The real reason an Indian saas gifts her bahu sargi on Karva Chauth

The real reason an Indian saas gifts her bahu sargi on Karva Chauth

Sargi is a pre-dawn meal that a mother-in-law prepares for her daughter-in-law on the day of Karva Chauth and it is followed by baya, or a token gift for the in-laws

If you are a movie buff, you might remember Hrithik Roshan asking his mum (Jaya Bachchan) to explain the concept of sargi to his bhabhi (Kajol) in the blockbuster hit Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham.

She says, "Sargi wo hai jo ek saas apni bahu ko Karva Chauth pe deti hai, kaju-badam, meethi matthi, suhag ki nishaniya aur dher sara pyar (Sargi is that which is given by a mother-in-law to her daughter-in-law and includes nuts, sweet pastry, traditional symbols of marriage worn by women and lots of love)."

In other words, Karva Chauth and sargi go hand-in-hand.

The festival of Karva Chauth

The festival of Karva Chauth holds quite an importance to married Hindu women. While in the modern times many husbands also fast for their wives, the original legend involved queen Veeravati fasting for her husband's long life.

Legend has it that queen Veeravati who was a beloved sister to her seven brothers decided to keep a difficult fast for her husband's long life. But seeing as her health started to deteriorate after a day of starving without water of food, they hung a mirror on a peepal tree and she broke her fast assuming it was the moon.


But the moment she ate the first morsel of her dinner, she received the news that her husband passed away. Agonised over the pain of losing her husband, she requests the gods to forgive her husband and her mistake of eating without actually seeing the moon (as is required to do during the fast).

The gods appeared and asked her observe the fast religiously again and only to break it after seeing the moon. When she successfully broke the fast next time, her husband came back to life and the two lived happily ever after.

Even though the story and the festival is a symbol of a wife's love towards her husband, there is another bond that is celebrated through this festival, that between a mother-in-law and her daughter-in-law.

And sargi is one of the ways that this bond is strengthened.

Continue reading to see why a mother-in-law should actually give sargi and the song all women must sing during the puja!

Sargi and its importance in Karva Chauth

As Jaya Bachchan explains, sargi is a pre-dawn meal that a mother-in-law prepares for her daughter-in-law on the day of Karva Chauth. It is basically the Punjabi name given to a sweet vermicelli kheer and is given to the bahu along with mathri (salty fried pastry), badaam-kaju (almonds and cashew nuts) and mithai (sweet).

Along with this, the daughter-in-law is also gifted saree, jewellry, sindoor, kangan, and bindi, all of which are adorned by married Indian women.

The sargi is followed by a baya, which is a token gift given by the daughter-in-law to her mother-in-law. Both of these are extremely important and the real reason that they are gifted is because it brings both women closer and together to wish their son/husband well.


And if you are also celebrating Karva Chauth this year, we are sure you have already prepared a saree and are getting ready to put henna on your hands. But don't forget to memorise the Karva Chauth song.

Songs of Karva Chauth

Since the story of queen Veeravati forms the basis of this festival, it is recited in this Punjabi song that is sung before breaking the fast in the evening. The song has reference to all the six things they should not do during the fast.

Veero kudiye karvara,
Sarv suhagan karvara,
Aye katti naya teri naa,
Kumbh chrakhra feri naa,
aar pair payeen naa,
ruthda maniyen naa,
suthra jagayeen naa,
ve veero kuriye karvara,
ve sarv suhagan karvara.

The seventh paragraph has reference to the things they can do.

Veero kudiye karvara,
sarv suhagan karvara,
aye katti naya teri nee,
kumbh chrakhra feri bhee,
aar pair payeen bhee,
ruthda maniyen bhee,
suthra jagayeen bhee,
ve veero kuriye karvara,
ve sarv suhagan karvara.

We wish you all the very best this Karva Chauth. May this festival bring prosperity and joy into your lives.

Read: 4 things I did to befriend my mum-in-law who knows it all too well

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(Images courtesy: Wikipedia)

Written by

Deepshikha Punj

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