On the occasion of Mahalaya, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Amit Shah sought the blessings of ‘Maa Durga’ and wished for “peace, prosperity and happiness”.

“Heartiest greetings on the auspicious occasion of ‘Mahalaya’. May Maa Durga bless us with peace, prosperity and happiness. Shubho Mahalaya,” he tweeted.

Celebrated a week before the five-day Durga Puja begins, Mahalaya essentially heralds the homecoming of the goddess and signifies the end of Pitri Paksha (the period when Hindus pay homage to their ancestors) and the beginning of Debi Paksha (period of the goddess).

On the day, devotional songs, scriptural recitations and prayers are recited to invoking goddess Durga to descend on Earth.