Festivals Celebrated in Kota
The city of Kota is known for different kinds of festivals and celebrations. Though Kota celebrates all the major festivals yet there are some which are celebrated with great pomp and zeal. The celebrations go on for days and the womenfolk in particular take active part in a lot of these festivals. The attire during the festival season along with the mood of the city is altered. People are cheerful and happy and the city is lit up throughout the period. Here are some of the most popular festivals celebrated in the city-
The festival of Teej is celebrated all across the state of Rajasthan but the city of Kota has an innovative way of celebrating it. The festival is celebrated with pomp and happiness in homes and women visit homes of relatives and neighbors to wish each other. Teej is celebrated on the 3rd day of the Shravan Month. There are small processions in the city where the goddess is carried around dressed in bright clothes. The women are seen in red or saffron outfits, especially the Kota fabric is seen in prominence. They are decked from head to toe in traditional attire and put mehndi on their hands. Some processions are organized on a bigger scale too. Cultural programs are held in homes and small communities that add to the celebrations. Women come out on the terrace and see the moon and worship it. The festival is celebrated for the longer life of their spouses.
The killing of the devil Ravan in the Ramanaya is celebrated all across the country, but Kota has a unique way of adding another level to the celebration. Dussehra Festival is one of the most popular festivals to be celebrated in Kota. Like in other parts of the country, Dusshera is celebrated on the 10th day of the Navaratri. But the festivities tend to start a lot earlier and almost from the 5-6 day of the Navaratri, houses are lit up. On the main Dussehra day, villagers gather at a community space, dressed in colorful traditional gear. It is here that artists from across the country are called for putting up shows and cultural performances especially Ram-Leela. A 75 feet tall effigy of the demon Ravana is made along with Kumbhakarana and Meghnad. These are then burnt on Dussehra, which symbolizes that good always wins over evil. Crackers are burnt and sweets distributed.
After the celebrations of Dussehra die down it is time to gear up for the Festival of Lights, Diwali. It is said that lord Ram returned back to Ayodhya on the day of Deepavali with Sita and brother Laxman. The celebrations for Diwali too start off a little earlier and homes are cleaned and decorated and sweets are made. In fact, sending sweets and savory items to each other’s home is a must in Kota. Relatives then drop in to celebrate the occasion together after a small ceremony is performed at the house. The womenfolk are given gifts and money as a token of appreciation.
The occasion of Gangaur is celebrated with pomp across Kota. This is mainly a festival that involves women, unlike Dussehra and Diwali. It is a festival that spreads over 16 days and Gangaur is celebrated on the 16th day. Here the young girls and married women get together to worship the different form of Lord Shiva along with his wife Parvati and other gods. The festival involves worshipping of the god for all 16 days, which is supposed to bring good luck and fortune to their husbands. It is said that young girls worshipping or doing Gangaur helps them find a good groom. All the women of the household assemble together to perform the puja everyday. They wear colorful attire and jewelry during the period. After the 16th day, the idols are immersed and the women celebrate with food and festivities in their homes.
There is an annual fair held in the Chambal area which is perfect for those who love adventure sports. This fair is held in February each year and attracts crowds from all over the country. The fair tests the skills of professional sportsmen and army personnel. Some of the events included in the fair are rafting, kayaking, parasailing, wind surfing, water skiing, etc. There is a boating facility in Chambal River, which falls right in the midst of Kota and Jawahar Sagar.
This fair is held in the town of Kota and includes handicrafts like terracotta figurines, cloth items made using Khadi, tribal artifacts, paintings and a lot of handicraft items are available here for low prices. The fair takes place each year in the month of December.