Bhubaneswar: Durga Puja celebrations have begun across Odisha with religious fervour. Sasthi puja is performed at thousands of pandals across Odisha.
Rituals such as “bilwa barana” are being performed.
On the other hand, Saptami is being observed at the traditional shakti peethas (shrines) such as the Chandi temple in Cuttack, Biraja temple in Jajpur, Charchika temple in Banki, Bhagabati temple in Banpur and the Manikeswari temple at Bhawanipatna in Kalahandi.
In Cuttack, pandals with beautiful arches, filigree backdrops and crowns made of gold and silver like every year are drawing lakhs of devotees.
Similarly in Bhubaneswar, the 165 feet wide by 70 feet high pandal at Rasulgarh is the biggest attraction. Among other prominent pandals drawing crowds, the one at Saheed Nagar, Bomikhal and many more.
Lakhs of people are expected to gather in Cuttack and Bhubaneswar to witness Durga Puja.
Elaborate arrangements have been made to control traffic in the twin cities.
Extra security arrangements have been made near the pandals, where the idols have been decorated with gold and silver ornaments and filigree backdrops have been put in place.