Let all disgrace wiped out, let the world cleansed...

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Let all disgrace wiped out, let the world cleansed

 Feature Desk daily-bangladesh.com

 Published: 12:25 PM, 14 April 2020   Updated: 12:38 PM, 14 April 2020

Photo: Collected

Photo: Collected

Eso Hey Baishakh Eso ... Poet Rabindranath Tagore explains the meaning of the first Baishakh through this song. Bengali New Year is solely involved with the Bengali traditions and culture.

At the beginning of the Bengali New Year, people of all levels, regardless of caste, forget all the misery. Bye-bye 1426, welcome 1427. Each year, the Bengali New Year is celebrated by the departure of the old and the adoption of the new.

But this year, the Pahela Baisakh celebrations have been stopped due to coronavirus outbreak. This time, the Bengalis’ festival of heart will be celebrated at the house. Neither visiting Ramana Bottomul nor go to any fairs. Home is now the only place to stay healthy. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said that this year’s Pahela Baishakh will be celebrated at home through digital mediums.

Seasonal to universal festival

The celebration of the Pahela Baishakh preserves the flow of our Bengali tradition and culture. Celebrating Pahela Baishakh is considered the biggest public festival in Bangladesh. Once upon a time the New Year had been celebrated as the seasonal festival. Agriculture was closely associated with it. During the Islamic rule in India, all activities were conducted according to the Hijri calendar.

Despite the rule of the sultans, the continuation was continued till the early part of the Mughal rule. Earlier, the Mughal emperors used the Hijri calendar to govern and collect revenue. Under the direction of Samrat Akbar, the then Bengal astronomer Fatehullah Siraji built a new Bengali calendar based on the Solar calendar and the Arabic Hijri calendar.

Beginning in March 1584, the Bengali calendar counting began. However, this calculation method is implemented from November 05, 1556. On this day, Emperor Akbar had ascended the throne. First, the name of the festival was the Fasali (harvest) calendar. Later it was known as Bangabda or Bangla calendar. The calculation of the Bangla Shon started from the time of King Shashank of ancient Bengal, but it was completed in the reign of Samrat Akbar.

Earlier, New Year was celebrated especially for Halakhata (balancing account of the previous year). This is an economic matter. On this day, traders complete all the past debts and arrears. The traditional ceremony is still celebrated today. At that time the peasants of Bengal paid the land taxes till the last day of the Chaitra. On this occasion, fairs and other events were organized.

The fundamental difference between the Hijri and the Christian calendar is that the Hijri calendar runs as the moon and the Christian calendar as the clock. Because of this, a new date begins in the evening with the arrival of the new moon in the Hijri calendar. The English day begins at midnight, on the other hand. Traditionally there was a practice of counting Bangle calendar from sunrise. However, from Pahela Baisakh 1402, the Bangla Academy canceled the rules and introduced new rules for starting the counting at 12 o'clock at night to keep up with the international norms.

History of the modern New Year's observance

News of the celebration of the modern New Year is first available in 1917. Home worship and worship were arranged in Baishak earlier that year, wishing the British victory in the First World War. Then there was mention of similar activities in 1938. Later, the tradition of celebrating the Pahela Baisakh was not as popular as before 1967.

Currently, the Pahela Baishakh celebration is the universal festival among the Bengali people. The day is a government holiday. Baishakh removes the narrowness of people, enlarges the heart. It is customary for the first Baishakh to eat Panta-Ilish. It has been considered a part of Bengali culture. Do you know what? In the past, it had no basis. Many people claim to have no relation of Pahela Baishakh with Ilish in Bengali culture. However, this practice has been well practiced by all the Bengali people.