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Dubai-based Indian amateur golfer Rayhan Thomas to compete at Hero Indian Open

Dubai-based 17 year old Indian golfer Rayhan Thomas will get his first taste of a pro tournament at the Hero Indian Open in Gurugram

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Rayhan Thomas, Wikimedia
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New Delhi, Feb 22, 2017: Dubai-based Indian amateur golfer Rayhan Thomas will get his first taste of a pro tournament in his homeland when he tees off at the Hero Indian Open next month in Gurugram.

The 17-year-old, who is the highest ranked Indian amateur in the world at No.94, is one of the four amateurs who have been given a spot in the National Open, the Hero Indian Open 2017.

Apart from Rayhan Thomas, the Indian Golf Union (IGU) has given its other three spots to US-based Rigel Fernandes, Yuvraj Sandhu and Yashas Chandra, all of whom are in their 20s.

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The tournament will be held from March 9 to 12, with an enhanced prize purse of $1.75 million and, for the first time, will be held at the challenging Gary Player layout at the DLF Golf and Country Club.

“It is a dream come true for me,” said Thomas, who recently teed off at the Dubai Desert Classic and made the cut whilst playing alongside some of the biggest names in the game.

He played the first two rounds in the company of two Indian Open champions, the 2015 winner Anirban Lahiri and 2016 champion S.S.P. Chawrasia. Both of them had high praise for the young Indian.

In 2016, Rayhan also won a professional tournament in the Middle East on the MENA Tour, whilst playing as an amateur. He was in Top-10 in four other events and that helped him break into Top-100 of the World Amateur rankings.

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Among the three other amateurs who have been given spots, Fernandes is studying in an American university. Fernandes, 20, who grew up in Dubai and is now pursuing a degree at the University of South Florida while playing golf, was also very excited about coming to India for the Hero Indian Open 2017.

“I have always wanted to play this tournament and it is indeed something I am looking forward to it,” said Fernandes.

Both Thomas and Fernandes were part of the Indian team that played at the 2016 Asian Amateur Championships in Incheon, South Korea.

The other two Indian amateurs to feature at the Hero Indian Open 2017 are Yuvraj Sandhu, 20, and Yashas Chandra, 22.

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All the top Indians and World No. 25 Rafa Cabrera-Bello will be seen in action at the Hero Indian Open 2017, India’s biggest golfing event, which is now in its third year on the European Tour and is co-sanctioned with the Asian tour. (IANS)

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Mahalaya: Beginning of “Devipaksha” in Bengali Celebration of ‘Durga Puja’

“Mahalaya” is the auspicious occasion that marks the beginning of “Devipaksha” and the ending of “Pitripaksha” and heralds the celebration of Durga Puja

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Mahalaya morning in Kolkata. Flickr
  • Mahalaya 2017 Date: 19th september.
  • On Mahalaya, people throng to the holy river Ganges in order to pay homage to their ancestors and forefathers; which is called ‘Torpon’
  • Mahalaya remains incomplete without the magical chanting of the scriptural verses from the ‘Chandi Kavya’ that is broadcasted in All India Radio
  • The magic is induced by the popular Birendra Krishna Bhadra whose voice makes the recitation of the “Chandi Kavya” even more magnificent

Sept 19, 2017: Autumn is the season of the year that sees the Hindus, all geared up to celebrate some of the biggest festivals of India. The festive spirit in the Bengalis all enthused to prepare for the greatest of the festivals, the ‘Durga Puja’.

About Mahalaya:

Mahalaya is the auspicious occasion that marks the beginning of “Devipaksha” and the ending of “Pitripaksha,” and this year it is celebrated on September 19.

Observed exactly a week before the ‘Durga Puja’, Mahalaya is the harbinger of the arrival of Goddess Durga. It is celebrated to invoke the goddess possessing supreme power! The goddess is invited to descend on earth and she is welcomed with devotional songs and holy chants of mantras. On this day, the eye is drawn in the idols of the Goddess by the artisans marking the initiation of “Devipaksha”. Mahalaya arrives and the countdown to the Durga Puja begins!

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The day of Mahalaya bears supreme significance to the Bengalis. The day is immensely important because on this day people throng to the holy river Ganges in order to pay homage to their ancestors and forefathers. Clad in white dhotis, people offer prayers and take dips in the river while praying for their demised dear ones. The ritual is popular as “Torpon”.

Mahalaya
An idol-maker in progress of drawing the eye in the idol of the Goddess. Wikipedia

As per Hindu myth, on “Devipaksha”, the Gods and the Goddesses began their preparations to celebrate “Mahamaya” or Goddess Durga, who was brought upon by the trinity- Brahma, Vishnu, and Maheshwara; to annihilate the fierce demon king named Mahishasura. The captivating story of the Goddess defeating the demon got popularized with the goddess being revered as “Durgatinashini” or the one who banishes all the evils and miseries of the world. The victory of the Goddess is celebrated as ‘Durga Puja’.

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Mahalaya remains incomplete without the magical chanting of the scriptural verses from the ‘Chandi Kavya’ that is broadcasted at dawn in All India Radio in the form of a marvelous audio montage enthralling the souls of the Bengalis. Presented with wonderful devotional music, acoustic drama, and classical songs- the program is also translated to Hindi and played for the whole pan-Indian listeners.

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Mahalaya
Birendra Krishna Bhadra (1905-1991). Wikipedia

The program is inseparable from Mahalaya and has been going on for over six decades till date. The magic is induced by the popular Birendra Krishna Bhadra whose voice makes the recitation of the “Chandi Kavya” even more magnificent! He has been a legend and the dawn of Mahalaya turns insipid without the reverberating and enchanting voice of the legendary man.

Mahalaya will keep spreading the magic and setting the vigor of the greatest festival of the Bengalis- the Durga Puja, to worship the supreme Goddess, eternally.

                 “Yaa Devi Sarbabhuteshu, Shakti Rupena Sanhsthita,

                     Namastaswai Namastaswai Namastaswai Namo Namaha.”

– by Antara Kumar of NewsGram. Twitter: @ElaanaC