What Is Poila Boishakh? All You Need To Know About The Bengali New Year

Celebrate Poila Boisakh with us– Traditions, rituals, and feasts.

Published On Apr 14, 2023 | Updated On Feb 29, 2024

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Poila Boishakh, also known as Bengali New Year, is a celebration that has great cultural significance for Bengalis everywhere. We will go over all you need to know about this lively and colourful festival in this article. This year, Poila Boisakh, the Bengali New Year, falls on the 15th of April.

The Bengali calendar, a solar calendar that was first established by the Mughal Emperor Akbar in the 16th century, begins on Poila Boishakh. The Surya Siddhanta, an old Indian astrological treatise, served as the basis for the calendar. Bengalis all throughout the world celebrate Poila Boishakh, which ushers in the new year, with great fervour.

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The celebration's origins may be traced back to rural Bengal when it was observed as an agricultural festival. Farmers would pray to the gods for a prosperous crop as they celebrated the new year. The festival has changed with time and now serves as a significant cultural occasion for the Bengali population.
 

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Every year, around the second week of April, a three-day holiday called Poila Boishakh begins. People clean their homes and decorate them with alpona, a traditional Bengali art form, to start the celebrations. Making alpona, which is said to bring luck and prosperity, involves mixing rice flour and water to create elaborate rangoli designs.

People go to temples in the morning and say prayers for a prosperous new year. The ‘Mangal Shobhajatra' a vibrant procession organised by students and cultural groups, is an activity that’s followed even today!

Poila Boishakh celebrations are not complete without food, thus traditional Bengali delicacies like bhat (steamed rice), ilish maach bhaja (fried hilsa fish), and cholar dal (lentils) are made especially for the holiday. Sweets, mostly sondesh and mishti doi (Bengali sweets and sweet curd) and other treats are also traded between friends and family members.

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Poila Boishakh has grown significantly as a tourist attraction in recent years, drawing visitors from all over the world to Kolkata to take part in the celebrations. During this time, Kolkata comes alive with cultural programs and fairs that people can attend!

Poila Boishakh is of great cultural importance to the global Bengali community. It's a time for fresh starts, community gatherings, and celebrating heritage. People from many backgrounds join together to enjoy the festival, which encourages cultural diversity and unity.

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The event is observed worldwide by Bengalis. In Bangladesh, this day is known as Pohela Boishakh. Additionally, the event is observed in nations having sizable populations of Bengalis, such as the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

Poila Boishakh is a significant holiday for Bengalis everywhere, irrespective of where they may be situated. It is a time when people join together to celebrate their cultural history, fostering both cultural variety and unification. The holiday is enthusiastically observed and features a variety of cultural activities, fairs, and traditional Bengali cuisine. It is an opportunity to encourage diversity and unity while showcasing Bengal's rich cultural history.

Pohela Boishakh is a celebration that is enjoyable to take part in whether you are Bengali or not. It is a chance to discover a distinctive culture and commemorate fresh starts. The festival will undoubtedly leave you with long-lasting memories because it is such a brilliant and colourful celebration of life and culture.

We encourage you to dive deep into the vibrant Bengali culture and celebrate Poila Boisakh this year with all your friends, marking a new tradition in your group! We promise that once you eat the yummy feast that Bengalis eat on this day, you will look forward to celebrating this day every year.


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