Navratri 2020: Chaitra Navratri is a nine-day festival dedicated to nine forms of Goddess Shakti. (Source: File Photo)
Chaitra Navratri 2020 Date: Festivities begin in India with the onset of the spring season. And one of the most prominent Hindu festivals during this season is Chaitra Navratri, that is celebrated over a period of nine days in the first month of the Hindu calendar, and in the months of March-April as per the English calendar. The other Navratri that is celebrated every year is in the months of September-October and is called Sharada Navratri. This year, the festivities of Chaitra Navratri begin from March 25 which is the pratipada, and end on navami or the ninth day of the Shukla Paksha, which is April 3.
The festival is also celebrated in southern states like Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka as Ugadi. It is also known as ‘Vasanta Navratri’ or ‘Rama Navratri’, as the ninth day of the Navratri festival is celebrated as the birthday of Lord Rama.
The nine days of the festival are dedicated to nine forms of goddess Shakti which manifest itself as Goddess Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati with three days dedicated to each goddess. While the first three days of Chaitra Navratri are dedicated to Maa Durga, the next three days are dedicated to Maa Lakshmi, followed by Maa Saraswati.
What is done?
Before the start of the celebrations, the house is cleaned. Puja is observed on all nine days. The devotees performing the puja observe a fast in which they take 'satvik' food like potatoes, fruits, kuttu ka atta among others. The fast is broken on the ninth day after a havan.
Ghatasthapana, the invocation of goddess Shakti, is a significant ritual followed during the period.