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  • Writer's pictureAakansha Mahajan

May you live forever..!!

Indian festivals season is on..!!

All the excitement is on. One after another- from renovating and painting the house to making variety of food items to buying new clothes, jewelry, gifts and what not, Indian homes are filled with lots of colors and excitement. All the markets are filled and hence all the roads are packed..!!

The months of September-October are the most happening months for the Hindus (majorly for all) as they are filled with various festivals starting from Navratri Pooja to Dussehra to Karvachauth and then “the most important festival”- Diwali and Bhaiya Dooj. It is the time to celebrate love, relationships, to strengthen the bonds between our family members and to work on our not-so-good-relationships (like we all have with few of our relatives).

One of the most happening festival (especially in Delhi) these days is “Karvachauth”. (For those who do not know- In Hindu culture-this festival is celebrated to pray for the long and happy life of the husband. The women fast for the whole day, stay without food and even water and do Pooja in the evening in groups and finally by looking at the moon, completes her fast and drink a sip of water from her husband’s hand). The festival of Karvachauth, filled with warmth and admiration, is celebrated by almost all the Indian ladies. Indeed, every women want to pray for the happiness and the long life of her husband.

All the religions and festivals hold their own importance and people have their individual and varied beliefs in them.

Every individual has a different eye to look at the way things are done and celebrated. Some women believe in fasting and do the rituals with all the faith and trust in their lord (assuming or believing that fasting will surely give her husband a long and happy life), on the other hand some might not believe in the same concept and don’t keep fasts (does not mean they don’t want their husband to live long but it’s just that this concept does not make sense to them). However, there is another category of people who do it because they are supposed to do it, their families are following this tradition and hence they also follow the same without giving much of a thought to it.

With the increasing craze and ever increasing demand of this day, Karvachauth has become one way for the ladies to shop giving a hole in their husband’s pocket :P (may be not intentionally for all).

The preparations for “the day” starts well in advance where ladies are involved in buying new expensive Indian clothes and jewelry. They also have to buy sargi including matthis and puas (jaggery) (as a part of the ritual). On top of all this, mehendi is one of the most demanding thing. The bhaiya and didi who are applying these mehendi are charging like bombs in some of the big markets of Delhi (even in smaller markets for that matter). And then comes the make-up, parlors are over-priced and apparently all the women are ready to spend anything to get that ‘perfect look’ for the day.

Not to my surprise, in today’s world, Karvachauth is celebrated just because it-is-in..!! How this maine-tumhari-lambi-umar-k-lie-fast-kia is affecting husband and women expecting jo-mujhe-chahie-wo-lekar-dena-padega varies from couple to couple.

Some women keep the day as simple as possible with minimal expenses and maximum time devotion on their prays, some demands expensive things from her husband showing that they are doing a favor on her husband by fasting, some do nothing at all whereas some buy things as they have to show off to their friends and family. Husband’s way of taking it also varies to a great extent. Some of them don’t even know how and what his wife is doing, some of them are extremely sensitive to the effort his wife is putting in and tries to do whatever possible they can- some keeps fast with wives (very few), some make her feel special by showing different gestures. However, some of them are forced to show their gesture in a way, not suiting to their mental, emotional or financial condition..!!

The irony is, with all this glitters and lights, the whole idea and purpose of doing all the fasting and Pooja is fading away. People are involved in outer things to such great extents that they have forgotten (or are forgetting) the reason and motive behind doing this festival. (How true the belief is, is not the point, how we are taking this makes the whole difference)

Is all the fancy decoration, make-up, lightning, heavy expenditure really required? Are we doing all this because these are a part of the rituals or are we following the ritual because we get to do all this?

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