Navratri is here and along with it, there is colour and the wonderful outfits. Be it fasting, playing garba and dandiya or eating yummy food, our TV actors tell us their plan for the next nine days.
Sourabh Raaj Jain – I love dandiya and the togetherness and celebration that come with these days. And of course, playing dandiya definitely calls for bright colours. My mother does Khetri Beejna at home. For nine days, we do morning and evening pooja of that. It’s a practice I have been seeing since my childhood. Sadly, this year I have a tight shooting schedule and will have to give dandiya a miss.
Ssharad Malhotra – During Navratri, we invoke the energy possessed by God Durga. The significance of this festival is the removal of all miseries in life. Durga is also referred to as Devi or Shakti. We worship 9 forms of Devi during these nine nights. It’s a very auspicious time for all of us. Personally, I am from Kolkata, where Durga Pooja is the biggest and most important festival of the year. I remember going out with family and friends to visit pandals which are so gorgeous. There, we take blessings from different idols of Maa Durga. Since I have shifted to Mumbai now, my friends and I visit pandals after pack up and see different idols. The best part is the Bhog which we get after Pooja. This festival is so beautiful and filled with vibrant colours. You get see people dressed in colourful Indian attire like Kurta pyjama, Dhoti, Saris, Lenhgas. As a kid, I remember back in Calcutta, I used to fast on the first and last day along with my Mom but here in Bombay, with such a busy schedule, it’s going be difficult fasting. Though I’ll try fasting on the 8th day because it’s Ashtami. Most of my friends play Garba and I stand and watch them but this year I’ll try playing too.
Adaa Khan – I can’t go for garba on all the nine nights because of work. I love watching everyone dancing and I feel this is the best festival to reconnect with old friends. Though I am currently busy with my shows, I might visit some pandals with friends. I like the festive vibes.
Daljeet Kaur – I have lovely memories of Navratri. I am in Gujarat for my show Maa Shakti‘s shooting. People are dressed up so beautifully here. Few girls even showed me some trendy tattoos that I was amazed to see. I hope that every Navratri I get a chance to visit Navratri pandals. Not that I am a great dancer but garba is something that brings out the dancer in everyone. I will take my son out this year and show him the colourful festival of Navratri.
Rashami Desai – I am a Gujarati, so for me, Navratri is about dressing up, meeting friends and watching everyone play dandiya besides doing regular pooja. It’s one of the most colourful, rich festivals for us Gujratis. I usually don’t go to do garba all the nine days, but I try my best to go at least three days every year, without fail. I have been fasting all nine days since many years. I actually live on fruits in Navratri. My favourite fruits include apple, banana and Kiwi. My most precious childhood memories of Navratri are the times when my mom used to take me shopping for garba and dandiya. I remember buying all those colourful costumes and jewellery and playing garba all nine nights. Also, since I would fast, my mother would pamper me with all the delicacies that can only be eaten during the fast. We would get the Garbi (an earthen pot that is decorated and a Diya is placed inside it which has to be kept lit for nine days) at our place and have a puja and recite prayers. It was all just a beautiful experience.
Jasmin Bhasin – I have some amazing memories of Navratri. I remember we used to organise Dandia in school. I would literally wait for the festival! This time, I am going to be in Mumbai as I am busy with work. But I’ll try to go out if work permits!
Arjun Bijlani – Navratri festival is an important festival for me. My wife and I make it a point to go to the temple at least once in these nine days. Like every year even this year, I will follow rules of not having non-veg food and visit the temple with my family. Before Navratri, we clean our house and change everything from bed sheets to the curtain and also do pooja for nine days. I won’t be performing Garba this year.
Aniruddh Dave -Navratri‘s nine days are like full of masti and dhamal for me thanks to garba and dandiya. We actors go for events also where I enjoy the vibrant atmosphere which is full of energy and colours.
Karan Oberoi – I love the colours, the celebrations, the costumes, the gaiety associated with the festival of Navratri. In fact, I try and be as colourful as I can in these days. Other than this, I don’t follow any rituals. I have been invited to a few dandiya nights but I haven’t yet finalised the ones I will be attending this year. But I am hoping to have a lot of fun wherever I go!
Neha Saxena – I have been celebrating this festival since my childhood. It means a lot to me because Maa Durga is our Isht Devi and we always take her home during Navratri. We do 9 days of hawan at home to celebrate Navratri and go to Durga Mandir to offer prayers. I used to fast for the first and last day as I can’t be hungry for longer than that. Also, I don’t believe much in fasting. I relate to this festival because Maa Durga embodies power in itself. She is described as the influential diety, who won her fight of good over evil and ensured the spirit of righteousness. I feel the qualities of Maa Durga should be embodied by women in today’s testing times, where are constantly struggling to save our grace and dignity.
Himmanshoo Ashok Malhotra – Navratri as a festival brings a great amount of joy and is full of celebration. It’s an amazing festive season of yummy food and dance, especially in Mumbai and Gujarat. Everyone gathers for Dandiya and Garba. I totally enjoy the festival. As far as fasting is concerned, I don’t fast but my mom does on all nine days. The only restriction is not to eat any non-veg items during Navratri and we abide by what mom says.
Mrunal Jain – I am a Marwari but have a lot of Gujarati friends. I used to do Garba and enjoy it to the hilt. It’s great fun to let your hair down and wear the special traditional outfit and go with friends for Dandiya. I am coming back to India from Indonesia and will surely enjoy the festivities.
Shashank Vyas – Navratri festival is a very special festival for me. I clean my house and do pooja. I will be not performing garba. My best memory of the festival is when I was in Ujjain. The best memory is when I had danced till 4 am with friends at a dandiya party.