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Wednesday, August 15, 2018
West Bengal

Festivals and Fairs


▪ Durga Puja ▪ Diwali ▪ Muslim Festivals ▪ Festival of Sahajiya Sect ▪ Orthodox Vaishnava festivals
▪ Rathayathra ▪ Holi ▪ Rabindra Jayanti ▪ Birthday of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose
▪ Dussera ▪ Fairs ▪ Sri-Panchami ▪ Birthday of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa

Rathayathra

Some of the many festivals of Vaishnavite character have become popular and these festivals are observed by all sections of Hindus. One of these is the Rathayathra festival held on the second day after the new moon in the early rainy season. An image of Vishnu in the form of Jagannath (Lord of Universe) is placed in a wooden chariot built in the shape of a temple on wheels, which is drawn by men of all castes to an appointed place. The day is considered very auspicious, marking as it does the start of the sowing season for the monsoon crop, throughout eastern India. The festival is observed in towns and villages. A special feature of fairs held on the occasion is the brisk sales of seeds and seedlings to farmers and gardeners. The festival at Mahesh a few miles from Calcutta on the west bank of the river Hooghly, attracts lakhs of people.