Sindhi Welfare Society, Kenya celebrated their annual festival of Thadri on the 2nd of September collectively as a family function. Thadri also known as Vadi Sataiin is usually celebrated a day before the Hindu Festival of Janmashtami as per the Sindhi Almanac called Tippno.
During the festivities conducted the community members gathered together and partook in the ritualistic prayers such as lodo, chhando, orano, arti etc under the efficient guidance of Kanchan Jethani. Harleen went around putting the sacred dot of kumkum (tilak) on everyone’s forehead which is a primary aspect of most Hindu rituals.
The event organized to perfection was evidently successful due to the efforts of Laveena Keswani assisted by her team of ladies. The society then released a book titled , ” Sindhi Months and Festivals” written by the guryani of Sindhi Mandir in Bangalore, India – Smt. Shweta Ramesh Sharma. The first book was presented to the eldest member present – Mrs. Geeta Aildasani who later gave kharchi to all the ladies and children present on the occasion.
The Highlight of the day post the prayers and food were the performances by the children who came out to present poems and songs in their mother tongue Sindhi.
This festival is observed as a worship to Goddess Sheetla Devi. Mother Goddess is worshipped in her various manifestations and in her Sheetla form she is considered to be giving people ease from measles/smallpox kind of diseases. On Thadri day the fires are not supposed to be lit in Sindhi households, hence the cold food from the previous day.
The songs related to this festivals are known as Mata ja orana and the most popular orano is. ” Thar mata thar……” wherein mothers are requesting the Goddess to shower her children with her cooling to subside the measles, smallpox or any such illness produced from the heat.
As per the norms traditional Sindhi dishes are cooked a day before to be consumed on the day of Thadri. The most prominent Sindhi foods for this festival are the Mitho Lolo, Mithi Tikki, Khatto Bhatt, Besani, Koki and Sana pakora. Other typical foods included on the menu are seyal phulka, sai bhaji, sukka patata, gidamri vaara patata, mirchai pakora, nankatai, papads, mathiyun, daal ji maani etc. However with the world getting to be more cosmopolitan in approach and to attract the younger generation to partake in such traditional festivals foods such as pani puri, vegetarian sushi, Mediterranean salads such as Tabbouleh, Fattoush and hummus have made way into the festive affairs along with the Lebanese breads. This is simply because these foods can be eaten cold without requiring any warming up.Besides this there’s always a variety of sandwiches for the modernists.