Festival that celebrates fragrance

Once favoured by the elite, particularly the kings and queens, itr and sugandhi have in recent times made it to the vanity boxes of not just the discerning but also common folk, as the recently concluded ‘Itr and Sugandhi Mela’ at Dilli Haat, Pitampura, revealed.

The one-of-its-kind festival of itr, aromatic essential oils and unguents over the weekend, set a fragrant tone for the season of Spring and mellow fruitfulness. The event drew a huge crowd of fragrance lovers and showcased some of the most exotic fragrances from various itr makers in and around the City. Popular buys were various varieties of itrs, particularly the herbal perfume, a non-alcoholic concoction of flower extracts and Sugandhi – the fragrant decoction extracted from a plant. People also enjoyed the live demonstrations of the art of perfume making, cultural programs and various competitions organised at venue.

There were around 40 stalls from across the country which showcased and sold varieties of aromatic products including agarbattis, dhupbattis, essential oils, perfumes, room fresheners, scented candles and other scented products.

There were lectures and live sessions on aromatherapy and panchkarma on all the three days and seminars on itr and sugandhis, which were well attended by the visitors. With the help of these sessions, visitors got the chance to understand aromatherapy which is said to relieve arthiritis, muscular pain, sinus, stress, insomnia, etc.

Experts, and those whose family has a history in perfume-making, showcased their works on agarbatti and dhoopbattis making during the festival. The festival also saw a large participation from Kannauj, which is famous for its fragrances and popularly known as the ‘fragrance city’.

Various competitions held during the three-day event included quiz competition and slogan writing competition on itr and sugandhi. Samiksha Mishra won the first prize in the slogan writing competition while the second prize was won by Sonu Bhatt and the third by Dharam Pal.

The evening of the concluding day was marked by a cultural program by Punjabi Academy which was followed by a prize distribution ceremony.

The three-day ‘Itra and Sugandhi Mela’, was organised by Delhi Tourism in collaboration with Fragrance and Flavor Development Centre (FFDC), Kannauj.

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