Vishu is the first day of the Malayalam calendar and is the call of a New Year in Kerala and the adjoining areas of Southern India. This day is celebrated with much ceremonial splendor among all family members, relatives and friends and is marked by feasting and burning of fire crackers.
Vishu 2016 was on April 14 Thursday
When is Vishu celebrated?
Vishu is the first day of the local calendar and is the beginning of Meda Rashi, the first zodiac sign. It signifies the equinox according to the solar calendar and falls usually in the second week of April according to the English calendar.
Spiritual Significance of Vishu
This day of Vishu is the most important day in a Keralite's life. It marks the beginning of new hopes and aspirations and is celebrated widely all across the state. People take a lot of care in fulfilling the rituals so as to bring prosperity and success in the coming year ahead.
Rituals of Vishu
- People start with early morning prayers at dawn on this auspicious day.
- The mother of the family arranges Visukkani which consists of cucumber, rice, arecanuts, betel leaves, gold ornaments, new clothes, a holy granth, coins in a silver cup, mangoes, jackfruit, metal mirror,fresh lemon long with a lit metal lamp alongside. Family members are supposed to view these things first when they get up from sleep.
- A special yellow flower named Konna is a must in the Kani.
- The holy text of Ramayan is recited during the puja and the common belief among Malayalees is that the recital would have its sacred effects on all family members.
- A special feast called 'sadya' is prepared keeping in mind all flavours that should be equally present in the meal. A meal usually consists of rice, sambar, chips, pickle, aviyal, rasam and different varieties of sweets and payasams.
- A special type of rice is prepared for this occasion. This is called Kanji and is prepared with high quality rice, coconut milk and condiment spices.
- Later children burst fire crackers and new clothes and money are given as gifts to friends and relatives as blessings by elders of the family.
- People also visit temples offering prayers on this day.
- People distribute coins among the poor on this day.
- People usually wear their best clothes on this day and women love to adorn themselves with gold ornaments. Men wear the traditional 'mundu' along with khadi shirts.
Important Timings On Vishu
|Sunrise||14-Apr-2016 06:18 AM|
|Sunset||14-Apr-2016 18:31 PM|
|Sankranti Time||13-Apr-2016 19:49 PM|
|Place : Ujjain [ India ]|
Celebration in other states
New Year is celebrated in other states of India during this time as well. This occasion is referred to by different names in various parts of India.
- Poila Baisakh in Bengal
- Baisakhi in Punjab
- Puthandu in Tamil Nadu
- Bihu in Assam
Vishu is definitely by far the most popular festival of Kerala and with the festive mood in town this is the best time of the year to visit the state.