Lohri 2023

Lohri is the first festival of the New Year and a popular harvest festival celebrated with great zeal and enthusiasm throughout Punjab, as well as parts of Haryana, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu, and Delhi. According to experts, the festival marks the start of the New Year, which falls on January 13 of each year and is mostly celebrated by Sikhs and Hindus across the country and worldwide.

Lohri also known as Lohadi or Lal Loi is a festival that marks the harvest season in Punjab. It falls on January 13 of each year, one day before Makar Sankranti which is another popular Hindu holiday that falls between January 14-15 every year. Lohri marks the end of the winter season and the start of the longer days. Lohri is celebrated to welcome the sun to the northern hemisphere. However, it is traditionally associated with harvesting rabi crops.

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What is the origin of Lohri?

The legend of Dulla Bhatti, who lived in Punjab during the reign of Mughal Emperor Akbar, is the most popular folklore associated with Lohri. He used to rob the rich and give to the poor and needy. According to historians, he once rescued a girl from kidnappers and raised her as if she were his daughter. He even performed the rituals on her wedding day in the absence of a priest. People loved and respected him, and they began singing the folk song “Sundar-Mundriye” on the occasion of Lohri every year.

Significance of Lohri

As per experts, it is believed that after Lohri the sun’s trek northward comes to an end on Lohri. After Makar Sankranti, the day after this festival, the nights get shorter and the days get longer. In short, the festival is celebrated for the arrival of warmer weather, which is represented by the bonfire. From this day on, a lot of people, particularly farmers, start harvesting the crop. On this day, people also recite some antiquated mantras so they can feel the warmth of the sun. The festival holds special importance for a new bride and even a newborn in the family. Family members make sure to make their first Lohri a memorable one. They together pray for good health and prosperity.

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What are the rituals of Lohri?

The celebration involves lighting a bonfire, doing parikrama of the bonfire, devoting puffed rice, jaggery, sesame seeds, popcorn, and coconut to the fire, and praying the almighty for a prosperous New Year. People also sing folk songs and dance, especially bhangra and gidda on this auspicious occasion.

What do people eat on Lohri?

The menu of the holy festival includes all things warm and healthy. From Gajak, Rewari, Till Laddoo, and Peanut Chikki to Makki Di Roti and Sarso Da Saag, the menu is quite elaborate and filling.

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