'Karwa Chauth' is a ritual of fast observed by married Hindu women seeking the longevity, well-being and prosperity of their husbands. It is popular among married women in the northern and western parts of India. This festival comes nine days before Diwali on 'kartik ki chauth', i.e., on the fourth day of the new moon immediately after Dusshera, in the month of 'Karthik' (October-November). This year it falls today, October 22 (Please check local calendar for moon rise time in your country or region).
In the evening, women dress up in special clothes, usually a red or pink sari or 'lehenga-choli' with gold woven 'zari' patterns. New brides often wear their bridal costume. All deck up in jewelry and wear 'mehendi' or henna patterns especially on the hands. Decorative 'bindis' on the forehead are a must for all women taking part in this celebration. Fasting women from all over the neighborhood gather in a group and narrate mythological stories that underscore the significance of Karwa Chauth. And, of course, all wives expect lavish gifts from their husbands!
The fast of Karwa Chawth truly sets the merry tone of the fun and frolic, festivity and feasting that come in good measure during Diwali -- the biggest festival of the Hindus. Read more...
Photo: Getty Images