Unmarried Women Cry During Diwali In This Village In Karnataka; Here’s Why

by Vaishalee Kalvankar
Unmarried Women Cry During Diwali In This Village In Karnataka; Here’s Why

India is rightly known as the land of festivals. The country is known for celebrating so many festivals with the same enthusiasm and love. Recently, we celebrated Diwali with so much pomp, happiness and also firecrackers. Every part of the country has a different way to celebrate this festival. But did you know that a village in Karnataka follows a unique ritual where unmarried girls cry during Diwali? Here is more about this unique ritual!

This Village In Karnataka Follows Unique Diwali Ritual

Credits: Google arts and culture

During Karnataka’s Gajendragad town’s Diwali celebrations, young unmarried ladies wear their traditional clothes, light lamps, and take blessings from local elders. These women, also known as Kanyamanis, adorned in their traditional garb, give and receive hugs and frequently cry happy tears on Diwali. 

These poignant events, amid the rich traditions of the Lambani community, are captured in the essence of Diwali 2023. A group trip to a nearby hill is part of the festivities, when people gather flowers while listening to poetic Lambani music. 

Thereafter, customs include making Hattevvan out of dung, setting it outside, and performing pooja of the same. Vibrant dancing and celebrations in front of the Sewalal temple in Tanda mark the conclusion of the festivities.

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Warm Embraces And Tears

Credits: Ministry of culture

After the dance, the young unmarried ladies of Tanda in Karnataka give each other warm embraces and cry as those who would be getting married the following year think about how they will miss these happy times with their companions on Diwali.

Deep ties to the festival are reflected in the mood, which makes for a vibrant Diwali celebration that lights up every Tanda home with joy. These unmarried women, or Kanyamanis, who are dressed in traditional Lambani clothing, gather outside the home of the Tanda chief. 

They set out on a journey to the neighbouring woodland together while singing a melodic Lambani song. They harvest a variety of vibrant flowers in the forest. Once they go back to the tanda, these young women perform a special puja for the village deity. This is done by scattering the flowers inside homes and mixing them with dung.  (As per News 18)

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Upholding Tradition And Culture

The women then dress in traditional clothes, perform their folk song, and line up their steps in a rhythmic takkant in the village hall, resulting in a colourful celebration of Lambani customs.

The girls fervently keep a fast on this particular occasion and joyfully celebrate the Festival of Lights with dance and cultural events. The Tanda leader, Prashantha Rathoda, upholds their heritage and culture while emphasizing environmental preservation by abstaining from using firecrackers. 

For the inhabitants of Gajendragad Tanda, Diwali, the Festival of Lights, is especially significant because it showcases their distinctive customs that stand for harmony in the midst of a vast range of cultural backgrounds.

The nomadic Lambanis, also known as Lambadis or Banjaras, originated in Rajasthan from Afghanistan and have since dispersed over Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, and Maharashtra. They are thought to have helped the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb transport supplies to the southern region of India in the seventeenth century.

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Do you know of more such unique rituals?

Cover Image Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

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