The Hindu festival Karwa Chauth is a celebrated with great enthusiasm and fervor among married women. On this day, women keep a 'nirjala' fast -- which literally means fasting in which even water isn't consumed from sunrise till moonrise. Women fast on this day to pray for the safe and long life of their husbands, though these days many husbands too observe the fast along with their wives for a similar reason.
According to the Hindu calendar, Karwa Chauth is celebrated on the fourth day after Purnima in the month of Kartik. On this day, married women dress up in new clothes (preferably red which signifies a happy married life) and apply mehendi on their hands as a part of the festivities. Women observing this fast get together on this day and celebrate it by narrating folk tale, reading Karwa Chauth Vrat Katha and singing folk songs-- all of which make it a lively festival. Women also worship Goddess Parvati in the Karwa Chauth puja followed by Lord Shiva, Lord Ganesh and Lord Kartikeya. The fast is later broken after having a glimpse of the moon.
Though this Hindu festival is celebrated by women across India, it is particularly celebrated in northern region of the country which includes the states Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh.
Karwa Chauth Story of Queen Veervati: Once upon a time there was a beautiful queen named Veervati who was the only sister among seven loving and caring brothers. On her first Karwa Chauth, she was at her parent’s place and began a strict fast after sunrise. In the evening, she was waiting eagerly for the moonrise as she was suffering from hunger and thirst. Seeing her suffering like this, pained her brothers. So, they installed a mirror in a Peepal tree that made it look as if the Moon is up in the sky. Now, the moment Veervati broke her fast, the news that her husband was dead arrived. She kept on weeping and was inconsolable. She instantly started home and met Goddess Parvati on her way. Maa Parvati revealed that she was tricked by her brothers. Then, she kept Karwa Chauth fast with full devotion and seeing her dedication, Yama, the lord of death restored life to her husband. This Karva Chauth Katha of Queen Veervati is quite popular and usually heard by women observing the fast.
Karwa Chauth Story of Queen Draupadi: Another legend behind observing a fast for the well-being of your husband goes back to the Mahabharat-era. It is believed that Draupadi had also observed this fast for the safety and long life of her husbands. The story: When Arjun had gone for penance in the Nilgris, the rest of the Pandavas faced many isues in his absence. That's when Draupadi remembered Lord Krishna for his help, who reminded her that on a similar situation earlier Goddess Parvati had keot a fast for Lord Shiva. Inspired by this, Draupadi too keeps a fast of Karva Chauth with all its rituals for her husbands. And consequently, the Pandavas are able to face their problems and overcome them.
Karwa Chauth Story of Karwa: There was a woman named Karwa who was deeply in love with her husband and this intense love gave her lots of spiritual powers. Once when her husband went to bathe in the river, he was attacked by a crocodile. Now the courageous Karwa bound the crocodile with cotton yarn and remembered Yama; the Lord of death. She asked Lord Yamraj to give life to her husband and death sentence to the crocodile. He said he was afraid he couldn’t do so. However, in return, Karwa threatened to curse Lord Yama and destroy Yamdev. Yama was seriously afraid of being cursed by such a devoted and doting wife and thus he sent the crocodile to hell and gave life back to her husband.
Karwa Chauth Story of Satyavan and Savitri: It is said that when Yama, the God of death, came to acquire Satyavan's life, Savitri begged in front of Yama to grant him life. But Yama was adamant and saw that Savitri stopped eating and drinking and followed Yama as he took her husband away. Yama now said to Savitri that she could ask for any boon except the life of her husband. Savitri, being a very smart woman, asked Yama that she wanted to be blessed with children. And since she was a devoted and loyal wife, she wouldn't let any kind of adultery. Thus, Yama had to restore life to Satyavan so that Savitri could have children.
On the day of Karva Chauth, women and girls observing the fast do not miss hearing Karva Chauth Katha of Savitri. Besides, listening to all the Karva Chauth stories emphasizes the importance of this fast and how ancient this festival is.
Date and time:Karwa Chauth on Thursday, October 13, 2022
Karwa Chauth Puja Muhurat - 05:12 PM to 06:26 PM. Duration - 01 Hour 14 Mins
Karwa Chauth Upavasa Time - 05:32 AM to 07:36 PM. Duration - 14 Hours 04 Mins
Moonrise on Karwa Chauth Day - 07:36 PM