Offbeat

Odisha celebrates Chhath puja

Bhubaneswar, Oct 27 (Sabyasachi Amitav): The river banks of Mahanadi, Kathajodi, Kuakhai, Brahmani, Koel and other water bodies too soaked in festive fervour with people belonging to Bihari community observing holy Chhath Puja on Thursday.

The puja is observed for four days when rigorous rituals including holy bathing, fasting and abstaining from even drinking water, are observed. Offering prasad and prayers to the rising and setting sun are undertaken. 

Bihari families residing in Cuttack, Bhubaneswar and Rourkela converged on the river banks for the prayer. On the first day, women observe fast after taking holy dip in the river and eat a single meal. The fasting continues throughout the third night to be broken on fourth day after offering prasad to rising Sun. Standing in waist-deep water, they worship the rising and setting sun at 5 pm on October 26 and 5 am on October 27.
 
The puja starts with the ritual of 'Nahai-Khai', in which devotees prepare traditional food after bathing. The second day is 'Kharna', during which devotees observe a day-long fast which ends after sunset.
 
On the third day, the devotees stand in water and offer 'Arghya' to the setting sun. On the final day of the puja, devotees and their friends and relatives assemble at the river bank before sunrise and offer 'Arghya' to the rising sun.

The festival was also celebrated with much fervour and gaiety in others parts of Odisha including Sundergarh, Birmitrapur and Rajgangpur where a good numbers of non-Odias are settled.

Eating healthy but not losing weight ?

Many people have made weight loss their New Year's resolution and have stocked their kitchen shelves with healthy items like avocados, coconut oil and...

Know why January 15 is celebrated as Army Day

New Delhi: The Indian Army is celebrating its 70th raising day on Monday. The showcase event of the Army Day will be the annual parade at the Cariappa...

Bhitarkanika park registers rise in number of winged guests

Kendrapara: The Bhitarkanika National Park in Odisha's Kendrapara district has played host to over one lakh migrant water birds this year.While 76,268...

Odisha man moves mountains to send children to school

Phulbani: Eight hours of gruelling work every day for two years, Jalandhar Nayak has been single-handedly moving mountains to construct a 15-kilometre...