Festivals in PuneEdit This
Teeming with a young and educated crowd, Pune is full of life, especially in the way that the Pune festivals are observed. Alongside a spectrum of national and religious festivals, Pune has some of its own festivities taking place throughout the year.
Diwali is a great festival of lights celebrated around October or November all over India by people of all religions in a grand manner. Undoubtedly, Pune too gets submerged in the flow of its celebration. The entire city looks luminous with the presence of lights and candles. Diwali continues for five days with each day having its own importance and set of rituals. The festival days are celebrated with people wearing a new set of clothes, drawing rangoli at the entrance of their homes, gifting sweets to each other, and setting light to firecrackers.
Observed in August or September spanning 10 days, the Ganesh festival involves worshipping of Ganesh,a pot-bellied deity who protects the innocent from evil. In Pune, on the day Ganesh Chaturthi, women fast to invoke the blessings of Parvati, Ganesh’s mother. Further, they place homemade delicacies like khir, panchamrit, sweets and modaks in front of the idol as ‘bhog’ and after the ritual worship, they distribute the ‘bhog’ among neighbors as ‘prasad’. The 10th day of the festival is marked as the day of immersion when a big procession carrying the idol through the streets amid dance and music set out for the immersion ghat.
Janmashtami is another great occasion celebrated in Pune with full vigor and enthusiasm. Taking place in the month of August or September, this festival marks the birth anniversary of lord Krishna. On this occasion, temples and homes all across Pune are bedecked with flowers and lights. An exhilarating game called ‘dahi-handi’ which is actually an enactment of an episode from the childhood of lord Krishna is played on Janmashtami.
Celebrated in September or October, Navratri festival entails worshipping of Goddess Durga. In Pune, Dandiya dance is a popular event of Navratri. Bengali community adds another dimension to the festival by organizing traditional Durga puja at the Congress House Ground. Three old temples in Pune namely the Tambdi Jogeshwari, Chatushrungi and Bhavani Mata temple get crowded with women devotees assembling to offer their prayers.
Pune festival organized by the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation takes place at the end of the Ganesh festival and continues for a month. This festival showcases a number of activities including competitions of traditional sports, auto rallies, musical and classical dance performance.
February 12, 2010 change by ashmita