BELAGAVI : The most awaited ‘Gatari Amavasya’, a traditional festival celebrated with liquor and non-vegetarian food one day before the holy month of Shravan kicks off, commenced in Belagavi on Monday evening.
Gatari Amavasya is a festival observed on No Moon Day, specially by Marathi people of Belagavi and a portion of Maharashtra. Many Hindu people do not eat non-vegetarian food and consume liquor during the Shravan month and so they drink and eat non-veg food on the last day in Ashada month.
Gatari Amavasya, which commenced on Monday evening according to the Hindu calendar, will conclude on Tuesday night. Girish Patil, a senior citizen of Tilakwadi in Belagavi, said that he has been watching the celebration since his childhood.
He explained that the name ‘Gatari’ is said to be given to the festival because many people consume liquor to such an extent on that day that they end up lying or sitting next to roadside gutters. Patil said that though celebrating Gatari Amavasya has been an old tradition in Belagavi, it does not mean one should consume more liquor. It asks the devotees to be disciplined after the celebration, by quitting liquor and non-vegetarian food till the completion of Shravan, he said.
Kalyani Jadhav, a woman residing at Hindwadi of Belagavi said that cooking non-vegetarian food is common in most of the houses during the festival. She said that usually people avoid consuming non-vegetarian food on Monday and so most will celebrate the festival on Tuesday.
Sale of liquor to rise by 15 to 20 per cent than regular on Gatari day.