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Wednesday, April 12, 2017 | 7:05:00 AM

Baisakhi is a festival of harvest celebrated by the Sikh community of India. It also indicates the merriment of the beginning of new solar year as well as the new harvest season also. It is one of the most significant festivals of Sikhs and they consider this day as the commencement of the Sikh New Year.

Baisakhi is celebrated with a great deal of feasting, bhangra dancing, folk music, and fairs. The area surrounding the Golden Temple in Amritsar becomes carnival-like. The auspicious festival of Baisakhi is celebrated on first day of Vaisakh month (April-May) according to the Nanakshahi calendar. Hence, the festival of Baisakhi is also popularly known as Vaisakhi.

Significance of Baisakhi

Baisakhi is celebrated because it is on this day that the Khalsa Panth was established. It is considered as the community of the pure ones and was started on the day of Baisakhi by the last Guru of the Sikhs, Guru Gobind Singh. Long before that, the third Guru of the Sikhs had started celebrating Baisakhi as a special festivals of Sikhs community.

The Sikhs, rural and urban celebrate this festival with full enthusiasm and vigour. It is a social festival and involves lot of religious activities also. The main part is dancing, eating, enjoying and merry making. They wear colourful dresses and perform their special dance form called Bhangra, which depicts full energy and passion.

In the rural areas, it is the time for the farmers to enjoy their fruits of hard work and so is a remarkable occasion. They have all the rights to enjoy and have the benefits of their whole year's extreme hard work. In fact the entire North India celebrates this day and people visit their near and dear ones also. Nowadays people give and take gifts on Baisakhi and show their love and care to friends and relatives.

Traditionally there used to be 'Baisakhi mela' which means a carnival and this is still followed in many villages in Punjab. There are plenty of things to enjoy there including different types of swings, tasty and spicy food items and dance performances as well. This festival is celebrated with family and those who stay away from their families try to reach their homes to enjoy the happiness and heartiness of the occasion.

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