Chovoth is an important festival celebrated in Goa
. The Ganesh Chaturthi
festival celebrated in the other parts of India is known as Chovoth in Goa. This festival is dedicated to Lord Ganesh
. Along with Lord Ganesh, Goddess Gouri and Lord Mahadev are also worshipped on this occasion.
During this festival, the image of Goddess Gouri is drawn on paper and that of Lord Mahadev is drawn on a coconut. Married women observe fast on this occasion.
On the first day of the festival, the people bring a clay idol of Lord Ganesh to their home. A pavilion is prepared for the occasion, with betel nuts, coconut, bananas, braches of mango tree and other necessary items. A priest performs the necessary rituals. Prayers are held until mid-day.
On the second day, a special prayer called ‘uttara puja’ is held. Blessings are sought from the deity for the welfare of the family members. Following the prayers, the idol of the lord is taken in a procession during the evening or night, and submerged in sea, river or other similar water bodies. Some people perform the immersion ceremony on the fifth, seventh or ninth day.
This occasion is a moment of great enjoyment, especially for the children. Varieties of leaves are collected by girls, to be offered to the deities. Flower decoration contests are held.