April 12, 2021: Celebrated as one of the best and most special springtime festivals, Gudi Padwa is the day which marks the traditional new year for the Konkani and Marathi Hindus.
What does Gudi Padwa stand for?
The word “Padwa”, “Padava” or “Padavo” is derived from the Sanskrit word “Pratipada” meaning the first day of a lunar fortnight that is, the first day on which the moon appears after the new moon day and the first day after the full moon.
Gudi Padwa is celebrated in and near the states of Maharashtra and Goa on the very first day of the Chaitra month in order to mark the beginning of the New year according to the Hindu lunisolar calendar.
How are the houses decorated for this festival?
This enchanting festival is observed with brightly coloured floor decorations in different hues, which is popularly called as Rangoli along with a special Gudi flag which is usually garlanded with neem and mango leaves, fresh flowers and topped with upturned copper or silver vessels.
The treats of this festival
Many glorious street processions are carried out during Gudi Padwa along with cheerful dancing and the special festive foods and handmade pakwaans. Gudi Padwa is also known as Marathi New Year. Related to Ugadi and various other Hindu New Year’s festivals, Gudi Padwa begins on the day of “Chaitra Suddha Padyami” and is celebrated for the entire day, each year.
The significance of Gudi Padwa
The word Gudi means flag, an erect flag on the houses is put as a part of the celebration in Maharashtra where it is mostly celebrated. According to Kittel, this word originally belongs to the South Indian language.
A Gudi is hoisted on this festival giving this occasion its name. The term Padwa or Padavo or Padva is associated with “Balipratipada” which is the third day of Diwali and another celebration which comes at the end of the harvest season.
The main importance and specialty of this is that it signifies the arrival of spring and also the reaping of Rabi crops. It is also known as the festival which is linked to the mythical day on which Lord Brahma had created time and universe.