Odisha is remarkable for traditional Melas, Bratas, Oshas, and Pujas. Some brata, oshas, melas, and Puja are derived from Ramayana, Mahabharata, Purana, and Grantha, etc. Mostly the former three are observed by women mainly. But the meals are always celebrated by all the family members.
There are nearly ten bratas, out of ten bratas, Savitri brata a great day observed by Hindu married women."Amavasya" the month of Jyeshta. The day is having more importance to married women whose husbands are alive. Savitri Brata or Savitri Osa falls on the no moon day in the month of Jyeshtha. It is celebrated in the Indian states of Odisha, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and aslo Nepal. The festival instituted to ensure the well-being, long life, and prosperity of the husband.
The story behind Savitri Brata
The Savitri Brata was named by lord Savitri, the beautiful daughter of Madra Desa king Aswapati. Savitri selected Satyaban as her life partner. Satyaban lives in the forest with his blind father Dyumatsen. Savitri left her Palace and lived with her husband and the in-laws in the forest.
As her wife, she went to the forest to take care of them. One day Satyaban was cutting some woods in the forest, Satyaban’s head reeled and he fell down. Then the death of God Yamraj appeared to take away his soul. Savitri pleaded to Yamraj not to separate from her husband, if he take away the soul she would also follow. Yamraj moved by the devotion of Savitri and returned the life of her husband.
Yama is implored by Savitri when he is about to leave his body and due to her determination and devotion to her husband, she wins him back to life and Satyaban regains his life.
Observation of Savitri Brata
Women wake up early in the morning on Savitri Brata and take a bath, wear new clothes and ornaments. Women use red vermilion on the forehead. Bhoga to offering Savitri consists of fruits like pineapple, dates, mango, jackfruit, banana, etc.
Women are going to the temple of lord Savitri with flowers and fruits. Along with hula-hula and Haribola sounds.
Then start Puja with prayers This fasting begins at sunrise and ends after sunset with prayers. The fast broken by consuming the Bhoga of Savitri.
Women always remember the determination of Savitri, she believes that when she observed this Brata her husband lives a long life with good health and wealth.