Published on December 31, 2013
☻ India is a land of diversity. The long history of India has exposed it to many cultural and political transformations and as a result, the country is now a proud conglomeration of diverse traditions. ☻ Celebration of New Year in India is a fun event often full of food, frolic and rituals. Dance and music are integral parts of New Year celebrations in the country. Different races at the different corners of the country have their distinctive traditions to commemorate the day.
☻ Agriculture is still the predominant vocation of the people of India and because of this, New Year celebration in India often coincides with the beginning of the agricultural season of the region. ☻ Separate calendars are followed in different parts of India and as a result, new years are observed on different dates. New Year celebration in different parts of India is known by different names. Upcoming slides are glimpses of New Year celebration in the different states of the country .
☻ Ugadi is celebrated as New Year's Day in Karnataka and Andhra pradesh. ☻ The name Ugadi is derived from the name "Yuga Adi", which means 'the beginning of a new age'. ☻ It is celebrated on the first day of the Hindu month Chaitra, which marks the onset of spring. ☻ It is believed that Lord Brahma, the creator according to Hindu tradition, began creation on this day. ☻ Preparations begin well ahead of the festival. Houses are given a thorough cleaning, people don new clothes and special dishes are prepared, with six flavors.
☻ Rongali Bihu or Bohag Bihu (mid-April), is celebrated as the Assamese New Year (around April 14–15) and the arrival of Spring. ☻ This marks the first day of the Hindu solar calendar. ☻ The first day of the bihu is called goru bihu or cow bihu, where the cows are washed, smeared with ground turmeric, patted with dighalati/makhiyati, worshipped and gets new ropes.
☻ This is followed by manuh (human in Assamese) bihu on April 15,which is the Assamese New Year Day. ☻ People welcomes the spring with cleaned home, neighbourhood and dresses. ☻ The third day is Gosai (Gods) bihu when people worship statues of God, all households are cleaned and worshiped hoping for a prosperous and happy new year.
☻ Gudi Padwa is celebrated as New Year's Day in Maharashtra. ☻ It is celebrated on the same day as Ugadi i.e., the first day of the month Chaitra. Courtyards of rural houses are cleaned and plastered with fresh cowdung. ☻ Designs called Rangolis are drawn on doorsteps. People wear new clothes and special dishes are prepared. ☻ Lord Brahma is worshipped on this day and the gudi, Brahma's flag (also called Brahmadhvaj), is hoisted in every house as a symbolic representation of Rama's victory over Ravana.
☻ Puthandu, also known as Varuda pirappu, is celebrated as New Year's Day in Tamil Nadu. It is celebrated on the first day of the Tamil month Chithirai, which falls on 14 April. ☻ Women draw patterns called kolams. A lamp called a kuttuvilaku is placed on the center of the kolam, to eradicate darkness. A ritual called kanni takes place. Kanni means 'auspicious sight'. ☻ People watch jewellery, fruits, vegetables, flowers, nuts, rice etc., as it is a belief among Tamil people that it brings prosperity. People wear new clothes and special dishes are prepared for the occasion.
☻ Contrary to popular belief, Vishu is celebrated as Malayalam New Year's Day in Kerala. ☻ Vishu falls on the first day of the Malayalam month of Medam (mid-April on the Gregorian calendar). ☻ The Malayalam New Year in Malabar used to be the 1st of Kanni and that in the Travancore region was on the 1st of Chingam. ☻ When the Government of Kerala adopted Kolla Varsham as the Regional Calendar the 1st of Chingam was accepted as the Malayalam New Year.
☻ Cheiraoba is celebrated as New Year's Day in Manipur. ☻ Sajibu Cheiraoba is an annual religious celebration in which certain rites and rituals are observed with a traditional devotion. ☻ The celebration marks the parting of the old year while welcoming the new year. The name 'Cheiraoba' is a combination of two words which have two different meanings – 'Chahi' (year) and 'laoba' (declaration). So, overall 'Cheirao-ba' means the announcement of the coming year.
☻ Navreh is the lunar new year which is celebrated in Kashmir. ☻ This coincides with the first day of the Chaitra (spring) Navratras. ☻ This day finds mention in Rajtarangini and Nilamat Purana of Kashmir and is regarded as sacred in Kashmir as the Shivratri. ☻ The celebrated Arab scholar Alberuni has written that Kashmiris celebrate the second of Navaratras to commemorate victory of their greatest and famous king – Lalitaditya – with great festivity and pomp.
☻ Mahabishuba Sankranti generally falls on 13 or 14 April. It is possible that it is celebrated on same day as Puthandu in Tamil Nadu. ☻ Mahavishuva Sankranti, is celebrated as the Oriya New Year. On this day, religious people offer delicious Pana – a sweet drink made of different types of fruits, water, milk, bela, curd and sugar or jaggery - to the Tulsi Plant, Lord Shiva and Shalagram and their deities in various Temples of the state. ☻ People also drink Pana with great enjoyment. During the festival you will find water pots placed on the roadsides to help the thirsty souls.
☻ Bestu Varas is the New Year's Day for Gujaratis and this falls on the day next to Diwali. Traditional Gujaratis follow Vikram Samwat or Bikram Samwat. ☻ According to Hindu calendar systems the Vikrama calendar begins with the month of Baishakh/Chaitra (April), or Kartak (October/November) in Gujarat. ☻ Bestu Baras generally falls in month of October or November. On this day, people greet each other on this day with "Nutan Varsha Abhinandan" i.e. Happy New Year or with "Saal Mubaarak" which is an Urdu saying but is said commonly by Gujarati people.
☻ The day starts with the heavy fire works, to welcome New Year, in the early morning as Hindus believe morning starts at 4 am. ☻ The local young boys sell raw salt (collected from Salt evaporation pond) calling it "sabras" means all taste, to make the locals' new year prosperous. ☻ Houses are decorated with the aaso palav & marigolds (galgota) toran (Door hangings) and rangoli beside front door with different designs and writings such as "Happy New Year", "Nutan Varshabhinandan" (નૂતન વષારિભનંદન). The people get dressed with new clothes and visit their neighbours and relatives to greet them
☻ Cheti Chand is celebrated as New Year's Day by Sindhis. ☻ According to the Hindu calendar, Cheti Chand is celebrated on the second day of the Chaitra month known as Chet in Sindhi. Hence it is known as CHET-ICHAND. ☻ It is the second day of month chaitra i.e. a day after Ugadi and Gudi Padi.
☻ The festivals of Chaitti and Basoa are celebrated as New Year festivals in the state of Himachal Pradesh. ☻ Chaitti is celebrated on the first day of month of Chaitra which according to the Bikram Samwat is the first day of year. The first day of this month (Chaitra Sankranti) is considered very important and is celebrated all over the state. Chaitti is cebrated on the same day as Ugadi and Gudi Padwa. ☻ The festival of Basoa, also known as Bishu, is celebrated on the first day of the month of Baisakh. The aboriginal and the farming folk celebrate the Basoa festival.
☻ Baisakhi Festival, also called Vaisakhi, holds great importance for the Sikh community and farmers of Punjab and Haryana. ☻ Baisakhi falls on 13 or 14 April, the first day of the second month of the year according to the Nanakshahi Calendar. Sikhs also celebrate this day in honor of their tenth guru, Guru Gobind Singh. ☻ Baisakhi commemorates the day when the Sikh Guru eliminated caste differences and founded Khalsa Panth in 1699, at Anandpur Sahib, Punjab. The Sikh New Year as per the Sikh Nanakshahi Calendar falls on 14 March every year.
☻ Celebrated in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and Uttar pradesh with the beginning of the Hindu New Year. ☻ New Year start with 1st day of Chaitra i.e. the beginning of the Hindu New Year. ☻ In 2013, the Hindu new year began on 11 April.
☻ Juir Sheetal also known as Pahil Baisakh or Baisakhi or Maithili New Year is the celebration of the first day of the Maithili new year. ☻ This day usually falls on 14 April on Gregorian calendar by the Maithils in Mithila region of India and Nepal. This is also called Nirayana Mesh Sankranti or Tirhuta new year in some regions of Mithila. ☻ The festive occasion is in keeping with the Hindu solar calendar. This day falls on the 13-14th or 14–15 April and coincides with the new years of other eastern states of India. Sweets and greetings are exchanged.
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