2022 Dussehra celebrations at Kanaka Durga Temple in Vijayawada

Last Update: 26th Sept 2022

Dussehra Navaratri is known as Devi Navaratrulu / Sharad Navaratrulu by the people of Andhra Pradesh. The nine days (actually nights) of Dussehra festival are celebrated in a grand way in Ammavaru temples across the state particularly in Vijayawada Kanakadurga temple.

Kanaka Durgamma temple is located on a small hill named Indrakeeladri which is in the old town area. The Peepal tree in 1 Town Police Station and the surrounding area is considered as Durgamma's parent's house. A day prior to Dussehra celebrations in the temple, the area surrounding the peepal tree in the 1 Town Police Station is beautifully decorated. The idol of Durgamma which is under the peepal tree is carried to Kanaka Durgamma temple by the Police officials. The 1 town police officials then offer turmeric powder (pasupu), vermilion (kumkuma), silk sari (pattu cheera) and other items to Kanaka Durgamma.

Also read:
  1. Dussehra - the Hindu festival of 9 nights
  2. Vijayawada Kanaka Durga temple
Devi Navaratri Utsavalu begin after Durgamma is draped with the sari offered by Her parent's house i.e the police officials. This has become customary since long. Police officials take active part in Devi Navaratri celebrations. According to legends, during the rule of Kondaveeti Reddy Kings, Durgamma appeared in the dream of a soldier named Mangayya and directed him to dig Her out. As per Ammavari directions, the idol of Durgamma was dug out and placed under the peepal tree. From then onwards, it has become customary for the police officials to take active part in the Devi Navaratri Utsavalu.

This year (2022) the festival celebrations at Kanaka Durgamma temple begin on Aswayuja Suddha Padyami Thursday 26th September 2022 and end on Aswayuja Suddha Dasami (Vijaya Dasami) 5th October 2022.

On each of the 9 days, Durgamma is dressed in different forms known as 'Alankaram' and worshiped in different names. Sharad Navaratri Utsavalu start with the Kalasha Sthapana Pooja.

Different Alankaras of Durgamma during Devi Navaratrulu

DAY 1 - Swarna Kavacha Alankruta Durga Devi (Golden Armor) on Aswayuja Suddha Padyami - 26th September 2022

On the 1st day of Devi Navaratrulu celebrations, Durga Devi is dressed completely in gold armor i.e swarnakavacha. In this 'alankara' Durga Devi with 8 arms (ashta bhuja) appears as 'simha vahini' i.e seated on lion. The goddess has 'Shankham' (conch), 'Chakram' (disc), 'Gada' (mace), 'Soolam' (trident), 'paasam' (string), 'Maha khadgam' (sword) and 'Parasu' (axe) in Her arms. Katte pongali, chalimidi, vadapappu and payasam are offered as naivedyam on this day.

DAY 2 - Bala Tripura Sundari Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Vidiya - 27th September 2022

On the 2nd day, Kanaka Durgamma is dressed in light pink sari in Bala Tripura Sundari Devi alankaram. It is believed that one will be blessed with children on worshiping Her. Pulihora is offered to Her as naivedyam.

Also read:Pulihora recipe

DAY 3 - Gayatri Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Tadiya - 28th September 2022

On the 3rd day, Ammavaru is dressed in saffron / orange sari and appears in Vedamata Gayatri Devi alankaram is with 5 faces. Kobbari (coconut) rice and Kobbari payasam are offered as naivedyam to Ammavaru.

DAY 4 - Sri Annapoorna Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Chavitti - 29th September 2022

Durgamma is dressed as Annapoorna Devi on the 4th day of Sharad Navaratrulu. In one hand She holds a bowl and in the other a ladle to serve food. Dadhojanam i.e curd rice, Ksheeranam and allam garelu are offered as naivedyam on this day to Durgamma in Annapoorna Devi alankaram. The goddess is dressed in sandalwood color sari on this day.

DAY 5 - Sri Lalitha Tripura Sundari Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Panchami - 30th September 2022

Lalita Tripura Sundari Devi resides in Manidweepam and is Sree Vidya Roopini. On the 5th day of Dussehra utsavalu, Kanaka Durgamma is dressed in pure Kumkuma (vermilion) or dark red or maroon color sari in Lalita Tripura Sundari Devi alankaram. Goddess Lakshmi and Saraswati are on the either side of Lalita Tripura Sundari Devi. Dadhojanam (curd rice) and Ksheeranam (paravanam) are offered as naivedyam to the goddess on this day.

DAY 6 - Sri Mahalakshmi Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Saptami - 1st October 2022

With the lotus in both Her hands, Durga Devi is in Mahalakshmi alankaram on the 7th day of Devi Navaratrulu. She is the goddess of wealth and prosperity and is worshiped the most by the devotees. Mahalakshmi is the unified form Ashta Lakshmi. On this day Ammavaru is dressed in pure pink sari. Kheeranam and Chakkara Pongali (sweet pongal) are offered as naivedyam to Ammavaru in Mahalakshmi alankaram.

DAY 7 - Sri Saraswati Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Saptami - 2nd October 2022

On the 7th day i.e on Suddha Panchami day when it is Moola Nakshatram (star), Durgamma is dressed in pure white sari in the form of Maha Saraswati - the goddess of knowledge and learning. She is seated on Her vehicle swan with Madalasa (the stringed musical instrument Veena) in Her hand. Dadhojanam (curd rice), kesari and paramannam are offered as naivedyam.

DAY 8 - Sri Durga Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Ashtami i.e Durgashtami day - 3rd October 2022

Vijayawada Kanaka Durgamma is beautifully dressed red sari in Durga Devi alankaram on Durgashtami day i.e the 8th day during Dussehra. According to legends, in this form Durga Devi killed an asura named Durgamma. Kadambam and sakaanannam are offered as naivedyam.

DAY 9 - Sri Mahishasura Mardhini Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Navami i.e. Maharnavami day - 4th October 2022

On Maharnavami day, Durgamma is dressed in deep red handloom sari as Mahishasura Mardhini. It is with this form that Goddess Durga beheaded the ferocious buffalo-headed demon named Mahishasura. This is a 'Simha Vahini' alankaram with a trident held in both the hands and other weapons in other arms. The day on which Mahishasura was killed by Durga Devi, is celebrated as Maharnavami. On this day chakkara pongali (sweet pongal) is offered to Durga Devi as naivedyam.

DAY 10 - Sri Raja Rajeswari Devi Alankaram on Aswayuja Suddha Dasami i.e. Vijaya Dasami day - 5th October 2022

Sri Raja Rajeswari Devi is the last alankaram of Kanaka Durgamma during Sharad Navaratrulu festival. The goddess is dressed in green sari on dasami day. Boondi laddu, pulihora, boorelu, garelu and annam (rice) are offered as naivedyam.

Photo credit: www.durgamma.com

The festive celebrations end with 'Teppotsavam' when the 'utsava vigraham' is taken on a beautifully decorated / illuminated boat ride in River Krishna.