There is a ritual prevalent among the Hindus of numerous states of India – the ritual of not letting nephews touch the feet of their maternal uncles for blessings. According to various legends, this tradition has its roots in Chhattisgarh. But wait till you learn about the reason; it will startle you because it is connected to Ramayana.
Chhattisgarh is believed to be the home of the maternal grandparents of Lord Rama.
According to historians, Chhattisgarh was known as Kaushal Pradesh during the times of Lord Rama. The land was ruled by Raja Bhanumant, who was the father of Kaushalya – Lord Rama’s mother. Raja Bhanumant thus was the maternal grandfather of Lord Rama.
Now, according to age-old traditions in Chhattisgarh, a woman would have to associate her village’s name to her own when she embarked for a different land after marriage. This tradition made Lord Rama’s mother adopt the name of Kaushalya as she went to Ayodhya with King Dasharatha after marriage.
In fact, Chhattisgarh’s Chandrakhudi and Aarang villages are the only two places in the country with Kaushalya Devi temples.
The villagers of these two villagers in Raipur district still offer prayers to and worship the mother of Lord Rama. As a result of this, every Hindu in Chhattisgarh regards Lord Rama as their nephew. Every nephew is thus given a special place by their maternal relatives, especially maternal uncles and aunts.
Furthermore, legends also say that it was in Chhattisgarh that Lord Rama, along with Sita and Lakshmana, had spent nearly 10 years of his exile. It was here that he met Shabari.
Not just this, some people even say that Valmiki had his ashram at Turturiya village in Chhattisgarh, where Sita was given refuge after she was sent to exile by Lord Rama. It was here that Luv and Kush were born and raised.
Sage Balmiki’s ashram is still present in Turturiya, Chhattisgarh.