Makara Sakrant – Kite Festival
Description- Makara Sankranti, or Maghi, is a festival day in the Hindu calendar, dedicated to the deity Surya (sun). It is observed each year in January.It marks the first day of the sun’s transit into the Makara (Capricorn), marking the end of the month with the winter solstice and the start of longer days. Makara Sankranti is one of the few ancient Indian festivals that has been observed according to solar cycles, while most festivals are set by the lunar cycle of the lunisolar Hindu calendar.Being a festival that celebrates the solar cycle, it almost always falls on the same Gregorian date every year (January 14), except in some years when the date shifts by a day for that year. Makara Sankranti is set by the solar cycle of the Hindu lunisolar calendar, and is observed on a day which usually falls on 14 January of the Gregorian calendar, but sometimes on 15 January.
Holi – Color Festival
Description- Holi ( /ˈhoʊliː/); is a popular ancient Hindu festival, originating from the Indian subcontinent. It is celebrated predominantly in India and Nepal, but has also spread to other areas of Asia and parts of the Western world through the diaspora from the Indian subcontinent. Holi is popularly known as the Indian “festival of spring”, the “festival of colours”, or the “festival of love”.The festival signifies the arrival of spring, the end of winter, the blossoming of love, and for many a festive day to meet others, play and laugh, forget and forgive, and repair broken relationships.The festival also celebrates the beginning of a good spring harvest season.It lasts for a night and a day, starting on the evening of the Purnima (Full Moon day) falling in the Vikram Samvat Calendar, in the Hindu calendar month of Phalgun, which falls around middle of March in the Gregorian calendar. The first evening is known as Holika Dahan (burning of demon holika) or Chhoti Holi and the following day as Holi, Rangwali Holi, Dhuleti, Dhulandi, or Phagwah. Holi celebrations start on the night before Holi with a Holika Dahan where people gather, perform religious rituals in front of the bonfire, and pray that their internal evil be destroyed the way Holika, the sister of the demon king Hiranyakashipu, was killed in the fire. The next morning is celebrated as Rangwali Holi – a free-for-all festival of colours, where people smear each other with colours and drench each other. Water guns and water-filled balloons are also used to play and colour each other. Anyone and everyone is fair game, friend or stranger, rich or poor, man or woman, children, and elders.
Description- Gangaur is a festival celebrated in the Indian state of Rajasthan and some parts of Gujarat and West Bengal.Gangaur is colourful and one of the most important festivals of people of Rajasthan and is observed throughout the state with great fervour and devotion by womenfolk who worship Gauri, the wife of Lord Shiva during March–April. It is the celebration of spring, harvest and marital fidelity. Gana is a synonym for Lord Shiva and Gaur which stands for Gauri or Parvati who symbolizes Saubhagya (marital bliss). The unmarried women worship her for being blessed with a good husband, while married women do so for the welfare, health and long life of their husbands and for a happy married life. People from Rajasthan when migrated to Kolkata in West Bengal started celebrating Gangaur. This celebration is now more than 100 years old in Kolkata. The 2018 date for the festival is March 20.
Description- Teej welcomes the monsoon and observed in the month of Shravan (July/August). The monsoon rains fall on the parched land and the pleasing scent of the wet soil rises into the air. Swings are hung from trees and women dressed in green clothes sing songs in celebration of the advent of the monsoon. This festival is dedicated to the Goddess Parvati, commemorating her union with Lord Shiva. Goddess Parvati is worshipped by seekers of conjugal bliss and happiness. An elaborate procession is taken out in Jaipur for two consecutive days on the festive occasion which is watched by people in large numbers. The Teej idol is covered with a canopy whereas the Gangaur idol is open. The traditional ghevar sweet is also associated with the festival. During Teej, Goddess Parvati is worshipped. The day before Haryali Teej, is celebrated as Sinjara, wherein women put mehandi on their hands and eat.
Diwali – Festival of Light
Description- Diwali is the festival of lights, which is celebrated by Hindus,Jains,Sikhs and some Buddhists every autumn in the northern hemisphere (spring in southern hemisphere). One of the most popular festivals of Hinduism, Diwali symbolises the spiritual “victory of light over darkness, good over evil and knowledge over ignorance.” Light is a metaphor for knowledge and consciousness. In the lead-up to Diwali, celebrants will prepare by cleaning, renovating, and decorating their homes and workplaces.During the climax, revellers adorn themselves in their finest clothes, illuminate the interior and exterior of their homes with diyas (oil lamps or candles), offer puja (worship) to Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity and wealth, light fireworks, and partake in family feasts, where mithai (sweets) and gifts are shared. Diwali is also a major cultural event for the Hindu, Sikh, Jain, and Buddhist diaspora from the Indian subcontinent. Sanskrit inscriptions in stone and copper mentioning Diwali, occasionally alongside terms such as Dipotsava, Dipavali, Divali and Divalige, have been discovered at numerous sites across India.