Ananta Chaturdashi is the 10th and penultimate day of the great Ganesha Utsav or festival that begins with Vinayak Chaturthi. In Sanskrit, 'Ananta' means eternal and 'Chaturdashi' means fourteenth. As such, it falls on the 14th day of the bright fortnight or 'Shukla Paksha' of the Hindu month Bhadrapada.
At the end of this day, Ganesha is given a grand farewell and the idols that were installed for the festival are carried to the nearby river, lake or sea front and immersed with a lot of devotion and fanfare amidst incessant chants of the slogan: "Ganpati bappa morya / Agle baras tu jaldi aa" - "O Lord Ganesha, come again next year." It is celebrated across India, especially in the states of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.
Although this festival is more popular for its colorful Ganesha immersion processions, Anant Chaturdashi is actually devoted to the worship of Lord Vishnu. In fact, the word 'Ananta' refers to the immortal one, i.e., Vishnu - the God head of the Hindu Trinity. Hindus invoke the blessings of Lord Vishnu praying to his image in which he is seen reclining on the mythical serpent Sheshnaga floating on the sea. Read Full Article