Saturday, 2 July 2011

Yellu Amavasya – Ellu Amavasi

Yellu Amavasya or Ellu Amavasi is an important festival observed by farming community in South India, especially in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. In 2011, date of Yellu Amavasya is January 4. There is no Ellu Amavas in 2010. Observed on the no moon day in Margashirsh month (December – January), it is a festival to thank the mother earth for a good harvest. Yellu means sesame and Amavas means no moon day.

Yellu is also believed to represent Lord Shani and is offered by people to get rid of Shani Dosha.

On Yellu Amavasai day, special food is prepared and is offered to Mother Earth by farmers. An important ceremony on the day is the spraying of sesame and jaggery all around the farmlands. There is a belief that the sesame and jaggery are food for the worms in the farmland.

Special vegetarian dishes using pulses and green leaves are prepared on the day. Some of the dishes prepared include bajje, pundi, chikki, palak, menthe, rajgiri, bartha, jowar kadabu and sajje kadabu. All the agricultural laborers gather on the farmland and the food is consumed along with all family members.

Special prayers are also held at rural temples for a better harvest. In cities, people have picnic to nearby parks and have food together with their family.

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