Non-Indians might find it difficult to pronounce! Gudi Padwa is celebrated as New Year in Maharashtra. While their cousin down the map in south celebrate as Ugadi- the New Year. Gudi Padwa is celebrated on first day of month Chaitra, according to Hindu calendar. This festival marks start of a new year for Maharashtrains and Konkanis (from Goa) in India.

There are several tale associated with this festival, according to the Brahma Purana, it was during this day, Lord brahma created world after great flood. This single day is considered as one of the ‘Sade-Teen Muhurt’ which is highly auspicious to start any new activity. This day is marked as holy festival with few rituals associated to it.

The Gudi Padwa is also marked as a day of victory of ancient King Satvahana Shalivahana over his enemies. The king commemorated his victory to his regime by erecting the ‘Gudi’ as symbol of victory by performing few rituals. While according to Konkanis, Gudi Padwa is known as ‘Sansar Padvo’ or ‘Samsar Padwo’.

Gudi Padwa: Maharashtrian’s New Year

Gudi Padwa: Maharashtrian’s New Year

Importance of Gudi Padwa

The festival holds great significance with the people in Maharashtra. Another tale connected to this festival is, it was this very day when Lord Rama returned from Ayodhya after defeating Ravana.

Raising Gudi

The first question that races your mind is, what is Gudi? The Gudi is a Bamboo stick or pole, one end of bamboo is tied with Yellow or green piece of silk cloth. A Kalash or metal pot is placed on the bamboo stick tied with silk cloth, which is then decorated with marigold flowers, balanced gudi and mango leaves. The so called adorned Gudi is placed outside the house by worshipping it. The Gudi is placed prominently on display outside window or at high height to make it visible, also it should be slightly tilted to an angle.   

Padwa

Gudi Padwa: Maharashtrian’s New Year

How Gudi Padwa is celebrated?

With bright, colourful Rangolis with aesthetic design drawn which reflect not only art, but also culture. At this time prayers are offered to Lord Brahma, the creator of world. As per the traditions, Maharashtrains prepare Shrikand, a type of sweet dish and is served with Puri (type of Indian dish) on this very special day. The day is considered as excellent day to initiate a new venture or so. Many business projects or construction projects are started on this day to gain success.

Etymology

The word ‘Padwa’ or ‘Padava’ comes from Sanskrit word which is first day after new moon day in Chaitra Month as per Hindu calendar. On this day, sun comes at position which is a point of intersection of meridians and equator. As per the Hindu calendar, this day marks the start of spring season or ‘vasanta ritu’ (Sanskrit Word).