Sunday, 17 August 2014

Floral remembrance to end in Navroze feast

MUMBAI: The fragrance of rajnigandha (tuberose) and incense pervades fire temples across the city as the ten-day Parsi observance of Muktad comes to a close at Pateti on Sunday. This period of penitence being observed by the Zoroastrian community will culminate in Navroze festivity on Monday. Then the aroma of sweet vermicelli and patra ni machchhi will take over.

"Sunday marks Pateti, the final day of the outgoing year. On each of the preceding ten days, people arrive to pray at the fire temple in the morning. This period is called Muktad and is essentially a remembrance of departed souls. Visitors commemorate their deceased relatives by placing flowers in vases marked with their names. The agiary prepares offerings of food that is placed in small bowls before prayers are recited," says Nozer Behramkamdin, head priest of the Patel Dadgah in Pump House, Andheri. This fire temple was consecrated inside the local Parsi Colony in 2000.

The priest's wife says, "Navroze or new year's day is time to savour traditional Parsi dishes. At breakfast we prepare sweet vermicelli which is served with curd and banana. Lunch can be a combination of non-vegetarian delicacies like patra ni machchhi and sali boti and vegetarian preparations like pulao dal." Jalebi is another community favourite.

Parsi bakeries remain open at Navroze, given that their strategic location near fire temples draws the festive crowd. "We sell large volumes of cream cake, mawa cake and rolls this day. There are several Parsi colonies like Malcolm Baug, Punthakey Baug, Dhunbai Wadi and Patel Building nearby so many worshippers arrive at the agiary behind our shop," says Donesh Irani of Ahura Bakery outside Andheri station.

Dressed in their Sunday best, families head out to watch a Parsi Gujarati play in the evening. Among the attractions this year is the revival of Adi Marzban's 'Hasa Has' at Tata Theatre. "The play is directed by Sam Kerawalla and we are staging it on both days, Pateti and Navroze. It is a musical variety revue of skits and songs, not a long drawn play," says Farah Ghadiali, a member of the cast. observance of Muktad,parsi,Navroze festivity,Navroze,Floral remembrance to end in Navroze feast



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