While the nation is gearing up to celebrate Diwali 2017 with full fervor, the eastern part of the country is also immersed in the preparations for another festival that falls on the same day as Diwali – KALI PUJO!
Celebrated widely across the states of West Bengal, Tripura and Assam, Kali Puja or Kali Pujo is dedicated to the worship of Goddess Kali. Like Durga Puja, Kali Pujo is often held in Temple courtyards or pandals, however some also perform the Puja in their respective homes. The Kali Puja is celebrated on Amavasya in the Lunar month of Ashwin. Kali puja dates typically coincide with Choti Diwali or Diwali. This year Kali Puja will be celebrated on Thursday, October 19. Telly celebrities talk about the Kali Pujo celebrations.
Devoleena Bhattacharjee: On the day of Kali Pujo, devotees gather in the Pandal to worship the deity. One of the most significant highlights of Kali Puja has to be the bhog that is served in the pandals, which could either contain the khichudi and labra or luchi and some vegetables. People also enjoy this festival with a lavish spread at the end of the day in their homes – one of the highlights of most meals is ‘Sandesh’ (sweet) which is enjoyed by the devotees after the conclusion of Puja.
Debina Bonnerjee: The much celebrated Kali Pooja of West Bengal coincides with the Diwali Festival. Gusto and enthusiasm for Kali Puja in West Bengal is same as seen for Diwali in rest of India. The only apparent difference one can see is that while rest of India worships Goddess Lakshmi on this day, in Kolkata Goddess Kali is the chief deity for the occasion. We enjoy the Dhak and Khichudi bhog are really special. I miss it in mumbai but do visit kali temples for blessings.
Parineeta Borthakur: Kali Puja is one of the major festival for people in West Bengal and north east. Being from Assam we celebrate the occasion with much gusto and enthusiasm. Just as people in other parts of India light lamps to honor Lakshmi Ma during Lakshmi Puja, people in West Bengal celebrate Kali Puja by lighting lamps in honor of Goddess Kali. The pujo is performed at mid-nights. I remember we use to prepare bhog and use to go to temples for puspanjali.
Neha Marda: I’m grown up at Kolkata and have enjoyed Diwali and Kali Pujo together. Houses are decorated and elaborate Rangoli pattern are drawn in front of houses and courtyard. Elaborate Kali Puja is carried out during the evening. As Goddess Kali is regarded as the Goddess to be feared Bengalis leave no stone unturned in carrying out a special Pooja for her. Through Puja people seek happiness, prosperity and protection against hardships. I really miss bengali bhogs which includes sweets and Khichudi.
Shiwani Chakraborty: I’m devoted to mother Kali. So the festival is really important for me. I feel her blessings to be with me in my good and bad times. I have many childhood memories. We all use to enjoy with great fun and glory in our societies. Puja happens during mid-nights and then we use to enjoy bhogs. Here, in mumbai I do visit kali maa temple for blessings.