BAISAKHI Baisakhi, derived from the month of Vaisakh, is New Year's Day in Punjab. It falls on April 13 and marks the ripening of the Rabi harvest. Baisakhi is always celebrated with unusual vigour and gaiety and the performance of Bhangra. Baisakhi also has a religious significance for the Sikhs. It was during the Baisakhi celebrations in 1699 AD that the tenth Sikh Guru Gobind Singh founded the Khalsa Panth. On Baisakhi, people gather in Amritsar to offer prayers at the Golden Temple and to have a dip in the Holy Sarovar. Sikhs visits gurdwaras and listen to kirtans and discourses and read texts from the holy Guru Granth Sahib. BOHAG BIHU Bohag Bihu or Bhogali Bihu is the bspring festival that falls on 14th April and marks the beginning of the first month of the Assamese calendar. Invigorated by the spirit of spring, people dance and make merry in gay abandon, transcending religious and class barriers. This is the reason that Bohag Bihu is also called Rangali Bihu (Bihu of merriment). The festivities of Bohag continue for a month, the formal ceremonies begin on the last day of Chot and extend up to a few days in the month of Bohag. The first day of Bihu is known as Goru Bihu (Cattle Bihu) when the cattle are washed and decorated with garlands. The next day, the first of Bohag is Manuh Bihu (Human Bihu) when people visit and greet each other on the New Year. The distinguishing feature of Bihu is the performance of the Bihu dance and song with the accompaniment of dhol, pepa (buffalo-horn pipe), taka (split bamboo clapper) and tal (cymbals). BUNDI FESTIVAL The Bundi Festival is being organised for the last five years in Bundi, a town in Rajasthan. The festival attracts a large number of foreign tourists who throng the city to witness the various unique programmes organised during the two-day festival. The various events include big colourful procession of camels and bullock carts, carrying people dressed in their traditional attires and the Deep Daan, the flux of lamps at the famous Jaitsagar Lake. GANGAUR This spring festival is held in March-April in the honour of Gauri or Parvati, the goddess of abundance. Gangaur is the most important local festival in Rajasthan. Although celebrated throughout Rajasthan with great enthusiasm, the celebrations in Jaipur and Udaipur have their own charm and attraction. The festival is also celebrated with great pomp and show in Bikaner, Jodhpur, Marathwara and Jaisalmer. The tribal men and women have an opportunity to meet and interact freely and during this time, they select partners and marry by eloping. This is an unusual,romantic custom, which is sanctioned by the community. GUDI PADWA FESTIVAL The Maharashtran New Year's Day is celebrated in March/April, on the first day of Chaitra as Gudi Padwa. It is a day of great festivity and rejoicing. People get up early and clean their houses, decorating them with intricate rangoli designs. A silk cloth is tied to a pole with a brass goblet or kalash atop it, which is supposed to drive away evil from the house. Fresh leaves of neem tree, puran-pori and Shrikand are eaten during this festival. Historically, Gudi Padwa marks the victory of the Satavahana king Shalivahana over his enemies, about 1921 years ago. JWALAMUKHI FAIR This is celebrated twice in a year in April and October in the Kangra Valley of Himachal Pradesh in the honour of the Goddess of Volcano. KARTHIKAI FESTIVAL This is held in several places in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Kerala in the month of Karthik (October-November) in the honour of Lord Shiva. KHAJURAHO FESTIVAL OF DANCES The Khajuraho festival of Dances was started in 1975 by the Madhya Pradesh Kala Parishad with a view to promote tourism in the State. The aim of the Festival is to attract attention to the rich architectural heritage of Khajuraho. The festival imbibes the spirit of an eternal glory, where the artists and the backdrop of the Khajuraho Temples merge together in total Harmony. KHARCHI FESTIVAL Kharchior Khmarchi festival is a celebration for worship of the tutelary deity of theroyal family of Tripura. Once prevalent only in the royal family, the worship of theFourteen Gods has now turned into a festival of the general public of Tripura irrespectiveof caste or creed. The popular names of the Fourteen Gods are -Hara, Uma,Hari, Ma, Vani, Kumara, Ganapa, Bidhi, Kha, Abdi, Ganga, Sikhi, Kama and Himadri. Every year, on the eighth lunar day of the month of Asadha, the festival starts and continues for seven days at a stretch. The Kharchi festival has united the people of Tripura in the bond of fraternity.The State Government had declared the period from March 1999 to March 2000 as the 'Khajuraho millennium' since many of the Temples at Khajuraho completed 1000 years of existence.