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Ganesh Chaturthi 2019: Everything You Need to Know Behind Festival Dedicated to Lord Ganesha

Notably Ganesh Chaturthi celebrates Lord Ganesha as the God of New Beginnings and the Remover of Obstacles as well as the god of wisdom and intelligence.

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Updated:September 2, 2019, 7:30 AM IST
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Ganesh Chaturthi 2019: Everything You Need to Know Behind Festival Dedicated to Lord Ganesha
Devotees carry a Ganesha idol to be installed at a pandal ahead of Ganpati festival. (Image: AP)
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Ganesh Chaturthi Or Vinayaka Chaturthi is a festival celebrating the birth of the elephant-headed God, Ganesha. The festival falls in the months of August or September according to the Gregorian calendar and is marked by devotees worshipping idols of Ganesha in homes or in marquees. Notably Ganesh Chaturthi celebrates Lord Ganesha as the God of New Beginnings and the Remover of Obstacles as well as the god of wisdom and intelligence. The festival which is celebrated with much pomp and splendor in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Goa, Telengana, Gujarat and Chhattisgarh.

It is also celebrated in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. Recent years have seen a surge of Ganesh Chaturthi in Bengal as well.

While it is unclear as to when Ganesh Chaturthi started, it became a major social and public event with sponsorship of Shivaji following the Mughal-Maratha wars and again in the 19th century when freedom fighter Lokmanya Tilak promoted it, championing it as a means to oppose the colonial British government ban on Hindu gatherings through its anti-public assembly legislation of 1892.

Notably, Vedic texts make no mention of Ganesha Chaturthi, but the mention of Ganesh Chaturthi does appear in post-Vedic texts such as the Grhya Sutras and thereafter ancient Sanskrit texts such as the Vajasaneyi Samhita, the Yajnavalkya Smriti and the Mahabharata.

Ganesh Chaturthi date is on September 2, 2019, Monday.

Ganesha Visarjan Date is on September 12, 2019, Thursday.

According to Hindu mythology, Goddess Parvati created Ganesha using such strength that no God could face him at war. However, during one of their bouts Lord Shiva accidentally chopped of Ganesha's head. To placate Parvati's rage, Lord Shiva along with the other Gods fixed the head of a baby elephant on Ganesha's trunk.

On the auspicious day of Ganesh Chaturthi, Lord Shiva declared that Ganesha will be the only deity who would be worshipped ahead of any other God, and that he would always be worshipped as a symbol of knowledge, wisdom and strength.

Worship of Lord Ganesha begins with the priest chanting mantras and bathing the deity with sandalwood paste and kumkum.

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