Saturday, June 15, 2024

Subho Pohela Boisakh 2024 – How did it all begin?

Subho Pohela Boisakh.


Pohela Baishak, also known as Nobo Borsho or Bengali New Year, marks the start of the new year for Bengalis. It will be celebrated on April 15, 2024.

‘Pohela’ means first and ‘Baisakh’ is the first month. In the Bengali calendar, Pohela Baishak therefore represents the first day of Baisakh month or the first month.

Due to the official holiday in West Bengal and Tripura, offices, colleges, and schools are closed on this day. Bangladesh celebrates it as a national holiday as well. Bangladesh, on the other hand, celebrates Poila Baisakh one day early.

Last year in 2023, the West Bengal Legislative Assembly declared Poila Baisakh as the West Bengal Foundation Day or Bangla Dibas. 

Celebrations and Traditions of Poila Baisakh in West Bengal

West Bengal comes to life on Pohela Baisakh with vibrant fairs and rallies when people celebrate the new year by dancing and singing.

On this day, the air is filled with the aroma of mouthwatering Bengali dishes like pulao, beguni, payesh, Kosha Mangsho, Aloor dum, Luchi, and Khichuri.

Pohela Baisakh presents a great deal for thrifty shoppers. Well-known markets including Esplanade, Gariahat, Hatibagan, and New Market have amazing bargains and discounts that you simply must not miss. In Chaitra, the shopping frenzy starts a month earlier.

New outfits are a must during Pohela Baisakh or Bengali New Year! Men dress in traditional Kurtas or Panjabis, while women wear sarees or salwar suits.

When families and friends get together, they wish each other a happy “Subho Nobo Borsho” (Happy New Year in Bengali).

History and Significance of Poila Baisakh

Pohela Baisakh is believed to have originated in 1584, specifically during Akbar’s reign, during the Mughal era in India. To more accurately determine the tax collection season, he created the Mughal calendar, which was essentially an amalgam of the Islamic and Hindu calendars.

This calendar made the Bengali New Year, or Pohela Baisakh, an official celebration period in the Mughal Court because it fell during tax season.

Bengali zamindars used to offer their subjects sweets during Pohela Baisakh.

A lot of people also think that this celebration’s origins can be traced to King Shashanka’s accession to the throne in 593 AD. He was the Gauda kingdom’s ruler.

An important holiday in the Bengali community is Pohela Baisakh. Family and friends gather to pray for a prosperous year ahead at the start of each new year. Pohela Baisakh also has cultural significance since it represents rebirth, revitalization, and the celebration of Bengali customs and legacy.

It’s said that the first day of the Bengali New Year will dictate the following year. For this reason, it is seen as a fortunate time for getting married, launching new ventures, clearing debt, and other events.

The Indian Bugle
The Indian Bugle
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