Ugadi, Gudi Padwa 2020: History, Importance & Significance of Gudi Padwa and Ugadi Festival

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Ugadi, Gudi Padwa 2020: Gudi Padwa gets its name from two words: 'gudi', meaning Brahma’s flag, and 'padwa', meaning the first day of the phase of the moon. (Source: Getty/Thinkstock)

Ugadi, Gudi Padwa 2020: India is home to many different cultural clusters and beliefs. The different festivals and observances that are celebrated throughout the year, give the country a colourful identity. Among them are the Ugadi and the Gudi Padwa festivals that are celebrated every year with a lot of heart and love. This year, both the festivals fall on March 25, which is a Wednesday.

Ugadi -- also referred to as 'Yugadi' -- is a major festival that is celebrated in the southern states of Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. As per the Hindu calendar, it is celebrated as the beginning of a new year. The word 'Ugadi' is a combination of two words: 'yug' meaning 'age' and 'adi' meaning 'a new beginning'. Thus, it celebrated the beginning of a new age. On this day, people wear their best clothes and come out and greet other people. They gorge on delectable delicacies that are specially prepared on this day. Prayers are offered and houses are cleaned, so as to usher in novelty and prosperity. Families get creative on this day, and draw rangolis in their home. Other traditional floor decorations also include flower petals and coloured rice.

Religious significance of Ugadi

It is believed that on this day, Lord Brahma had created the universe. He had also created days, weeks, months and years. Thus, Ugadi is said to be the first day of the creation of the universe.

Gudi Padwa

Similar in concept is the Gudi Padwa festival, which will also be celebrated on the same day. It is mostly celebrated by the people of Maharashtra according to the lunisolar Hindu calendar. Gudi Padwa gets its name from two words: 'gudi', meaning Brahma’s flag, and 'padwa', meaning the first day of the phase of the moon.

On this day, many people take a customary oil bath, following which, they wear new clothes -- mostly traditional attire -- and decorate their home. Traditional rangoli is made with flowers and colours, and people then go on to hoist the gudi, or the revered flag.

The religious significance of Gudi Padwa

It is believed that Lord Brahma had created the universe on this day following a natural calamity. Owing to his efforts, time had restarted and a new era -- that of truth and justice -- had prevailed. It is for this very reason, that Brahma is worshipped on this day.