Tradition of love

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | SWATI SHARMA
Published Oct 24, 2021, 2:02 pm IST
Updated Oct 24, 2021, 2:37 pm IST
Karva Chauth has become a debate about its implications in a patriarchal society. Some readers share with us what the rituals mean to them
(File picture) Divas at Sunita Kapoor's house for the celebrations
 (File picture) Divas at Sunita Kapoor's house for the celebrations

Anil Kapoor’s daughter and producer–stylist Rhea Kapoor had taken to her Instagram stories recently to address her fans and followers that she and her newly wedded husband Karan Boolani don’t celebrate Karva Chauth. She even went on to criticise the many who called her silly for not doing this.

“Hi. Happy Sunday. Respectfully please don’t reach out to me for karva chauth gifting or collabs. It’s not something Karan or I believe in. We respect other couples who partake and can even enjoy the festivities while they do. It’s just not for me. Or us. So the last thing I want to do is promote something I don’t believe in and don’t really agree with the spirit it comes from [sic],” Rhea’s story caption read.

 

The stylist with very strong opinion on the matter went on to add, “For now I feel like if we take care of ourselves and each other we should be good. I only write this because it seems random strangers feel the need to aggressively convince me that I’m being ‘silly’, ‘have to do it’, ‘it’s my first’. No, thank you. Let’s move on? If you read this thank you for giving a sh*t. I hope you enjoy your Sunday [sic].”

Celebrating love

Sasha Rawal Bajaj

Karva Chauth has always struck a chord in my heart since I was very young. I’ve grown up seeing my mother perform all the rituals with utmost dedication, and I always knew I’d do it all when I was meant to too. I think it’s the most traditionally romantic gesture that a woman can perform for her man. I know some consider it old-school, but to me it has an inexplicable charm. For me, it’s a reminder of how much I love my husband and the lengths I’d go to for his well-being.”
— Sasha Rawal Bajaj, COO at Kunal Rawal

 

That much-needed pause in life

Shweta keerthi sethia with her husband Akash Sethia

This is my third Karva Chauth. I’ve grown up watching my mother do this, so I’ve been very excited about following this tradition. I love all the gifts I get at the end of the fast from my husband and family. But what I love most about this day is that my husband and I, who are usually totally up with our own daily lives and work, always make it a point to spend the entire day together. Beginning from the dressing up in ethnic Indian wear, which we don’t do very often, to the excitement of keeping a lookout for the moon — it all adds up to making it a day with lots of fun.
— Shweta keerthi sethia, Co founder Purple Martini events and Akash Sethia businessman

 

JUST not for me

Rhea Kapoor

“Respectfully please don’t reach out to me for karva chauth gifting or collabs. It’s not something Karan or I believe in. We respect other couples who partake and can even enjoy the festivities while they do. It’s just not for me. Or us. So the last thing I want to do is promote something I don’t believe in and don’t really agree with the spirit it comes from
—Rhea Kapoor, Anil Kapoor’s daughter and producer–stylist

The ritual of Karva Chauth has become a bone of contention for many in a generation that respects equality and values traditions, ensuring that the practices they follow are in accordance with their beliefs. But even as many women have started choosing not to celebrate Karva Chauth, there are couples like Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli, Divyanka Tripathi and Vivek Dahiya, who’ve been making this a shared celebration by fasting together for each other’s long lives.
We spoke to the modern Indian women about what this tradition means to them.

 

Traditions of love, a sleepover and moon-sighting

Dr Rummy Azad MahendraI believes Karva Chauth symbolises a wife’s love for her husband. I started partaking in this ritual since I got married — next year, it’d be 25 years of my celebrating the occasion. Traditionally, the sargi is offered to you by your mother-in-law, and sweet is in an inherent part of it. One starts preparing for Karva Chauth a day before, starting with getting mehndi on your palms and hand, buying/choosing bright coloured bangles to match the outfit you choose to wear on the day.
“Over the years, my Karva Chauth has become more of a sleepover. I go and bunk-out with my friends and we all wake up together in the morning and eat the sargi together. Then, we go about doing our bit the whole day. While I get back to work, I know some women take the day off and spend the time playing cards, watching movies, etc. By evening, all of us then get back together in one of our houses and do the Karva Mata puja, which has to include seven married ladies and has to be completed before sunset. We exchange our plates as songs play in the background. Then comes the fun part, when it’s the time to sight the moon; you have to look at your husband through the sieve and do the puja before breaking the fast by drinking water, which your husband offers you.”
— Dr Rummy Azad Mahendra, Dentist

 

All the fun and decking up