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IT’S DHANTERAS AS THE CITY PRAYS FOR PROSPERITY, PROGRESS AND WEALTH

dhanteras-diwali-2The first day of Diwali was celebrated in the city with Dhanteras. Dhanteras is the thirteenth day of the month of Ashwin. The word “Dhan” means wealth. Houses and Business premises are renovated and decorated. Entrances are made colorful with lovely traditional Rangoli designs to welcome the Goddess of wealth and prosperity. To indicate her long-awaited arrival, small footprints are drawn with rice flour and vermilion powder all over the houses. Lamps are kept burning all through the nights. Believing this day to be auspicious women purchase some gold or silver or at least one or two new utensils. “Lakshmi-Puja” is performed in the evenings when tiny diyas of clay are lighted to drive away the shadows of evil spirits. “Bhajans”-devotional songs- in praise of Goddess Laxmi are sung and “Naivedya” of traditional sweets is offered to the Goddess. There is also a custom in Maharashtra to lightly pound dry coriander seeds with jaggery and offer as Naivedya. In villages cattles are adorned and worshipped by farmers as they form the main source of their income. In south cows are offered special veneration as they are supposed to be the incarnation of Goddess Lakshmi and therefore they are adorned and worshipped on this day.

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