Rongali Bihu, affectionately known as Bohag Bihu, isn’t just a festival; it’s a cultural extravaganza that ignites the spirit of joy and prosperity across Assam. This annual celebration, held in April, serves as a joyous herald of the Assamese New Year, intertwining age-old traditions with enthusiastic merrymaking.

A weeklong affair: Festivities unveiled during Bohag Bihu

Prepare to be swept away by the infectious enthusiasm that permeates every corner of Assam during Rongali Bihu. From April 14 to April 20, the state becomes a canvas of vibrant celebrations, pulsating with the rhythm of cultural performances and age-old rituals.

Honoring tradition: Rituals and customs

The celebrations begin with Goru Bihu, a special time to honor the cattle, which are crucial to farming in Assam. People carefully bathe and decorate these animals, showing their appreciation for their vital role in agricultural life.

As the festivities continue into the second day, Manuh Bihu takes center stage, enveloping communities in a whirlwind of traditional rituals. People apply turmeric paste, symbolizing blessings and good fortune. This is followed by baths, a tradition believed to bring prosperity. Additionally, the festivities are made even more delightful with a variety of mouthwatering Assamese dishes, prepared from the finest harvests, adding a delicious touch to the celebrations.

Cultural splendor: Husori and Bihu dance

No celebration of Rongali Bihu would be complete without the enchanting melodies of Husori and the energetic rhythms of the Bihu dance. Experience the magic of Husori as groups of singers traverse villages, spreading joy and merriment with their soul-stirring tunes. And when the beats of the dhul, melodies of pepa and gogona, echo through the air, it’s time to join the exuberant Bihu dance, a visual symphony of colorful attire and lively movements that embody the essence of celebration and renewal.

Bihu assam
bihu majuli” by Woodlouse is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Embracing tradition, embracing unity

At its core, Rongali Bihu is more than just a festival—it’s a testament to the rich history of Assamese culture and the enduring spirit of community. Beyond its agricultural significance, Rongali Bihu symbolizes new beginnings, prosperity, and the promise of a brighter future for all. As the sun sets on another year and the rhythms of Bihu songs fade into the night, the spirit of joy and togetherness lingers on, a timeless reminder of the cultural heritage that binds us all.

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