Navratri, or Navaratri, is a Hindu festival to worship the nine forms of Goddess Durga (Shakti/Devi). It is usually celebrated in the month of September or October; the dates, however, are determined based on the lunar calendar. The word Navaratri literally means nine nights in Sanskrit (nava means nine and ratri means night).
Significance of the Navratri's Nine Nights
The Navratri commences on the first day (pratipada) of the bright fortnight of the lunar month of Ashwin. The nine days of the Navratras are devoted to Maa Durga, Maa Lakshmi and Maa Saraswati, with each goddess being worshipped for three days, respectively.
The festival of Navratri is one of the most celebrated festivals among the Hindus. Dancing, feasting and fasting become the daily routine for the Hindus during the nine days of the Navratras. Although it is celebrated all across India, the festival of Navratri is most popular in Gujarat and Bengal. While Dandiya and Garba Raas are the highlights of the Navratras in Gujarat, people in Bengal pamper themselves with new, bright clothes and indulge in feasting sweets during this festive season.
As the Navratras are just around the corner, it is that time of the year again when one needs to get into the festive mood and start chanting “Bolo Durga Maiyya ki Jai!!!