With Durga Puja just 10 days away, the mood is festive. The preparations are on in full swing and artisans in some cities of the country have begun giving finishing touches to their beautifully created idols.

Durga Puja 2016
An artisan hangs decorative pieces at a pandal, or a temporary platform, for the upcoming Hindu festival of Durga Puja, in Kolkata, India.Reuters

Durga Puja is not just a festival, it is an emotion for most in the Bengali community. Celebrated over a course of five days – Shashti, Shaptami, Ashtami, Navami, Vijaya Dashami – Durgotsav primarily means two things – pandal hopping and good food. Also, during these five days, people take care of what they wear and how they wear. It's almost like stepping out for a big fat wedding each day – all dressed up and plastered with make-up.

Because the festival epitomises victory of good over evil, it is the perfect time to let the bad times slide. Below are some of the first pictures of Durga idols being crafted and pandals being erected across the cities of Kolkata, Allahabad and Agartala.

Durga Puja 2016
An artisan paints an idol of mythological demon Mahisasura ahead of the Durga Puja festival, in Allahabad, India.Reuters
Durga Puja 2016
An artisan works on an idol of Hindu goddess Durga at a pandal, or a temporary platform, ahead of the Durga Puja festival, in Agartala, India.Reuters
Durga Puja 2016
An artisan paints an idol of Hindu goddess Durga at a workshop ahead of the Durga Puja festival in Kolkata, India.Reuters
Durga Puja 2016
An electrician hangs decorative lights at a pandal, a temporary platform, for the upcoming Hindi festival of Durga Puja in Kolkata, India.Reuters
Durga Puja 2016
Artisans work on a giant model of mythological demon Mahisasura at a pandal in Kolkata.Reuters
Durga Puja 2016
An artisan paints an idol of Hindu goddess Durga at a workshop in Allahabad.Reuters
Durga Puja 2016
An artisan works on an idol of Hindu goddess Durga at a workshop in Kolkata.Reuters
Durga Puja 2016
An artisan paints an idol of goddess Durga in Kolkata.Reuters
Durga Puja 2016
An artisan works on an idol of goddess Durga in Kolkata.Reuters