The first day of the Bangla calendar indeed is a big occasion in the life of every Bengali. It is a day of cheerful celebrations with great pride and enthusiasm. Pohela Boishakh is the festival of celebrating Bengali New Year. Pohela means first and Boishakh is the first month of Bengali year. Mainly Pohela Boishakh is the first day of the first month of Bengali year. Every year the first day of Bengali year is celebrated as Pohela Boishakh. Bangladesh and the West Bengal of India celebrate this day with great enjoyment.
Every year Pohela Boishakh celebrates on 14th April. Though the Bengali New Year based on a solar calendar so every year’s 14th April is celebrated as Pohela Boishakh according to the Gregorian calendar and the date is fixed. It is observed as a public holiday in Bangladesh and in Tripura. In West Bengal, it is an optional holiday.
Pohela Boishakh is the day of inspiration for the Bengali nation. Bangladesh is one of the non-communal countries in the world. Among all the festivals Pohela Boishakh is the biggest non-communal and universal festival. On this day people from every sphere meet together on this festival just for the traditional aspects. There is no discrimination between religion and caste, rich and poor. Being festive, the Bengalis, on the day get enlightened by her heritage, cultural identity and glorious nationalism. These feelings of nationalism every time tightened them together and creative inspiration to fight for any struggle for the country’s well-being.
In Bangladesh, the day begins before the break of dawn when the crowd gathers in Ramna Park for the cultural show held by Chhayanat every year. Women mainly wear white Shari with a red border. Since Boishakh brings spring, women adorn their hair with flowers and wear colorful churi (bangles) that symbolizes the many colors and renewed life in nature. Besides, men wear traditional Panjabi with Paayjama, Lungi or Dhuti.
The celebration of this day is full of colorful designs, banner, festoons, and flowers. People wish to one other on this day. Mongol Shovajatra, the major attraction of the Bangla new year celebration, began in the morning from the Dhaka University campus and paraded through different areas of the capital city.
Many of the city dwellers started the day with 'Panta Bhat' (soaked rice), green chili, onion, and fried Hilsha fish at Ramna Park, Suhrawardy Udyan, Dhaka University Campus, Rabindra Sarobor at Dhanmondi and other places of major attractions for the day.
Pohela Boishakh designates a new Bengal business year too. Business owners start the day with a new ledger, clearing out the old one. Special mantras are chanted all along.
The Bangla New Year will show us that this is not who we are that indeed this is a day for all of us to go out and have a grand time.