga amid fanfare towards the River Buriganga for immersion when children, the young and the elderly joined hands to slowly put the idols into the water at the climax of the festival, the biggest of the Bengali-speaking followers of Hindu faith.
In the massive immersion processions, huge numbers of people of other faiths including foreigners were seen taking part with their Hindu brethrens and rejoicing the occasion with dancing and chanting slogans like "Durga Moy ki Joy."
Besides, during the five-day festival, many foreigners, including males and females, was seen visiting the Puja mandaps ignoring the security alert hoisted by their missions in Dhaka.
Through the immersion of her idols, goddess Durga set out for Kailas, her husband's abode, and would return to her parental abode, the Earth, in Autumn next year. With this belief, the Hindu community members immersed thousands of idols, with prayer for victory of good over evil.
According to the Hindu calendar, this year goddess Durga came riding on horseback and returned in a palanquin.
Thousands of Hindu devotees gathered in processions or individually at ghats (jetties) where the idols were immersed.
As per the decision of the authorities, through immersing idols at Bina Smrity Snan Ghat at Waizghat in the city at 3:00pm, the formality of bidding farewell to the goddess ended.
The Hindu devotees bade goodbye to the goddess only for this year with Conch-Ululate, dance and songs with the beating of the drums.
Earlier, idols were gathered in front of Dhakeshwari Temple--central temple--from various corners of the city. From where idols mounted in 48 trucks headed towards Waizghat.
Narayan Shaha Moni, General Secretary of the Sarbajanin Puja Committee, said that idols of 225 puja mandaps of the city were immersed at different ghats.
Idols were submerged in various marshland, rivers and sea outside of the city.
A report from Natore says, some masked miscreants attacked a temple and desecrated at least six idols at Gurudashpur upazila in Natore early on Friday. -Photo on page 16