The sadness that Goddess Durga leaves behind in hearts of Bengalis lasts long but the community still choose to celebrate other festive occasions soon after it, believing that certain celebrations are better if they come once a year. The full moon that appears right after Durga Puja is the day when Bengali mothers celebrate Kojagori a mother who stays awake at night to worship Goddess Lakshmi Lokkhi Pujo. Well, this tradition is perhaps restricted to Kolkata and only Bengali colonies in cities across the country. Bengalis, especially the Bangals the refugees from Bangladesh , prefer eating jora Illish double Hilsa on this occasion of Lokkhi Pujo. On the occassion a Bengali mother is expected to eat minimum eight kinds of food, including Hilsa, for dinner after the puja. While the traditional approach to this particular puja is that it should be celebrated on the same mondop or pandal and at the same sthaan or thaan the place where the Goddess was worshipped days ago , places almost everywhere in Kolkata dismantle the pandals only after this puja is over.

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A Bengali mother's Lokkhi Pujo

The autumn festivity that had started with Durga Pujo, concludes with another much awaited Lakshmi pujo or more precisely Kojagari Lakshmi pujo for Bengali, that falls on Kojagari purnima or sharad purnima as known elsewhere in other parts of India. Fast forward to Seventy years later, this divide has become obsolete now almost and once popularized by East Bengal community, Kojagari Lakshmi puja is well adopted by everyone beyond the borders. Interestingly, this is another time when the cultural attributes of each of the Bengali community is very much on display, while ghoti households worships Ma Lakshmi in form of idol, kojagari lakshmi pujo in bangal household altogether holds a different meaning. Hailing from such family, I had heard stories from my Ma and grandma about elaborate preparations they used to do during Lakshmi puja in Dhaka.


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