Karvachauth is a major festival of North India. On this day married women observe a day long fast for the well being, prosperity and long life of their husbands. Unmarried girls also observe this fast with the belief that by doing so they will get a loving and caring husband. The festival promotes greater bonding between women and their in laws.
The ritual of Karwa Chauth is quite tough. Women forego the whole day
without food and water. Women get up before sunrise and eat "Sargi"
- food consisting of Pheni (made up of milk and semolina), coconut,
sweets and cereals. After sunrise they do not eat and drink anything
till they worship moon at night.
Women specially dress up for this festival. They attire in bridal
outfit, wear best of make up and apply Henna (Mehndi) on their hands and
feets. In the evening all the women of locality gather and perform the
puja together. Afer puja they offer gifts to their mothers -in-law. At
night after offering ark (water) to the moon the women break their fast.
Karva Chauth falls about nine days before Diwali on the Krishna
Chaturthi - the fourth day of the waning moon or the dark fortnight - of
the month of Ashwin after Sharad Purnima (some time in October or
Karwa/Karva Chauth is observed by women for the long life of their husdands.