The four-day Hindu festival of Durga Puja that takes place every fall all over eastern region of India is underway. It's become more about expressing folk artistry and playing traditional music than about the religion itself, which makes it an ideal celebration for foreigners to attend. The decorations and makeshift temples are incredible, and sadly they are all destroyed at the end of the festival each year.
Puja is a Sanskrit word for worship and Durga is a goddess who vanquishes the demon Asura with her 10 arms. According to the Bengali Hindu traditions, Mother Goddess Durga comes down from her Himalayan abode on to the plains for those four autumn days, and brings along her children Ganesha, Lakshmi, Saraswati and Kartik, who each symbolizes a special force.
Below are photos that Nandini Banerjee took in Calcutta on Friday. To see photos from Durga Puja taken a few years back, click here.