Bathukamma means ‘come back to life mother’ and is asking Goddess Sati to return back. Legend has it that Sati returned as Goddess Parvati and therefore the festival is also dedicated to Goddess Parvati.
The idol of the Goddess Bathukamma during the festival is made using flowers. The murti of Bahtukamma is immersed in water on the final day of the festivities.
There is a very special festival that celebrated by Telangana people only is called Bathukamma pandaga, it comes before Dasara. It starts before 10 days of dasara. The Women and Children make bathukamma with lot of flowers and put them around in their varandas and play the songs by rounding those bathukammas. People celebrate this festival 9 days. On the sixth day (arrem), for instance, a call is given to herald the end of the festivities. On that day, there is a break of sorts and a bar on playful activities.
When Bathukamma will fall:-
Bathukamma is usually celebrated from Ashwayuja shuddha pandyami to Maharnavami. On the 9th Day they will celebrate pedda Bathukamma . There will be hungama on the 9th day every body will wear pattu saries and they sing folk songs and at last they immerse them in
rivers. After that the next day Dasar will come that every body knows as Vijaya Dasami.
Women pray Bathukamma and Unmarried girls pray Bodemma (Girl Bathukamma). Bathukamma is a floral creation with flowers found in Telangana region i.e. yellow Tangedu, white Gunugu, golden marigold.
About Bathukamma :-
The flower pattern is unique. Tangedu (yellow flowers) are at the bottom. Atop that is Gunugu (white). Banthi (Marigold) acts as the cover for the Bathukamma. The tangedu had a striking.
Bathukamma is a stack of beautiful flowers arranged in seven concentric layers in the form of a cone. It is believed that the flowers that are obtained in this season are unique seasonal flowers, with medicinal value. It is the ladies who prepare Bathukamma with the flowers. They then arrange them on a wide plate in a conical mound. Those ladies who participate in the festival dress up in their best, wearing traditional Silk Sarees and jewellery. Young girls also
participate. They wear Langa-Oni – the traditional attire of young girls of the region. The ladies gather in large numbers along with their Bathukammas in their locality place them in the middle and dance around them while singing soul stirring Bathukamma folk songs. Synchronising steps and claps in unison provide a splendorous look to the festivities.
By practice one has to prepare veduru or duseru woven creeper, with an overwhelming collection of flowers, including the vegetable variety on each of the nine days. These range from gummadi, Thangedu, pydi thangedu, gunugu, nuvvu, rudraksha, katla, goranta, kakara, beera and potla to ganneru.
After placing the Bathukamma in the open, the women go around it, hand in hand, to offer their prayers. Sari folded in typical style they dance around merrily while clapping their hands. Men can watch this from afar. The woman with the most melodious voice in the group is compelled to render songs on popular demand. The rest of the members constitute the chorus.
The songs are to invoke the blessings of various goddesses like Lakshmi, Parvathi as also Sita Anasuya, Chandramathi, Shashi Rekha, Satyabhama, Savitri, Kanyaka Parameshwari, who are eulogized wholeheartedly. By principle, the renditions end with any one of the following three tributes, Ooyala, Chandamama or Gouramma.
However, the pasupu mudda (depicting Gowramma) is not thrown inside the water. Rather every married woman applies a paste of this, after dipping it in the by now holy water, on her mangalsutra (the sacred thread/nuptial knot that marks the solemnization of her marriage) so that her husband is protected from all evils and ill fate. They also smear their cheeks and neck with the paste.
Food for Bathukamma:-
If on the first day betel nut placed on tulsi leaves are exchanged between families, on the Pedda Bathukamma day pesara (grams), wheat, rice, coconut and nuvvulu (sesame) are exchanged at the immersion spot.
On the ninth day, it is customary to prepare garelu (Wada) for breakfast, Pulihora (tamarind rice) for lunch and jaggery-rich laddoos for consumption during dinner.
What is Bathukamma immersion (Nimajjan or Visarjan)?:-
After the completion of Bathukamma Aata, women take their Bathukammas to ‘Cheruvu’ (pond or lake) and pray for the last time in the year and immerse them into water.