Rakhya bandhan, a festival of love, affection and a pledge for protection of the sisters.A Hindu festival, but observed accros the religion in India.Also celebrated in some parts of Asia.Falls in the month of August(Shravana in Hindu calender) the festival is known in different names like Rakhi and Silonu in different areas.
Rakhya Bandhan, a Sanskrit name means “Bond of Protection.On this day the sisters, tie a red thread on the wrist of their brother expecting him to be the protector from every evils .In return, the brother gifts her with dress ,sweets chocolates.
Social significance: The brother and sister shares a special bond of affection and love while they grow together. Typically the sister marries and settles in her in- laws house.The brother remains in the parental house,takes care of the elderly parents.On this day, sister comes to her parents house and the Rakhi festival is celebrated.Jointly the entire family celebrates the occasion,shares the sweets and remembers the good times of the past.The sister gets some good times with her parents and relatives.After few days stay, the brother accompany the sister to drop her to her in-laws house.In this way ,the brother becomes a bridge between the both families.In the times of difficulty, the sister banks upon his brother for help and protection.
The function is not confined to blood relation only.Even a brother- sister relationship is created by tying the Rakhi around the wrist of a man cutting across the division of religion ,caste and creed.
Hindu mythology: In Hindu texts of Bhavishya Purana,Lord Krishna mentioned, the tying of Rakhi by Royal priest(Raj Purohit) on the right hand wrist of Yudhisthira.Even today, during Yagyan(worship, offering) the priest ties a red thread as Rakhi on the wrist of all present.
In India ,the Rakhi festival or Rakhya Bandhan is an occasion to bring the families Offers an opportunity to take out some quality time from the busy schedule for the family.Reminding the responsibility of brothers to their families, sisters and elderly parents.Bridges the gap between religion, cast, creed and class.
A lesson for the Talibans: On this day I pray for the sisters of Afganistan.May this Rakhi bring a hope for the sisters.Wish the Taliban learn to protect the sisters.