Basant Panchami, also known as Vasant Panchami or Shri Panchami, is an important Hindu festival. It is celebrated on the first day of spring, which is the fifth day of the month of Magha. Basant Panchami also heralds the start of preparations for Holi, which begins forty days after Basant Panchami. Mustard flowers bloom in India during Basant Panchami, and the festival is associated with the colour yellow. The festival honours the goddess Saraswati, who is worshipped on this day as the representative of learning, creativity and music. It is also the day when we celebrate with our nearest and dearest by eating and sharing. From history to significance, here’s all you need to know about this day.
Basant Panchami 2024 date and time
According to Drik Panchang, this year the festival of Basant Panchami will be observed on Wednesday, February 14, 2024. The auspicious timings are as follows:
Vasant Panchami Muhurat – 07:01 AM to 12:35 PM
Vasant Panchami Madhyahna Moment – 12:35 PM
Panchami Tithi Begins – 02:41 PM on February 13, 2024
Panchami Tithi Ends – 12:09 PM on February 14, 2024
History of Basant Panchami
According to mythology, Kalidasa was about to commit suicide in a river after learning of his wife’s departure. Just as he was about to do so, the goddess Saraswati emerged from the river and asked Kalidasa to bathe in it. Afterwards, his life was transformed as he was endowed with insight and developed into a talented poet. Another story concerns the Hindu god of love, Kama, who is said to have interrupted Lord Shiva in the middle of a deep meditation after the death of his wife Sati.
Seers approached Kama to rouse him from his meditation, allowing Shiva to re-establish his connection with the outside world and acknowledge Maa Parvati’s efforts on his behalf. Kama nodded and shot flowers and beeswax arrows at Shiva from his sugarcane bow. Kama was reduced to ashes by an angry Lord Shiva, who opened his third eye. On the day of Basant Panchami, Shiva promised to resurrect Rati, his wife, after her 40 days of penance. Later he is said to have been born as Lord Krishna’s son, Pradumna.
Basant Panchami significance
On this day, the colour yellow is very important. People worship the goddess Saraswati, wear yellow clothes and eat traditional food. As well as representing knowledge, yellow also represents mustard fields, which are associated with the arrival of spring.
Puja rituals of Basant Panchami
The festival honours the goddess Saraswati, who is revered by intellectuals, artists and students alike as the patroness of learning. On this day, people travel to temples to worship the goddess in the hope of receiving her blessings for creativity, knowledge and wisdom. As yellow is the colour associated with the goddess Saraswati, many people dress in yellow and rise early on this day to worship her. As part of the puja ceremonies, yellow flowers and sweets are offered to the goddess. Recitation of hymns and mantras in honour of the goddess is another part of the puja.