Magh Bihu, The Community Festival of Assam

Assam, one of the beguiling states of the Seven Sisters in North-East India, is eminent for its rich traditions, verdant tea gardens and breath-taking scenic vista. And when we talk about the core carnival of Assam, we can’t hop the discussion without Bihu. The people of Assam celebrate various types of Bihus (Rongali Bihu, Goru Bihu, Kati or Kongali Bihu) across the calendar. One such important event of Assam celebrated in the mid-week of January is Magh Bihu or Bhogali Bihu.

Being one of the significant community fiestas, Magh Bihu is celebrated in Assam with great gusto after the annual harvest. Since the event falls in the local month of Magh, it is popular as Magh Bihu. However, the celebration is not limited to the farming community of the state, on the contrary; inhabitants from the tiny hamlet and urban terrain of the state also join the festival with equal amount of glee. Today, the celebration spreads its aroma from the villages to the cities and people flock here from various locations to witness this amazing carnival of Assam.

The prime highlight of Magh Bihu festival is the food, which is produced in large quantities after the harvest. The night before the festival is popular as Uruka featuring community feats and fun festivity. There are many religious folks of Assam who prefer to be on fast on this night. While the villagers get involved in making a bamboo huts, which is popular as Bhelaghor in Assam. On the other hand, the female members of the family start preparing various food items like Laru, Pitha and many other sweet dishes made of rice, coconut, molasses and sesame. Besides, the kids and youths of Assam enjoy constructing a temporary chalet on the eve of Magh Bihu where they stay overnight and burn in the morning; and pray for a better harvest in the year ahead. This is how the community festival of Magh Bihu or Bhogali Bihu takes place in Assam. The festival is also celebrated as Makr Sankranti in various parts of the nation as it marks the end of winter. As per Calander, this year the festivals of Makr Sankranti and Magh Bihu are to be celebrated on January 14 and January 15 respectively.

So anyone who is planning a voyage to Assam this week, make sure to experience this community festival of the state. During your stay in Assam, you can also explore some of the enchanting destinations like Majuli, Kaziranga National Park, Kamakhya Temple, Umananda Island, Manas National Park and Sibsagar.


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