Punjabi’s are great fun-filled and love to bond with other people. There are various Festivals in Punjab which deliver a chance to have fun and to involve in public interaction. Punjab festivals are celebrated up to the mark with great pomp and glory involving big crowd.
The true beneficiary of Indus Valley Civilization is Punjab. Punjab extraordinarily fuse both plenty and antiquity. In other words, Punjab festivals can also be termed as holy soul purification with amazing celebrations. Punjab is not confined only to their state festivals but they actively participate is all the festivals of our country. Punjab festivals along with refreshing our spirits, they deliver a soothing welcome to our monotonous and boring lifestyle. Punjab celebrates all religions festivals with equal importance and spirit.
Lohri festival is followed by Maghi festival which is quite popular among the entire Punjab population. Punjab citizens prefer a holy dip in the river and donate many things to needy people. This festival is remarked with a special recipes including kheer boiled in juice of sugarcane.
This particular festival is celebrated on the memory of heroic fight of Chali Mukte or Forty Liberated Ones, the people who forfeited their lives in order to safeguard Guru Gobind Singh. This festival is also celebrated by arranging fairs in many regions of Punjab.
Punjabi’s generally get together during festival occasions to share pleasant things among themselves. Few of the significant Punjab festivals are.
The term Hola was obtained from halla (refers to military charge) and mohalla means a highly organized procession like an army column. Thus the word Hola Mohalla refers to ‘the charge of an army’. This festival is celebrated for one week and comprises of out camping having fun with several displays of bravery and powers. This is followed by poetry, music and kirtan. Participants sit in neat rows on ground called pangats and consume vegetarian Langars distributed by volunteers. The function comes to end with long military type procession besides Takht Sir Keshgarh Sahib, 1 among the 5 highly sacred regions for Sikhs. This function was initiated by Guru Gobind Singh, tenth sikh Guru. Guru Gobind was involved in fighting back Mughal Empire Aurangzeb and Hill Rajputs and formed Khalsa Panth fighting force recently. Guru Gobind inaugurated this new tradition of celebrating a day camping out with mock battles and various competitions at Holgarh Fort on February 22, 1701.
This mela is celebrated as a remembrance of battle fought during 1705-1706 against Mughals by Guru Gobind Singh. This fair is commemorated for 3 days during the day of Makar Sankranti (in the month of January). On first day of the fair, devotees take holy dip in Muktsar Tank (known as salvation pool), second day, they perform a procession to 3 divine mounds like Mukhwanjana Sahib, Tibbi Sahib and Rikab Sahib. Guru’s troop broke out at Rikab Sahib. This is the final battle of Guru which is known to be highly decisive fight in Sikh history. The name of this city literally refers to ‘the pool of liberation’. 40 Sikh fighters who faced death battling against Mughal Empire about three hundred years back were remembered in this mela.
Kila Raipur Sports Festival
During February month, the city of Ludhiana attracts sports enthusiast from all over the world. It is a rare event to see camels or bullock carts racing for attractive cash prizes. Kila Raipur magnetizes people with its special breed of camels, bullocks, mules, dogs and various other animals racing in purely professional races. One has to see that directly to believe the magic. In an article written by Donald Banerjee who visited Punjab, describes that a tourist can have a feel of rural Olympics. There will be lot of dust when Nihang astride 3 horses arrive galloping down at a distance. The battle cry rises high as they target their lances at pegs. 3 horses try to gallop outside with wooden pegs. Stadium crowd raise their cheers. This exercise repeats for clocklike precision and strange feel of anticipation. Mule’s cart streak forward unevenly. Cart owners insist their mules to proceed faster. Immediately the Mule’s disappear into the crowd, dispersing the villagers out of harm. One can also see above seventy and 6 years old showing their body strength and also stamina. An adult pulls truck through his teeth, a youngster spins on the top of this thumb and single finger whereas above 70 exercise ‘mungli’. All this happens during 1933. The famous philanthropist Inder Singh Grewal attended an annual recreational event attended by farmers from surrounding areas of Kila Raipur who come together and identify their corporal stamina. This formed the basis to Kila Raipur Sports, undoubtedly ‘Rural Olympics’.
Bhatinda Virasat Mela
This heritage festival, ‘Virasat Mela’, is organized by Malwa Heritage Foundation in order to recollect the earlier days when our lives was very simple where people were really affectionate among themselves. Remembering decade old customs, this heritage festival gives birth to ancient folk arts, the traditions and customs at specifically constructed ‘Jaipal Gar Village’ inside Bhatinda Sports Stadium.
This is one among the important holiday for Sikhs, celebrating Khalsa establishment in 1699. In order to celebrate this event, devotees from all religions gather at the worship place of Sikh, the Gurudwara. There will be processions all through town area. This occasion was commemorated lavishly at Bhatinda Takht Sri Damdama Sahib in Punjab. Tenth Guru of Sikhs, Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji formed Khalsa (Community of the Pure) at baisakhi in order to get together people at Keshgarh Sahib besides Anandpur in the year 1699. The followers of Guru Gobind from all over our country are permitted to meet Guru Gobind at baisakhi fair in the city of Anandpur.
This festival is dedicated to sun god and fire. It is celebrated at the time of movement of sun towards north. This new position of sun decreases the intensity of winter and delivers warmth to our earth. This is to get rid of extreme chillness during January where people can light bonfires, also dance around in a bonhomie mood and enjoy Lohri. This festival is to worship fire. This festival is commemorated in North India as big ceremony. Participants round bonfire throwing popcorns, puffed rice and til into the bonfire flames. They offer prayer to bonfire requesting wealth and abundance. Punjabi women and men perform Giddha and Bhangra, the famous Punjabi folk dance surrounding the bonfire in true spirit of their culture. Children roam among houses singing songs enthusiastically and they are encouraged by their seniors with eatables and money during this festival.
This festival of colors is commemorated on Phalgun Poornima in the month of February or starting of March. This festival has its root from ancient period that celebrates the victory of good over bad. This colorful festival seals social gap and refresh sweet and new relationships. On the day of holi, people use to hug each other and wish ‘Happy Holi’. All over Punjab, people decorate their shops creating a colorful atmosphere. The air is filled with gulal of bright colors and abeer. People pour colors among themselves. Children enjoy this festival with full delight applying colors each other and also by throwing water filled balloons.
Guru Hargobind Singh, 6th Sikh Guru reached Amritsar from Gwalior following his release during Jahangir rule. This festival is also celebrated to remark the return of Ayodhya King, Ram with Sita and Lakshmana to Ayodhya following 14 years of their exile and a battle in which demonicking Ravana was killed. This festival of lights is celebrated all over Punjab with luxurious decorations of lights and fireworks creating an outstanding ambience that leaves a long lasting effect on everyone’s mind. Irrespective of all faiths, people come together to enjoy Diwali. The celebration goes on for 5 continuous days, in which the 3rd day is celebrated as major Diwali or ‘Festival of lights’. This festival is directly linked with fireworks. Diwali is celebrated by lighting candles, diyas around the house. In evening, Lakshmi Puja is carried out to seek the blessings of our Goddess of wealth. All the buildings, stores and streets are embellished with lightings and also fireworks to get rid of the dark night. All streets echo children laughter. People dress up in new clothes; meet their friends and relatives to exchange gifts and greetings.
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