Jharsuguda : Hundreds of devotees thronged the Ghats and ponds in the Jharsuguda District to celebrate Chhath Puja on Sunday evening.
The four-day festival of worshipping Sun God began on Friday as Chhat Puja, followed by an important offering (Sandhya Arghya) on Sunday evening. The ‘Suryodaya Arghya’ or the morning offering ritual will be performed on Monday.
The festival is celebrated on the sixth day after Diwali every year, and it is usually a four-day celebration. Chhath Puja is unique as there is no pundit or priest who performs this ritual and devotees offer prayers and Arghya. Devotees mainly married women fast 36 hours for the well-being of sons and prosperity of the family.
Chhath Puja started from Friday with Nahay Khay, the first day of Chhath Puja where devotees took a dip in the river and carry the holy water back home to commence the rituals. On the Second day a special meal “Kharna” is prepared. Kheer and Roti are prepared during evening hours for family and relatives, ” said Rakesh Singh , a resident of Jharsuguda The Kheer is made up of rice, Sugarcane, Jaggery and milk and is eaten with roti” he added
On the third day is ‘Chhath’ when devotees offer ‘Sandhya Arghya’ to the Sun God. Devotees stand in waist-deep water and offered prayers to the sun on the banks of rivers. The fourth and the final day, also known as ‘Suryodaya Argh’ is the day to offer early morning prayers to Sun before breaking the fast.