Durga Puja, the biggest religious festival of the Bengali Hindu community, has begun with a drizzling celebration as devotees performed Maha Sashthi puja on a rainy day amid festivity following the prescribed health guidelines in face of coronavirus pandemic.
On the occasion, preparations at all the puja mandaps have nearly been completed as artisans are busy giving final touches on idols and pandals across the country marking the festival.
The five-day-long Durga Puja celebration will begin with the unveiling of the face of the deity and Kalparambho on the day of Maha Sashthi on Thursday and conclude on October 26 with the immersion of the idols.
The incarnation (Bodhon) of the Goddess Durga was held on Wednesday at temples ahead of the puja on Maha Panchami.
Maha Saptami puja will be performed on Friday, Maha Ashtami, Kumari Puja, and Sandhi Puja on Saturday, and Maha Nabami Puja on Sunday.
The Mahalaya, the auspicious occasion heralding the advent of Goddess Durga, was celebrated on September 17 last.
This year, Durga Puja will be arranged at 7,014 mandaps in Dhaka division while at 3,906 mandaps in Chittagong, 4,689 in Khulna, 2,646 in Sylhet, 1,584 in Mymensingh, 1,701 in Barisal, 5,250 in Rangpur, and 3,435 in Rajshahi division.
Recently Health Services Division issued directives for maintaining health guidelines during the Durga Puja in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
According to the instructions, while entering the puja mandap, one has to maintain health guidelines, including social distancing, using hand sanitizer, and wearing a mask.