A harvest festival; Ugadi is one of the most sought-after summer festivals of India. Also known as 'Yugadi," which means, "start of a new era," marks the commencement of a New Year in the southern states of India, such as Karnataka, Maharashtra Telangana, and Andhra Pradesh.
Ugadi is observed on the first day when the moon's orbit changes. Most of the festivals in India observe the Indian lunar charts, and Ugadi is observed a day after the first new moon and after the sun crosses the celestial equator on the spring equinox.
How do we celebrate Ugadi
Every popular festival in India starts with an invigorating oil bat; known as Abhyanga, and Ugadi is no different. The perks of Abhyanga(rooted in Ayurveda) have been analysed widely and is identified as one of the most therapeutic and relaxing ways to maintain good health.
Also, Ugadi brings with it a slew of practices and customs that are expressly identified with the festival. The "Ugadi Pacchadi" (a customary food) requires 6 ingredients - Neem, Raw mango, Jaggery, Tamarind, Chilli and Salt. This amalgamated preparation serves as a complete representation of life itself- bitterness, sorrow, happiness, anger, surprise, and fear. Today, social psychoanalysts and therapists insist that every sensation needs to be welcomed for good mental and emotional health. This custom toils as the perfect understanding of the significance and the inevitability of every human emotion.
Places to observe Ugadi in India
Also known as Yugadi, signifies the commencement of the new year as per the Hindu calendar. According to the myths, it is believed that Bramha began the creation of the cosmos on this day. This popular festival of Karnataka is observed with fervour and many preparations. Temples and homes are adorned and many speciality food items are cooked. Moreover, people venture out on this auspicious day to acquire a new asset or start an enterprise.
Ugadi is observed as 'Gudhi Padwa' in Maharashtra and purports the commencement of a prosperous new year and adherents consider it to be one of the most auspicious days. It is commemorated with great grandeur and shows all over Maharashtra. Homes are adorned with garlands and rangolis, and a Gudhi is put up outside the home to greet prosperity and good health into the family. Gudhi Padwa is a symbol of triumph, represented by a bamboo shoot with a piece of silk fabric; it is garlanded with flowers.
People welcome the new year by worshipping the Gudhi and sharing prasad among the people in the neighbourhood. Delightful sweets like Basundi or Shrikhand are prepared and savoured by adults and children alike. Many parades in several parts of the state are carried out to honour the culture and traditions of Maharashtra.
Ugadi or Telugu New Year is a widely celebrated festival in Andhra Pradesh. Hindus in Andhra Pradesh observe Ugadi according to the lunar calendar. Lots of tasty sweets are made on the day like Bhakshya and Puran Poli. The adherents follow a custom of making a garland of banana leaves and hang them up on the doors. New clothes, sweets, and lights followed up special PUJA (prayer) make this auspicious day more special.
Ugadi is the New Year's Day for the people of Telangana. This auspicious day marks the beginning of a new era in Telangana. Hindu adherents prepare for this joyful occasion by cleaning and decorating their homes and purchasing new clothes. When the day begins, they adorn their houses with mango leaves and rangolis and prepare many special dishes.