Hindus across the country are celebrating the eighth day of the ten-day-long Bada Dashain festival as Maha Ashtami by worshipping the Goddess Durga Bhawani.
On this day, people offer special prayers to the goddesses Mahakali, Mahalaxmi, and Maha Saraswati. This particular day of the Dashain festival is considered significant as it is believed that on this day the Goddess Durga gained her divine power.
On the occasion, people perform religious rituals at the Dashain Ghars and armories and offer worship to goddesses at various shrines by offering sacrifices of different animals. The people also chant the mantras from Durga Saptashati, Shrimad Devi Bhagwat and Devi Stotra scriptures.
Devotees throng various goddess shrines in the Kathmandu Valley early in the morning to offer worship and make offerings of goats and ducks.
Likewise, across the country, people visit various goddess temples to perform worship and make offerings, including the sacrifice of goats, ducks, and roosters.
Special Durga Puja ceremonies and prayer rituals take place at the Dashain Ghars. There is also a tradition of worshipping weapons, vehicles, and machines on the day of Maha Ashtami.
For those who refrain from animal sacrifices, various vegetables and fruits are offered in place of animals.
Furthermore, on this day, a special Kalaratri worship is performed at midnight at the Dashain Ghar in local Hanumandhoka.