Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Karwa Chauth Today: Bangles, henna and fasting for married women

Jamshedpur, Oct. 29: Stalls after stalls have been lined up in by-lanes of the steel city, as women, both young girls, lined up to buy dozens of sparkling bangles in every possible colour on the eve of Karwa Chauth.

Bangle sellers are happy that sales of different varieties of bangles are at their peak during these days.

Occasionally, sale of bangles is three-fold the normal sales on the occasion of Karwa Chouth. Colourful bangles in plastics, glass and metal are available in the market this year, but shopkeepers point out that traditional bangle are most in demand.

Aside from purchasing bangles of different hues and designs, applying mehndi (henna) on their hands is the most sought after by women during Karva Chauth.

“Going by the trend, Arabian, tattooed and ornamental designs are a rage this year, as young, single girls too have applied henna.

We start at 11 a.m. and keep on working till midnight,” says Raj Kumar, a henna artist in Sakchi.

“There is a huge rush at our parlour and, hence, we have closed further bookings for the festival. Several orders were from women who want to get ready at their homes, but we could not take any,” said Jyoti Singh, owner of a parlour in Bistupur.

Apart from makeup and dresses, matching accessories and fashionable footwear are also top in the list of women. Hence, the city markets are offering large varieties of bangles and footwear for women in traditional styles for this Karwa Chauth. Footwear is also available in wide ranges, but those in golden and black are most favored.

Despite drastic changes in the lifestyle and views, the traditions of fasting for the well being of husband has not lost its meaning to these women.

The Karva Chauth tradition continues to thrive even among the women, who are well educated and ambitious and not so traditional in their approach. “Karva Chauth is just a custom and I follow it in that way only.

I am secure in my relationship with my husband, so observing fast for a day in a year is no big deal,” said Niti Ahuja, a 26-year-old marketing executive in a private bank.

Veena Taneja, a corporate employee, too feels that observing the festival hardly affects her relations with her husband.

Nevertheless, she does follow the tradition as others in her family. These days, however, women have introduced some changes in the festival to suit their schedules.

Describing the rituals, Komal Sareen, a teacher, said, “At dawn the women are supposed to eat food cooked by the mother-in-law, but I just prefer to have a glass of milk. Then married women are supposed to keep a fast until the moon appears in the sky.”

Many husbands also accompany their partners in observing fast to give a feeling of togetherness. “I am also keeping the fast with my wife,” said Aditya Saxena, a dentist married for two years.

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