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Viva Holidays Tours & Travels Pvt. Ltd. Home >> Festivals in India > Karwa Chauth

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Viva Holidays Tours & Travels Pvt. Ltd. Karwa Chauth
Karwa Chauth is considered to be a traditional Hindu festival for married women and is celebrated in some parts of India. There is a ritual of fasting observed by married Hindu women ( Suhagan) seeking the longevity, well-being and prosperity of their husbands. It is popular amongst married women in the northern and western parts of India, especially, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat.The ritual involves keeping a strict fast by married women and they do not take even a drop of water.
Karwa Chauth
The day starts with getting up early in the morning, performing their ablutions, and wear new and festive clothes. In Punjab women start their fast by consuming food items and sweets called sergi which is sent to them or given by their mother-in-law before the dawn. Shiva, Parvati and their son Kartikeya are worshipped on this day along with the 10 'karwas' (earthen pots) filled with sweets. The Karwas are given to daughters and sisters along with gifts. The fast is broken after looking at the moon through the sieve and then looking at her hasband's face. The process involves looking at their husbands just after seeing the moon.

Karwa means earthen pot and chauth means fourth night after the full moon. It is celebrated on the fourth night after the full Moon in the month of kartik in the Hindu calendar. It has great social and cultural significance and is mostly practiced in northern India. Wives start their fast at night just after the appearance of the moon, within sight of their husbands.

They then wait until the next night's moonrise to begin the fast breaking ceremonies, without consuming any food or drink. In the evening women dress in their best clothing, and adorn themselves with jewellery and henna. On sighting the moon, they look and offer prayers and worship to it, and then receive their first bite of food and water from their husbands. Thereafter, women consume their special meal prepared for the occasion. Worshipping the moon involves filling up the karwa with specially prepared food and jewellery and offering it to the god. Karwas are also exchanged with other women after that. Further practices involve telling and listening to stories regarding origin of Karwa Chauth.

Celebrations of Karwa Chauth
The auspicious Occasions of Karva Chauth festival is celebrated by married women of North India with complete dedication and so much fanfare in the form of fasting from sunrise to moon rise without eating a bit or drinking a drop. They observe the most difficult fast for the long life and prosperity of their husbands.

Significance of Karwa Chauth Festival
The festival of Karwa Chauth is observed with a fasting tradition by the married women. So unique in nature women keeps the fast to pray for the welfare and long life of their husbands. Karwa Chauth festival brings married women more closer to their Mother-in-laws. Like other festivals, Karwa Chauth is also marked by gatherings by friends and relatives, preparing delicious food, exchanging of gifts and well wishes. All the decorations, jewelry, heena and joyous atmosphere signifies the splendor and happiness of a married life. Unlike from past the celebrations of Karwa Chauth festival is changing with the times.

The beauty parlours, jewelry shops, and restaurants have made this festive Occasions a full-fledged commercial activity. Unmarried girls have also started to observe the fast for getting their dream husband. Photographs and phone calls are doing away the need to wait till the moon rise to end the fast. This shows the changing and glorifying face of Karwa Chauth festival.

Legends of Karva Chauth
As per a legend in the Mahabharata, once Arjun had gone for worship to the Nilgiri Hills. Draupadi was struck with fear believing that she was alone in the forest with no one to protect her. She invoked Lord Krishna who appeared before her. On hearing her predicament Lord Krishna cited an example of Goddess Parvati.

Parvati in a similar situation asked Lord Shiva's help. Lord Shiva explained to her that to ward off such apprehensions, a woman could observe a fast on Kartik Krishna Chaturthi as a remedy. There is also the story of the Satyavan and Savitri. Savitri with her unparalleled love for her husband averted his untimely death. When Lord Yama, came to procure Satyavan's soul, Savitri begged him to grant him life. When he refused, she stopped eating and drinking and Yamraj finally relented. He granted her, her husband's life.

Karwa Chauth is an occasion that encourage people to gather and socialize with friends and family, exchange gifts and share home-cooked meals. The gifts exchanged on this occasion reflects joy, splendor, brightness and happiness of a married life.


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