Buddha Purnima, Basant Panchmi & Baisakhi all are important festivals in India linked with different regions and cults. They even have different messages.
BUDDHA PURNIMA is associated with birth celebration of Lord Buddha and is celebrated amongst Buddhists all over the world with a message to make special efforts to bring happiness to the unfortunate like the aged, the handicapped and the sick. The festival is celebrated in the month of “Vaisakh” as per Hindu Calender, which falls in May and is thus also called Vesak. In Nepal, the birth-country of Buddha, it is celebrated on the full moon day of the Vaisakha month of the Hindu calendar, and is traditionally called Buddha Purnima, Purnima meaning the full moon day in Sanskrit.
|Statue of Lord Buddha|
BASANT PANCHMI on the other hand is the Hindu festival to commemorate the onset of spring. This festival is usually celebrated in “Magh” month of Hindu calender, (between January and February in Gregorian calendar). Ladies in Northern part of India esp. Bihar wear yellow colour dress on this day to match with the season which also sees blooming of Mustard fields with yellow flowers.
Goddess Saraswati (associated with knowledge, music, arts, wisdom and learning) is worshipped on this day and so the day is also referred to as Saraswati Puja. Idols of Goddess Saraswati is adorned at street corners and worshiped with happiness and joy asking goddess for the blessing of knowledge.
|Saraswati Puja Celebration by students|
|Devoting immersing Goddess Saraswati idol in river after Saraswati Puja|
BAISAKHI altogether different is a Harvest Festival & is celebrated in the northern state of Punjab. Farmers observe this as a thanksgiving day whereby they pay their tribute, thanking God for the abundant harvest and also pray for future prosperity. The Punjabi new year also falls on the same day. It is celebrated on 13 April and also coincides with Khalsa Sirjana Divas (formation of Khalsa in 1699 by Sikh 10th Guru – Guru Gobind Singh) and Mesha Sankranti festival. April 13th marks the beginning of the solar year. Visit to Gurudwaras, Vaisakhi processions and traditional performances marks the days celebration. Local fairs & Punjabi folk dance Bhangra rules the festivity.
The festival also coincides with other new year festivals celebrated on the first day of Vaisakh 13 April in some other regions of the Indian Subcontinent such as Pohela Boishakh - the Bengali New Year, Bohag Bihu of Assam and Puthandu, - the Tamil New Year. It also coincides with some other regions harvest festival like Satuani in Bihar.
That’s for today with B. Tomorrow it would be another festival with “C”
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