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Festivals in India

Festivals in IndiaIndia is the perfect example of a secular nation. In India there are people of varied culture and religious backgrounds co-existing in a tremendous display of unity. India gives to its citizens a freedom to practice any religion and culture as long as it doesn't disturb the communal harmony of the country in any way. Festivals of India bring out the best of Indian people and the rich culture which is spread across the country. There are many festivals celebrated in India by people of different religion showcasing India's rich diversity. All these festivals are celebrated with lot of fanfare and excitement and at times one can witness an active participation in festivals of each other and this unity is what makes India a unique county with genuine secular credentials. Let us join hands in celebrating all the festivals of India together and take this unity forward in displaying to the world that factors like race, color, religion are all inconsequential when it comes to India.

Festivals in IndiaIndia is a land of fairs and festivals and every month, one or the other fair/festival occurs.Festivals in India symbolize color, gaiety, enthusiasm, prayers and rituals. People coming to India from abroad are awestruck by the scale and multiplicity of Indian festivals/fairs. Through fairs and festivals, we in India remember and commemorate the birthdays and great deeds of gods, goddesses, hero's, gurus, prophet's and saints.

Indian Festivals celebrated by varied cultures and through their special rituals add to the colours of Indian Heritage. Some festivals welcome the seasons of the year, the harvest, the rains, or the full moon. Others celebrate religious occasions, the birthdays of divine beings, saints, and gurus (revered teachers), or the advent of the New Year. A number of these festivals are common to most parts of India. However, they may be called by different names in various parts of the country or may be celebrated in a different fashion.

Many festivals celebrate the various harvests; commemorate great historical figures and events, while many express devotion to the deities of different religions.

Every celebration centres around the rituals of prayer, seeking blessings, exchanging goodwill, decorating houses, wearing new cloths, music, dance and feasting.

Festivals Calendar 2009

January 2009
01 Thursday New Year
05 Monday Guru Govind Singh Jayanti
13 Tuesday Lohri
14 Wednesday Makar Sankranti
15 Thursday Pongal
26 Monday Republic Day
26 Monday Chinese New Year
26 Monday Mauni Amavasya
31 Saturday Vasant Panchami

February 2009
14 Saturday Valentine’s Day
23 Monday Maha Shivaratri

March 2009
09 Monday Milad un Nabi (Birthday of the Prophet), Sunni
14 Saturday Milad un Nabi, Sunni
11 Wednesday Holi
11 Wednesday Hola Mohalla
21 Saturday Nau Roz
22 Sunday Mothering Sunday (UK)
26 Thursday Khordad Sal, Birth of Prophet Zaranhushtra

April 2009
03 Friday Ram Navami
05 Sunday Palm Sunday
06 Monday Bikrami Samvat (Hindu New Year)
07 Tuesday Mahavir Jayanti
09 Thursday Hanuman Jayanti
09-16 Thursday Passover
10 Friday Good Friday
12 Sunday Easter (Western)
12 Sunday Palm Sunday (Orthodox Christian)
13 Monday Baisakhi
19 Sunday Easter (Orthodox)

May 2009
09 Saturday Buddha Jayanti / Buddha Purnima
10 Sunday Mother's Day

June 2009
02 Tuesday Ganga Dussehra
15 Monday Father's Day
16 Tuesday Martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev (Nanakshahi calendar)
24 Wednesday Rath Yatra

July 2009
07 Tuesday Guru Poornima

August 2009
02 Sunday Friendship Day
05 Wednesday Rakhi /Raksha Bnadhan
14 Friday Sri Krishna Janmashtami
15 Saturday Independence Day
19 Wednesday Jamshedi Noruz (Zoroastrian New Year in Shenshai calendar)
22 Saturday Ramadan begins
23 Sunday Ganesh Chaturthi

September 2009
02 Wednesday Onam
05 Saturday Teachers Day
19 Saturday Navaratra begin
21 Monday E-d-ul-Fitr- Ramadan Ends
28 Monday Dussehra

October 2009
02 Friday Gandhi Jayanti
08 Thursday Karva Chauth
15 Thursday Dhan Teras
17 Saturday Diwali
18 Sunday Govardhan Puja
19 Monday Bhai Duj
31 Saturday Halloween

November 2009
02 Monday Guru Nanak Jayanti
14 Saturday Children's Day
26 Thursday Thanksgiving Day
28 Saturday Eid-Ul-Adha

December 2009
12 Saturday Hanukkah
18 Friday Al-Hijira
25 Friday Christmas
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