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Chamba Shasti

Champa Shasthi, also known as Chambasasti or Chamba Sasthi, is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is observed on the 6th day in the month of Margashirsh in Maharashtra and other regions. In 2016, the date of Chamba Shasti is December 5. The day is of great significance at Jejuri near Pune, which has a temple dedicated to Martand also known as Malhari or Khandoba or Kanderao. Lord Shiva took the form of Martand to destroy two demons named Mani and Malla.

Sasti, or Shashthi, is the sixth day in a lunar fortnight in Hindu calendar and is mainly dedicated to Lord Muruga or Subrahmanya.

Legend has it that two demons named Mani and Malla became powerful by performing intense Tapas (austerities) dedicated to Brahma. After several years Brahma gave them boons. With unimaginable power on their disposal, Mani and Malla started harassing demi gods and humans. They created havoc and disturbed the peaceful life on earth and heaven.

Manichurna Mountain the abode of several Saints was taken over by the demons. Rishis and demigods approached Shiva.

Shiva brought out several lieutenants from his matted lock to fight Mani and Malla and went to Manichurna Mountain. He himself took the form of Bhairav, the terrible form of Shiva and Parvati took the form of Mhalsa. In some regions, Mhalsa is believed to be an incarnation of Mohini and Parvati.

The battle began on the first day of Margashirsh. Mani and Malla fought hard for six days. Finally, they fell on the feet of Shiva and they were killed. This happened on the sixth day of Margashirsh and is observed as Chamba Shasti. It is believed Lord Shiva decided to stay here in the form of a Swayambhu lingam after defeating the demons.