Sutak or Sootak refers to period of impurity. In Vedic Astrology, it is believed that the negative effect of the Eclipse begins hours before its actual occurrence. The Sootak or Sutak begins 12 hours before the Solar Eclipce and 9 hours before in case of a Lunar Eclipse.
It is believed that one must not eat food during this period. However, there is an exception for the aged, ill persons and children. Any cooked food becomes impure. It should all be thrown away before the start of an eclipse. Generally, the entire house is cleaned in preparation for an eclipse.Anyone who does not observe the eclipse rituals and do not bathe at the end of an eclipse, are considered Sutaki (ritually impure) until the time of the next eclipce.
There will be a Total Solar Eclipse on 22nd July 2009, ( Vedic Calendar: Shravan Krishna 30, Wednesday, Samvat 2066). This eclipse will be on Pushya Nakshatra and Cancer Sign (Karka Rashi). This eclipce will be visible throughout India. For detailed path of the eclipse, visit Surya Grahan, Solar Eclipse in Vedic astrology. According to Indian Standard Time, the entry time of this Solar Eclipse will be 5:28 AM. Mean time for Solar Eclipse will be 6:23 AM and the exit time will be 10:42AM. The Sutak will be from 5:28 PM on 21st july to 10:42 AM 22nd July.