Many times wives have to tie Rakhi’s to their husbands which are sent by their sisters. This is a common scene in the nuclear families we see these days.
This year I decided to search for the origin of this festival of Raksha-bandhan. When I asked many elders in my reach, most of them referred to the Incidence of Rani Karnavati and Mughal Emperor Humayun, where the Chittor Queen wanted to save her kingdom from the invasion of Sultan of Gujrat with the help of the Mughals.
When I sat on my friend lappie to get into the googles and wikis, I traced back the festival’s origin to Indra’s wife sachi, who got a holy cotton bracelet from Lord Vishnu to tie it on the wrist of her husband ‘Indra’ to win over the demon king ‘Bali’. I also came across many mythological and historical references of using the ‘Raksha Sutra’ by ladies to encourage their husbands or brothers in order to boost their confidence while they prepare for action. References are also found where Pundits and Brahmins tie such a raksha sutra to the warriors and their kings who are going the battle field.
Our festivals are full of such symbolic props. Raksha-sutra is definitely one such symbol to remind a person that he is meant to guard the honour of his family members and his motherland. Passing this symbol to us with the hands of sisters or our wives is a good way to remind us of our duties. Hope we all make good use of these festivals as a great reminder system for our duties.
Dr. Sunil Ji Garg