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As part of my continuing efforts to travel around India to explore questions of gender and space, and document my experience through photographs, I went to see the Basant Festival at Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah with the objective of capturing the gender representation there.
There is a cultural explanation for Indian women's fixation on their husbands' long lives. Whether a man lives or dies ultimately defines how his wife is socially perceived and treated! A married woman is called Sumangala -- the fortunate one, the bringer of good luck. A widow, on the other hand is called Amangala -- the unfortunate one, the bringer of bad luck. The reverse logic does not apply to men.