The Tarnetar Mela is one of the popular religious festivals of India, organized in the month of August/September every year. The site of this Mela is the Trineteshwar temple, situated in the Saurashtra region of Gujarat. The festival is celebrated as a commemoration of the wedding of India’s legendary hero, Arjuna and Draupadi, at the Trineteshwar Temple at Saurashtra. Arjuna performed the Mastsyavedh, a supreme feat of archery, and won the "Swayamwar". After which his marriage to Draupadi was celebrated with immense merriment. Besides this, the temple itself is regarded as a sacred 'kund' (reservoir) known as 'Papanshu' (the destroyer of sins). Devotees believe that a dip in the holy waters of this reservoir holds as much significance as the dips in the holy waters of Ganges.
The Saurashtra Tarnetar Fair also serves as a kind of ‘marriage promotional’ Mela for the tribal youths of Gujarat. On this day people from all over Saurashtra come to the Mela, dressed up in colorful finery. Tribal youths belonging to the Kolis, Bharwads or Rabaris, all come to the Mela to find a bride for them. This is the reason they dress up in attires of colorful dhotis, embroidered jackets and eye catching turbans and colorfully embroidered umbrellas. The bachelor distinguishes themselves with Tarnetra Chhatirs (umbrellas) that are adorned with elaborate embroidery and mirror works.
By tradition if a girl stops by and starts to have conversation with any of the young boy, it usually means that she is interested to marry the person.
Besides all these, the fair also has numerous other attractions too. There are vivacious folk songs and dances like garba, ras, hudo, etc that are simply enchanting. While most notable is the Rasada, a fascinating folk dance, which is performed in a single circle by hundreds of women moving in gracefully to the beats of drums and tune of the flutes. Rural handicrafts are also exhibited during the Mela. Crowd pulling entertainments like cattle shows and competitive sports are held during the Tarnetra Mela of Saurashtra.