Dussehra is a Hindu festival celebrated all over India to commemorate the victory of good over evil. It is celebrated on the tenth and final day of the festival of Navaratri. Also known as Vijayadashami and Durgotsav, the festival marks the day Lord Ram defeated the evil ten-headed king Ravana and rescued his wife Sita from him. Mammoth effigies of Ravana filled with fireworks are burnt to recreate the historic event. This is also a time when young and old gather to listen to readings of stories from the Ramayana known as Ramleela. The exchange of apta leaves for good luck is an important custom too. The festival is also a public holiday and marks the beginning of the harvest season. Most businesses are closed on this day.
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