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Gangaur Festival

Gangaur Festival

The Gangaur Festival takes places in Rajasthan and is celebrated in honour of Goddess Parvati.

A festival that honours goddess Gauri, the Gangaur festival usually takes place in various parts of Rajasthan, including Jaipur, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Bikaner and Nathdwara. In the word Gangaur, 'Gan' is the synonym for Lord Shiva whereas 'Gaur' stands for Gauri or Goddess Parvati. However, this festival is mainly held to honour Goddess Parvati, who is regarded as the epitome of marital love, strength, courage, power and excellence. Predominantly celebrated by women, this festival honours Goddess Gauri, a manifestation of Parvati (wife of Shiva). She represents purity and austerity. It is believed that during this festival, Parvati returns to her parental homes, in order to bless her friends and their marriages.

Celebrated in the month of Chaitra, the first month of the Hindu calendar, the Gangaur Festival in Rajasthan takes place between March and April. It begins on the first day of the Chaitra month, which is a day after Holi and continues for 18 days. Besides celebrating Goddess Gauri, this festival also marks the beginning of spring and end of winter. The Gangaur festival is called Teej though the distinct difference between the two festivals is that the idols idol will have a canopy during the Teej Festival while the Gangaur idol would not have a canopy. Besides Teej festival is celebrated not just in India, but also parts of Nepal as well. 

To mark this occasion, women and girls fast during this duration and consume only one meal. Images of Gauri and Lord Shiva are made and decorated in a pretty manner. However in some Rajput families, images of these deities are made of wood and painted by famous painters who are called Matherans. Further, people also wear new clothes, adorn themselves with jewellery and also apply mehndi. On the seventh day of the festival, they carry ‘ghudilas’ which are basically earthen pots with lamps inside them. The women folk also receive many gifts from the elderly members of their family.

On the last of the Gangaur festival, these earthen pots are broken by the women and girls; broken pieces of the earthen pots are then thrown into a well or tank. In Jaipur, to mark the last day of the festival, A grand procession is held which starts from the Zanani-Deodhi of the City Palace which then goes through Tripolia Bazaar, Chhoti Chaupar, Gangauri Bazaar, Chaugan Stadium and finally converges near the Talkatora. Headed by a colourful show of elephants, old palanquins, chariots, bullock carts and performance folk artistes, many people from around the state come here to witness the festivities, making it one of the most famous festival of Rajasthan.


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