‘Chhath Puja’ is a famous festival of Hindus. It is celebrated in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh and many other parts of India. It is also followed in some parts of West Bengal, Jharkhand, Odisha, Assam, and also Mauritius, and Nepal.
It is celebrated mainly among the Bhojpuri and Maithali-speaking people. Chhath Puja takes place during the 6th day (Shasthi) lunar fortnight (Shukla Paksha) of Karthik month according to Hindu Calendar. It generally falls in the month of October-November. The festival lasts for four days.
Chhath Puja is also known as Dala Chhath. In this important festival setting Sun (dawn) is worshiped. The festival is observed with the faith that the Sun God fulfills wishes if ‘Pragya’ is offered with complete dedication and devotion.
It is a festival connected with purity, and devotion to the Sun God who is considered the source of life on this earth and is regarded as the deity who fulfills all our wishes. The festival is with aims to express thanks to Sun God for offering energy to earth continuously enabling the environment suitable for the people to live in. Along with the Sun God, people worship ‘Chhathi Maiya’ on this day.
On this festival, devotees assemble at the ghats at rivers and ponds and take a holy dip before preparing offerings (Prasad). The main constituent of the offerings is Thekua, which is a wheat-based cake.
Offerings are preferably cooked on an earthen Chulha (oven). During the offerings, offerings are contained in small, semicircular pans woven out of bamboo strips called soop.
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