Naraka Chaturdashi or Choti Diwali begins with an age-old ritual of Abhyang Snan, a holy bath taken before the sunrise.
Naraka Chaturdashi, also known as Kali Chaudas, Roop Chaudas or Naraka Nivaran Chaturdashi, is celebrated as the second day of the five-day long Diwali festival. Since it falls a day before Diwali, it is called Choti Diwali. According to Hindu literature, asura (demon) Narakasura was killed on this day by Krishna, Satyabhama and Kali. The day is celebrated by early morning religious rituals and festivities follow on. On this day, a bitter berry called kareet is crushed under the feet as a symbol killing Narakasura, symbolising evil and removal of ignorance.
In Goa and parts of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, Deepavali is traditionally celebrated on Naraka Chathurdasi day while the rest of India celebrates it on the no moon night (Amavasya). In Karnataka the festival of Deepavali starts from Naraka Chathurdashi and extends till Bali Padyami, celebrated in honour of the return of the (Daitya)-king Bali to earth, co-inciding with Bhai Dooj on October 8 this year.
Celebrating victory of good over evil this Choti Diwali. Have a blessed one.