Saturday, May 27, 2017

BandiHabba of Shirwad Karwar

#Bandihabba #Kalas
Pic shared by #SantoshKhiraNaik

In the month of May, in Karwar, Ankola, Kumta, Honnavar and Bhatkal taluks in Uttara Kannada it is the season for "Bandi Habba," a folk festival.

Basically, it is a festival for farmers to evoke the blessings of village deities before sowing. It is also celebrated in honour of those killed in wars and "#mahasatis" who sacrificed their lives to uphold the village tradition. It is called "Bandi Habba" because in ancient days the deities were placed on a bandi (a cart with four wheels) and taken in a procession.

The presiding deity of the festival is the gram devata, Amma, also known as Shanta Durga, Bhoomitai and Kanchika Parameshwari. The festival is celebrated for eight to 12 days.

During the festival, a small water pot (`#kalasha') is kept on a stone platform in the temple. The `kalasha' is decorated with flowers and ornaments and the mask of the deity is placed at the centre of the platform. Every day during the festival, gunaga, the head priest, carries the `kalasha' on his head and goes in a procession. At night, the `kalasha' is placed on a platform called Adukatte and worshiped. Later, the `kalasha' is taken to "uyyale chappara," a swing. The gunaga conducts the traditional rituals there.

The festival brings people of different communities together. The festival can be a tourist attraction and provide opportunities to study the folk art, culture and tradition of the region.

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