After Diwali, Chhat Puja is an important festival of Hindu religion and no doubt one of the most famous festival in Nonihat. It is also called Dala Puja and very popular in the Northern and eastern Indian state of Bihar, Jharkhand and Nepal. Literally, the Word Chhat derived from the word sixth as it is celebrated on the sixth day of the Lunar fortnight of Kartik- six days after Diwali. This festival is dedicated to Sun God. Chhath is mainly characterized by riverside rituals in which the Sun God or Surya is worshiped, giving it the name of ‘Suryasasthi.’ It underpins the ever so scientific belief that the Sun God fulfills every wish of earthlings and so it’s our duty to thank the sun with a special prayer for making our planet go round and bestowing living beings with the gift of life.
The ghats of riverbanks throng with devotees as they come to complete their ritual worship of the sun- both at dawn and dusk.The morning ‘arghya’ is a prayer for a good harvest, peace and prosperity in the new year and the evening ‘arghya’ is an expression of thanks to the benevolence of the Sun God for all that he has bestowed during the year gone by. A very interesting story associated with this festival, it was a time of Mahabharta when Chhat Puja was performed by Draupadi, the wife of Pandava kings. Once during the long exile from their kingdom, thousands of wandering hermits visited their hut. Being devout Hindus, the Pandavas were obliged to feed the monks. But as exiles, the Pandavas were not in a position to offer food to so many hungry hermits. Seeking a quick solution, Draupadi approached Saint Dhaumya, who advised her to worship Surya and observe the rituals of the Chhath for prosperity and abundance.