Also known as Varushapirappu or Puthandu in Tamil, it is the beginning of New Year as per the Tamil Calendar. In Tamil traditions, when Sankranthi occurs after sunrise and before sunset, then the new year begins the same day. If Sankranthi occurs after sunset, then the year begins on the next day. The Tamil New Year falls either on April 13 or April 14. The same occasion is known as Baisakhi in North India and usually marks the start of Sikh and Hindu New Year.
A festival of immense joy and social gathering, the festival is celebrated by meeting and greeting the relatives. Pondicherry, being a vibrant splash of colours, celebrate the Tamil New Year with great joy. From meeting and gathering with neighbours to offering prayers to deities for a healthy harvest, Tamil New Year resembles the usual New Year Celebration, except the fireworks. The houses in Pondicherry are decorated with rice and colours. A tray is arranged with three fruits, consisting of mango, banana and jackfruit, Silver/Gold jewellery, betel leaves and areca nut, flowers and a mirror. It is believed that watching the tray as the first thing on the New Year is auspicious and would bring great wealth and prosperity in the upcoming year.
Later in the evening, a family feast is organised followed by consumption of Mangai-pachadi. Tamil New Year is an occasion of the celebration in Pondicherry and experiencing Tamil New Year in Pondicherry would provide you with a cultural insight into the Tamilian culture.
The Tamil New Year is celebrated either on April 13 or April 14, every year.
Special Highlights/Rituals of the Festival
- The major highlight of Tamil New Year in Pondicherry is the evening feast, which includes the famous dish Mangai-pachadi.
- Arranging a tray with three fruits, consisting of mango, banana and jackfruit, Silver/Gold jewellery, betel leaves and areca nut, flowers and a mirror. Watching the tray, first thing in the morning is considered auspicious and it is believed to bring wealth and prosperity.