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Ganesh Chaturthi Festival, Rajasthan

A Resonating Call of Religion and Culture at the Ganesh Chaturthi Festival, Rajasthan

Location - Ranthambore, Rajasthan
Date - September 5, 2016
Highlights - Religious proceedings of the fest at the temple dedicated to Lord Ganesha, Sparkling shades of the auspicious orange colour, devotional songs and other cultural programs, markets selling ethnic stuff.

The holy festival of Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated with much enthusiasm and pomp in almost all parts of the country. Rajasthan in particular paints a blissful picture on the auspicious day which marks the birth day of Hindu Lord Ganesha. The festival is organised every year on the occasion in the month of September in Sawai Madhopar in the state of Rajasthan. It is to rejoice and pay a holy tribute to the ultimate God who is believed to remove all the obstacles in the path of a human's life.

It is a special affair in the Ranthambore region for a very famous temple dedicated to Lord Ganesha is located in the Ranthambore fort. Millions of tourists from all over the world are allured towards this fun filled colourful fest and flock the place during this time to soak their souls in this religious cum cultural extravaganza. Though the temple is generally occupied with people paying regular visits to worship and seek blessings from the Lord before each and every auspicious day or activity or on any special occasion like marriage, child birth etc., for it is considered to be a good first step.

The temple is also the major site for the festive celebrations especially organized during this time of the year and thus, draws much attention from all the visitors and worshippers to blend in the merry making, dancing and singing of devotional and other cultural songs. Inside the temple, a glorious idol or statuette of Lord Ganesha is placed inside the temple, traditionally coloured in orange. Interesting, the colour orange also becomes the scared colour of the fest. The idol is beautifully and intricately bedecked with heavy gold ornaments and quite large sized marigold garlands, changed fresh on a daily basis.

The festival brings in a variety of shades in the region; religious, social, cultural, spiritual and traditional during this gala time. Professional folk singers and dancers grace the occasion with a wonderful display of their entertaining talent along with the other spectacular cultural shows, activities and events taking place. Tourists as well as local people of the town participate completely and with great excitement in all of these arrangements, taking in the ethnicity in every breath. Several stalls and small shops are also laid out in the nearby markets selling out the essentials as well as unique traditional pieces for the tourists to buy as souvenirs. The renowned Ganesh Giri temple at the Moti Dungri Hill i.e. the ‘Pearl’ Hill is also a main place to be visited, particularly for the lovely scenic view and certainly to pay a revered homage to Ganeshji. At the time of the festival, it is captivating to witness the morning holy showers and the aarti (prayer to the Lord) going inside the temple. It is even more charming to offer the Indian sweet laddos or Modak to Lord Ganesha for the fact that the sweet is the most favourite of the God. The place is surely worth a visit while one is travelling to the country, notably during the fest, to witness the different hues of the Pink city in full grandeur.