For the first time, the Hindu community celebrated Ganesh Chaturthi, also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi, as per lockdown protocols due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The festival of Ganesh Chaturthi was celebrated across India, neighbouring nations and people of Indian origin living in various countries with great devotion. The day marks the birth of Lord Ganesha, considered the symbol of wisdom, prosperity and good fortune. People place clay idols of Lord Ganesha in their homes and worship them during the 10-day long festival. Ganesh Chaturthi is a major attraction in Maharashtra where people celebrate it with great zeal. As Bengal has developed a distinct tradition and culture with Durga Puja followed by Kali and other fests, Maharashtra is identified with the Ganesha Chaturthi. It is believed that Lord Ganesha comes to earth from Kailash Mountain in the Himalayas with his mother Goddess Parvati also called Gauri. He is the youngest issue of Parvati and Lord Shiva, one of the triumvirates of the Hindu faith. As per Shiva’s instruction, Ganesha, the elephant-headed God holding the Veda in one hand and the repository of knowledge should be worshipped before the commencement of all rituals including Bengal’s fabled Durga, Kali and other pujas. Ganesha is also worshipped before any major enterprise is launched and is the patron of intellectuals, bankers, scribes, and authors. Arti’ was performed at the Shri Siddhivinayak Temple in Mumbai on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi on Saturday, August 22 to kickstart the ten-day celebrations. The Union Ministry of Home Affairs has issued guidelines prohibiting cultural and religious functions and other large congregations across the nation as part of the lockdown protocols.
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