Happy Vishu 2017!
Keralites across the globe are set to celebrate the Hindu new year, on Friday, April 14. While it is known as Vishu in Kerala, the festival is celebrated as Puthandu in Tamil Nadu, Bihu in Assam, Baisakhi in Punjab and Pahela Baishakh or Poila Baishakh in West Bengal.
What is the significance and how is Vishu celebrated?
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The day begins with Vishukkani, which means things that are seen first in the morning. According to the tradition, if a person sees joyful things as kani on Vishu day, the year will be filled with good experiences.
The Vishukkani arrangement, using rice, lemon, coconut, jackfruit, cucumber, kajal, arecenut, Cassia fistula flower (kanikonna), betel leaves, valkannadi (mirror), religious books, lighted oil lamp, coins and decorated Lord Krishna statue, is set by women a day before Vishu. Each family member is then brought blindfolded in front of the setting by an elderly member of the house. Following this, each of them is given Vishukodi (new dress) and Vishu kaineetam (money).
Other customs of Vishu
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The most important tradition of Vishu is the grand sadya (feast) served like the sumptuous lunch during Onam festival. Apart from this, Vishu kanji (made of rice, spices and coconut milk) and Vishu katta (made from freshly harvested rice powder, coconut milk and jaggery) are the special dishes prepared as part of the festival in Kerala.
In the evening people celebrate Vishu by bursting fire crackers.
Vishu special songs
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The most popular songs in Malayalam related to Vishu festival is Lord Krishna's Kanikaanum Neram Kamalanethrante and Keshadi Paadam Thozhunnen tracks sung by KS Chithra.
Listen to the Vishu special audio songs here: