Mysore, Oct 12 (UNI) 'Gombe Habba, festival of dolls, started several centuries ago by the early rulers of Wadiyar dynasty, reflecting the skills of the women folk associated with the famous Dasara festivities, began here today at every home in the city of palaces.
The Gombe habba is part of the 'Navarathri' is arrangment of dolls by almost all the houses, that attract large people particularly kids.
The Palace Board sources told UNI that a festival that signifies the nine incarnations of goddess Durga, the festival of dolls is slowly losing it's patronage among women and young children alike.
Artistically arranged dolls with intricate works showcasing the skills of women are fast disappearing from the traditional homes.
The festival dates back to the period of Raja Wadiyar in the 16th century. Initially, the idol of Gowri was decorated in a special manner and worshipped for nine days. By the end of the 18th century, the royalty introduced dolls in the arrangement. To celebrate the festival of dolls, the royalty earmarked a place in the Mysore Palace and referred it to as 'Gombe Totti' This dolls festival was later introduced into the public domain by officials in the royal service, and the practice of arranging dolls at home during the Navarathri started. The tradition of gifting 'Pattada Bombe' to daughters during their marriage also contributed to the popularity of 'Gombe Habba'.
The arrangement of dolls revolved around the 'Pattada Bombe' made out of Chandana wood(Sandalwood), procured from Tirupati, in rural, the practice of preparing 'Bombe Bagina' or a snack on all the nine days was a popular affair during the Dasara and children would invite their friends home to have a glimpse of the dolls arrangements.