Gangaur is a Hindu festival that celebrates the love and devotion of Goddess Gauri, who is the consort of Lord Shiva. It is mainly observed in Rajasthan and some parts of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and West Bengal.
The name Gangaur comes from the combination of 'Gan', which means Shiva, and 'Gaur', which means Gauri. The festival starts on the first day of Chaitra month (March-April) and lasts for 18 days. It coincides with the spring season and marks the arrival of new crops.
The festival is especially significant for women, who worship Goddess Gauri for marital bliss, fertility and well-being. They adorn themselves with colorful clothes, jewellery, henna and kajal. They also make clay idols of Shiva and Gauri and decorate them with flowers.
The women observe fasts, sing songs, perform rituals and offer prayers to Goddess Gauri. They also carry earthen pots filled with water on their heads and walk in a procession to a nearby lake or river. There they immerse the idols in water as a symbol of bidding farewell to Gauri.
Gangaur is a festival of love and fertility that honors the divine union of Shiva and Gauri.
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