Thousands of lamps will illuminate river Valvonti at Sankhalim village in North Goa, as part of the state festival of ‘Tripurari Purnima’ celebrations on November 14. “Goa has some unique festivals to its credit, and this time of the year, it is time to gear up for the annual Tripurari Purnima celebration. This festival has an interesting story behind it and is celebrated to mark the end of the Diwali season,” the state Tourism department said in a press release in Panaji.
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“According to mythology, Lord Krishna defeated and killed demon Tripur on the day of Kartik Purnima. People celebrate Krishna’s victory and the end of the demon’s tyranny by releasing lamps in the river. Since then it has been a tradition all over India to release small lamps in the river during the time of Diwali, especially on Kartik Purnima,” it said.
“An interesting element about the way this is celebrated in Goa is its distinctive local touch. The tradition takes the form of a very unusual competition – that of making miniature models, boats and ships made out of thermocol and other materials,” it said.
“The ship building competition has become the main highlight of the festival drawing a large number of spectators and participants from all over Goa and other places. The festivities take place at Vithalapur in Sanquelim near the Pundalik temple,” the release said.
River Valvanti flows nearby making it an ideal spot for the boat competition. The celebrations start in the evening as the palanquin of Lord Vithal is brought amidst chanting to the accompaniment of traditional music. The palanquin is then kept on the banks of the river where it remains until the end of the boat competition.
The magnificent sight of the miniature boats, all lighted up and moving along the shoreline is a visual treat for the huge crowd that gathers every year to take part in the celebrations.
The festival concludes by giving awards to the best designed boats, the release added.