Shamba Dashami is celebrated in Orissa
on the 10th day in the bright fortnight in the month of Pousha (December-January). According to legends, Lord Krishna’s son Shamba had misbehaved with a sage, who in turn had cursed him. As per the curse, Shamba was inflicted with leprosy. To get cured, Shamba was asked by Lord Krishna
to worship Surya
at Arkatirtha (Konark
). With the blessings of the Sun God, Shamba was cured.
Women observe fast on this day and devotees gather at river banks and on beaches to worship the Sun God. Thrice a day - morning, noon and evening - the Sun God is worshipped with a variety of rice cakes. In the evening, Ghadghada (a vegetable soup) with leaves, tubers, local beans and pulse is prepared and this is followed by a family feast.