Red sindoor shines through grey skies


A Durga idol being immersed in the river in Tezpur. Picture by UB Photos

Guwahati, Sept. 30: The four-day Durga Puja festivities ended on a rainy note across most parts of Assam today.

Incessant drizzle in most parts of Assam was not enough to dampen the spirit of revellers who lined up along the routes of idol processions and thronged the immersion sites though.

While it rained in Guwahati, Goalpara, Nagaon, Dhubri, Sivasagar, Jorhat (first half), Silchar, the weather was “pleasant” in Tinsukia and Dibrugarh districts in the afternoon.

Immersion passed off peacefully with the district and police administration making adequate security and traffic arrangements to control the crowds. Revellers carried umbrellas or stood under shelters.

However, the crowd everywhere was less compared to last year because of the weather.

In Guwahati, pandals were agog with activities and enthusiasm for the final journey of goddess Durga for immersion on the banks of the Brahmaputra on Dashami today.

Devotees sprinkled sindoor and gulal on each other and fireworks were lighted as the idols were loaded on trucks and smaller vehicles decorated especially for the occasion.

Gaily decorated vehicles, blaring loud music, followed men and women singing and dancing on the road leading to the immersion point at Kasomari Ghat, Pandu Port, Sunshali Ghat, Azara, Basistha and Chandrapur here. Vehicles other than those carrying idols were kept off the busy MG Road here leading to the riverfront.

NGOs served water to the people tired and thirsty with all the walking, dancing and screaming.

At several places across the state, Dussehra was celebrated in the evening. In Guwahati, Ravan Dahan will be held tomorrow at the Old Jail campus.

Xankardev

Dashami and Dussehra coincided with the 569th abirbhav tithi (birth anniversary) of the 15th century saint Srimanta Xankardev in Assam today.

Devotees clad in white, cutting across caste, creed and religion thronged naamghars and xatras in all districts of the state braving inclement weather to remember the Vaishnavite Saint.

The Srimanta Sankaradeva Sangha, the largest socio-cultural organisation of Assam, celebrated the birth of the saint with much enthusiasm at all 5,873 prathamiks (branches) spread across every nook and corner of Assam. The Sangha will hold a 15-day celebration.

Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal said the teachings of the great saint are the backbone of the greater Assamese identity.

“Srimanta Xankardev is one of the world’s renounced social scientists and a great humanist. People of the state should unify and move forward hand in hand on the foundation stone laid by the great saint,” Sonowal said.

Posted by Ali Fauz Hassan in Telegraph India with Additional reporting by Hiranya Barman

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