Rehal Border: 'Karwachauth' was a low-key affair for married women residing in border hamlets of Jammu and Kashmir this year as they broke their fast together at shelter homes where they have been staying ever since shelling and firing started from across the border.
Married women, who had kept day-long fast praying for the long lives of their husbands, gathered and broke their fast together last evening after the sighting of the moon even as shelling from across the border continued.
Twenty minutes before the moon came into sight at 8.40 PM, Pakistani rangers targeted 25 BSF posts besides several hamlets including Arnia town and Kuku-Da Kothay, Mahasha Kothe, Jabowal, Treva, Chingia, Alla, Sie,Chenaz and Devigarh.
Women whose husbands are still back home could not help but be worried about their well-being.
"Pakistani shelling has dampened the Karva Chauth celebrations. We have left our homes and taken shelter at these camps. Husbands are back home taking care of bovines and houses. What is meaning of such kind of celebration?" asked 48-year-old Baljeet Kaur, a resident of Abdullian border village who is staying at a camp in R S Pura belt.
At Deoli camp, barely 12 kms from International Border, Mumta said, "We have kept the fast and followed the rituals for our men folk. But the joy and happiness is missing as husbands of most of us are still back home."
The district administration, under the guidance of District Magistrate Ajeet Kumar, made arrangements for the Karvachauth celebrations at various shelter camps and provided all items required for the rituals.
"The officers concerned made personal contributions to ensure that Sargi and other related items were provided to the women to observe Karvachauth as per the rituals," Deputy Commissioner (Jammu) Ajeet Kumar Sahu said.