Lohri

Lohri

Around January 14; during Hindu month of Magha
Lohri is a traditional seasonal festival in India celebrating winter's end and the returning prominence of the sun to the Northern Hemisphere. Among Hindus and Sikhs Lohri is a particularly special occasion for families who have had a baby during the previous year; families may celebrate with a feast and family members and friends often give gifts to the new child. This is also a traditional day for young unmarried Sikh women to pray for a good marriage, which custom is said to derive from the association of a 16th-century matchmaker named Dulla Bhutti with Lohri. Another old tradition is for children to go door to door singing for candy from the neighbors, not unlike Halloween in the United States.
Throughout India Lohri today is widely celebrated at night with bonfires and dancing. People eat seasonal nuts and candies and also throw them into the fire.
See also Magh Sankranti
CONTACTS:
Ministry of Tourism, Government of India
Rm. No 123, Transport Bhawan, No. 1, Parliament St.
New Delhi, Delhi 110 001 India
91-11-23715084; fax: 91-11-23715084
www.tourisminindia.com
SOURCES:
CelebFestIndia-1994, p. 36
RelHolCal-2004, p. 204
SikhFest-1989, p. 44
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Giddha is traditionally performed as part of women's celebrations of weddings, as well as at the festivals of Lohri and Teej: the former January festival marks midwinter and the hope of a good harvest, while celebrating the marriage or birth of sons in the previous year; the latter August festival marks the rainy season, and the traditional annual return of newly-married girls to their natal villages.
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