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About Festival Baisakhi
Baishakh is the first month according to Bengali calendar (a traditional solar calendar, Bonggabdo or Bangla Shon). Usually, this calendar is used in eastern Indian states, namely West Bengal, Assam and Tripura and the neighboring country Bangladesh. The people of these regions termed the first day of the month as Pahela Baishakh or Poila Baisakh, the beginning of a year. This festival is celebrated most popularly by the Sikh communities in Punjab. The festival Baisakhi is termed as different name in different states like Rongali Bihu in Assam, Naba Barsha in Bengal, Puthandu in Tamil Nadu and Pooram Vishu in Kerala.
2012 Baishakhi Utsab or festival: Baishakhi is not a Gazetted Holiday by Central Government. The day is celebrated as a holiday (Restricted Holiday) in few states of India like Punjab, West Bengal, Assam, Tripura, Tamil Nadu and Kerala. This year Baishakhi will be celebrated on 14th April 2012, Saturday. 13th April is also celebrated as the year ending of Bengali calendar. People who use this calendar called this running year as 1418 Bangabdo according to their calendar. This Bengali year will continue till 13th April 2012. Celebration Day of Baishakhi is – 14/04/2012...
Baisakhi in Punjab
People of Punjab celebrate the festival of Baisakhi with excitement and devotion. Major activities of the day are organized in Gurudwaras (temple). They visit to their neighborhoods gurudwara (temple) and take part in the special prayer meeting organized for the day.
For the large farming community of Punjab and Haryana, the festival Baisakhi marks the time to harvest Rabi crop. By this festival they want to thank to their god for harvesting the beautiful crops. During this festival or Utsab people buy new clothes and make happy other by singing, dancing and offering the best of festive food.
Rongali Bihu in Assam
To celebrate the joyous Rongali Bihu festival, people of Assam wear new and colorful clothes. People visit their neighbors, friends and relatives and distribute sweet as they greet each other a Happy Bihu. Many people also organize grand feasts in the house to celebrate the occasion
Rongali Bihu celebrations are quite colorful and vibrant. Young boys and girls in village of Assam put on traditional dhoti, Gamosa and Saadar Mekhela and they sings folk Bihu songs in traditional Mukoli Bihus. At several places Bihu fairs are also organized where people participate in the games and other fun-filled activities.
Naba Barsha in West Bengal
The people of west Bengal celebrate Poila Baishakh with happiness and lots of enjoyment. They wish each other "Shubha Nababarsha" which means "happy new year". There are a number of colorful fairs and cultural programs throughout the west Bengal which spice up the celebration.
This date have a great importance for business man or traders. They open new cashbook (known as "Hal Khata") and close all of the previous activities. They wear traditional Bengali dress, like Punjabi and Dhoti and worship to the god Ganesha and distribute sweets to their customers.
Puthandu in Tamil Nadu
According to Tamil Calendar Chithirai is the first month of a year and Puthandu the first day of a year in Tamil Nadu is celebrated with lots of enjoyments. This auspicious occasion is also popularly known as Varusha Pirappu or the birth of New Year and falls on 13th or 14th April according to the Gregorian calendar
People of Tamil Nadu celebrate Puthandu Pirappu like this, they wake up early in the morning, and women decorate the entrance of their house with colorful Kolam patterns (drawing). Centre of the Kolam is decorated with a lamp called kuthuvillakku in a belief that it would dispel darkness of coming New Year.
A popular culture of Puthandu is Kanni which means the auspicious sight. Following the ritual, people start the Puthandu day by watching auspicious things like gold and silver jewelers, betel leaves, nuts, fruits and vegetables, flowers, raw rice and coconuts.
Pooram Vishu in Kerala
According to Malayalese Calendar Malayalam is the first month of a year and Vishu Festiva falls on the first day of a year in the state of Kerala. The people of Kerala celebrate Pooram Vishu with lots of enjoyments. This auspicious occasion is falls on 13th or 14th April according to the Gregorian calendar.
In villages of Kerala, young men and women dress up as the Chozhi by wearing a skirt of dried banana leaves and masks on their faces. These entertainers would then move from house to house and collect reward for their performances. The money collected by them is spent in Vishuwela or the New Year Fairs.
A popular custom of Pooram Vishu is Vishukani or Kani Kanal which means the auspicious or first sight. Following the ritual, people start this day by watching auspicious things like gold and silver jewelers, betel leaves, nuts, fruits and vegetables, flowers, raw rice and coconuts.