Bathukamma, the famous flower festival of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, that takes place during the ten days of Navratri, ended on Sunday. The main celebrations during Dussehra are known to take place in Andhra Pradesh's Krishna district. Bathukamma festivities are about worshipping the 'goddess of life' in the villages bordering Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. During Navratri and Dussehra, forms of Goddess Durga or Shakti are worshipped across India, Dussehra festivities are unique in different states of India.
Bathukamma celebrates the close relationship between earth, water, fire, air the human beings. Women decorate a special pot with flowers grown locally. A procession is taken out in the villages with the pot filled with offerings to the Goddess. According to legends, the flowers used for Bathukamma have special purifying qualities.
During the entire week of celebrations, women make Boddemma or a deity of Gowri - the mother of Devi Durga with earth. Prayers are offered to the goddess and on the last day, it is immersed along with the Bathukamma in the pond.
Locals believe, prayers during the festival and the special flowers keep the waterbodies pure and prevents them from drying up. It is known to be a great environment-friendly festival.
During Bathukamma, women dress up in colourful clothes and decorate their hair with flowers. Ornaments made of flowers are also commonly used. A special sweet called maleeda is prepared with sugar and corn bread and distributed among family members and in the neighborhood.
There are special folklore-based Bathukamma songs and women dance to it in circles around the decorated pot. It is an extremely colourful and vibrant festival.