Banadashtami dedicated to Goddess Banashankari

Banadashtami, or Banada Ashtami, is an auspicious day dedicated to Goddess Banashankari, an incarnation of Goddess Parvati. In 2014, the date of Banadashtami is January 8. Goddess Banashankari is also known as Vanashankari or Shakhambari or Banadevi and is mainly worshipped in Karnataka. The word Banashankari is derived from ‘Ban or Van’ meaning ‘forest’ and ‘Shankari’ meaning ‘the consort of Lord Shiva.’

There is also a Banashankari Navarti in Pushya month and is observed by devotees of Banashankari. Fairs and festivals are held during this period in Banashankari temples.

Banadashtami is observed on the eight day after new moon in the month of Pushya. The day also marks the beginning of festivals dedicated to Goddess Banashankari. A major fair is held at Badami Banashankari Devi Temple during this period and it begins on Banadashtami day.

According to Skanda Purana, Goddess Banashankari Devi killed a demon called Durgamasura at the present day Badami in Bagalkot in Karnataka.

Banashankari Devi was also said to be worshiped by mighty Chalukyas as their Kuladevi.

Famous temples dedicated to Goddess Banashankari are located in Badami and Bangalore in Karnataka.