Malani Purnima and Dhalo is observed in Paush Month in
Goa and is dedicated to Vandevi, the forest deity. Malani
Purnima 2014 date is January 16. During the festival of Dhalo, women decorate
and worship the Tulsi Plant(tulsi Vrindavan – basil plant in a pedestal) as the
symbolic representation of the forest goddess.
Earlier people in the region used to depend on the forest for their livelihood. The forest goddess is invoked for blessings of health and prosperity. Women worship the Goddess by singing folk songs and by performing folk dance. It is essentially nature worship – thanking the forest for protecting and providing food.
Community celebrations are held near forests or around huge trees. The sacred trees around which worship and performance take place is known as Rashtroli.