The festivals of Delhi provide the Delhites with a much-needed break from the routine and monotonous city life. Numerous festivals are celebrated in this capital city. Since it is a melting pot of different religions and cultures, Delhi celebrates almost all the festivals that are celebrated in other parts of the country. From the Diwali of the Hindus to the Eid of the Muslims to the Christmas of the Christians to the Guru Nank Jayanti of the Sikhs, each and every festival is celebrated in Delhi. Throughout the year, the city remains immersed in the festivities. However, the festivals of New Delhi, India do get an additional touch of the city when they are celebrated here.
Some of the major festivals of Delhi are:
Bhai Dooj Festival
Bhai Dooj Festival is celebrated in the month of October or November.
The date is not fixed and is calculated every year by the Pandits. It
falls on the new moon night, approximately one day after the festival of
Diwali. The name Bhai Dooj, with "bhai" meaning brother and "dooj"
meaning the second day after the new moon (the day of the festival),
literally means the day of the brother. Bhai Dooj is also known as the
festival of Tikka.
The Chhath Festival is basically a major festival of Bihar, but is
celebrated with equal devotion in Delhi as well. This festival, which
honors the Sun God, is celebrated six days after the festival of Diwali.
The Chhath puja celebrations do not include much fanfare, rather, it is
a festival of prayer and propitiation that is undertaken with
Christmas in Delhi
Christmas is celebrated every year on 25th December. It commemorates the
birth anniversary of Jesus Christ, the founder of Christianity.
Conventionally, it involves decorating a fir tree, singing Christmas
carols and exchanging gifts with loved ones. The main celebrations of
Christmas take place on the Christmas Eve, that is December 24.
Diwali Festival is also known by the name of "the festival of
lights". One of the major Hindu festivals, it is celebrated almost
in each and every city of India. There is a legend associated with this
festival. It is believed that Demon King Ravana had kidnapped Sita Mata,
the wife of Lord Rama, while they were undergoing their 14 years of
Durga Puja Festival
Durga Puja festival is one of the major festivals celebrated by the
Bengalis. The festival is dedicated to Ma Durga, the Goddess of power,
also known as Shakti. It is believed that festival of Durga Puja
commemorates the victory of the goddess over the demon Mahishasura.
Hindus throughout India celebrate Dussehra Festival, although by
different names. Also known as Vijaya Dashmi ('Vijay' meaning 'victory'
and 'Dashmi meaning 'tenth day'), Dussehra festival has a number of
legends associated with it. It is believed that it was on this day that
Lord Rama killed the demon king Ravana and took over his empire, Lanka.
Eid festival has a lot of significance for Muslims all over the world.
The celebration of this festivitiy takes place twice a year. According
to the Muslim calendar, for the first time Eid falls somewhere around
the month of Zil-Haji and is known as Eid-ul-Zuha. Eid-ul-Zuha
celebrations in New Delhi, the capital of India, take place with great
pomp and show. .
Guru Nanak Jayanti
Guru Nanak Jayanti festival commemorates the birthday of Guru Nanak Dev
the founder of the Sikh faith. Guru Nanak Dev was born in the Hindu
Month of Kartik (October-November) in 1469 AD at Talvandi, almost 30
miles from Lahore. Sikhs celebrate the birthdays of all the ten gurus
and call them Gurpurabs.
Holi festival is celebrated in the Hindu month of Phagun (Month), on a
full moon day. It is the festival of colors and involves smearing each
other with gulal (colors) and throwing water on each other. There are a
number of legends associated with the origin of the Hindu festival of
Holi. One legend has it that on this day Holika, an evil demoness, tried
to burn Prahlad, a devotee of Lord Vishnu.
Independence Day in India commemorates 15th August, the day on which
India attained independence. After remaining under British rule for over
100 years, India finally regained freedom in the year 1947. Declared a
National holiday, the Independence Day is celebrated throughout the
country with much fanfare and gaiety.
Janmashtami Festival is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary
of Lord Krishna. It falls in the month of August or September, with the
date being calculated every year. On the day of Janmashtami, people fast
until midnight and thereafter worship the image or statute of Lord
Krishna at home or temple. .
Lohri Festival is celebrated every year on 13th of January (Hindu month
of Paush or Magh). It is the harvest festival of Punjab, which welcomes
the onset of spring season and the end of the winter season. The
festival of Lohri marks the entry of the sun in the rashi (zodiac) of
Muharram festival is celebrated to honor the martyrdom of Hazrat Imam
Hussain, the grandson of the Holy Prophet. The festival begins on the
first day of Muharram, the first month of the Islamic calendar and lasts
for 10 days.
Navratri Festival is regarded as one of the most holy and revered
festivals of the Hindus. Lasting for a period of nine days, the festival
is dedicated to Goddess Shakti. Also known as the Divine Mother, the
Goddess assumes many forms. Three of her forms consist of Goddess Durga
(destructive), Goddess Lakshmi (protective) and Goddess Saraswati
Raksha Bandhan Festival
Raksha Bandhan festival is celebrated amongst Hindus throughout the
world. The festival of Raksha Bandhan celebrates love and affection
between a brother and sister. It falls in the Hindu month of Shravan
(generally August). However, the date is not fixed and is calculated
Republic Day commemorates the adoption of the constitution of India. On
26th January 1950 India adopted its new constitution and became a
Republic. From that year onwards, 26th January is celebrated as the
Republic day of India every year. The day has been declared a National
holiday since then and all the commercial as well as educational
establishments observe holiday.
Maha Shivratri Festival
Maha Shivratri Festival is celebrated in honor of Lord Shiva and it is
believed that Lord Shiva got married to Parvati on this day.
Mahashivaratri is celebrated on the 13th (or 14th) day of the dark half
of Hindu Month of Phalgun (February-March). As the name "Shivratri"
means "the night of Shiva", this festival is celebrated
generally at night.