Karwa Chauth is a Hindu festival mostly celebrated in Northern India during which married women fast from sunrise till the moon comes out. Unmarried women also observe a fast for finding their prospective grooms.
The women consume a meal before dawn, called sargi and then only eat and drink after they see the moon at night. Women mostly keep a ‘nirjala’ fast, meaning that they fast without any water consumption too from sunrise till moonrise. Going by the Hindu lunisolar calendar, it is on the fourth day after the moon in the month of Kartik that Karwa Chauth is observed. This year Karwa Chauth falls on October 17, 2019. It is in the Northern regions of Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Rajasthan, Haryana and Punjab that Karwa Chauth is predominantly celebrated.
Karwa Chauth is an auspicious occasion when married women pray to Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati so that their husband has a long life. They dress up in ethnic wear and apply sindoor and wear jewellery. Before sunset, they come together in a group and read the vrat katha.
Although women fast during this time period, food is an important part of this day. The practice of eating sargi in the morning is important. It is common practice for mother-in-laws to prepare a thali of sargi for their daughters-in-law.
The thali comprises foods that provide enough energy for the long day ahead and are filling. Some of the common sweets prepared for the sargi are halwa and phirni. Dry fruits such as almonds, pistachios, cashews and walnuts are consumed because they are high on nutritional energy. Fruits are important since they provide the body with the much needed water content till the evening.
Moonrise time: 8:16 pm
Chaturthi Tithi: 6:48 am (October 17, 2019) to 7:29 am (October 18, 2019)
Karwa Chauth Pooja Muhurat: 5:46 pm to 7:02 pm
Karwa Chauth Upavas time: 6:27 am to 8:16 pm