Rakshabandhan is the occasion to celebrate the pristine bond between a sister and their brother. On this day, sisters tie a rakhi around their brother’s wrist, who promise them to protect from every evil that comes their way. That said, there’s a twist of tale to rakhi celebrations, which should not come across as a surprise given the ethnic and cultural diversity of India. In this post, we take a look at some unique ways in which rakhi is celebrated in different parts of the country. Read on.
The festive fervour starts setting in a month before rakshabandhan in Jammu. The month long celebrations are marked by people taking to their rooftops to fly kites of all sizes, shapes and colors. Locals name their kites according to the color combination and design aspects. People play loud music when flying kites and enjoy local delicacies throughout the day.
Rakshabandhan in Maharashtra and coastal parts of Western India is known as Narali Purnima. Locals, especially fishermen celebrate the festival by worshiping the sea for providing them with a means of livelihood. Locals throw coconut in the sea as offerings and prepare coconut based delicacies. After the pooja, sisters tie rakhi on their brother’s wrist.
3. Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Some Parts of UP
Rakhi is renamed as Kajari Purnima in MP, Chhattisgarh and some parts of UP. The day marks the beginning of the new agricultural season. On this day farmers worship goddess Bhagwati for a good season. Farmers go to their field with their wife who brings back soil from the field in a leaf. Barley crops are planted in the soil and placed in a corner (especially cleaned and decorated for the occasion). After seven days, the put is submerged in a well. The festival is also celebrated by women blessed with a son, who worship the goddess to bless their son with a long and prosperous life.
4. Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Parts of Orissa and Maharashtra
Rakshabandhan is celebrated as Avani Avittam in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and some parts of Orissa and Maharashtra. Brahmins celebrate the festival by changing their janeu (the sacred thread tied across their body) and pray to the Supreme Power to forgive them for their past sins. They promise to inculcate good habits and act wisely in the coming year. The celebrations are marked by scholars reciting different verses of the Yajur Veda.
Related: 4 Unique Rakhi Celebration Ideas
Rakhi: One Festival, Many Colors
With these different ways of celebrating the occasion, rakhi truly stands out as a festival with many colors. In these parts of India, the festival is more than an occasion to celebrate the bond between a sister and brother, and reflects the local beliefs, traditions and way of life.