Mysore Dasara 2012 culmination

Today is Dasara or Vijayadashmi, the grand culmination of Mysore Dasara celebrations. Dasara or Dusherra as called in North India is a day to celebrate the victory of good over evil. The nine days that celebrate Goddess Durga in various forms culminates today. Durga Pooja festival marks the victory of Maa Durga over Mahishasura. The festival is celebrated with great pomp and fervor in various Indian states like Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, Tripura,West Bengal, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Punjab, Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Kerala.

In North India Dasherra is celebrated by burning the effigy of Ravana. In East India, Durga idols are immersed in water, while in South India, especially in Mysore the nine-day long festivities end with a grand royal procession. On Vijayadashami, the traditional Dasara procession (locally known as Jumboo Savari) is held on the streets of Mysore city. The main attraction of this procession is the idol of the Goddess Chamundeshwari which is placed on a golden mantapa on the top of a decorated elephant. This idol is worshipped by the royal couple and other invitees before it is taken around in the procession. Colourful tableaux, dance groups, music bands, decorated elephants, horses and camels form a part of the procession which starts from the Mysore Palace and culminates at a place called Bannimantap where the banni tree (Prosopis spicigera) is worshipped.

Here is a video of the Mysore Dasara explaining the fanfare that surrounds the Dasherra festival.

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