The festival of Basant Panchami, which marks the arrival of spring, will be celebrated in India this year on Tuesday, February 16. It is also known as Saraswati Panchami or Saraswati Puja as it is considered to be the birthday of Goddess Saraswati. The festival also marks the start of Holika or Holi which comes 40 days after Basant or Vasant Panchami. It is celebrated on the fifth day of the Hindu month of Magha in several parts of India.
Yellow colour is significant to this festival as people wear yellow coloured clothes and decorate their houses with yellow flowers on Basant Panchami. On this festival, devotees also offer prayers to Goddess Sarawasti. They visit the temples of the Goddess and pray to her in order to seek her blessings. A special feast is prepared on this day where people consume yellow rice.
The muhurat of Basant Panchami will start at 6:59 am and ends at 12:35 pm on February 16. Tithi of Basant Panchami begins at 3:36 am on February 16 and ends at 5:46 am on February 17. The Madhyahna moment will be at 12:35 pm on February 16.
On Basant Panchami 2021, many children are also introduced to alphabets as Goddess Saraswati is considered to be the deity of learning. A ceremony is held for children on this day which is called Vidya-Arambham or Akshar-Abhyasam. Apart from children who are introduced to alphabets, students also seek the blessings of Goddess Saraswati.
Apart from India, Basant Panchami is also celebrated in Nepal. Among Hindus of Indonesia, the festival is called Hari Raya Saraswati.
The significance of Basant Panchami is also because the season of spring is considered to be the king of all seasons and also auspicious for new beginnings. Therefore, this season is also believed auspicious for those who want to get married.