Baisakhi was celebrated yesterday with great éclat and enthusiasm, especially in the northern parts of the country. It is harvesting time in Punjab, Haryana, and parts of the Uttar Pradesh.
The air goes agog with the feeling of Baisakhi festivities all over. Farmers start harvesting and they, along with traders, commence their new year.
Our Sikh brethren got their Ks, namely kaccha, kara, kanga, kirpan and kesh to be distinguished as true Singhs, as it were. They celebrate Baisakhi as an ‘article of faith’ to offer their gratitude unto the Almighy for all He has bestowed upon them.
The city of Amritsar wears a festive look. People make it to the Golden Temple to take a dip in the holy Sarovar and offer prayers for their own well being and prosperity of entire mankind.
While the people in general content themselves with the exuberance around, the more conscientious of them remember the patriots who laid down their lives at the altar of the motherland during the freedom struggle. Baisakhi reminds all true Indians to live up to the expectations of all those people who preferred ‘death to disgrace’ in the true ‘religious traditions of the country’. People join in their thousands to pray for them so that they are granted their “due and blessed place.”
The occasion is celebrated elsewhere in the country too, though differently and under different banners. In Kerala, the festival is celebrated as ‘Vishu Kani’. On this day, gifts are exchanged among friends and relations and prayers are said for the wellbeing of mankind.
In Andhra Pradesh and Orissa, it is celebrated as the New Year’s Day. Although the day is celebrated under different names and in different manners, yet the common feature everywhere is one of joy.