Cotton University Students Offer Prayer, Protest Against Citizenship Bill On Saraswati Puja

Guwahati, February 10, 2019

Saraswati Puja was celebrated with much pomp and merriment in Guwahati, with students and children making a beeline at their schools and colleges to offer prayers to the goddess on February 10th, 2019.

It is also believed that Goddess Saraswati was born on the auspicious day of Basant Panchami, which is why Basant Panchami is also known as Shree Panchami. Celebrated during the tithi of Basant Panchami of Hindu calendar, this festival is dedicated to the goddess of learning.

A snapshot of Saraswati Puja celebrations at the Cotton University. Photo: TIME8
A snapshot of Saraswati Puja celebrations at the Cotton University. Photo: TIME8

The pandals have been erected in different localities in the city apart from schools, colleges, hostels and other educational institutions.The puja pandals were decorated with bright and vibrant hues of marigolds, roses and rajnigandhas to pay obeisance to the Goddess.

At the prestigious Cotton University, the students assembled to offer prayers and flowers to the deity. The theme of this year’s Saraswati Puja at the varsity is the much-debated Citizenship (Amendment) Bill. Apart from decorating the pandal, the students also displayed a handmade map of the Northeast with ‘We oppose Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016’ written on it.

From the early morning, the students, dressed mostly in Indian wears, got together and assembled at the pandals, where priests chanted mantras and devotees placed seasonal palash flowers, their books, pens, other objects of learning at the deity’s feet to the ringing sounds of cymbals and conch shells. Like all festivals, Saraswati Puja is marked by many traditional delicacies. The puja is never complete with a mandatory lunch comprising khichdi, labra (mixed vegetables) and tomato chutney. 

The major educational institutions in Guwahati such as Handique Girls’ College, B Borooah College, Pragjyotish College, Gauhati University, Gauhati Commerce College, TC Girls’ High School, Sonaram High School, Maligaon Railway High School, Assam Jatiya Bidyalay, Gopal Boro High School among others, drew huge crowds.

Girls, draped in brilliant hues of mekhela chador and saree and men and boys in kurtas added the colour to the festivities at the colleges.