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Photographer's Note

'Dashami' or 'Bijoya-Dashami' as it is sometimes known, is the final day of 'Durga Puja' (according to mythology, the Goddess Durga prepares for her return journey to her husband's abode). The highlight of this day's events is 'Sindoor-khela' . The forehead and face of the idol of 'Durga' is smeared with vermillion by married women of the locality who then smear each other's faces with the vermillion. This is done amidst the constant beating of drums and blowing of conch-shells. The ladies then perform 'Boron' where they wipe the idols eyes, feed them sweetend curds, give them paan and tearfully bid farewell. The ritual signifies the mother wishing her daughter who had come to her house, farewell. This done, people seek the final blessings of the Goddess before the idols are removed from the 'Pandal'. As people say farewell, with a heavy heart, to the Goddess Durga and wish her back the next year, the idols are put onto the trucks that carry them to the river for immersion. The immersion of the idols marks the journey of the Goddess back to her in-laws, and the end of 'Durga Puja', probably the biggest and most popular of all festivals among the Bengali community.

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Additional Photos by Arijit Ghosh (arijit_ghosh86) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 112 W: 1 N: 130] (795)
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