On the full moon night following Dusshera / Durga Puja, Goddess Lakshmi is ceremonially worshipped at home to pray for her blessings. Lakshmi is the Goddess of light, beauty, good fortune and wealth who descends on the earth on this auspicious night to bless all with health and prosperity.
It is also referred as Kojagari Lakshmi Puja as it is celebrated on the full moon night of Kojagari Purnima. A major event on the day is the drawing of alpana or rangoli patterns especially that of Goddess Lakshmi’s feet.
Special vegetarian dishes – ‘khichuri, naru, narkel bhaja, chirey and taaler phopol’ – and sweets are made and offered to the goddess along with fresh fruits. It is believed that on this day Lakshmi walks through the green fields and loiters through the bye-lanes and showers her blessings on man for plenty and prosperity. This Kojagari Vrat or celebration coincides with the harvest festival. It is also called `Navanna’ (new food) and from this day the new grain of the harvest is usually eaten. ‘Kojagara’, literally means the night of awakening.
It seems on this Kojagari night Goddess Lakshmi visits every house asking ‘Ko Jagarti’ meaning `who is awake’ to ascertain. And those who are awake Goddess Lakshmi blesses them with fortune and prosperity. Lakshmi Puja is celebrated in the evening when tiny diyas of clay are lighted to drive away the shadows of evil spirits, devotional songs in praise of Goddess Lakshmi are sung.