Navratri, held annually in honour of Hindu Goddess Durga, is celebrated over a period of nine days where thousands of youth dance the night away in traditional costumes. Navratri starts on September 25 and will be celebrated until October 3.
In many parts of the country it is marked by celebrations involving prayer, fasting, music and dance among men and women.
It is famous for being high-spirited and Christians and Muslims are known to take part. They also take part in the Holi Hindu spring festival.
Meanwhile, the five-day Durga Puja festival will be celebrated from September 30 to October 3, and is the biggest religious event for Bengali Hindus.
Durga is attributed as the destroyer of evil and Hindus believe that the goddess symbolises power and the triumph of good over evil.
|A man decorates an idol of the Hindu goddess Durga at a pandal, a temporary platform, ahead of the Durga Puja festival in Kolkata September 25, 2014. — Photo by Reuters|
|A man works on a pandal, a temporary platform, as it is built for the Durga Puja festival, in Kolkata September 25, 2014. — Photo by Reuters|
|Women dressed in traditional attires balance pitchers on their heads as they take part in rehearsals for the "garba" dance ahead of Navratri festival in the western Indian city of Ahmedabad September 24, 2014. — Photo by Reuters|