One of the biggest and the most awaited festival for the Hindu women in Telangana is the Bathukamma festival. It is a floral festival representing the cultural spirit of Telangana. Bathukamma songs reverberate the entire region for the nine days beginning with Amavasya and ending on Saddula Bathukamma.
It is believed that the famed lingam in the famous Rajarajeshwara temple in Vemulawada in Karimnagar district was stolen by the Chola kings. In an attempt to console Parvathi (Bruhadamma), the ladies in the town arranged flowers like a mountain which was called Bathukamma. Gouramma made with turmeric is placed on top of the Bathukamma and women danced around it with lively rhythmic songs invoking the greatness of Goddess Parvathi.
Preparing a Bathukamma has become a folk art. Women start preparing Bathukamma from the afternoon. They cut the flowers leaving the little length base. Some dip Gunuvu flowers in vibrant colours and arrange them on a wide plate, one layer on top of the other. Women compete to show off their Bathukkama with unique arrangement of flowers.
For the nine days, in the evening, women, especially young girls, gather in large numbers with their Bathukammas in open areas of their locality. They form a circle around the Bathukamma and start singing folk songs by clapping their hands and moving around the Bathukamma, synchronizing steps, claps and the song. This gives a splendorous look to the festivities.
It is the festival of feminine joy and celebration. Women show their solidarity by dressing up in their sarees, half sarees and lehengas. For most women, this is a time for shopping for the best traditional sarees, lehengas etc.
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