Dussehra and Durga Puja are one of the biggest festivals in India which are celebrated every year at the end of Navratri. The festival marks the triumph of Lord Ram over the evil king Ravana. Every year, all over the country, fairs are organized at various Ram Lila grounds that give us a good insight into Indian culture. However, this does not go exactly the same way in all regions of the country.
In different parts of the country the methods of celebrations could be different but the significance remains the same – the victory of good over evil. Well, here in this article, we take a look at four unusual places to celebrate Dussehra in India.
1. Kulasekarapattinam, Tamil Nadu: People dressed as Gods
This unusual 10-day Dussehra festival at Mutharamman temple in Tamil Nadu’s Kulasekarapattinam village requires pilgrims to dress up as gods and goddesses, or animals of their choosing. The temple is dedicated to ferocious Goddess Kali. The festival culminates with a theatrical slaying, on the beach, of demon Mahishasura by the Goddess.
2. Almora, Uttarakhand: Parade of demons
3. Coorg, Karnataka: An all-night street party
Another popular local Dussehra festival in Karnataka, Madikeri Dasara celebrations kick off with ritualistic karaga folk dances from four temples. The rituals are dedicated to Draupadi, an incarnation of Goddess Mariamma and wife of the five Pandava brothers in The Mahabharata. The highlight happens on the ninth night of the festival when the town is taken over by an uproarious parade of 10 hi-tech floats featuring mechanical figures of gods, goddesses, and demons. Each puts on an eye and ear-popping display, in the hope of winning a prize. The party continues well into the morning on Dussehra, facilitated by the thunderous blasting of dance music through loudspeakers.
4. Kota, Rajasthan: Rural fair
The highlight of this Dussehra celebration is a huge fair (mela) with a rural feel. Artisans come from far and wide to sell their wares, and there are cultural programs and performances. Villagers also gather in traditional dress to offer prayers to Lord Ram and to celebrate his victory over Ravana. Towering effigies of Ravana are burnt. The fair takes place alongside the Kota Adventure Festival. Activities include parasailing, rafting, windsurfing, water skiing and kayaking, rock climbing, gliding, trekking, angling, and rural excursions.
Well, which of the above places do you want to celebrate the most?