Dussehra also known as Vijayadashami or the tenth day of Navratri is a Hindu festival which is celebrated differently across various countries such as India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka.
Different cultures associate differently with this particular festival, and have their own theory, but the most famous by far is the victory of Lord Rama over the demon king who had ten heads, called Ravana or Ravan. In fact, Dussehra is said to have been derived from the Sanskrit word Dasha-hara meaning dashnan Ravan or the killing of Ravan.
This day also marks the victory of Goddess Durga over Mahishasur, a demon who had caused havoc across all realms or the world. The word Vijayadashami has been derived from the Sanskrit word Viajaya-dashami which means the victory of the Dashami. Dashami is the tenth day of the Hindu lunar calendar month.
A play depicting the whole story of the victory of Lord Rama/Ram over Ravana/Ravan- king of Shri Lanka is staged in every locality. It starts 10 days prior to dussehra and ends on the dussehra eve. There are outdoor fairs and large parades with effigies of Ravana , his brother Kumbhakarna and son Meghanad. The effigies are then burnt on bonfires in the evening.
The Bengali community worships Goddess Durga and organises huge feasts to celebrate her miraculous victory. They worship the deity for five to six days and immerse the deity on the last day in a river or a pond. She often symbolises ‘Shakti’ or power.
Hindu families usually like to celebrate the evening with sweets, especially jalebi and rabri.
Important festival, symbolising the victory of good over evil , light over darkness; it marks the beginning of a pure reign.