Festivals of India, October - 2018

Fairs / Festivals October 2018
Month Festival Place
October 10 to 18, 2018 Navratri North India
October 15 to 20, 2018 Durga Puja All India
October 19, 2018 Dussehra North India
October 28th, 2018 Karwa Chauth North India

 

India is a land of festivals, for the people of India believe in celebrating life. And October here can be described as the Queen of all months where festivals and fairs are concerned. Some of the major festivals in India normally fall in the month of October. Here is a list of the few important ones:

Festivals

Karva Chauth

When: 27 October
Celebrations

Karva Chauth which falls on the fourth day of Krishna Paksha in the Hindu month of Kartik is an important Festival in India. On this day married women fast for the whole day wishing for the long life of the husband. The rituals are strictly followed by married women on this day. The fast begins early morning before sunrise and ends when the moon rises late at night. In many parts of India unmarried women also keep fasts in order to get the desired life partner. Women get beautifully dressed up like newlywed brides on this day. In the evening women gather and narrate the story of Karwa to other women. Goddess Parvati is worshipped during the pooja. After the pooja is finished women break their fast when the moon arrives. While watching the husband through a sieve the fast is broken when female drinks water offered by the husband.

 

Karva Chauth Calendar
Date Day Year
8 October Sunday 2017
27 October Saturday 2018
17 October Thursday 2019

Navaratri

When: 10 to 18, October

Navratri, which means the nine nights, is an important festival celebrated in India. It is on this day that Goddess Durga and her various incarnations are brought home and worshipped. The festivities continue for nine days. The festival is celebrated all over India with full fervor and enthusiasm. It begins on the day of Mahalaya (new moon) and concludes on Dussehra.

Celebrations: During Navratri, people fast for nine long days and consume only satvik (vegetarian food prepared without onions and garlic) food when they break the fast at the end of each day. In the evening and till late night the goddess is again worshipped in the form of dandiya and raas garba, where everyone dressed in their finest traditional clothes dance all night long, in large areas arranged for the event. During Navratri, festivities take place all over India. In Gujarat Garba is played by Dandiya, in West Bengal, huge poojas are organized, in North India people perform folk dance and organize Ramayana plays.

What to do and what not to do during Navratri?

To do -
Visit the temple daily during Navratri to seek the blessings of the Goddess.
Offer water to people who are thirsty, especially during Navratri.
Clean your surroundings and wear clean clothes.
Fasting is an integral part of Navratri so one should keep a fast during the nine days.

Not to do -
Avoid consuming alcohol.
Avoid eating non-vegetarian food.
Avoid lying or hurting anyone.

 

Navaratri Calendar
Date Day Year
1 - 11 October Saturday 2016
21 - 29 September Thursday 2017
10 - 18 October Wednesday 2018
29 Sep. - 7 Oct Sunday 2019
Navaratri Related Links

Durga Puja

When: 15 to 20, October

Durga Pooja, one of the most important festival celebrated in India, is the major festival of Bengali community. During Durga Pooja, the Goddess Shakti is worshipped in various forms. The festival continues for 4 days.

Celebrations:In West Bengal people wake up before sunrise and pray to Goddess Durga to come on Earth. After the pooja, they blow conch shell that reverberates through the air in the morning. In the evening again pooja is held and celebrations take place. On the last day, Sandhi Pooja takes place on a grand scale. It is believed that Ma Durga (as the Bengalis address the goddess) after killing the demon Mahishasur, visits her parents’ place for 4 days, before heading back to Kailash, the abode of her husband Lord Shiva. People welcome their Ma every year with great fervor. The idol of Ma Durga in the pose of killing Mahishasur along with the idols of Lord Karthik, Lord Ganesh, Goddess Saraswati, and Goddess Laxmi (who are considered to be Ma Durga’s children as per Bengali tradition) are placed in beautifully constructed pandals. The Puja begins on the sixth day of the new moon and continues for four days with the celebration of great fervor. There are many fairs all over India, with rides and food stalls, On The 4th day the idol is immersed in rivers symbolizing the departure of Ma Durga for Kailash. There is a lot of fanfare with loudspeakers blaring music and the streets lit up with colorful lights.

 

Durga Puja Calendar
Date Day Year
7 - 11 October Friday 2016
26 to 30 September Tuesday 2017
15 to 20 October Monday 2018
4 to 8 October Friday 2019
Durga Puja Related Links

Dussehra

When: 19 October

The tenth day of Navaratri is celebrated as Dussehra all over India. As per popular beliefs, on this day Lord Rama, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, killed Ravana, the king of Lanka. The festival basically symbolizes the victory of good over evil

Celebrations North India: All over North India very big effigies of Ravana filled with firecrackers are erected in an open area. With very large crowds watching, these effigies are then set on fire. Normally someone in the costume of Lord Rama shoots a lighted arrow at the effigy. As the effigy burns and the firecrackers light up the night sky, there is great rejoicing and people wish each other a Happy Dussehra.

Kullu: Here Dussehra is celebrated to worship Goddess Hadimba, who according to mythology was the wife of Bhim and mother of Ghatotkacha. Celebrations in Himachal Pradesh are also held on a grand scale. Specifically, the Dusshera of Kullu is extremely popular which attracts tourists from worldwide. Grand scale celebrations are held to show respect to Lord Rama and Goddess Durga during Navaratri.

Kota: Here a big Mela (fair) is organized and artisans come from far and wide with their wares. All the villagers are dressed in traditional clothes and a spectacular procession of decorated elephants, camels, horses, folk dancers is taken from the Royal Palace to the fairground. Ravana effigy is also burnt.

Karnataka: Dussehra is a major festival of Mysore. According to the mythology in Karnataka, on this day Goddess Shakti, in the form of Chamundeshwari, killed the demon Mashishasur. The festival is celebrated on a grand scale, and the highlight is the Mysore Palace, illuminated with nearly 1 lakh light bulbs. There also various cultural programmes all over the city.

Gujarat: In Gujarat, Dandiya festival is organized on this occasion. The sounds of dandiya sticks, dhol, and tunes of garba can be heard everywhere in the state. Traditional costumes are worn and dances are performed by men and women altogether.

Tamil Nadu: In Tamil Nadu, these nine days are celebrated worshipping goddesses and exchanging gifts. Married women are given bangles, bindi, and other ornamental stuff. A ritual called Kolu is the most interesting part of the festival in which the staircase is decorated with dolls.

Maharashtra: In Maharashtra, Navaratri is significant for new beginnings. It is considered the best time to buy property or initiate new business ventures. Gifts are exchanged, dandiya is played and traditional dances are performed during Navaratri.

In other parts of India including West Bengal, Bihar and North-east the last four days are considered extremely significant. Durga Puja is considered as the most popular festival and the victory of Goddess Durga over evil is celebrated with full fervor and enthusiasm.

 

Dussehra Calendar
Date Day Year
11 October Tuesday 2016
30 September Saturday 2017
19 October Friday 2018