Christians celebrate January 1st as New Year.India celebrates New Year by both solar and lunar calendar system.Most of these New Year festivals are celebrated based on Hindu calendar that follow by the movement of the moon.In India, different places celebrate New Year in different times of the year.As India is having multiple cultures, celebration of New Year may also vary distinctly.Most of the states in India celebrate this festival at the time of harvesting of crops.These days are celebrated with different names as Ugadi, Gudi Padwa, Baisakhi, Puthandu, Bohag Bihu, Pohela Boishakh, Bestu Varas, Vishu, Losoong, Navreh, Hijri and Cheti Chand.
In Andhra Pradesh, this day is dedicated to Lord Brahma,the creator of this world, as he has started creating the world on this day itself gaining significance for this day.It is also a belief in Hindus that Lord Vishnu has appeared in Matsya avatar on this day.This celebration includes cleaning of the houses and surroundings, decorating entrances with green mango leaves and wearing new clothes.On this day, people wake up early in the morning and have some oil massage to the body followed by head bath and visit temples to offer prayers.
In Karnataka, this festival is considered as New Year to the people and believe that this day bring new hopes and happiness in life.On this day, people wake up early in the morning, have bath and visit temple to offer prayers to god with sincerity while the priests chant mantras.On this occasion, people wash their houses, paint them and decorate the entrances with mango leaves. Ugadi pachadi, lemon rice and many varieties of dishes are prepared on this special day.
Gudi Padwa is celebrated on the first day of the Chaitra month of the Hindu calendar.This is celebrated as New Year by Maharashtrians and Hindu Konkanis’.According to Brahma purana, Gudi Padwa is the time when Lord Brahma has started creating the world.On this day, people hang Gudi on the right side of the main entrance of the houses.Gudi is a cloth tied to the end of the bamboo and a copper pot is placed inverted on the stick along with a garland.Festive cards and wallpapers are shared among friends and dear ones on this occasion.People offer prayers to god and prepare delicious mouth watering dishes on this occasion.
Baisakhi is a New Year day celebrated in Punjab and Haryana. This festival is generally celebrated on 13 April.Baisakhi is the major festival of Sikhs and is celebrated to denote the arrival of the harvest season.On this occasion, people wear new clothes, prepare halwa and other delicious dishes at home.
Puthandu is the New Year day of Tamil Nadu celebrated on the first day of Chithirai, the first month in Tamil calendar.Puthnadu is also known as Varusha Pirappu and usually falls on 13th or 14th of April.On this occasion, women decorate the house with colorful kolam patterns and the center of the kolam is decorated with lamp.On this occasion, people wear new clothes and eat maanga pachadi which is a symbol of this festival.
Bohag Bihu is a major agricultural festival celebrated in Assam.Songs and dances play a vital role in Bihu celebrations.The festival revolves around agriculture and the changes in the seasons.Bihu is celebrated three times in an year namely, Bohag Bihu( also called as Rongali Bihu ),Kati Bihu ( also called as Kangali Bihu ) and the Magh Bihu ( also called as Bhogali Bihu ).The first one Bohag Bihu is the most important one among the three.This is a spring festival that usually falls in the mid of April.
Pohela Boisharkh is the festival celebrated on the first day of Bengali calendar.This festival is celebrated in both West Bengal and Bangladesh.On this occasion, people clean their houses,wear new clothes and offer prayers to god with sincerity.People spend with friends and relatives on this day and prepare various kinds of food items.This festival generally falls on the mid of April.
Bestu Varas is the festival celebrated on the first day of Gujarati calendar.This festival usually falls after Diwali.People greet each other on this day saying “Nutan Varsha Abhinandan” or “Saal Mubarak”.This festive day starts early in the morning by firing plenty of crackers.On this day, people decorate their houses with marigold torans and draw colorful rangolis at their doorstep.People wear new clothes,visit temples and greet their friends and relatives a happy and a prosperous new year.
Vishu is a festival celebrated on the first day of Malayalam month of Medam.This festival is usually celebrated on 14 April of Gregorian calendar.The festival is defined by the offerings to the god called Vishukanni. This consists of the auspicious articles like rice, linen,cucumber, betel leaves, matal mirror and uruli.All these arrangements are completed by the women the night before Vishu celebrations.On the day of Vishu, people must wake up with eyes closed and go to the pooja room, so that the first thing a person can see is the Vishukanni.
Loosong is one of the most famous and old festival of Sikkim celebrated in the month of December.This festival is usually celebrated at the end of harvesting season.This is also considered as the farmers’ New Year festival.On this occasion, Chham dance is one of the major attraction.
Navreh festival is celebrated in Kashmir as New Year.This festival usually falls on the first day of Chaitra Navratri and is generally referred as Shivratri.
Hijri and Cheti Chand:
Hijri is the Islamic New Year celebrated on the first day of Muharram.The Islamic calendar does not depend on the Gregorian calendar so it may vary depending on the Lunar calender.This festival is celebrated with unique customs and traditions.
Cheti Chand is the festival celebrated on the second day of Chaitra masa by Sindhi community.The people of Sindhi community celebrate this festival as a honor to the birth of Jhulelal.