Ganesh Chaturthi 2018 falls on September 13 of this year. And the preparations for the popular festival are on full swing. The festival will begin on September 13 and will end on September 23.
The 10-day Ganeshotsav is celebrated with much fervour in the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.
The date of Ganesh Chaturthi falls on the fourth day of the waxing moon period (Shukla Chaturthi) in the Hindu month of Bhadrapada. This is August or September each year. The festival is usually celebrated for 11 days, with the biggest spectacle taking place on the last day called Anant Chaturdasi.
According to the Hindu mythology, Goddess Parvati created Ganesha from dirt and appointed him to prevent anyone from entering her chamber while she was taking a bath. Unaware of Ganesha, Lord Shiva got angry upon seeing an unknown boy standing outside trying to prevent him from entering. He then severed Ganesha's head.
After seeing the headless Ganesha, Goddess Parvati asked Lord Shiva to join his head back, since that was not possible, a head of an elephant was used instead. This gave birth to the beloved Lord Ganesha.
On this auspicious day, processions are held to enjoy the festival. In Mumbai, where Ganeshotsav is the biggest festival, people take to the streets and dance along to religious songs. People cherish the festive spirit with lights, lasers, fireworks and drumbeats.
Lord Ganesha was a fond lover of food, especially modak. Another popular sweet dish is karanji (karjikai in Kannada), similar to modak in composition and taste but in a semi-circular shape. This sweet is popularly known as nevri in Goa, which is an intrinsic part of Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations in Goa.
Happy Ganesh Chaturthi 2018!