Durga Puja starts, Maha Saptami Friday
The five-day 'Sharadiyo Durgotsav' started on Thursday with Sashthi Puja and it will come to an end with the immersion of Goddess Durga idols on October 26, in rivers and water bodies near temples across the country.
Durga Puja, the biggest religious festival of the Hindu community, began Thursday with the Maha Sashthi Puja at temples across the country, reports BSS.
In the morning, formalities of the Durga Puja began with the Sashthi puja in various mandaps across the country, including the Dhakeswari temple.
Sashthi Puja began with recitation of verses from the Holy Chandi, the blowing of conch shells (Shankha), and the beating of dhak-dhols (drums) in temples.
Participation was made limited at the mandaps as everyone was given entry into the mandap after checking the temperature while arrangements have been made for maintaining social distancing.
No one was allowed to enter the mandap area without a mask.
Maha Saptami puja will be performed on Friday, Maha Ashtami, Kumari Puja and Sandhi Puja on Saturday and Maha Nabami Puja on Sunday.
Various religious ceremonies have been shortened this year as per the instructions to avoid the infection of global pandemic Covid-19.
Bangladesh Puja Udjapan Parishad has termed this year's Durgotsav only as the 'Durga Puja' as the issues related to the festival would be avoided.
Leaders of the Bangladesh Puja Udjapan Parishad urged all to strictly maintain the health guidelines and directives issued by the government in the wake of the global pandemic COVID-19 during the Durga Puja celebration.
This time Mahalaya was on 17th September. Durga Puja is usually held six days after the Mahalaya, but this time the puja is being held in the month of Kartik as the month of Ashwin means ‘mall month’ which means ominous month.
According to the instructions, one has to maintain health guidelines, including social distancing, using hand sanitizer and wearing mask while entering the puja mandap.
Hand washing facilities, sanitizers and thermal scanner should be ensured at the entry points of puja mandaps.
Recently Health Services Division issued directives for maintaining health guidelines during the Durga Puja in the wake of coronavirus outbreak.
This year, the Durga Puja has been arranged at 7014 mandaps in Dhaka division while at 3906 mandaps in Chattogram, 4689 in Khulna, 2646 in Sylhet, 1584 in Mymensingh, 1701 in Barishal, 5250 in Rangpur and 3435 in Rajshahi division.
Security has been beefed up in all Puja pandals throughout the country, including the capital, with the deployment of additional squads of Ansars, police, RAB and other law enforcers for peaceful celebration of the festival.
Besides, voluntary groups will also perform duties at the puja pandals.