DHAKA Maha Ashtami, known as Kumari Puja, the third day of the five day Durga Puja of the Hindu community, was celebrated with much enthusiasm and religious fervor at temples across the country today.
The Hindu community observed Maha Ashtami through performing the day's main attraction Kumari Puja in the city as elsewhere in the country.
The Goddess Durga is worshipped in various forms during the five day Sharodiya Durgotsab and one of those is worshiping Kumari as an epitome of virginity.
Several thousands of Hindu devotees gathered in city's various temples including Dhakeshwari National Temple, Ramkrishna Mission and Math, Kalabagan, Banani, Shakhari Bazar and Dhaka University Jagannath Hall puja mandaps to welcome and worship goddess Kumari at the podium.
Devotees of all ages offered flowers at the feet of the Kumari, adorned the girl with gold, silver and clothes, as part of their rites seeking blessings from the Goddess.
The organisers also arranged cultural programmes on the occasion and later, Mohaprasad (sweets) along with anjali (flowers) was distributed among the devotees.
All puja mandaps were decorated with colourful designs and lights while additional law enforcers were deployed at all temples in the city to maintain law and order situation during the festival.
The five day festival began on Friday with the incarnation (Bodhon) of the Goddess Durga on the day of Maha Shashti.
Security has been beefed up at all Puja pandals throughout the country, including in the capital, with the deployment of additional squads of Ansars, police, RAB and other law enforcers for peaceful celebration of the festival.
Closed circuit television cameras (CCTVs), archways and metal detectors have been installed at all puja mandaps across the country. Law enforcers including intelligence personnel are on alert to thwart the trouble makers during the Puja celebrations.
Bangladesh Puja Udjapan Parishad and Mahanagar Sarbajanin Puja Committee this year decided that the immersion of the Goddess Durga would be done by 10 pm on the day of Bijoya Dashami across the country.
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)