Know all about Basant Panchami and Saraswati Puja
Basant Panchami is a very special day across India. A day dedicated to Goddess Saraswati, Basant Panchami is celebrated in the month of Magha according to the Hindu calendar. On Basant Panchami, Saraswati Puja is very popular among students, professionals, artists, and musicians. Basant Panchami is also known as Shri Panchami as well as Saraswati Puja especially in West Bengal and Assam. Saraswati Puja is also done during the Sharad Navratri, in some of the southern states. It is called ‘Vidyarambham’ in Kerala and Karnataka.
There is a tradition of wordhipping books, all things to do with arts and musical instruments on Saraswati Puja, specially in West Bengal. Saraswati Puja is extremely common in schools and colleges and even at homes of people in the state.
When is Basant Panchami and Saraswati Puja
Basant Panchami is on February 16. It is celebrated during ‘Shukla Paksha’ or the Full Moon fortnight in Magha. The muhurat or auspicious time for Saraswati Puja is from 6:59 AM to 12:35 PM. The Panchami Tithi begins at 3:36 AM tomorrow and ends at 5:46 AM on February 17.
Know the significance of Saraswati Puja on Basant Panchami
Devi Saraswati, the goddess of learning and knowledge is worshipped on Basant Panchami. The day is significant for Vidhya Arambha or the ritual of introducing young children to the world of books and learning. Both young and old participate with great enthusiasm in Saraswati Puja. It is believed that Goddess Saraswati was born on this day and hence many people refer to the day as Saraswati Jayanti.
Yellow and white are the colours of Devi Saraswati. The deity is almost always seen in white or yellow saree and decorated with flowers of the same colour, which is usually marigold. On Saraswati Puja, people make milk-based sweets and khichuri (a dish made of rice and pulses). Sweets, fruits and khichuri are offered to the goddess first and then distributed as prasad among friends and family members.
Basant Panchami marks the beginning of Holi festivities in Brij Bhoomi. On this day, temples in Mathura and Vrindavan are decorated with yellow flowers. The idols are also adorned with yellow dresses to mark the arrival of the cheerful spring season.