--> Skip to main content

Durga Puja At Kamakhya Devi Temple

At Kamakhya Devi Temple, Guwahati, Assam, Durga puja festival is celebrated in all its grandeur for 16 days from Mahalaya Amavasya to Purnima known as Devipaksha. The Durga puja rituals followed at the Kamakhya Temple are laid down in Kalika Purana, Devi Purana and Brhannandikesvara Purana. The most important pujas are held on Saptami, Ashtami, Navami and Dashami.

An earthen pitcher is placed at the Calanta near the murtis of Kameshwar and Kameshwari to represent Goddess Durga. Mahasana of the deities is performed with Manani puja at the Peetha sthana of Devi Kamakhya on each of the 16 days. Special bhog is offered on all 16 days. Nitya puja, Prata puja, Madhya puja, Sainni puja, Sandhya Arati and bhog bhata are performed on every day. Puri is offered with bhog in the evenings.

On Maha Saptami, the seventh day of the fortnight, pigeons are sacrificed and offered in all the temples at the Kamakhya temple complex. Moh boli or buffalo sacrifice is performed on the day. Buffalo is sacrificed on the morning and at midnight.

On Maha Ashtami, the eighth day of the fortnight, the murti of Goddess Kameswari is taken in procession around the temple and offered a special bhog on her return. Moh boli or buffalo sacrifice is performed on the day. Buffalo is sacrificed on the morning and at midnight. Kumari Puja is performed on the day.

On Mahanavami, the ninth day of the fortnight, ducks are sacrificed in the Goddess’ shrines for the Maha Peetham. Moh boli is performed on the day. Buffalo is sacrificed in the morning.

On Dashami, the tenth day, puja is performed elaborately in the morning. The Goddess is offered pantabhata (leftover rice soaked in water, a traditional food of the Eastern parts of India) along with fried dove meat.

Traditionally, on Saptami, Ashtami, Navami, sacrifices of fish, goat, duck and buffalo were sacrifice. Some flesh from the upper half of the animal/bird sacrificed and a small quantity of its blood were place before the ghat or pitcher representing Goddess Durga. In recent times, this ritual is not followed instead water is poured and flowers offered along with the chanting of mantras.

The food offerings during Durga puja festival comprises mainly of vegetarian dishes. Once the pujas and rituals are completed in the main temple, the pujaris proceed to the Bolighar, where animal sacrifice is offered. The animals sacrificed are goat, pigeon, duck, buffalo and fish.