Bhubaneswar/Cuttack: With the beginning of Navaratri, festive fervor has gripped the twin-city. The glittering pandals have made the puja environment most exciting.
Special programmes are being organised at many places to make the festival more colourful. A big stage has been set up at sprawling Janata Maidan in the capital city for Dandiya Raas, a traditional folk dance of Gujrat.
Not only the youngsters, but the old persons and women are also found enjoying the programme. With the beats of Dandiya, the smell of festival is felt at the ground. Dressed to the hilt, a large number of revellers whirled till late into the night.
Gujarati and Punjabi communities are observing Navratri in their traditional style by organizing garba and Dandiya parties on rooftops.
Similarly, posh hotels, apartments are organising the Dance programme and holding competitions among many groups to attract more revellers.
Millenium city Cuttack, popularly known for its age old Dussehra, is all set to welcome Goddess Durga. After the ‘Bilwa Barana’, the puja will formally kick off and will continue till Vijaya Dasami.
Stages are set up at many places of the city including College square, Badambadi, Sikharpur, Khannagar, Chandinchowk for various cultural programmes. Puja committees have expected huge footfalls this year due to pleasant weather condition.
In view of large gathering, the commissionerate police left no stone unturned to ensure a full proof security for the revellers in twin city.
Anti-terrorist squad and two units of SoG have been deployed in both the cities. Out of a total 172 pandals in Bhubaneswar six are decorated with silver filgree while in Cuttack, 13 pandals are made of silver out of 158. Apart from the Cuttack city, the goddess is being worshipped at 75 places under Commissionerate police jurisdiction.
According to police all professional criminals have been arrested as per the section 110 of CrPC. Over 300 criminals have been nabbed on old warrants, police commissioner RP Sharma said.