The Sodasha Puja or Shodasa dinatmaka Upachara of Maa Tara Tarini in the run up to the Dussehra festival started from Mulastami on 27 September at the hill shrine near Berhampur city in Odisha. The Sodasha Puja began with Chandi Path and Yagna, also known as DEVI- UTTHAPANA. With the chanting of religious hymns in the spiritual ambiance of the Hill Shrine and the ritualistic worship by the devotees surcharged the festive atmosphere with an exhilarating blend of spirituality. The Secretary TTDB, other officials of TTDB, temple authorities and thousands of devotees were present on that day at the hill top shrine.
With the commencement of the puja after 3.00 pm on Mulastami and amidst chanting of hymns the Sevakas of Maa Tara Tarini temple brought 108 pots of water from the holy River Rushikulya flowing at the foot hill of this ancient Shrine. After the rituals of Snana, Majana, Maha Arati and commencement of Yagna in the established tradition the goddess gave darshan to her devotees in the Rajarajeswari Besha and the entire process continued till 7.30 pm. As per the information from the Shrine the Chandi Patha and Yagna will continue till last day of Vijayadashami / Dussehra.
Durga Puja is a festival, which is celebrated in different ways in India. In major Shakti Peethas like Kamakshya, Daksinakali, Bimala, Vaishnodevi, Chamundeswari and particularly in Adi Shakti Peeth of Maa Tara Tarini the Durga Puja is observed for 16 days, starting from Krushna Paksha Ashtami to Shukla Paksha Navami of the Hindu Calendar, also known as Shodasa Dinatmaka Upachara. The Goddess Durga is also worshiped by devotees in different Pendals for a period of either nine days or less across the states of eastern India.
Out of the 16 days the Navratri Puja at the Tara Tarini shrine will start from October 05 and will culminate till october13. The Sodasha Puja and particularly Navratri are very important and major festival in the religious calendar of the Shrine. The word Navaratri literally means nine nights. During these nine nights and ten days, nine forms of Shakti/Devi are worshiped i.e., on theFirst day of Navratri – Shailputri, Second day of Navratri – Bhramcharini, Third Navratri – Chandraghanta, Fourth Navratri – Kushmanda, Fifth Navratri – Skandmata, Sixth Navratri – Kaatyayani, Seventh Navratri – Kaalratri, Eighth Navratri – Mahagauri/Mahakali and Ninth Navratri – Siddhiratri are worshipped. The tenth day is known as Vijayadashami and the Sharad Sodasha Puja culminates in Durga Puja or "Dussehra". During this entire 16 days period the Sanctum of Maa Tara Tarini Shakti Peeth remains open round the clock for Darshan of the devotees.