By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, Oct 20: With Maha Saptami, the main Durga puja rituals have got under way in major shaktipeeths across the State, accompanied by animal sacrifice. In Kamakhya temple, where general puja began on October 6, the mandir committee conducts the Kumari puja also during the varatri puja of Devi Durga, worshipping living kumaris based on each day during varatri. The sacrifice of five types of animals and vegetables are also conducted during Maha Shasthi, Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami and Maha vami. As per rituals, 12 buffalos have already been sacrificed --- six yesterday and six today.
Eight buffalos are lined up for sacrifice on Maha Ashtami and four on Maha vami, though their numbers may increase at the last moment. The mandir authority has been sacrificing four buffalos every year during Durga puja while the others are doted by devotees. As before, devotees will also be sacrificing hundreds of goats, ducks, pigeons, catfish, sugarcane and white gourds at the temple to seek blessings of the Mother Goddess and have their wishes fulfilled.
The Ugratara shaktipeeth in the city is considered a living devalaya of Devi Durga and so the temple authority does not conduct agomoni (arrival) and bisarjan (immersion) of the Goddess. In this temple too, 12 buffalos have been scheduled for sacrifice during puja. On Tuesday, around 35 goats and other animals, along with vegetables were offered during the Maha Saptami puja.
In another major shaktipeeth of the State, the Bilbeswar devalaya of lbari, a total 37 buffalos are scheduled for sacrifice this year during Durga Puja. Among these, four will be sacrificed by the temple authority and the others will be doted by devotees. Every year, the temple authority keeps records of buffalos and other animals sacrificed during Duga puja. Another specialty of this devalaya is that unlike the other temples and shaktipeeths of Devi Durga, this devalaya uses a replica of Devi Durga symbolically with a variety of ba tree called Ram Kol, which is brought from a particular home in Kokoya area of lbari district, where it is believed to have origited.