This Hindu festival, also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi, is observed across India to celebrate Lord Ganesha, who is known as the deity of prosperity. He is also called Vighna Harta – The remover of obstacles. As a rule, every Hindu ritual starts with prayers to Lord Ganesha. His worship symbolizes good omen and new beginnings. This is a ten-day festival, that starts on the fourth day of Hindu Luni-solar calendar month Bhadrapada, which typically falls in Gregorian months of August or September.
An excerpt about the festival is given below.
Ganesh Chaturthi is a ten-day Hindu festival celebrated to honour the elephant-headed God Ganesha’s birthday. He is the younger son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati.
Ganesha is known by 108 different names and is the Lord of arts and sciences and the deva of wisdom. He is honoured at the start of rituals and ceremonies as he’s considered the God of beginnings. He’s widely and dearly referred to as Ganapati or Vinayaka.
There are two different versions about Ganesha’s birth. One has it that Goddess Parvati created Ganesha out of dirt off her body while having a bath and set him to guard her door while she finishes her bath. Shiva who has gone out, returned at that time, but as Ganesha didn’t know of him, stopped him from entering. An angry Shiva severed the head of Ganesha after a combat between the two. Parvati was enraged and Shiva promised Ganesha will live again. The devas who went in search of a head facing north of a dead person could manage only the head of an elephant. Shiva fixed the elephant’s head on the child and brought him back to life.
The other legend has it that Ganesha was created by Shiva and Parvati on request of the Devas, to be a Vighna Kartaa (obstacle-creator) in the path of rakshasas (demonic beings), and a Vighna Hartaa (obstacle-averter) to help the Devas.
This year, September 17th marks the beginning of this festival which is also called as Vinayaka Chaturthi.
You can read the full article here (source): India Today News