Those who crave the real garba experience this Navratri have planned trips to the epicentre of the nine-night festival – Gujarat.
Parth Contractor, 25, an associate at a law firm, has convinced his brother and friends to make a weekend trip to his hometown, Ahmedabad for the festival.
“The best programmes are at Kalhaar, Karnavati Club and Sports Club in Ahmedabad,” said Contractor.
His brother Harshal, 25, feels Navratri in Mumbai has lost its charm. “First came the Bollywood songs and then the DJs. Wouldn’t one prefer going clubbing instead? The real fun of Navratri, lies in its tradition.”
Bandra resident Janki Tank, 25, a biotechnologist from Bandra, cannot wait to dance around the idol of Goddess Durga in one circle. “I will be going to Alkapuri, Baroda, for two to three days and will put up at a family friend’s place,” said Tank, who feels Navratri in Baroda is better organised than in Mumbai.
Even private dandiya functions organised at farmhouses and bungalows in Ahmedabad are worth attending, said Bandra resident Netra Parikh, 44.
An online social networker at Pinstorm, Parikh said: “I will fly to Ahmedabad on October 8. I love Falguni Pathak’s shows, but the grounds in Mumbai are too crowded.” The dress code too, is taken very seriously. “If you wear a choli and jeans, you’ll end up being the odd one out. In fact, people are so excited about the festival, that they never repeat their attire. I have a collection of chaniya cholis, but I will pick a new one for this year.”
Reena Jagwani, 26, is another enthusiast who loves the dandiya raas at Karnavati Club and Nirma Institute of Technology, Ahmedabad. “I will be going for five days. Mumbai celebrations are too jazzy for my taste. You have fun even at a society gathering,” said Jagwani.
The preparations in Ahmedabad are in full swing.
Mitesh Patel, co-organiser of the Navratri celebrations at Karnavati Club, Ahmedabad, said: “We invite local singers, and don’t play Bollywood songs. The programme goes on until 12am.”