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Why Bangla New Year Is Famous in Southern Asia?

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A highlighter of South Asian culture abroad the world. A greener and eager author of Hubpage.

Bengali New Year is a public celebration of all races, castes, and religions in Southern Asia. Even all over the world. In Newyork, Bangla New year celebrates with solemn.

So, the reader needs to know about their festival and cultural program.

Celebrating Bengali New Year (pohela-boishakh) in Newyork.

Celebrating Bengali New Year (pohela-boishakh) in Newyork.

In our South Asian countries, the Thirty First Night is celebrated according to the English year and the New Year is celebrated according to its calendar. New Year's Day is a day of great joy. The day when children, young, old people of different ages share their happiness. I am talking about 'Bangla New Year'.

According to the solar calendar, the Bengali month was celebrated from ancient times. This time, it was customary to celebrate the first day of the year in Assam, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Bengal, Punjab, etc. Although Emperor Akbar is called the originator of the Bengali year, the inventor of the Bengali calendar is considered to be the 8th-century king Shashanka. Later Emperor Akbar changed it to collect rent and revenue.
At first, the name of Akbar's calendar was "Tarikh-e-Elahi" and in that calendar, the months were mentioned as Arbadin, Cardin, Biswa, Tir. However, no one can say for sure when this name was changed to Boishakh, Jaistha, Ashar, Shravan. It is believed that the Bengali twelve months were named after different stars. For example, from Bishakha star to Boishakh, from Jayistha to Jaistha, from Shar to Ashar, from Sraboni to Shravan, the month is named after the star in Bengal.

The Mughal Empire was ruled in India according to the Hijri calendar. And the Hijri calendar depends on the moon. Since the agricultural work of the farmers did not match with the calculation of the moon, they had to face the problem of paying untimely rent. For that Emperor Akbar reformed the year calendar so that the farmers would not have any difficulty in collecting rent.

Then famous astronomer and thinker Fatehullah Siraji made the rules of the Bengali year based on the solar year and the Hijri year by the order of Emperor Akbar. The first Bengali year was reckoned from 10 March or 11 March 1584 AD. However, this calculation was officially started on 5 November 1556.

Earlier, this year was named as crop year for harvesting and collection of rent. Later it was called Bangabda and Bangla San. Then the farmers had to pay rent and duty by the last day of the month of Chaitra. So from then on Emperor Akbar used to organize sweet and cultural programs for the farmers. Halkhata has also been introduced by traders since the time of Emperor Akbar.

 The Emperor Akbar who innovated Bangla New Year.

The Emperor Akbar who innovated Bangla New Year.

From Baishakh, the first month of Akbar's Bengali year, to the victory of the British in the First World War in 1918, home kirtan and puja were arranged on the first Baishakh of that year. Where war attacked people of different religions took part in this ritual. Then in 1938 similar activities are mentioned. Later, the practice of celebrating the first Baishakh, which took place before 1967, did not become very popular.
Later, Pahela Boishakh was celebrated through various events and social needs.

The present Bengali year has come according to the Gregorian calendar. According to this Gregorian calendar, Happy New Year is celebrated on 14th April every year in Bangladesh. Since 1989, the well-being procession has been a major attraction of Bengali New Year celebrations. That called ‘Mongol’ procession. It’s to be noted that in 2016, UNESCO declared the ‘Mongol’ procession organized by the Faculty of Fine Arts of Dhaka University as an "Invaluable Cultural Heritage of Humanity".

New Year is celebrated on 14th April in Bangladesh but it is celebrated on 15th April in West Bengal. This is because the Hindu community in India follows the Tithi Panjika (Calender). According to the Gregorian calendar in the modern Bengali year calendar in Bangladesh, April 14 is the first day of the Bengali year fixed by the Bangla Academy.

Rural customs

According to the rural custom, the farmers start the day by wearing new clothes and breakfast with panta rice, pitha-puli, and sweets with their families in the morning. Moreover, several villages organize Baishakhi Mela. Different traders also used to take their products to the fair. Some sell fish, toys, some sari-bangles, hair ribbons, etc.
It is believed that our tradition of eating hilsa fish came from this fair. A month-long, three-day, or ten-day Baishakhi fair is organized in the village. The main attraction of the fair is the series of songs and plays performed by different groups of artists.

Nagor dola in Boishakhi fair

Nagor dola in Boishakhi fair

Cultural program in Boishakhi fair

Cultural program in Boishakhi fair


Every year there is a singing program at the base of Ramna. As soon as the sun rose, Ramna's Botmul song was sung to wish ‘Happy New Year’. Everyone sang in unison - "Come, O Boishakh, come, come".


 Chhayanat program at the base of Ramna Banyan tree

Chhayanat program at the base of Ramna Banyan tree

And from the fine arts of Dhaka University, various masks and statues were made with the predominance of rural culture, and the New Year was welcomed by marching in the streets of Dhaka. Everyone can take part in this procession.

Mars procession of Bangla New Year

Mars procession of Bangla New Year


Sonargaon also had a fair during the reign of Isa Khan. There, in the local Battala (Banyan tree), virgins, brides, and mothers used to worship to fulfill their desires. Goats were sacrificed earlier. But now they fly pigeons to the goddess in the hope of a message of peace.
Sonargaon horse fair was also in vogue. It is said that a man named Jamini Sadhan used to give propitiousness to everyone on horseback on New Year's Day. After his death, a memorial was erected there and later a fair was organized around it. Earlier earthen horses were kept, from then on the fair was kept in the form of nagar-dola, charka, and whirling dola.

Bou mela (Bride fair)

Bou mela (Bride fair)

Bou mela (Bride fair)

Bou mela (Bride fair)

According to this tradition of celebrating the New Year in different countries, the New Year celebrated in Bangladesh and West Bengal of India of South Asia is a gathering of all people, a traditional means of inviting new ones. There is tranquility for people's minds in these festivals. Among the various festivals of the Bengali nation, this New Year celebration is a fancy event to preserve the culture of the world. Which will always be awake in the mind of every Bengali. Today I am ending the description of Bengali New Year till now. I will come another day with another interesting or memorable ‘Day’ ahead. Good luck to everyone until then.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Asad Islam

Comments

Asad Islam (author) from Dhaka, Bangladesh on October 19, 2020:

Thank you, BRENDA ARLEDGE for comment in this article.

In that time our farmers paid their rent with harvesting crops and our landlords were collecting rent.

Russell Ahmed on October 19, 2020:

Pohela Boishakh is one of the major festivals for the The first Baishakh is as glorious as the joy for us We are very proud to have such a festival. Thank you sir so much for being able to write about Pahela Baishakh so beautifully.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on October 18, 2020:

I do not know anything about this tradition or culture.

You have enlightened me with your story. It seems to be a very happy occasion with alot of love & sharing.

I was a bit confused with farmers collecting rent and then paying rent, but I figure it is the sell of his products.

Very informative article.

Asad Islam (author) from Dhaka, Bangladesh on October 09, 2020:

Thanks, Amjad vai. Please stay with me in Hubpages.

Amjad on October 08, 2020:

This is a very intersting and important article for all kind of Bengely.

Asad Islam (author) from Dhaka, Bangladesh on October 05, 2020:

Ya, a huge information about Bangla New year, please stay with us

Mahmuda Parvin on October 03, 2020:

Very informative....

Asad Islam (author) from Dhaka, Bangladesh on August 31, 2020:

Thanks a lot. I am very proud to write in Hubpages about our culture

Shamim on August 31, 2020:

Your writing is excellent about our bangla New Year. It was need to express Pahela Boishakh all over the world. I think hubpage.com is on of the greatest website that is published our culture all over the world. Please carry on.

Abu Hanif on August 30, 2020:

Bangla New Year celebrating is very heartiest for all kinds of Bengali. Though he is a Bangladeshi or Indian or any other countries citizen.