Baisakhi also known as Vaisakhi marks the Punjabi and Sikh New Year and is a spring harvest festival celebrated in Punjab and Northern India. Baisakhi falls on 14 April this year and it commemorates the formation of the Khalsa Panth, under Guru Gobind Singh in the year 1699. Hindus celebrate the descent of Goddess Ganga on Earth, on Baisakhi. In Punjab, Baisakhi marks the ripening of the rabi harvest and farmers pay their tribute by thanking God for the abundant harvest.
On the day of Baisakhi, Khalsa Sikh order was founded after which the Guru Teg Bahadur was persecuted and beheaded by Mughal emperor Aurangzeb for his refusal to convert to Islam and standing up for religious freedom. Following these events, in the year 1699, the tenth Guru of Sikhs, Guru Gobind Singh laid down the foundation of Panth Khalsa, by baptizing Sikh warriors to defend religious freedom.
On the occasion of Baisakhi, Hindus take a holy dip in river Ganga. This festival is celebrated across Punjab and a number of processions called Nagar Kirtan led by five Khalsas dressed as Panj Pyaare passes across the streets in the early hours of the day. Sikhs visit Gurudwara and a number of fairs are organized across Punjab where festivities are observed through the folk dance Bhangra along with songs, amusement rides and good food.
First Published: Apr 13, 2019 13:01 IST