Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], February 4 (ANI): Pongal was celebrated last month but you're wrong if you think the festivities are over!
One of the most auspicious traditions that take place around the time is 'Bommala Koluvu'. It is one of the popular traditions in Andhra Pradesh celebrated during the month of Pongal.
As the name indicates, the Telugu words "Bommalu" means toys and "Koluvu" means to showcase. Women and young girls of the household arrange the dolls in a thematic manner and invite people to see the Koluvu. It serves as a platform of creative expression for women. Also, it's a way of visual storytelling to kids thereby educating them about our rituals, and traditions depicted through doll sets.
While most people procure the doll sets from the market, we came across a Mumbai-based doctor Praneetha Yenduri who along with her family made dolls at home and put them on display. Take a look.
Don't they look extremely cute?
Well, we asked Praneetha about the significance of these dolls. She told ANI that these dolls "represent various creations of the universe and range from humans, mythological figurines, temple scenes, elements of nature, and everyday life scenes. It is believed that our deities reside in these doll sets assembled in the house, in a manner of ensuing their blessings and protection for the whole year - till the next harvest."
Briefing us about the history and significance of the tradition, Praneetha added, "this tradition dates back to the era of King Janamejaya (a decedent of the Pandavas); when his son, King Eatanika in order to appease Lord Vishnu and beget a son, had a display of dolls put up during the Sankranti festivities (believed to be Lord Vishnu's favourite festival). Children were invited and gifted with sweets. Continuing the tradition to this day, in many households, women and children arrange the Bommala Koluvu."
Speaking further about how the tradition is celebrated in her family particularly, she said," Whenever my family celebrated this tradition, it was always at my maternal grandmother's house Mrs Syamala. She was the one who used to gather us all together and conceptualise that particular year's Koluvu...It's an age-old tradition for families to purchase readymade doll sets during this time of the year. Every year new sets get added to the collection. Traditionally dolls made from wood and clay were used. We as a family wanted to break the monotony this year."
Pranitha further revealed that the dolls were made from scratch, don't they look quite wonderful? (ANI)