Madhubani Paintings is a heritage rooted in the Hindu life and was originally a form of bhitti-chitra or wall art. The themes and motifs of Madhubani are drawn from a palette of legendary figures, gods and goddesses, ritual activity and very importantly, local flora and fauna. As the he region of Mithila abounds in marshes and ponds, the women draw their staple motifs of puren, lotus; fish, turtles, snakes and other elements of aquatic life and also depicts symbolic meaning - the turtle is also a sign of Vishnu in one of his avatars, the snake is venerated as the guardian of the underworld, and the lotus and bamboo indicate feminine and masculine sexuality respectively. Other scenes like rites of passage from birth to death are accompanied by ritual painting on the walls of a house—sathhudi, a ritual observed during the seventh and ninth months of pregnancy; chatiyarpuja, done on the sixth day after the birth of a child; annaprashan, to mark a child's first eating of rice; akshararambh, to mark a child's entry into the world of learning; janaur, to mark the sign of rebirth of young Brahmin boys; marriages and deaths. Festivals like Chhath and Chauth Chand are also occasions for doing this ritual art. This customary art form was given a new life in 1996 due to a drought that ruined Mithila’s economy. The local government persuaded few woman artists to paint on paper which helped it in becoming a world renowned art form. Three forms of Madhubani paintings are common. Aripona is ritual floor art that is made afresh on occasions like pujas (worship), vratas (vows) and sanskaras (rites of passage). It uses white rice paste, turmeric and sin door (vermillion powder) to depict tantric symbolic forms, symbols for the Mother Goddess, and motifs from nature and daily life. Bhitti chitra or wall paintings fall under two main types—those made by the upper caste Brahmin and Kayasth women and have themes from mainstream Hinduism—the Shaiva, Vaishnav and Shakti and Dushadh paintings and mud murals made by the marginalized Dushadh community.