Margasira Lakshmi Puja is one of the major vows observed in North Coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh. Though the puja procedure or puja vidhanam is same as other Lakshmi vratham like Deepavali Lakshmi puja and Varalakshmi puja, the naivedyam that is offered to the Goddess is different.
On Thursdays in Margasira month, devotees prepare to perform Laxmi puja either in temples or at homes. Houses are cleaned and kept neat during the festival days and the image or small idol of Goddess Lakshmi is placed at puja place. Some people also place a Kalasham instead of image or idol of Lakshmi.
Lord Vinayaka or Ganesh is worshipped first. Devotees perform Prathama puja to Ganapati to get rid of obstacles or vignas. After Ganapati puja, Goddess Lakshmi is worshipped with shodashopachara puja and ashtottaram and offered special Naivedya on each day during the month. The Margasira Lakshmi vratha katha or the story of Margashira Laxmi puja is recited after puja.
Lakshmi puja is performed on all Thursdays during the month of Margashirsha. If only four Thursdays fall in Margashria masam, then the Laxmi Vratham is also observed on the first Thursday of Pushya masam.
Naivedyam or food offerings to Goddess Lakshmi during Margasira Lakshmivara Vratham:
1st Thursday – Pulagam
2nd Thursday – Ksheerannam (Paalannam)
3rd Thursday – Kudumulu
4th Thursday – Paramannam
5th Thursday – Poornam Boorelu
On the last Thursday after Lakshmi puja, poornam boorelu are offered to five mutthaiduvulu (married women) along with ‘thamboolam. The five women are considered as the avataras of Lakshmi and offered meals on this day. There is no udyapana or udwasana for this vratham. One can perform the Margashira Lakshmi vratham for longtime. It is believed that observing Lakshmi puja during the month will solve all problems of performers and Goddess Laxmi blesses devotees with prosperity, wealth and health.