Gudi Padwa - Marks Marathi New Year Gudi Padwa is an important Marathi festival celebrated among the Hindu

community of the state. This festival is also known as Gudhi Padwa and is held on the first day of the month of Chaitra. With this festival, the Marathi communities welcome the Hindu New Year. Padwa is a Sanskrit word, which means first. This festival is also celebrated in other states of India and is known by various names. The Hindus from the Konkan region of Goa calls this festival as Samvatsar Padvo. It is also known by the name of Yugadi in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. Marathi people have special importance for this festival as it marks the beginning of a new year. This celebration is doubled, as it is the time to sow and reap new crops. The agrarian community of Maratha has a special significance, as it is end of the harvest season and start of new one. The end of Rabi season is when people of Maharashtra celebrate Gudi Padwa. Hindus of Maratha consults the lunar calendar before planning any auspicious date. Important events and functions are held after consulting the Hindu calendar. Marathi people believe that the Hindu calendar has sade-teen muhurats (3 and half auspicious dates) and this festival is celebrated in one of this auspicious dates. The other festivals celebrated in auspicious dates are Vijayadashami, Balipratipada and Akshaya Tritiya. Even Marathi matrimony dates are fixed after consultation with the Hindu calendar and finalizing on a shubh muhurat. Celebration of Gudi Padwa also has historical connect. This day marks the start of Shalivahana calendar, after he defeated the Huna tribes in battle. According to Hindu mythology, Brahma, one of the three important Hindu deities, created the universe after deluge. From this day, the concept of time started in the universe. This festival also has a seasonal context. On this day, the sun changes position and moves up the point of crossing between the meridians and equator. Springtime or Vasant Ritu starts from this day. How the Marathi people celebrate Gudi –Padwa: Gudi is hanged by the people of Maharashtra on this day outside the window or displayed in a prominent place in the house. Gudi is a bright green or yellow cloth, adored with zari, and tied on the tip of a bamboo stick. A mango twig, some neem leaves, sugar crystals and red flower garland are tied along with the gudi. A copper pot covers the gudi by placing in an inverted position. This entire arrangement is kept at such a place in the house that everyone can get glimpse of it. Mostly the gudi is kept at the right side of the house as it symbolizes an active soul. The people of Maharashtra believe that gudi wards of evil eye and brings good luck. Others believe that this is the flag of Brahma as he created the universe on this day. It is also a symbol of victory in wars fought in the Maratha land.

Like any good occasion, on this day Marathi regional delicacies are prepared. Families prepare Poori and shrikhand. Regional delicacies are also prepared during various Marathi Matrimony functions. Houses are decorated with rangoli and people wear new clothes. Shipra writes on behalf of Jeevansathi.com, which is India’s fastest growing matrimonial website. Jeevansathi.com helps the users to search corresponding matches from their respective community like Maratha Matrimony, Hindi Matrimony from their online matrimonial and matchmaking services.

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