Bhai Dooj

It is a Hindu Festival that is celebrated on the second lunar day of Shukla Paksha according to the Vikram Samvat Calendar. Other names of this festival are ‘Bhai Ponta’, ‘Bhai Tika’ and ‘Yamadvitya’. The celebration of this festival takes during Diwali with a lot of enthusiasm and spirit. The festival falls on 26th October 2022, this year.

What are the rituals associated with ‘Bhai Dooj’?

The celebration of ‘Bhai Duj’ takes place all over the country in a traditional way. On this occasion, sisters prepare a seat for their brothers with rice flour. After the brother sits on the seat, a paste of vermillion, Dahi, and rice is applied on the forehead of the brothers as a religious tika. After that, the sister places a flower of Kaddu, betel leaves, betel nuts, and coins in the palms of the brother and pours water on it while chanting mantras. Once this is done, a Kalawa is tied on the wrist of the brother, and the aarti is performed. The next ritual is to exchange gifts among each and take the blessings of the elders.

How do the celebrations of Bhai Duj take place in different states?

In Maharashtra:  This festival is celebrated as ‘ Bhav bij’. As a part of the sibling celebration, a brother sits on the floor where a sister draws a square and consumes a bitter fruit known as Karith. After that, sisters apply tilak on the forehead of their brothers and perform the aarti and offer prayers for the welfare of the sibling.

In West Bengal: The festival is known as ‘Bhai Ponta’. As a part of the ritual, the sister observes a fast until the ceremony is completed. Sister applies tilak of the forehead of her brothers that is made with sandalwood, kajal, and ghee before offering prayers for the well-being. 

In Bihar: The celebration of Bhai Dooj in Bihar is quite different as compared to other parts of the country. Here the ritual is that, on this day, sisters hurl curses and abuses for their brothers on the occasion before pricking their tongues as a punishment and asking for forgiveness. In return, brothers bless them and offer them gifts.