Neer Thumba Habba – Cleaning and venerating Water a day before Deepavali in Karnataka



Neer Thumba Habba, or Neer Thumbo Habba, is a unique cleaning ritual performed a day before Deepavali (Diwali) by some communities in Karnataka. ‘Neeru’ means water and the ritual is a sort of physical and spiritual cleaning. The cleaning is to remove all dirt, evil and inauspicious things before the arrival of Goddess Lakshmi on the next day. In 2014, the date of Neer Thumba Habba is on October 21.

Neer Thumba Habba is observed on the 13th day during the waning phase of the moon in the month of Ashvija.

Toilets, wash areas, bath areas etc are cleaned thoroughly. Water containers, vessels are emptied and cleaned. All buckets and mugs are scrubbed and cleaned. Those still using huge urns decorate them with turmeric and kumkum dots. Rangolis or kolams are drawn before wash areas and before huge vessels.
Lines are also drawn on bronze and silver vessels with red paint or red mud and also using paste of gypsum.

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