Atla Tadde is the festival observed by Telugu speaking women for the welfare and long life of their men-folk, especially husbands. The festival occurs on the third night after the full moon of the Aswiyuja (Ashwin) month.
For the Year 2023, Atla Tadde occurs on Tuesday, 31st October 2023. The exact timings of the sunrise, sunset and the moon rise have to be ascertained from the respective regional calendars. Mostly, this festival coincides with the Karva Chauth festival. The festival is also called as Atla Taddi nomu.
It is believed that Goddess Parvathi Herself had suggested observation of this festival for the unmarried girls to get a good husband and for the married ladies for the long life and welfare of their husbands.
Goddess Gowri is invoked and worshipped for this festival. During the previous day evening, women apply mehandi to their palms.
The devotees wake up early in the morning and take holy bath. There is a practice of eating the soaked rice of the previous evening with curd and Gonkura chatni before sunrise. For this purpose, rice is specially cooked the previous night and after it cooled down soaked in water. It is believed that only the unmarried girls and children eat the curd rice before sunrise.
Otherwise, the day is spent fasting until moon rise. Some even observe nirjal type of upvas foregoing even water.
During the day, kudumulu (rice-based dish), poothereku (sweet made of rice water and jaggery) and atlu (small dosas) are prepared.
The group of minimum eleven married ladies is formed to the possible extent. This includes the elderly lady of the house. The husband’s sister is considered as the chief guest.
In the evening, soon on moon rise, the moon is seen through some water body. Then elaborate Puja is done to Sri Gowri Devi invoking Her blessings. A Kalash filled up with water, coins and other auspicious things is kept at the Puja place. The Kalash is then covered with mango leaves. Lamps and incense sticks are lit. The idols / pictures of Sri Parvathi Devi are decked up with Chandan, Kumkum and Turmeric. Devi Slokas and prayers are chanted and recited.
The lamp made of the dough of rice flour and jaggery is lit with a wick and ghee. This lamp is shown as an upachara to Sri Gowri Devi. The thoranam, the cotton threads smeared with turmeric and Kumkum are kept ready with eleven knots each.
After tying the thoranam, there is a custom of giving vayanam (Puja gift) to the ladies. The main ingredients are eleven atlu and one dough lamp. While giving vayanam, the following utterances are made by the giver and the receiver.
G: Isthinamma vayanam (I have given the vayanam)
R: Puchukunnanu amma vayanam (I have taken the vayanam)
G: Mummatiki Isthinamma vayanam (I have certainly given the vayanam)
R: Mummatiki theeskunnanu amma vayanam (I have certainly taken the vayanam)
G: Vayanam puchukunna vanitha evaru (who is the lady that took the vayanam)
R: Nae nae namma Gowri Parvathi (It is me, Gowri Parvathi)
It is believed that Goddess Parvathi Herself blesses the household with Her presence by accepting the vayanam.
Then the neivedyam is partaken of and the fast is ended. As a practice, a sambar consisting of eleven vegetables is also prepared.