Karvachauth is here again. It is a festival celebrated by north Indian women by fasting from sunrise to moonrise for the long life of their husbands.
From childhood I have seen my mother and grandmother observe this, having not even a drop of water entire day. For most of my lifetime I have even participated in this by reading out the katha for them, running to the terrace to see if the moon is out, clicking pictures when they get dressed in beautiful bright sarees and what not. With each year though I find this festival utterly sexist. Of course, no judgement for those who observe diligently every year. It is all about your choice.
Some husbands out of love observe the same for their wives which is very respectful. I appreciate such men.
Ladies will go about doing all their daily chores without getting any special treatment throughout the day. There will be men who let alone cook a meal will demand their food to be served on the table without picking a glass of water themselves. They might even order a Biryani for themselves without giving a second thought that their better half is starving for them. Again, it is not about food or staying hungry. It is about the sexism. In India, there are no fasts observed by men for their wives but at least one each month that the wife will observe for her husband.
I for one, did observe it few times but with each year it seems like a farce to me. I do want my husband to live long, I pray for his success every day, I want him to be happy forever but I don’t think keeping a fast or skipping it is doing anything for that. The society we live in though makes you do things you don’t want to. Most of the people out there are judgemental. Also, let me add one more thing here. Karvachauth was first time observed when husbands went out on a war and wives stayed at home praying to the gods and observed the fast. Are the husbands nowadays going to any wars while women are staying home? NO. Women in India are fighting harder battles than men – acing at work while doing all the work at home too (no support from men again). I wonder what husbands feel when their wives touch their feet seeking their blessings after the moon is up. Do they feel powerful and a bigger person? Or do they feel shameful that their wives are doing so much when they are doing nothing? I will go with the first one because if it was that they felt shameful they would force their wives not to observe the fast, the way they might be forcing them into many other things. India is a land of weird sexist traditions and what is surprising is women don’t mind. Again, not judging. Maybe they have their own reasons or some other thoughts behind it or just pure love but personally I abhor this.