Bangalore: It is Ugadi or New Year in Karnataka and the Bangaloreans are all dressed up and excited to celebrate it.
They are excited about eating bevu vella that is made up of neem leaves and jaggery. And eating this strange combination is probably the most famous ritual associated with the Kannada New Year.
However, why would anyone eat it?
It is eaten to signify that one should accept the bitter and sweet in life with equanimity.
New Year also means time for predictions. While it is the year of the pig for the Chinese, it is the year of victory and prosperity for the Kannadigas down south.
"This time, the almanac says it is the Sarvajit year, which means a year of victory and prosperity for all across the globe,” says a local priest.
So what is the special food cooked in Ugadi?
"On Ugadi we make raw mango rice and Obatto. This is special food cooked on Ugadi,” says a housewife.
So everyone is part of the celebrations; the foodie, the religious and the fashionable. Ugadi is the festival to accept all- bitter and sweet alike.