Kali Puja (Mahanisha Puja) is one of the most celebrated festivals in Bengal. It is observed during Diwali festival. In 2016, Kali Puja date is October 30.
During Kali Puja, Goddess Shakti is worshipped in the form of Maha Kali. Devotees believe that on this day, Goddess Maha Kali is appeared along with 64,000 Yoginis.
Mahanisha Puja is also observed during Chaitra Navratri (Basanti Durga Puja). It is performed on Basant Navratri Ashtami.
Literally, Kal means darkness or sorrows. Kali slashes away all sorrows of our lives. She brings us to a path of light from darkness and deep troubles. Kali Puja is also known as Mahanisha because the puja is performed at night. Devotees stay awake throughout the night to worship Goddess Maha Kali.
Alpana or Alpona are the major attractions to draw the attention of the Goddess. Alpana are the floral designs drawn at the Kali puja pandal or in front of the house of devotees. Devotees draw the designs to welcome the Goddess to their homes. Generally, Kali Puja begins with Ganesh Puja and Guru Puja. Devotees worship Lord Ganesh during the puja in order to remove every obstacle they face.