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Context: The President of India has greeted the nation on the occasion of Vaisakhi, Vishu, Rongali Bihu, Naba Barsha, Vaisakhadi, Puthandu, Pirappu, which are being celebrated in different parts of the country on 13th and 14th April, 2020.

New year festivals in India: The new year in North and Central India is known as Baisakhi, Rongali Bihu in Assam, Tamil Putthandu in Tamil Nadu, Vishu in Kerala, Bishuva Sankranti in Odisha and Poila Boishakh in Bengal.

Significance of festivals: These festivals are a symbol of unity inherent in the cultural diversity of India and are also an occasion to celebrate our farmers. Our farmers not only produce food grains for us but also bring us food security and prosperity through their tireless efforts.

Vaisakhi

  • Vaisakhi has been a harvest festival in Punjab - an area of northern India - for a long time, even before it became so important to Sikhs.
  • In 1699, Guru Gobind Singh chose the festival as the moment to establish the Khalsa - that's the collective name given to Sikhs who've been baptised.

Vishu

  • The festival of Vishu heralds the beginning of the Malayalee New Year and the festival is celebrated in a big way inKerala and the adjoining areas of Tamil Nadu.
  • Malayalee people celebrate Vishu as the New Year Day celebration. 
  • Usually, the Vishu festival falls in the month of April. 
  • The start of the month in which this festival is celebrated is known as Medam in the Malayalam calendar.

Rongali Bihu

  • Bohag Bihu or Rongali Bihu is a festival celebrated in the state of Assam and northeastern India, and marks the beginning of the Assamese New Year
  • It usually falls on 2 April week, historically signifying the time of harvest.

Naba Barsha

  • The Bengali New Year usually falls around April 14 or April 15. 
  • The first day of the initial month of Baishakh of the Bengali solar calendar is called by many names like Naba Barsha, Pohela Boishakh, and Pahela Baisakh in various parts of India.

Puthandu

  • Puthandu also known as Puthuvarusham or Tamil New Year, is the first day of year on the Tamil calendar and traditionally celebrated as a festival. 
  • The festival date is set with the solar cycle of the lunisolar Hindu calendar, as the first day of the Tamil month Chithirai.

Pirappu

  • Amid the Tamil month of Aadi, each Friday (Velli Kizahamai) is thought to be propitious and perfect for worshiping Hindu Goddesses, particularly the different incarnations of Shakti.
  • Aadi Pirappu-The first day of the aadi month is celebrated by visting temples.
  • In this critical day, dominant part of the Hindus take after the act of performing pujas that are devoted to Nagas (Snakes).

Image Source: Economic Times