The famous Bengali Poila is the first day of the first month of Bengali calendar and this month is known as Baisakhi. This festival worldwide by all Bengalis around mid of April each and every year.

From successful business, to maintaining good relations – everyone is out to meet, renew the existing relations around them. Also, since it is a New Year- they strive to close all bad ties and close off any sort of pending monetary commitments during this time.

Bangladeshi participate in a rally to celebrate the Bengali New Year or Pohela Boishakh in Dhaka, Bangladesh, April 14, 2015. Bangladeshi people celebrated the ... Image Source: Xinhua/Shariful Islam/IANS

Pohela Boishakh celebration

Bengali New Year 2023 is on April 15 Saturday

8 months and 7 days to go for the event

When is Poila Baisakh?

This is one special celebration in which all Bengalis take part. It usually falls of the 14th or 15th of April every year and is celebrated with a lot of pomp. This marks the New Year and is one of the biggest festivals that you would witness in Bengal.

Why is it given this special name?

In Bengali, the name Poila can be translated as First and then Baisakh is the first month of the Bengali Calendar. So, when brought together – the festival is named as Poila Baisakhi or Pahela Baisakhi or even Pohela Baisakhi.

Spiritual Significance of Pahela Baisakh (Poila Baisakh)

Since this is the harvest festival, people pray to Lord Ganesha and also to Goddess Laxmi so that their life and households are filled with God’s blessings. 

On this day, a lot of prayers are chanted as people believe this will bring in happiness, good health, long lives and then prosperous lives. Once prayers are over, it is considered an auspicious day to begin new ventures and even clear off old loans.

They believe the beginning of the month is a day that should be welcomed properly and then the whole year will be fine.

Rituals connected to Bengal New Year/ Pohela Baisakh

  • In the morning, the day starts off by believers watching the first morning rising sun, as they believe it will be auspicious. 
  • After this, a religious procession is undertaken and such a clustered procession is called Prabhat Pheris. This is really worth the watch!
  • The attire is one of a kind as Garad sarees are worn by women. These are white sarees with bright red borders. They decorate their hair with fresh flowers.
  • Women adorn themselves large gold earrings and heavy jewellery that is mostly gold. They look elegant and this is accompanied with some white pearls.
  • Men dress in traditional kurtas and dhotis and these are mostly white in colour.
  • Men wear ‘tikka’ that is obtained at the temple.
  • After the procession, the men and women sing songs and dance to various traditional folk songs.
  • Apart from this, a grand breakfast is prepared by the women in the households. This meal consists of rice, fish, green chillies, onions and certain sweets. 
  • Rangolis are prepared in the home ad sometimes in front of the home and this is being followed even to this date.
  • The rest of the day is spend by visiting relatives and also eating and sharing good food. 
  • Dance programmes rule the evenings of the special day. From folk songs to skits and even traditional theatre performances can be witnessed in the prominent towns of Bengal.

Facts about the traditions of Bengali New Year (Nobo Borsho)

  • On this day, if you are in Bengal- be like one and greet them in the native language with a ‘Shubho Nabho Barsho’which means ‘Happy New Year’.
  • In Bangladesh it is most commonly known as Pahela Baisakhi.
  • This festival has gained a lot of prominence in Australia and in fact if you happen to be in Sydney- you can be a part of the Sydney Baisakhi. It is said to have grown immensely over the past few years and is in fact a lavish event of colours, traditions and good food.
  • If you are out in the markets on this day, then you can must try shopping from many shops, as that day you can get highly discounted items on sale.
  • This is because want to sell off everything and start a fresh set of business once the new year commences on full stretch.
  • Heard about the Boishakhi Mela? Well, that is a fair or mela that is conducted in the markets of Sweden, UK and even Australia during the Bengali New Year.

Bengali New Year festival dates between 2019 & 2029

2019Monday, 15th of April
2020Tuesday, 14th of April
2021Thursday, 15th of April
2022Friday, 15th of April
2023Saturday, 15th of April
2024Monday, 15th of April
2025Tuesday, 15th of April
2026Wednesday, 15th of April
2027Thursday, 15th of April
2028Saturday, 15th of April
2029Sunday, 15th of April

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