Ganesh Chaturthi

Ganesh Chaturthi, also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi, is a Hindu festival observed on the fourth waxing moon day during the month of Bhadrapada. This corresponds to August or September on the Gregorian calendar. The festival concludes after a ten-day period, on the fourteenth day of the waxing moon. The purpose of this festival is to honor the god Ganesha, also known as Vinayaka.


While the origins of this festival are unclear, many believe it dates back to the Maratha clans of the seventeenth century. During this time, Chhatrapati Shivaji declared it a public event to foster national pride. Later, in the nineteenth century, Bal Gangadhar Tilak made it a public holiday that could be celebrated by all.

Customs, Traditions, and Celebrations

Several months before Ganesh Chaturthi begins, artisans craft a large clay statue of Ganesha. There is no set size limit for this idol; it can be smaller than an inch or over twenty feet tall, depending on the creator. This idol is then placed in homes or set up in specially made tents for people to pay their respects.

After the idol has been set up, it is usually visited by priests. These priests chant mantras over the idol in a ritual known as Pranapratishtha, which is performed to infuse the idol with life. Subsequently, people show their reverence by offering various items to the idol, including modakas, coconut, and red flowers. A sandalwood paste is also applied to anoint the idol.

For the next ten days, the idol is worshipped. On the eleventh day, it is carried through the streets for public viewing. After this procession, people pay homage one last time before the idol is taken to a river and submerged.


Ganesh Chaturthi is a festival that allows people to invoke the power of Ganesha and seek his assistance in removing obstacles that impede their spiritual or mental paths. It is also a time to request help in developing spiritual strength and resolve. This festival is one of great hope, joy, and celebration, open to everyone regardless of social class or wealth.

Where is it celebrated?
India (Restricted holiday)Mauritius (Hindu holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
September 7 Saturday
Next year (2025)
August 27 Wednesday
Last year (2023)