The third day of Navratri is devoted to Maa Chandraghanta, the third form of Maa Durga, who is married to Lord Shiva. She adorns a half-moon shaped bell (hence the name Chandraghanta) and has eight hands holding a Trishool, Gada, bow-arrow, sword, lotus flower, bell (ghanta) and kamandal (water pot) and one hand remains in the abhayamudra, the blessing posture. She rides a tiger or a lion to as a symbol of bravery and is also known as Chandika and Rannchandi.
As the legend goes, Goddess Parvati was devastated after Lord Shiva said that he would not marry any woman. However, Her sufferings overwhelmed Him and He agreed to the union. When Lord Shiva brought the wedding procession, Parvati’s parents were terrorised to see gods, mortals, ghouls, ghosts, goblins, aghorees in the procession. When Her mother fainted, Parvati took the form of Her fearsome self and transformed herself into Maa Chandraghanta to save her family.
On being persuaded, Lord Shiva re-appeared as a charming prince adorning jewels and the two get married.
While She is a very serene being, when provoked, Her fury could know no bounds. She is always in the fierce war-posture, ready to take on the evil and the demons.
She is worshipped on the third day of Navratri after Maa Shailaputri and Maa Brahmacharini. Each day of the Navratri is devoted to one of the nine avatars of Maa Durga. The nine different forms are Shailaputri, Brahmacharini, Chandraghanta, Kushmanda, Skandamata, Katyayini, Kaalratri, Mahagauri and Siddhidhatri.