Monday, August 24, 2015

Karaga Festival A Demonstration of the Rich Cultural and Religious Heritage of Karnataka

Karaga is one of the oldest and widely celebrated festivals of Karnataka. Karaga festival depicts the rich cultural and religious heritage of Karnataka. It is celebrated in honour of the Goddess Shakti. 

The festival is held at the famous Dharmarayaswamy temple in Bangalore. The festival starts on the full moon day of Chaitra that falls in March/April. The festival derives its name from an earthen pot in which the Goddess Shakti. The celebrations last for 9 days, starting from the full moon day.

The celebration of Karaga festival in Karnataka can be traced back to over five centuries. It is believed that the festival originated in the Tigala community, a Tamil-speaking community of gardeners in Southern Karnataka. The Tigala community has been carrying forward the tradition of the festival for several centuries. This festival celebrate in  women's and men's. Men wear white Dhoti and women wear traditional silk saree

The origin of the Tigala community is not clear. Members of this community call themselves Vanihikula Kshatriyas. Some members claim that they are descendents of Veerakumars, the members of a mythological army who had helped Draupadi in her fight against a demon. Some believe that the origin of the community can be traced back to the lions of Angirasa, the sage whose offsprings founded most of the dynasties that had ruled over South India. Some others believe that the Tigalas are descendents of Agani, the Goddess of fire as per the Hindu mythology.

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