The Mapusa market was brimming with people on Friday as people came out to shop for items to celebrate Tulsi Vivah, also called Tulsi Lagna.
It is a wedding ceremony held between Lord Vishnu and the holy basil plant or tulsi (Ocimum sanctum). As this plant is grown in the front yard of homes, the ‘ceremony’ is held here.
The Tulsi Vivah is performed in homes by following all traditional, social and religious customs and rituals.
On the occasion, the tulsi vrindavan is decorated with branches of various trees such as tamarind (Tamarindus indica), which represents the bridesmaid or dhedi and sugarcane which represents the best man or dhedo.
Gavti fov (poha - rice flakes) on sale in the Mapusa market. Sweet preparations made of fov and puffed rice are distributed among people attending the Tulsi Lagna.
The tulsi has a special relationship with the women of the household. For a married woman, a day in a typical Hindu village home starts by watering and circumnavigating this plant. Then at dusk, a lamp is lit and placed on the planter.
Sugarcane signifies dhedo (best man) in the Tulshi Vivah.
Tulsi Vivah marks the onset of the Hindu marriage season.