Bangladesh is a land of varieties cultural festivals. People of Bangladesh follow several days as their happiest occasion. Pohela Boishakh, a traditional day to celebrate among the Bengali. Normally 14 or 15 April in Gregorian calendar, they celebrate alongside the Bengali of India.
The history of Pohela Boishakh:
Pohela Boishakh is the first day of Baishakh month every new year in Bengali calendar (Panjika). This day is a public holiday in Bangladesh to remember the Bengali history across the country. People of West Bengal and Bangladesh celebrate this day arranging different auctions. First day of Hindu Vedic Solar calendar also known as Bongabdo is traditionally known as Pohela Boishakh. On the early years, this day was celebrated only as seasonal day. Mughal emperor Shah Jahan commenced this day as a day to collect tax from the civilians. 10th or 11th March of 1584, people started to count Bengali year. That time the year was called as Fasli year. This name has been changed to Pohela Boishakh later.
Ways to celebrate:
On this day, the capital of Bangladesh, Dhaka is seen in new colorized. The civilians of Dhaka arrange cultural events and different activities. These activities are started on the dawn of day with the song “Esho he Boishakh” by Rabindranath Tagore. The local organization “Chhayanaut” organize event under a big old banyan tree at Ramna Batamul. Mongol Shobha Yatra or Provat Ferry, the traditional colorful procession starts on the early morning. On this day people wear different colorful especially white and yellow colored dresses. Some of the cultural events are music and drawing competition, acting, drama, boat racing, cockfight, wrestling, bull racing etc.
Villagers in the villages of Bangladesh also take part in this awesome day of celebration. The shopkeepers arrange “Halkhata” to increase the density of relation with their customers. The customers pay their dues on this Halkhata to the shopkeepers and open new account book. The shopkeepers invite their customers to have meal or rich dishes together. They exchange greetings one to others.
Local fairs known as mela are held across the country. Nagor dola, Palkis etc. and many more types of entertainments are arranged. In this mela, people buy and sell their homemade products, foods such as wooden, steel and other groceries.
“Panta Vat” is the favorite food of the Bengalis. The previous day of Pohela Boishakh, rices are wetted to eat in this day. Panta Vat with the fried Hilsa fish is traditional food which has exceptional taste. Everybody with their relatives and friends eat this food at their homes or in the mela. Cakes, sweets, sours etc. foods are served. Children enjoy this day much than the elder. They were new dresses, draw tattoos on their faces and visit the fair with their parents.
Pohela Boishakh is a ritual fact for the Bengalis. This day let them to remember the history of Bangladesh. Day by day, Pohela Boishakh is becoming a popular festive around the world. In fact, different cultured people are getting attracted to this day of celebration. This day holds up the familiarity of Bengalis to all nation.