Rajasthan is a vibrant state adorned with a train of festivals in a year. Gangaur is one such vivid festival reciting the importance of marriage in a girl’s life. The word Gangaur is combination of two meanings, where Gan means Lord Shiva and Gaur means Godess Parvati. The festival arrives in the months of March and April every year. This 16 days festival is quite thespian where girls and women don beautiful Rajasthani attires with adorable matching jewelry.
Conventionally, girls wake up on early hours to bathe, get dressed beautifully and also apply mehandi on palms and feet. Carrying these aesthetics, they also keep fast during this festival and eat once in a day. Beautiful sculptures of Lord Shiva and Gauri are made and decorated with complete diligence. Some of the Rajput families even get them made with wood from “Matherans” (the artisans) every year, before the arrival of the festival.
One another attraction of this festival are “ghudilas”, which are typically earthen pots with some holes. Inside them, lamps are lit and they carry them on their heads. Girls receive gifts from the elders in the form of ghee, money, sweets, jaggery and they also sing mellifluous songs of Gangaur. After completion of 10 days, the women break these pots and the broken granules are thrown into the tank or a well. The last day of the festival is full of many other rituals like immersing the clay idols into water.
The common notion behind the festival that married women worship Goddess Parvati for the long and happy life and unmarried girls worship so that they get a loving and understanding partner. The festival is celebrated at a humongous state in Jaipur and Udaipur cities of Rajasthan. The pink city comes alive with vidaai songs for Gauri and dances on euphonious music.