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Millions of people, especially Women offer Prayers to mark Chhath festival across Bihar

The four-day Chhath festival is associated with faith, purity and devotion to the Sun God

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Chhath festival. Flickr
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Patna, November 6, 2016: Millions of people, mainly women, marked the festival of Chhath on Sunday across Bihar by fasting, praying, singing traditional devotional songs and making offerings to the setting sun.

The four-day Chhath festival began on Friday when devotees took a dip in rivers, a tradition known as ‘Nahai khai’. It is followed by the ritual of ‘kharna’ on Saturday when sweet dishes are prepared before fasting.

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Married women observe fast for 36 hours during the festival. Devotees traditionally offer wheat, milk, sugarcane, bananas and coconuts to the Sun God. In many parts of the state, the festival is celebrated with fervour and zeal.

In Patna and other towns, all roads led to the riverbanks which were decorated and cleaned for the devotees to perform ‘arghya’ or oblations to the sun.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and his cabinet colleagues preferred to spend the day with their families.

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There was no Chhath festivity at Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad’s residence as his wife and former Chief Minister Rabri Devi announced she would celebrate Chhath only after her two sons get married.

In Patna, over 50 ghats or riverside bathing platforms on the banks of the Ganga have been given the last-minute facelift by the administration and volunteers.

The authorities had declared more than two dozen ‘ghats’ in Patna unsafe and dangerous.

Chhath is associated with faith, purity and devotion to the Sun God. Colourful idols of the Sun God riding his chariot with seven horses, a new attraction this year, were sold on riverbanks.

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The administration and dozens of voluntary organisations worked round-the-clock to clean the roads leading up to the banks of rivers and water bodies.

The festival will conclude on Monday morning with devotees worshipping the rising sun.

Chhath is celebrated six days after Diwali. (IANS)

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  • Shivani Vohra

    Chhat pooja is a well-known festival across all India

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Aadhaar Helpline Mystery: French Security Expert Tweets of doing a Full Disclosure Tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App

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Google to charge $40 per device to Android makers. Wikimedia Commons

Google’s admission that it had in 2014 inadvertently coded the 112 distress number and the UIDAI helpline number into its setup wizard for Android devices triggered another controversy on Saturday as India’s telecom regulator had only recommended the use of 112 as an emergency number in April 2015.

After a large section of smartphone users in India saw a toll-free helpline number of UIDAI saved in their phone-books by default, Google issued a statement, saying its “internal review revealed that in 2014, the then UIDAI helpline number and the 112 distress helpline number were inadvertently coded into the SetUp wizard of the Android release given to OEMs for use in India and has remained there since”.

Aadhaar Helpline Number Mystery: French security expert tweets of doing a full disclosure tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App, Image: Wikimedia Commons.

However, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recommended only in April 2015 that the number 112 be adopted as the single emergency number for the country.

According to Google, “since the numbers get listed on a user’s contact list, these get  transferred accordingly to the contacts on any new device”.

Google was yet to comment on the new development.

Meanwhile, French security expert that goes by the name of Elliot Alderson and has been at the core of the entire Aadhaar controversy, tweeted on Saturday: “I just found something interesting. I will probably do full disclosure tomorrow”.

“I’m digging into the code of the @Google SetupWizard app and I found that”.

“As far as I can see this object is not used in the current code, so there is no implications. This is just a poor coding practice in term of security,” he further tweeted.

On Friday, both the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) as well as the telecom operators washed their hand of the issue.

While the telecom industry denied any role in the strange incident, the UIDAI said that he strange incident, the UIDAI said that some vested interests were trying to create “unwarranted confusion” in the public and clarified that it had not asked any manufacturer or telecom service provider to provide any such facility.

Twitter was abuzz with the new development after a huge uproar due to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R.S. Sharma’s open Aadhaar challenge to critics and hackers.

Ethical hackers exposed at least 14 personal details of the TRAI Chairman, including mobile numbers, home address, date of birth, PAN number and voter ID among others. (IANS)

Also Read: Why India Is Still Nowhere Near Securing Its Citizens’ Data?