Kolkata witnessed the successful and grand conclusion of the Chhath Mahaparva festival on Monday. With tight security arrangements in place, devotees offered Arghya to the setting sun on Sunday and, in continuation, to the rising sun on Monday, marking the peaceful conclusion of this significant folk faith festival in the state.
Lakhs of Chhath devotees flocked to various Ganga ghats across West Bengal, including metropolitan Kolkata, Howrah, Hooghly, North and South 24 Parganas, to perform the rituals associated with Chhath Puja. The ghats buzzed with activity as married women adorned in colorful sarees, applying vermillion from nose to head, decorated bowls with fruits like banana, apple, coconut, orange, and pear, entering the water to offer Arghya to the Sun.
Chhath fasting women, after bathing and eating on Friday, observed a fast and worshipped the Sun by remaining hungry for over 36 hours. Priests joined the devotees in the river to facilitate the Arghya offerings. The police ensured comprehensive security in the capital, while the Municipal Corporation arranged for lighting, cleanliness, and public announcements at the ghats.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, in a significant gesture, visited the Ganga Ghat on Sunday afternoon, extending her wishes to Chhath fasting individuals and announcing a two-day holiday for Chhath Puja. Expressing her respect for the festival, she emphasized her tradition of granting leaves on Chhath Puja, similar to Eid and Kali Puja holidays.