Telangana Jagruthi New Zealand, the youth and women organisation of the Telangana community promoting Telangana culture on Saturday, September 28 hosted a massive Bathukamma celebration at Mt Eden War Memorial Hall.

Telangana Jagruthi led by Jyothi Mallikarjun as the president of the association organized the massive celebration third year in a row bringing several hundred men, women and children to the auspicious festival of flowers.

Bathukamma is a beautiful stack of flowers arranged in a seasonal flowers sequence with most of them having medicinal importance and is also worshipped as Maha Gauri.

The celebration last weekend had men, women and children come is traditional and Indian clothing- especially women who draped fancy and heavy worked sarees, jewellery and men in Kurta.

“Bathukamma festival holds special place in our culture, and tradition, especially for women who call the Bathukamma flowers Maha Gauri or Maa Durga and worshipping her gives its devotees a long life for themselves, for their husbands and prosperity for the family and the community,” president of Telangana Jagruthi NZ, Jyotji Mallikarjun said.

Bathukamma also indicates the start of the Navaratra season followed by Diwali- the festival of lights and the victory of good over evil.

The event on Saturday was a part of the nine days of Navaratri, and during all these nine days small events will be held at different places such as private homes and community centres and some outdoor culminating the event on Durgastami on Sunday, October 6. 

During these nine days, men and women fast, communities hold congressional prayers at houses, temples and community centres and Garba or 'kolatam' in Telugu is also hosted for the community members.

A range of floral baskets was placed at the centre of the community hall with the idol of deity Durga in the centre, and the women danced circles on different Bathukamma songs in the Telugu language.

Present at the celebratory event on Saturday were National MP Kanwaljit Bakshi, MP Parmjeet Parmar, Michael Wood, Priyanca Radhakrishna, NZ Police District Commander Karyn Malthus and other community leaders.

“As per the timezone, Telangana Jagruthi NZ was the first organisation in the world to start and celebrate Bathukamma this year, and the event as expected was a massive success,” Ms Jyothi added.