Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Chief Mohan Bhagwat on Tuesday, October 8, performed the 'shastra puja' at the annual Vijayadashmi festival in Maharashtra's Nagpur city and is expected to address the swayamsevaks from the city’s Reshimbagh ground and send out a message for the cadre of the organisation and its affiliates across the nation through its own Internet-based radio channel.
HCL founder Shiv Nadar was invited as the chief guest for this year's event. Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari, Gen V K Singh (retd) and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis were among the others present at the event. Vijaydashami also marks the celebration of Dussehra, the day holds significance to RSS as the organisation was formed on the same day in 1925.
Shastra Puja is a Hindu tradition of worship of instruments and weapons. It is also known as Ayudha Puja in southern part of India and Astra Puja in some parts of the nation. It holds special significance as the day marks the victory of good over evil in order to establish peace, and hence the weapons that are used in the process are worshipped. Defense Minister Rajnath Singh will also be performing Shastra Puja on receiving the Rafale fighter aircraft. The Defence Minister has flown to France to receive the first of the 36 Rafale combat jets acquired by Indian Air Force (IAF).
After his talks with French President Macron at the Elysee Palace in the French capital, Singh will be flown to Merignac, a suburb of the south-western French town of Bordeaux, where he will participate in the official handover ceremony of the combat aircraft for IAF. The ceremony coincides with the foundation day of the IAF as well as the day when Dussehra will be celebrated and hence arrangements have been made at the airbase for a traditional 'Shastra Puja' ceremony which forms part of Dussehra celebrations. After performing puja, Singh will take a sortie in a two-seater trainer version of the aircraft.