Nagara Chauthi festival is celebrated on the fourth day of the Hindu month Shravana, July – August according to Gregorian calendar dedicated to Snake god. This year (2016) the festival is on 6th August. On this day women take oil head bath and do pooja to a snake carved out of stone or to the Havina Huththa, an ant hill where the snake lives or to a silver Nagappa / snake.
They offer raw Milk, Gejjevastra / cotton garland, Arishina / Turmeric powder, Kumkum / Vermillion colored powder, flowers and soaked Bengal gram. In North Karnataka small raw tamarind known as Nagara Kayi, Salt and Aralu / Flattered Puffed Rice are also used in the pooja.
Picture – Ant Hill, Photograph taken in B.R.Hills
The women pray for the well being of their brothers and for the prosperity of their brothers. They fast on this day.
On this day Yellina Chigali and Akki Thambittu is prepared and offered as Naivedya / blessed food. The Yellu / Sesame Seeds and Akki / Rice used for these dishes will be used raw i.e, it will neither be roasted nor cooked.
The day after Nagara Chauthi is Nagara Panchami festival.