Mahalaya (or Mohaloya, as a Bengali would correct you) is one day of the year a sleep-loving Bengali would happily get up at the crack of dawn to listen to Birendra Kishore Bhadra’s narration of Mohishashur Mordini, especially on the radio.
Allow us to decode the significance of the Mahalaya and what it means to a Bengali. It marks the beginning the puja. The countdown to Dussehra (Doshomi to a Bengali) begins a day after Mahalaya.
For a Bengali, listening to Mahalaya is a tradition. It narrates the tale of the havoc that Mahishahur wreaked in heaven, earth and hell, the creation of Maa Durga and how she vanquished the Demon God. What makes listening to Mahalaya is Birendra Kishore Bhadra’s voice modulation and the songs that accompany the narration
Mahalaya started off as a live performance but since 1966, it is broadcasted in a pre-recorded format.