In the sacred realm of Kartik Vrata, rural women from Orissa embark on a Tirtha yatra to Vrindavan – a space where worldly distinctions dissolve in Krishna’s divine lila. This yatra is not just physical but an Ātmikā, Anveṣaṇā, unifying the bhaktas in a shared BhaktiBhava towards Gopala. Enveloped in the spirit of Kartik, these women immerse themselves in artistic expressions, from intricate alpanas to mud figurines, celebrating Krishna’s love – and in this process this pilgrimage becomes a liberating journey, fostering Female Solidarity & emotional expression
Ms. Surabhi Pandey is a Doctoral Scholar at the Department of History, School of Liberal Studies (SLS), Ambedkar University, Delhi. She holds a degree in Masters in Philosophy from the Centre for Comparative Religions and Civilisations, Jamia Millia Islamia (2018). Before that, she completed her Masters of Arts from Daulat Ram College, Department of History, University of Delhi (2015). Her areas of specialization are Early Modern Indian Religious History, Ethnography in the Study of Religion, Medieval Vaishnavism, Cultural, and Religious Sacred Spaces, particularly of the region of Braj. She is also a recipient of JRF at the Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR) Delhi.